Flowers, folk art, and old-school tattoos fill Maarit’s linocut prints

Today we’re talking to printmaker Maarit Hänninen, who makes gorgeous handmade linocut prints from a bedroom studio in her Amsterdam apartment.

Drawing inspiration from her Finnish roots, her work is filled with lush florals, and she loves to incorporate old-school tattoo designs, as well. This gives her prints a retro, yet contemporary feel that you won’t soon forget.

Check out the full interview below, and be sure to visit Maarit’s website, Instagram, Facebook, and YouTube channel.

Tell us about yourself. What do you make? What do you consider your best or favorite work?

  • Maarit Hanninen Lady in Black linocut print
  • Maarit Hanninen Autumn Blossoms linocut print
  • Maarit Hanninen prints

I’m Maarit Hänninen. I’m a Finnish artist, living in Amsterdam, and I design and create handmade linocut art prints.

Most of my works have flowers in them – especially peonies. I love folk art, old-school tattoos, and ornamental scrollwork, so my work is sort of a combination of those three, plus other themes as well.

My favorite piece is probably one with a tattooed lady, called, “Lady in Black”.

Tell us about your workshop

Maarit Hanninen linocut workspace
Photo credit: Maarit Hänninen

I make all my prints at home in a 15 m² guest room, turned into a studio. I share the space with my partner.

I have one desk, one portable press, a couple of closets for storing my prints, tools and packaging materials, so it’s a bit crammed at the moment.

My dream is to someday move into a house with a backyard, where I could build my own separate studio. But the space I have now works well enough for the volume of work that I produce, and it has a great, natural lighting so that’s a huge plus.

Get inspired: Best linocut artists to follow on Instagram

How long have you been doing your craft? Who taught you or where did you learn?

I have been making linocuts for about three years. I got acquainted with intaglio and woodcut printmaking at Liminka Art School in Finland.

A few years after that I started making linocuts at home, implementing the printmaking techniques that I had previously learned, and teaching myself that which I did not know yet.

Any advice for beginners to your craft?

Maarit Hanninen The Dance
“The Dance” Photo credit: Maarit Hänninen

Printmaking may seem a bit intimidating at the beginning because it entails so many different work stages. Many things can and will go wrong, especially at the beginning, but as with everything, practice makes you better.

The important thing is to just keep practicing and experimenting without fear.

Read also: Best lino cutting tools: Essential printmaking tools for block prints

Once you start to understand the medium a bit better, the practice becomes very meditative, and as a bonus, it teaches you a lot about patience.

Anything else you’d like to share?

I’m always happy to discuss my work and practice, so feel free to shoot me a message at [email protected], and make sure to check out my YouTube channel for videos of my process.

To see more of her work, check out Maarit’s website, Instagram, Facebook, and YouTube channel.

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