Monday, October 8, 2007

Experimenting with Intaglio and the Pin Press

Previous discussion of the pin press can be found at My first test print (a relief) with the pin press was

This past week and weekend, I started experimenting with pulling an intaglio with the pin press. I burned a small 2-1/2in by 3-1/2in poplar block. I used Daniel Smith oil etching ink and Rives BFK paper. My first attempts were dismal. The paper moved as I rolled back and forth. Only half the lines were pulled when I wiped well; when I wiped less, I achieved more lines, although still not all, but they became thick and undefined. After half a dozen such attempt, I gave up for the moment.

I decided to go ahead and print the block relief so that I could at least get something from it, and was disappointed even further. Usually I have no movement of paper on relief prints as the paper sticks well to the inked surface, however due to the small size of this print, the paper also moved and I ended up with an okay image, but nothing great.

On a last ditch effort at relief printing, I spritz a couple papers with water. Maybe the damp paper will stick better to the block, and damp paper always prints better. It did. It was slick. Why didn't I print with damp paper in the first place. With my success of damp paper for relief, I misted some additional pieces and bagged them up for the night to print intaglio the next day. They printed just as beautiful. There was no slippage of the paper, and the lines pulled crisp. You can see the final relief and intaglio prints in the following two posts.

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