SUMMER ARTS Lab: Gelatin Printmaking

Did you know? You can make prints with transfers, botanicals, and even collages!

Dates: Monday, June 22–Friday, June 26, 2020 

Times: 9:00 a.m.–4:00 p.m. daily

McColl Center Members: $300; Non-members: $340

11–16 year-olds


Instructor: Laurie Smithwick

What you’ll do: Create your own gelatin plates and techniques for making prints

Tools you’ll use: Gelatin, botanicals, handmade stencils, found materials

Students will create their own gelatin plates, a non-toxic method of printing to paper or cloth. Artist Laurie Smithwick will teach them to explore diverse techniques such as rolling ink and pulling a print (including ghost prints), as well as more complex techniques, making transfers, botanical prints, and collage with handmade stencils and found materials. Artwork created during the week will be shown in an Artwork Showcase on the last day of class.


  • All materials are provided.
  • Students will be in class from 9:00 a.m. to 12 p.m. and from 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. Lunch will be from 12 a.m. to 1 p.m. and participants must bring their lunch.
  • McColl Center will provide a healthy snack to the students during class. If your student has certain food allergies, please notify staff prior to the first day of class.
  • Please have your student wear comfortable clothes and shoes that you don’t mind getting a little messy.
  • The use of electronic devices, such as cell phones, is prohibited during class time, as it is likely to disrupt the creative process for your student and others in the classroom.
  • If your student has any special needs or health conditions, please notify staff before the first day of class. (McColl Center staff and teachers cannot dispense medication.)
  • Family and friends are invited to the culminating Artwork Showcase on Friday, June 26, at 3:00 p.m.


About SUMMER ARTS at McColl Center

SUMMER ARTS at McColl Center for Art + Innovation is designed for 11–16 year-olds to spark imagination, encourage self-expression, and make enduring connections to many expressions of art. Each lab focuses on a particular medium and technique, led by a professional artist who will teach skills and give individual support through the creation process. In the course of the week in the lab, students develop technical and conceptual skills while producing an impressive body of work across drawing, painting, sculpture, mixed media, printmaking, encaustic, mural design, graffiti, and/or design and illustration.

SUMMER ARTS students will have the opportunity to explore McColl Center to experience the artwork in the gallery and visit with the artists-in-residence in their studios.

At the conclusion of each week in the lab, family and friends are invited to experience the Artwork Showcase, highlighting the work of each student in the lab.

How to get here + drop-off and pick-up procedures

  • McColl Center is located at 721 N. Tryon Street in uptown Charlotte. Free parking is available in the paved portion of the lot at the corner of W. 10th St. and N. Church St. (behind Charlotte Ballet). Metered street parking is available on N. Tryon St. and W. 10th St. (Accessible entrance info below.)
  • Daily arrival time is between 8:45 and 9:00 a.m. at our main entrance at 721 N. Tryon Street. Look for the posted signs guiding you in. Parents or guardians must bring the student into the building to sign-in for each session.
  • A McColl Center representative will have you sign the drop-off sheet and a nametag will be given to your student. You will then be directed to your student’s classroom.
  • Pick up time is between 4:00 and 4:15p.m. at our main entrance at 721 N. Tryon Street. When you return to pick up your student, you will sign the pick-up sheet.

Refund and cancellation information

  • Cancellations made 30 (thirty) or more days prior to the first day of the lab will result in a full tuition refund (less $25 processing fee). 
  • No tuition refunds will be issued after the first day of the lab, when held as scheduled. 
  • All cancellations and refund requests must be made in writing to Claudia Gonzalez Griffin at

Accessible entrance

Our accessible entrance is located at the end of the ramp at the rear of our building. From the N. Tryon Street side of our campus, proceed towards the building, then follow the paved pathway to the left along the side of the building. (Our building will be on your right as you proceed towards the ramp.) When you reach the end of the ramp, the back bay door area will be on your right. Press the intercom button and someone will assist you. Call us at 704-332-5535 if you need further assistance upon arrival. We’re happy to help.