Japanese Woodcut at Rabley with Sara Lee – Course review 2015


Japanese Woodcut

Traditional water-based printing without a press.


Artist and master printer Sara Lee gave an inspiring insight in to the beautiful, but complex, ukiyo-e Japanese Woodcut method on her 3-day course at Rabley last weekend.

Sara covered the history and technique of this method and guided everyone through the fundamental stages of cutting, tool sharpening, paper preparation, inking, registration and printing. Special advanced techniques like bokashi were also demonstrated where you get can a subtle vignette and gradation of tones in your prints.

There was a huge amount of information for everyone to take on board, but Sara was an extremely generous and patient teacher and we all benefited from her years of experience. It is safe to say we have a newfound respect for the Japanese cutters and printers of Hiroshige, Hokusai and Kuniyoshi’s complex images!

After a few ‘first pancakes’ and by the end of the course everyone was producing multi-block prints – Amrita and Pru even printed a small edition!

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There was also an opportunity to see exciting, new Japanese woodcuts in the gallery by Sara Lee and Nana Shiomi that are being launched with Rabley Contemporary at London Original Print Fair next week. Amrita who came all the way from Calcutta, India for the course was also kind enough to talk to us about her experience of working alongside a master printer in India.

We hope you all enjoyed and were inspired by the course. See you at Rabley again soon!

To see some of Sara Lee’s new Japanese woodcut prints check out her gallery page on our website, or come see them for real at London Original Print Fair, 23-26 April, Royal Academy, London.



Sara Lee


Japanese woodcut




Sara Lee

‘Under the Same Sun’

Japanese woodcut




Sara Lee


Japanese woodcut





Thurs 23 April 10–9pm

Fri 24 April 10–10pm

Sat 25 April 10–6pm

Sun 26 April 10–6pm



Eileen Cooper RA,

Peter Freeth RA,

Naomi Frears,

Jane Harris,

Katherine Jones,

Sara Lee,

Endellion Lycett–Green

Nana Shiomi,

Emma Stibbon RA


Contact Meryl or Amy-Jane if you would like information about future courses:

events@rableydrawingcentre.com / 01672 511999



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