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Gel Printing with a Vegetable Bag

Trash can be so exciting when gel printing! Those mesh produce bags from the grocery store can do something very cool and customizable but they also surprised me by what they didn’t do!

At my grocery store it’s fascinating how many different types of mesh bags are available, some have a very tight weave, and others a very loose weave. This technique works best with mesh that is very loose.

Why? It makes it easy to turn the grid into wavy lines. You can customize how big the waves are and how many threads you smoosh together.

When you’ve got the mesh in the shape you want, place it on the gel plate and brayer the paint over it. It’s hard to see in the photo, but the mesh isn’t totally flat on the gel plate.

Since a gel plate grabs just about anything, I was surprised when it didn’t make the mesh go totally flat. Even with that, it still printed just fine. You might have noticed that the mesh is larger than my gel plate. That’s because the edges fray very easily so if I want to cover an entire plate, I cut the mesh larger than the plate.

These are fun prints in black and white, but I couldn’t resist adding a bit of color by loosely adding watercolors to the print.

To add to the pattern, I added black dots of various sizes and topped those dots off with a white paint pen.

Once the paint dries on the mesh, it is “stuck” in that shape meaning the threads don’t move very easily and the painted areas don’t fray as easily either so it’s ready to go any time you want to make more prints with it!

This is just one technique you can use on gel plate- there are loads more and if you’re ready to get more out of your gel plate, check out my online workshops.

Next time you’re at the grocery, take a peek at the bags of onions and other produce items. There just might be in a great gel printing tool there!

Here are the supplies used. Some of these links may be affiliate links which means I may get a small percentage and it doesn’t cost you anything extra! And you get a really good feeling knowing that you are helping keep the free tutorials coming!

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