“It feels like a squid. It’s fabuloso!”

Sunflower and Fern groups have been working on representing and depicting the figure in many different ways with a variety of materials.  Three weeks ago, children were introduced to Gelli plates, which are plates made out of durable gelatin that can be used over and over for mono printing.  I absolutely love to work with this material, both in the Studio and at home.  We began by passing Gelli plates around and friends described what they looked like, felt like, and even smelled like.

Andres: It feels like a squid.  It’s fabuloso!

Trebor: It looks like jello.

Zavier: I think it’s made out of old paper.

Madison: Like, strawberry jelly?

Kwame: It’s so sticky.

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Miguel: It’s floppy and I can drop it so easily.

Waju: It’s made out of water and ice and it mixes together to make that.

Nneka: When I rub it, I see the lines I made.

Ra’Maya: It smells like crayons.

William: Squishy and stretchy.

Adrian: It’s gooey.

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Elijah: The name is kind of funny.  Smells like goo.  Really, really stretchy.

Douglas: They look so shaky.

Selwyn: It looks like a piece of cheese for the Krabby patty.

Sophie: It wiggles!

Next, I walked friends through the steps of how to use a Gelli plate.  We began by putting a small amount of paint directly on the plate.  I suggested using the squirt bottles to put one spot of paint in each corner, which seemed like the perfect amount.  Then, we used a brayer to roll out the paint.  Friends said the brayer reminded them of what you use to paint a house, or a wheel on a big truck.  Once the paint was in a smooth layer, we used finger stamps and scrapers to create images in the paint.  Once they were happy with the composition, they set a piece of paper down, rubbed it with their hands and VOILA— their image transferred to their paper!

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Zeina: I know, the paint will go from the Gelli plate to the paper!  This is going to be super fun.

Adrian: This is so amazing and fun.

Destynee: It’s so pretty, isn’t it?  It makes other shapes.

Ayub: This is my favorite!

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Selwyn: My Gelli plate is clean again.  I love this.

Elliott: Guys, look what I made.  It looks pretty great!

William: I can’t wait to see mine.  Wow, it looks like an underwater jail!

Mae: Oh yeah, go gelatin!

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Zoe: You have to make big decisions before you put the paper down on the Gelli plate.

Zavier: I used the scraper to make a “Z,”  isn’t it gorgeous?  It’s a painting of rain.

Carlos: It’s so quick.

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Elijah: I’m an artist making my hands dirty.  Wow, this turned out really good!

Stay tuned for a post on how we combined representing the figure and Gelli printing!

“Mine looks like a masterpiece. It looks like the Northern Lights!”

Over the past few weeks, friends in the Yellow art groups have been continuing to learn about and experiment with different printmaking processes.  Children spent two weeks working with Gelli plates, which are durable, gelatin printing plates that allow you to create monoprints over and over again.  This is the first year that I have working in the Studio with this material, but am so happy that I was able to take a class on it and introduce it to Pre-K friends!

How does the Gelli plate feel in your hands?

Sylvie: Soft like the ground floor.

Sophie: Like peanut butter and jelly.

Mackenzi: Ooey gooey.

Zoe: Whoa, it feels like jello!

Nneka: Squishy wishy.

Justin: Is it a jellyfish?

Abigail: Don’t squeeze the Gelli plate or it’ll break.

Next, friends began by putting a few small spots of paint on their Gelli plates and then rolled the paint over the plate with a brayer.

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The first week that we worked with Gelli plates, children used different types of stencils to make patterns and images to transfer to their paper.

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Next, children laid down a sheet of paper and applied pressure with their hands to transfer the paint.

Chrishelle: I remember… what you stamp will be on the paper.

Ryler: You can never make the same thing again.

Sasha: It’s so pretty it’ll make my dad cry!

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While friends were learning about this process, Ms.Lewton, the Head of the Art Department, stopped by and children had the opportunity to teach her how to use the Gelli plate.

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The following week, friends used finger stamps to create marks and images on their Gelli plate.

Miles: The finger stamps are boinging on the Gelli plate.

Reese: I like how squishy the Gelli plate is.  The paper gets stuck to it because it’s sticky.

Zoe: Mine looks like a masterpiece.  It looks like the Northern Lights!

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This week, children signed their finished prints for their portfolios!

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