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blotted line – a technique for serial work

Creative project Factory
Technique: Print
I can do alone: Yes
Required time: < 20 minutes
City: Home

Art like an assembly line? Some techniques make it possible to duplicate a motif and recreate it over and over again with subtle variations. What possibilities does this open up for art or in the field of fashion and product design? Try it out right now!

"I like things to be exactly the same over and over again."

Andy Warhol


You will need

  • ink
  • ink pen
  • pencil
  • tracing paper
  • (white) paper
  • pens
  • glue strips
  • magazines

Step 1

Choose a motif that you want to print.

For example, look in magazines or brochures for an object from advertising, perhaps a shoe.


Is there a difference between an original and a reproduction? What is that difference? What is special about an original? When is a print an original?


In the blotted line technique, a pencil sketch is traced with ink and printed. While applying the ink, the thickness of the printed lines varies, resulting in ink blots and imperfections. The copy is then colored, for example with watercolors.


Andy Warhol developed this technique in order to be able to reproduce his drawings and make them look as if they had been printed. As a commercial artist, this allowed him to create many similar illustrations on the same subject, change them slightly and experiment with different colors.


See more in the video!

Step 2

Now print the design using the blotted line technique:

  • Draw it in pencil on tracing paper.
  • Attach the papers on one side with an adhesive strip.
  • Trace the lines piece by piece with pen and ink and print them on white paper..

This technique allows you to create the same shoe over and over again with subtle differences.


The video explains all the steps again in detail!

Ponder this

What advantages did this technique give Andy Warhol as a graphic artist? What is so appealing about serial production?


Why did Andy Warhol particularly love the “defects,” the ink blots, and messy bits?


Once your object is completely transferred to the white paper, you can design it with color and patterns.


Finally, you need a suitable title or slogan: Who is your object for?


You don’t have ink at home? In this video we show you how you can easily make it yourself!

Before Andy Warhol worked as an artist in New York, he designed advertisements, for example, for shoes. Products and packaging, such as for cornflakes, are also a recurring theme in his paintings.

Delve deeper

Artist Factory

Andy Warhol

was born in Pittsburgh in Pennsylvania, USA in 1928 and died in New York in 1987.

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