Woodblock Prints

Moku Hanga translates to “woodblock print” in Japanese. This traditional Japanese printing method uses water based pigment technique developed in the 17th century. Prints are made by first carving the design into a wood block (typically imported shina plywood).

A separate block is carved for each color in the design. Water based pigments are then rubbed onto the carved wood block, Japanese paper is laid over top of the block. A baren is used to to apply pressure to the back of the paper, transferring the pigment to the paper.

Each color block is printed by repeating the same process, registering the paper in a “kento” registration system. A printing press is not used with this technique.