Thursday, July 22, 2010

Printmaking II

"Vintage Roses" on a zinc plate using a combination of line etching and dry point to add richer blacks to the back ground.

"Kindly Light" is a spider day lily and leaves, made by dry point scratched on a Plexiglas plate.

" Wooden Chair" my first "line etching" intaglio print. It was completed with only one dip in the acid which I blogged about back in May here.
Sorry it took so long to share a scanned image.

"Nasturtiums" a first proof print of dry point on copper plate.
Recently, I had a second class with Jake Muirhead at Pyramid Atlantic Art Center he taught another Intaglio technique called dry point in which we scratched drawings on copper and Plexiglas plates. We used a sharp needle in a wooden holder to make lines with a burr that would catch some ink. Then we proof printed our plates the same way as the line etchings. After you see your first proof print one gets to decide if the image is complete or if you want to add more lines. I usually want to add more and watching Jake work on his own plates is inspiring because he works over his plates a lot and gets some beautiful passages of ink in his prints. It is very hard to describe without a print in hand to show you but the beauty in Intaglio prints is all about the various lines and tones that the inks leave on the page transfered from the plate. Jake's prints online show some of that rich deep print quality but you really need to see one in person up close to enjoy all that velvety ink texture. Intaglio print making is a drawing you make on a plate and each change you make to the plate is only clear after you run a proof print to see what your marks have done. It can be a lot of fun, if you like this process and it can be a lot of torture, if you are uncertain what you want in your print at the end. I enjoy the process and sometimes the torture; in some ways it is the experience of drawing amplified and in very slow motion.
Pyramid Atlantic Arts Center recently rented gallery space to Washington Printmakers Gallery a collective of printmakers who always have etchings and dry points on display upstairs above the studios. I visit there regularly to get inspired by many local artists. It is an intimate gallery that is very friendly and full of all kinds of prints. Your comments are always welcome to encourage my endeavors, to tell us about prints you have seen or just to say hello.

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