I have quite a few old cutting mats I have used for my linocut workshops. Quite often, the hand slips and mark is made in the cutting mat. So I thought why not to try a cutting mat as a block to cut to on purpose. It is made out of vinyl after all.

I used an A4 mat and cut 2 equal landscape rectangular blocks. Three colours in mind, I started with the top layer (black) after moving to blue and yellow.

Using a tracing paper, a carbon paper and a sharpie pen, I transfered the 'blue' image from a test top layer print onto the second block.

The material is very hard and quite thick so an A4 board with cut out shape to slip the block into makes a brilliant registration method.

The yellow for the cardinals will be made out of a rubber block, like stamps. I can then use either ink pads or ink to print those. Tracing the shapes from one of the test prints, using tracing paper and then rubbing the images onto a rubber block.

Now for the berries, they will be hand coloured once everything is dry.

Cutting into a cutting mat is surprisingly enjoyable. I now what to do with my old pile of them!