Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Andy Warhol-inspired Printmaking

There are lots of people that never develop an appreciation for Andy Warhol’s work. If you’re one of those people, you should really read Uncle Andy’s, a fiction book by James Warhola, the famous artist’s nephew. While my son and I really liked the story and the whimsical illustrations, what I love the absolute most is the message – art is everywhere!

After we read this amazing book, we read an excerpt from Bonnie Christensen’s book. (We would have read more but my son was too curious about the supplies I’d set out for our art activity.) I cut to the chase and read the page that explained how Warhol used a commercial printing process to mass produce paintings in his studio, which became known as the Factory.

Then it was time to make our pop art-esque prints! We used a process I saw on Avie Designs’ site (thank you, Pinterest!).

What you need:
Clear household contact paper
An embroidery hoop
Thin fabric (I picked curtain sheers fabric)
Paint (we used craft acrylic; if you’re printing on a textile, use fabric paint)
Paper or fabric to print on
Fine-tip sharpie marker
Simple shape to trace and cut out (my son picked one from
Old credit card or empty gift card

Step 1
Place one layer of your fabric inside the embroidery hoop and tighten the screw, making sure the fabric is taut. Trim off the excess fabric.

Step 2
Trace the picture that you’ll be screenprinting onto the contact paper with a sharpie marker (mark your lines on the paper side, not the plastic side).

Step 3
Cut out the shape to make your stencil. Peel off the paper and lay the plastic sticky-side up on your work surface.

Step 4
Position your hoop over the stencil. Apply light pressure to make sure that the fabric adheres to the plastic, paying particular attention to the edges of the design.

Step 5
Position the hoop over a piece of paper. Squeeze out some paint above the design. Using a credit card or used gift card as a squeegee, apply pressure and scrape the paint across the design, repeating until it’s totally covered.

Step 6
Carefully lift the hoop from the paper. Ooh and awe. (We sure did!)

My son picked four different colored construction papers. When he lifted the hoop off the paper, he was just as excited as the first time. The results were awesome!

IMPORTANT: We did this activity twice. The first time we put the plastic stencil INSIDE the hoop. Paint bled underneath the contact paper stencil each time we dragged the card across. The secret to success is putting the contact paper stencil on the OUTSIDE of the hoop (steps 3 and 4), so the plastic made contact with the paper.


  1. Wow! What a great activity! You really are great at teaching about "the great artists" to your kids!

    Thanks for sharing on Kids Get Crafty!

    Maggy & Alissa

  2. I've been wanting to do screen printing in my preschool art classes for a while, but wasn't sure how to do it without the fancy equipment- this is a great alternative! Thanks :)

  3. This is so cool, the kids would love doing this activity and this books sounds like it is amazing. What a great way to teach children about art, artists and finding art everywhere! Thank you so much for sharing and linking up to stART :)

    ~Michelle @ A Mommy's Adventures

  4. I love this! Print making is so much fun and I love the way you did this! So going to try this with my kiddos.:)

  5. Love it!! You always come up with great ideas =-) Thanks for linking up to TGIF! Have a GREAT week,
    Beth =-)

  6. I also think this is an incredibly creative idea! Thank you so much for sharing!


  7. What a fun activity!! Thank you for sharing at Sharing Saturday!! I hope you are having a great week!

  8. how fun! My hubby is a huge warhol fan - I should do this as a family night activity!

    Will be sharing this as one of this week's features on the Sunday Showcase.

    Thanks for always sharing your fab ideas with us!