idea: rolling pin wood block printing.

here’s a bizzare idea that I just thought of… what about engraving rolling pins to create wood block type of prints. In a typical print shop you cut flat planks of wood to do engravings on and put it through a roller to apply pressure to the paper. What about just engraving a wooden rolling pin so that the pin itself acts as a roller that puts the ink on the paper. Strange idea, but for those on a budget without a typical printing press, it sounds like it might possibly work… but now the question is will a rolling pin stand up to that sort of damage? In printmaking class back in college, another cheapo alternative I remember talking about with the professor was using wooden kitchen spoons to sort of rub the paper on to the top of a cut up piece of wood or metal to make the print. This idea with the rolling pin sounds more logical to me as long as you can figure out a way to make the registration marks stay where you want them, and the paper stay while the rolling pin moves.

2 thoughts on “idea: rolling pin wood block printing.

  1. Nice update on a ancient idea cylinder printing.
    In Mesapotamia people carried cylinder seals, that looked like one long bead on a string, these were elaborately engraved, and could be printed on soft clay. They were used as signatures, and if someone left a home for a journey they would seal there door that way for a security measure.
    In Pre-Columbian Mexico, pots were also decorated with prints done in this manner.
    You should try your idea and upload photos,
    Kevin McCloskey

    • ooh, looks like other folks already have been doing this. Nice idea to use cork board since the cork will be cheaper to replace then the rolling pin itself… although, for art work that is suppossed to be printed years later, as prints in fine arts are sometimes, it might be better idea to engrave the rolling pin itself…

      Thinking about this a bit… Dowel rods might be able to be used instead of expensive rolling pins. That way the print could be reprinted later easily. The ends could just be cut smaller then the rest of the area to be printed to leave it as a handle to this home-made rolling pin sort of thing… maybe even sanded down to make it easier to roll consistently.

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