Lino Printing

Students are introduced to relief printing through cutting and printing their own lino designs. A common theme is threaded through the works by drawing on the Mapping Country painting as a starting point. Shapes, themes and textures are used to form the basis of the student prints.


This activity was conducted in studioFive at MGSE as part of our Master of Teaching course.


  • Cartography
  • Identity through place
  • Abstraction
  • Simplification

Skills and Techniques

  • Linocut printing
  • Print making conventions


  • Lino
  • Cutting tools and bench hooks
  • Block printing ink
  • Cartridge paper


If required, an introduction to lino cutting can be conducted at the beginning of the class, emphasising the direction of cutting and the use of bench hooks.

Ask students to consider their Mapping Country works and think about how they might be represented or responded to in prints. Have a discussion around the opportunities and limitations that printmaking presents to artists.

Students draw designs on lino before cutting them out carefully. Pairs or groups of students can work together to ink and print their pieces.

This exercise presents an opportunity to discuss printmaking conventions such as editions, consistency across printing, numbering, signing and the use of an artists proof.

Art Connections

This lesson challenges students to move between painting and printmaking in exploring the themes around their mapping investigations. The strengths and limitations of printing practice can be leveraged by students to create new and meaningful productions.

VCD Connections

Lino printing is a powerful medium for designers to use when refining design concepts. It allows the consistent reproduction of shape and colour and can be used in the development of logo graphics or when exploring the use of pattern and repetition within a communication design.

Related Artists

Cally Conway

Next Steps

Following lessons can extend these concepts by:

  • These lino print designs were explored further in the Screen Printing exercise.
  • A range of Present and Perform outcomes can be explored with the edition of prints that students have produced. Try framing, hanging and presenting the same images in a variety of ways and observe how audiences respond.
  • The lino prints can be painted over – creating new, unique mappings over the consistent prints.
  • Students can explore with printing on to different print stocks and fabrics, turning the lino design into a pattern to be used in a communication design.