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History of printing

By Lewis Lafferty

Lewis Lafferty

on 22 June 2012

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Transcript of History of printing

In this prezi slideshow, you will learn all about the process of printing, and how it has come a long way from where it once started. Feel free to scroll around and learn about some of the numerous amount of printing methods which people have used throughout the ages. A metal plate is taken and its whole surface is roughened evenly. This is done manually with a rocker, or done mechanically. The image is this created by selectively burnishing areas of the surface of the metal plate with metal tools. The smoothed parts will print lighter than those areas not smoothed by the burnishing tool.

The image is then created by selectively burnishing areas of the surface of the metal plate with metal tools. The smoothed parts will print lighter than those areas not smoothed by the burnishing tool. A burnisher (the tool used) has a smooth, round end, which flattens the minutely protuding points on the roughened surface of the metal printing plate. Areas which are smoothed completely flat will not hold any ink at all (these areas will print white)

By smoothing the surface to a certain degree, mid-tones between black and white can be produces. This is why mezzotint is called what it is. Mezzo-tinto is italian for 'half-tone' or 'half painted' The advantages of mezzotint:

Images which are created using this method are aesthetically pleasing to look at. When a individual uses this process to print, they are really a skillful person. To achieve midtones with mezzotint, you have to take a lot of time and be very precise.

This method of printing displays the improved ergonomics of that era. People were using specialised tools to get the job done, rather than their bare hands. The weaknesses of mezzotint:

This method of printing is very time consuming.
This method of printing is extremely hard to do.
There is very little room to muck up, as one mistake can ruin a few days work. Mezzotint

(A type of hand printing)

(Invented by the German amateur artist Ludwig von Siegen (1609–1680) Etching

(A type of hand printing)

(Believed to be invented by Daniel Hopfer (circa 1470–1536) of Augsburg, Germany. A metal (usually copper, zinc or steel) plate is covered with a waxy solution which is resistant to acid. The artist then scratches off the solution with a pointed etching needle where he wants a line to appear in the finished piece. The plate is then dipped in a bath of acid. The acid "bites" into the metal, leaving lines in the plate. The plate is inked all over, then all wiped off, leaving only the ink in the etched lines.

The plate is then put through a high-pressure printing press together with a sheet of paper (often moistened). The paper picks up the ink from the etched lines, making a print. This can be repeated hundreds of times, intill eventually, the plate shows some sign of wear and tear. The advantages of etching:

This method is a lot like mezzotint, in the sense that the results are great to look at. They have a very natural and raw beauty to them.

This method of printing is a lot easier than other methods.

The fact that you have to use a etching needle to get the job done shows that the study of anthropometry at the time was improving. People were beginning to notice that tools and machines made the job easier and more effecient. The disadvantages of etching:

This method of printing involves the use of acid, which means it can get quite messy. Linocut

(A type of hand printing)

(Invented in 1943-1945 by Walter Inglis Anderson) A sheet of linoleum (sometimes mounted on a wooden block) is used for the relief surface. A design is cut into the linoleum surface with a tool.

The linoleum sheet is inked all over with a roller (called a brayer), and then impressed onto paper or fabric. The actual printing can be done by hand or with a printing press. The strengths of linocut:

This method of printing is simple. It doesnt require a lot of effort and it is fairly straightfoward.

This process requires tools, which shows that anthropometry is improving. The weaknesses of linocut:

Tools can be dangerous if used incorrectly, so you need to know exactly what you are doing before you do it. Rotary printing press

(A mechanical type of printing)

(Invented by Richard March Hoe in 1843, perfected in 1846) A rotary printing press is a printing press in which the images to be printed are curved around a cylinder. Printing can be done on large number of substrates, including paper, cardboard, and plastic. Substrates can be sheet feed or unwound on a continuous roll through the press to be printed and further modified if required (e.g. die cut, overprint varnished, embossed). Printing presses that use continuous rolls are sometimes referred to as "web presses". Disadvantages of the rotary printing press:

- The machine involved is not really available to the general public, due to its size and price.

- If the machine breaks, you are gonna spend a long time finding out what is wrong with it and repairing it.

- Even if you are do find out what is wrong with it in the event that it malfunctions, you are going to require professional help in order to repair it. Advantages of the rotary printing press:

- Hardly any manual labour is required, meaning you save a lot of money in the long run.

- You are able to produce more products than ever before.

- This is just the beginning. Soon, the machines will get better and better, becoming more and more efficient and easy to use. Mimeograph

(A mechanical type of printing)

(1890) The stencil duplicator or mimeograph machine is a low-cost printing press that works by forcing ink through a stencil onto paper. Along with spirit duplicators and hectographs, mimeographs were for many decades used to print short-run office work, classroom materials, and church bulletins. These technologies began to be supplanted by photocopying and cheap offset printing in the late 1960s.

Mimeographs are said to be economical and energy-efficient, as well as easier-to-use. Mimeograph machines continue to be used in developing countries because it is a simple, cheap, and robust technology. Many mimeographs can be hand-cranked, meaning they require no electricity. Advantages of the mimeograph:

- Energy efficient and economical

- Easy to use

- Capable of printing many products in a small amount of time compared to other previous methods. Disadvantages of the mimeograph:

- This is not a method of printing which is available to the general public.

- If the machine breaks of malfunctions, you will have to repair it again, and that is not something which many people can do.

- With todays technology, there are much better methods of printing available. Aquatint

(A mechanical type of printing)

(The painter, Jan van de Velde invented the aquatint technique in Amsterdam, around 1650) Aquatint is an intaglio printmaking technique (another version of etching). Intaglio printmaking makes marks on the matrix (a copper or zinc plate) that are capable of holding ink. The inked plate is passed through a printing press together with a sheet of paper, which results in a transfer of the ink to the paper. This can be repeated a number of times, depending on the particular technique. Like etching, aquatint uses acid to make the marks in the metal plate. Advantages of Aquatint:

- A lot of the work is done by the machine, which means less work for the individual doing the method.

- Produces pieces of work which are good quality and beautiful. Disadvantages of Aquatint:

- Due to the fact that a printing press is required, this is not a method which is available to the general public.

- The use of acid makes this method quite complicated to individuals who do not know what they are doing. An inkjet printer is a type of computer printer that creates a digital image by propelling droplets of ink onto paper. Inkjet printers are the most commonly used type of printer in this day and age and range from small inexpensive models to very large professional machines that can cost tens of thousands of pounds. Ink jet printing (A type of digital printing) Advantages of Inkjet:

- Cheap and available to the general public.
- Does not require manual labour.
- Can print a lot of products in a short amount of time.
- Very simplistic and easy to use. Disadvantages of inkjet:

- Paper can sometimes 'clog up' the machine, so to speak. Laser printing (1969)

(A type of digital printing) A laser printer is a modern day computer peripheral that can quickly produce high quality text and graphics onto plain paper. The printer uses a complex combination of physics and electrostatic charges to get its media produced, making it more complicated than previous methods.

Advantages of Laser Printing:

- Produces high quality pieces of work.
- Produces pieces of work at a fast rate.
- Does not require any manual labour. Disadvantages of Laser Printing:

- These type of printers are very complex, and in the rare event that the machine breaks or malfunctions, it is going to be very hard or costly to repair.

- These type of printers are quite expensive.

- Due to the complex nature of this type of printing, it is a lot easier to just use another method.
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