Marker Monoprints

Learn how to make a monoprint with your MFA art kit or materials from home

Printmaking allows artists to create multiple original copies of their work, similar to making a print on a copy machine. But with monoprinting, the image can only be made one time. Each work of art is unique! Many different materials can be used as the base for making monoprints, such as metal, wood, and even Styrofoam. Artists can add designs with paint, ink, and collage. Afterward, the surface is wiped clean and ready to be used all over again. Onchi Kōshirō, the artist who made the print above, used colorful ink to paint circles and stripes on a wood block.

If you have an MFA art kit for this very activity, you already have all the materials you need! If not, start by gathering all the materials below.



You will need:

  • a large plate
  • water
  • print foam or a clean Styrofoam food tray
  • washable markers
  • white paper
  • colored paper
  • glue stick
  • paper towel or a sponge

Step 1

pouring water from a pitcher into a bowl
Pour just a little bit of water onto a plate.

Step 2

drawing colorful shapes onto styrofoam with markers
Use washable markers to draw designs or a picture onto the Styrofoam, being careful not to press the marker down too hard. You can make anything you like!

Step 3

dipping one side of sheet of paper in water
Wet one side of the white paper by dipping it into the water.

Step 4

pressing wet sheet of paper against colored-in styrofoam
With the wet side facing down, carefully place the paper on top of the Styrofoam. 

Step 5

pressing surface of paper onto colored-in styrofoam
Gently press the paper onto the Styrofoam with your fingers, making sure to press the whole surface.

Step 6

peeling paper off of styrofoam to reveal shapes transferred onto paper
Peel back the paper and take a look at what you made!

Step 7

print glued onto larger sheet of paper as frame
If you’d like, you can frame your print by gluing it onto another piece of paper.

Step 8

wiping marker off styrofoam
Use a paper towel or sponge dipped in water to wash the marker off the Styrofoam. Once it’s dry you can start again!