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Engraving in Artistic Printmaking

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Shalika Kun

on 16 September 2015

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Transcript of Engraving in Artistic Printmaking

Brief History
How It's Done
Examples &
Late 1300 & early 1400
Wood-engraving & printing flourished in the rich towns of Western Europe (Brussels, Antwerp, Amsterdam, Utrecht,Cologne, Nurnberg, etc).

Wood engraving was widely used to mass produce religious art & biblical writings.
ca. mid-1300
Bewick, 1797-1804.
Famous Usage: Danse Macabre / Dance of Death Series
Wolgemut, 1493.
Famous Usage: Danse Macabre / Dance of Death Series
Holbein, 1526.
Famous Usage: Religious Art
Famous Usage: Religious Art
St. Christopher bearing the Infant Christ, 1416.
Casus Luciferi—'The Fall of Lucifer', 1459.
Late 1400 ~
engravings came into general use and superseded engraving on wood for a long time.
A lot of artists experimented with plate drawings
and publishers began to illustrate their books with
this method.
plates was introduced in late 1700.

Many early engravers came from gold/silver-smithing background. A notable engraving artists from this era is
Albrecht Dürer
St. Christopher (Dürer, 1521)
The Madonnas (Dürer, late 1400 - early 1500)
Passion of The Christ - series #6: Flagellation (Dürer, 1512)
The Chorus (Hogarth, 1732)
Steel Printing for Encyclopædia Britannica 11th Edition (1910-1911)
The Project Gutenberg eBook

A Brief History of Wood-engraving from Its Invention, by Joseph Cundall

The Works of William Hogarth: In a Series of Engravings, by John Trusler

A History of Wood-Engraving, by George Edward Woodberry

The Best Portraits in Engraving, by Charles Sumner

Wood Engraving by R. John Beedham
More Resources

Fine Rare Prints

Oh So Beautiful Paper

The Beauty of Engraving

List of Engravings by Albrecht Dürer

And other Wikipedia pages.

Engraving + Etching
Commercial print shops and money-printing now use engraving mixed with chemical processes (acid bath, silver coat + nickel solution + electricity, etc) for faster process and cost-effective labor costs.

Fully automatic machines are used on the inking & pressing processes.
Presentation Link
Fine Stationery, Collateral, & Invitations
Engraving delivers refined, detailed, and
elegant presentation.

The ink sits perfectly on the raised paper surface, and this subtle texturing connotes prestige and distinction on the artwork.
Sharp results on intricate monograms, logos, symbols, seals, & ornaments.
Sharp print for light ink on darker colored papers.
Currency & Sensitive Documents
fine line patterns
high amount of details on an engraved artwork, and the handworked nature of engravings ensures security and prevents easy counterfeits.
Engraving tools with different points
(5-10 variety)
Detailed information on each tool/point: The Project Gutenberg EBook of Wood Engraving by R. John Beedham
Ink dabber or ink roller
Others (magnifying glass, sandbag, plate holder/base, light, cloth, wax, ~ ).
Uncoated Paper, 250gsm and up, moderate (or less) texture. Any color is possible!
Metal plates/dies, copper or steel.
Sharp print on details, raised/textured on paper, elegant look, but the pressure bruises the paper,
so best result on one sided print only.
Color usage is limited, no gradients. More colors = More plates = More time = More $$$.

Ink is strong & opaque, light ink sits well on dark background, color layering is possible.

Solid matte ink looks better on intricate details & thin lines, rather than metallic ink.
Keep in mind: Prepare the artwork mirrored.
Drawing & Shading Technique Comparison
William Hogarth
Claude Mellan
Full transcript