The primary ingredient of lino (or linoleum) is linseed oil, plus other natural ingredients including resins, limestone, powdered cork and wood powder. Lino blocks have either a hessian back or are mounted on fibre-board to give a more sturdy surface to work on.
|Lino block with hessian backing (left) and fibre board backing|
An alternative to lino are the Speedball Speedy-Carve Carving Blocks. These latex-free rubber blocks are easily carved with a lino cutter. They are also very flexible and can be bent around curved objects for printing onto flower pots or jars. The dense rubber also makes the cut blocks ideal for creating imprints on polymer or silver clay.
|Cut Speedy-Carve Blocks|
Our Fact File page Block Printing with Speedball Speedy Stamps takes you step-by-step through the process of creating a two colour print using these rubber blocks. The same principles of this process apply to prints created with lino blocks.
The design is cut out of the block using a Lino cutter which consists of a handle and a choice of interchangeable blades. Each blade provides a different depth or shape of cut.
|The Speedball Lino-zips Safety Cutter|
|Brayers in 2 widths|
There are a number of methods for transferring the inked block to the surface of the paper or fabric. Lightweight papers tend to print more easily than heavier weight papers although slightly dampening the surface of the paper will help with transfer.
In addition to the lino printing tools offered on the George Weil website we also offer a large selection of block printing inks.