What an interesting accident

So I took an illustration, inverted it and 3D engraved it on medium basswood settings (on a random piece of non PG basswood).

I was thinking it might work as a woodblock printing test.

Unfortunately, no. The lines are way too fine for that at this scale. So I figure “maybe I’ll paint it white, then roll black over the whole thing, getting a positive’. I had a can of white primer laying around so I said “let’s see what happens”. I got a couple of light sprays in and just stopped because I thought it looked really cool. This is what I got:

It’s like the primer sought out the upper surface, such an unexpected result.


I zoomed way in, re engraved and tried again. Provisional success on block printing:

The bottom left one was the most recent, getting the amount of paint dialed in is tricky, definitely a feel thing.

This is just plain old acrylic model paint, watered down about 25%.


AFAIK woodblocks require way more presure than you would think.


The print looks great! Interested to see what other unexpected outcomes you stumble upon.

I did one little woodblock print at one point …I liked the draftboard for it better than the hardwood - it seemed to hold the paint better.

But yeah, took a lot of pressure.


It looks delicate but very pretty.

The “zoomed” in version looks like a woman.

You know, I thought the same thing. It’s an original piece by my girlfriend, she was so pleased to see her digital art made into something physical :slight_smile:

And she was as surprised as anyone about the gender flip when you zoom just the eyes.


It definitely requires more than a rubber stamp that would be more familiar. They’re actually usually a piece of wood, then piece of cushion, then rubber design so they’re even springier. There’s no give with a woodblock and very little with lino.

The back of an old wooden spoon works pretty well for burnishing the paper on the block.

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And here I just did my test on notebook paper on top of a magazine (which had a bit of give) :slight_smile:

@evansd2 All kinds of awesome! this is fantastic

<Bump> Seems like this would be great for charcoal rubbings, too!

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looking at the closeup I see a lot of places there because of kerf the edge barely makes it. With a bit of sanding on a very flat surface and not hard enough to break a wall. and at the finest grit (2000?) you would have a polished single surface that my guess would print better than a variable height surface. Alternatively, or perhaps as well, a thin rubber sheet behind the paper might make up for such diversity.