top of page

Elizabeth Forrest is an artist print-maker whose career has encompassed printmaking, drawing, artist books, three-dimensional installation, teaching, and curatorial work. After earning a B.A, she graduated from Ontario College of Art and later taught there for seven years. ​Elizabeth went to Kyoto Japan in 1988 to learn colour woodcut printing or mokuhanga. She has specialized in mokuhanga printmaking since 1999 and has taught many workshops in the medium. She now permanently resides in Waterloo Ontario.


(woodblock print)

Mokuhanga means 'woodblock print' in Japanese. This traditional Japanese printing method emerged in the 17th century Japan after water based printing of buddhist texts on woodblocks travelled from China. In English the terms "colour woodcut", or "Japanese woodblock print" are also frequently used to describe contemporary work made in this method. 

Unique to this printing approach compared to European printing is the use of thick horsehair brushes to apply pigments. A printing disk or baren is employed to create the impression. Japanese made "washi" paper creates the most successful prints and the prints.


Today this technique still uses artisan made tools and materials but is being adapted to contemporary imagery by many contemporary print makers. Creating a mokuhanga print involves planning  a graphic style image that  usually employs colour. The design is transferred to one or more woodblocks, carved  and printed. A notch registration system (kento) transforms the original sketch to a beautiful print through the ineffable charm of water colour pigments impressed into a strong, durable washi paper.

Get in Touch



bottom of page