A History of Green Door


Green Door Printmaking Studio was first conceived in Green Lane, a University of Derby owned building, in 2006. The studio began modestly, with five members working in a small area of the building (previously occupied by the catering staff).


When the decision was made by the University to repurpose the building in late 2007, Green Door moved to the first floor of St James Centre in Normanton. The studio grew from 5 to 130 members in the space of five years and it soon became clear that printmaking was very much alive and kicking in Derby and beyond!

In late 2012 Green Door Printmaking Studio applied for and was successful in getting an Arts Council England Grant for the Arts in order to move into and become an anchor tenant of Banks Mill Studios.

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Green Lane, Derby (2006-2007)
Green Lane, Derby (2006-2007)
St James Centre, Malcolm St (2007-2013)
St James Centre, Malcolm St (2007-2013)
Banks Mill Studios, Bridge St (2013-)
Banks Mill Studios, Bridge St (2013-)

Our Mission

Green Door Printmaking Studio is Derbyshire's only open access artist studio dedicated to the art and craft of innovative and environmentally sound printmaking.

We research, develop and teach the very latest techniques and processes for innovative and environmentally sound printmaking. We are building a local, national and international artist's community of printmakers dedicated to safer printmaking practices by inviting contributions to our projects, exhibitions and print exchanges.

We strive to raise the profile of printmaking as a primary art form with a long and distinguished history.

Accessibility at Green Door

At Green Door we believe in inclusion and accessibility, and strive to ensure that all are welcome to enjoy printmaking in our supportive environment. We are dedicated to providing any accomodations requested to make your experience comfortable and uninhibited.

Our studios invite printmakers from all walks of life and in no way discriminate against anyone because of their sex, religion, disability or any other personal characteristics.

If you have any feedback or require any personal accommodations prior to visiting the studios, please contact us.

We aim to:

  • Provide an environmentally sound open access printmaking studio within Derby City Centre that is accessible to all.
  • Be a driving force for arts, leisure and culture within Derby City. Working with local educational establishments, businesses and commercial enterprises to further develop Derby’s cultural economy.
  • Be a firm influence in the move away from the use of toxic materials in printmaking across national and international studios.
  • Build and support a vibrant community of printmakers, enabling artists to create, exhibit and sell work both locally and internationally.

Our Founders

Anna and Pandora Johnson
Anna and Pandora Johnson

Anna first delved into the world of printmaking when she was studying at Edinburgh College of Art in the 1960s. She studied innovative techniques under Master Printmaker Alfons Bytautas whilst completing her BA(Hons) degree in Illustration at the University of Derby.

Simultaneously, Pan (Anna’s daughter and partner in crime) was also dipping her toes into screen printing whilst studying at the University of Derby (also for a BA(Hons) degree in Illustration).


When both Anna and Pan graduated, both firmly invested in printmaking for their individual arts practice, it became apparent that printmaking facilities in the Midlands (in particular the innovative techniques that they had been using) were non-existent.

It was obvious to Anna that in order to further utilise printmaking (in particular, etching) that she would need to set up a specialised studio, with printmaking facilities.

Being a firm believer in socialism, and ethical issues, it seemed to be the natural progression that the studio be Open Access and available to all, as well as being set up from the outset as environmentally sound, outlawing the use of acid, solvents, and other chemicals usually found in printmaking studios.

Our Projects

Founded in 2009, the International Print Exchange is an unjuried print exchange with no assigned theme, open to all.

Founded in 2018, the Derby Print Open is an annual exhibition celebrating printmakers based in the United Kingdom.

Green Door Printmaking Studio is the only UK stockist of Photopolymer Film (Hitachi Chemical; Photec H6-238, 40 microns).