Tag Archives: Printing

Little Wizard by Kazuno Kohara

Little Wizard: Kazuno Kohara (Macmillan Children's Books, 2010)

Little Wizard: Kazuno Kohara (Macmillan Children’s Books, 2010)

I saw this book hidden on a shelf in a discount bookstore and pounced on it quickly. It drew me in with the vibrant colours and a quick flick through showed that we needed this book! I later realised that I had heard of other books by Kazuno Kohara and they are now all on my wish list.

This book is beautiful. The images are linocuts (that’s what they look like, I haven’t been able to find behind-the-scenes book creating for her work which is a shame as it’s so gorgeous) in two colours on purple paper. It works so wonderfully well. The black print lines stand out against the purple, and the only other colour is green for the dragon. Perfection.

The story is one of friendships in unlikely places, and the things that really matter not being what you originally thought. I have lost track of the number of times I have read this book today, DG has requested it over and over. It was one of DG’s Christmas present books and I’m so glad I found it. Hugely recommended, and well loved by DG and MG.

Love Monster, Hate Printing

Hate is a bit of an overstatement, but I’ve gone with artistic licence for the title of this post!

Love Monster is a lovely book about being different and being loved for who you are, not for being like everyone else. I really liked the book, and enjoy reading it to the girls. But what I didn’t realise until seeing the video below is that the pictures are created by printing, which is why they have the lovely quality that they have.

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5e8yxqht0i0]

On seeing this, I was inspired. This is generally not a good thing, because I have the artistic talent of, um, a cluster of colour blind hedgehogs in a bag… But still, I wanted to do printing! Printing! The girls would love that. Wouldn’t they?

Light sensitive etching plates and printing presses aren’t a feasible option so I started to think lino printing because I remembered doing it at school, but didn’t think that was a particularly safe option for small children. After some great advice from Zoe at Playing by the Book I decided to get 4 colours of water based printing ink, a brayer (or roller) and tried to get the girls interested in attempting printing using biro drawings on styrofoam.

It didn’t really work very well. The girls didn’t really get the idea of drawing on the styrofoam (pizza packaging in our case); I couldn’t find a biro or the paper embossing tools that I’m sure I have somewhere and the blunt end of a paintbrush wasn’t the viable alternative I hoped it would be (although pencils worked well); and one roller between two children (and 4 colours) meant arguments and lots of roller cleaning…

I had a rethink. Foam sheets! Then the girls wouldn’t have to draw anything, just needed some foam stickers to stick on and instant printing. So I invested in 2 more rollers, thinking this would be a huge hit, and we tried again.

The girls weren’t interested. Mighty-Girl did one print, and then was far more interested in making patterns with the foam stickers (and ‘painting’ them with the ink) and although Destructo-Girl managed some prints with help, she much prefered making handprints.

Mummy got completely frustrated that her brilliant idea wasn’t appreciated, and sulked. Looking back at the pictures, it looks a lot more successful than I remembered!

On the bright side, Love Monster is a lovely book that I can read again and again. And we have all the tools we need for attempting printing again, at some point in the future…

Disclaimer: We were sent a copy of Love Monster by HarperCollins for review. No other financial reward was given and the opinions are my own. I was not asked to write this post.