We are a network of artists who explore the creative possibilities of large scale relief printmaking.

Why Be A BIG INKer?

Here are a few good reasons...
Video Tutorials

Never made a woodcut or woodblock print? No problem! We've created step-by-step video tutorials to get you started.

Professional Prints

We assist in the creation of three impressions from your carved block which you can later exhibit and sell.

High-Res Photography

You are provided a professionally photographed image of your work that is also added to our website.

No Submission Fee

We don't charge a submission fee and only collect a participation fee if you are accepted.

Basic Criteria

Size: Images must be at least 24” x 36” in dimension but no larger than the maximum size indicated under each venue’s details.  Please keep in mind that size may be limited due to the equipment available at the venue in which we’re printing.

Materials: Artists are responsible for securing his or her own plywood, MDF or Shina for carving in addition to carving tools. The plywood, MDF or Shina must be either 1/2″ or 3/8″ thick.  BIG INK provides technical documentation and step-by-step videos to get you started.

Originality:  Uniqueness of the design is a major consideration.  A drawing, digital graphic, altered photography, collage, sketch, painting of what you intend to carve is acceptable. Images must be solely created by the applicant.

Fees: It is free to submit your proposal; accepted artists pay $295 to participate.  This fee covers everything including paper, ink, cleaning supplies, and professional photography.

Painters, sculptors, photographers and any other ambitious souls are welcome to apply. You don’t have to be an expert printmaker. We’ve coached accepted participants of all career levels, from emerging to established, through the process.

Commonly Asked Questions

Collaboration: Two artists can collaborate on a single woodblock.  Simply list both individual’s details on the application.

Attendance: Artists are responsible for attending the printing day assigned to them.  You’re welcome to attend any other scheduled printing days but are not required to do so.

Transport: You may be able to ship your block directly to the venue.  Contact us to confirm. At the event BIG INK provides newsprint to wrap the work and mailing tubes are provided for those that are mailing work back home.  When shipping your block to the venue also include a return label in the package. This makes shipping your block back home easy.

Accommodations:  Artists are responsible for securing his or her own accommodations.  We use Airbnb most frequently.  The site allows you to input the venue’s address and view the nearest rooms for rent.  Typically you can find something well under $100 per night. We recommend booking sooner rather than later to ensure the best availability and price.

Consumables:  BIG INK provides everything needed to print you large woodblock including Masa printing paper and Graphic Chemical oil based relief ink.  You’re not required to bring anything but your block to the printing event.

Color printing:  To keep the work cohesive and simplify the process of printing multiple artist’s work, we don’t permit color printing at events.

2018 Call-For-Entry Schedule

3 Fish Studios

4541 Irving St, San Francisco, CA 94122
Dates: Apr 28th & 29th
Apply By: Midnight, Feb 19th
Max Proposal Size: 40″ x 60″
Fees: Free to apply; $295 if accepted

Dedee Shattuck Gallery


Dates: Jun 16th & 17th
Apply By: Midnight, Apr 9th
Max Proposal Size: 40″ x 96″
Fees: Free to apply; $295 if accepted

Center for Contemporary Printmaking


Dates: Jun 23rd & 24th
Apply By: Midnight, Apr 16th
Max Proposal Size: 40″ x 96″
Fees: Free to apply; $295 if accepted

Frontline Arts


Dates: Jul 14th & 15th
Apply By: Midnight, May 6th
Max Proposal Size: 40″ x 96″
Fees: Free to apply; $295 if accepted

Whiteaker Printmakers


Dates: Jul 21st & 22nd
Apply By: Midnight, May 14th
Max Proposal Size: 40″ x 84″
Fees: Free to apply; $295 if accepted

Fleisher Art Memorial


Dates: Aug 3rd & 4th
Apply By: Midnight, May 21st
Max Proposal Size: 40″ x 96″
Fees: Free to apply; $295 if accepted

Zea Mays Printmaking


Dates: Aug 11th & 12th
Apply By: Midnight, Jun 14th
Max Proposal Size: 40″ x 96″
Fees: Free to apply; $295 if accepted

Artists Image Resource


Dates: Sept 22nd & 23rd
Apply By: Midnight, July 16th
Max Proposal Size: 40″ x 96″
Fees: Free to apply; $295 if accepted

Riverviews Artspace


Dates: Oct 6th & 7th
Apply By: Midnight, July 30th
Max Proposal Size: 40″ x 96″
Fees: Free to apply; $295 if accepted

Share Your Idea

We’re delighted to review your proposal!  Before applying, please read through the current open deadlines above if you haven’t already done so.  Note this application system does not save information. If you navigate away from this window while your application is in process, it may be lost.  We recommend that you type your proposal in a word document and then copy/paste responses into the application. If you have any questions, or run into problems using our online system, please contact us.

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To get a sense of how you should present your concept please view this sampling of past proposals that have been accepted.

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