Project 10: Mark making on Polystyrene

I had some Polystyrene in the house that I’d used in the past to try making stamps/stencils with so it made sense to do some mark making with it. I decided to use only a few tools; a ball point pen, fine pen, craft knife and hand saw and to keep what I drew with them simple. So forgive the child like quality of the prints.

Cutting the surface 

Cutting into polystyrene with a craft knife

Cutting into polystyrene with a craft knife

Printing

print taken from polystyrene cut with craft knife

print taken from polystyrene cut with craft knife

I chose to do some ‘drawing’ with the craft knife to see if it would give the fine lines I was expecting. The fruit was drawn simply because it was a simple subject to draw. I think the effect is quaint, could work well as part of a print, the lines could make a nice background texture.

Marking

marking polystyrene with ball point pen

marking polystyrene with ball point pen

Printing

print taken from polystyrene marked with ball point pen

print taken from polystyrene marked with ball point pen

I expected that making marks with the ball point pen would give thicker lines, perhaps look a little more like an illustration done with a brush pen. And that’s pretty much how it’s worked, I think this could work well as a sort of children’s book illustration, or for drawing a simple still life.

Marking

marking polystyrene with fine pen

marking polystyrene with fine pen

Printing

 

print taken from polystyrene marked by fine pen

print taken from polystyrene marked by fine pen

I wasn’t sure how well the finer pen would work, as it was harder to drag through the polystyrene. It made some rougher marks than the ball point which gave smooth thick lines. I’m not entirely sure what kind of subject this would suit.

Printing

marked polystyrene with hand saw

marked polystyrene with hand saw

 

Marks made with a hand saw

Marks made with a hand saw

I wanted to try and make a mark with a harsher tool, seeing as the hand saw was around it seemed as good a choice as any. What I like about the lines is (and you can probably only just make this out close up) that you can see some of the tooth marks from the drag of the saw just next to the big lines made by it. It gives this sort of shadow effect.

 

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