a journal of original drawings and screen prints of animals


Monday, March 11, 2013

Copper Plate Etching

image from Artrenewal

Many years ago, my sister bought me a print that I have always, and to this day, loved. In continuing with where I left off in the last post, this print is of a copper plate etching that was done of a painting by Benjamin Constant (1845 - 1902). 

An etching is achieved by applying ink  to lines which have been engraved into a metal (copper and later steel) plate and then transferred onto paper by a press. Because of the nature of the metal plate, the lines that are etched are usually parallel lines that are sometimes curved. There are various ways of creating a tonal effect too either through crosshatching or varying the intensity of the engraved line.  
By the mid-1600's a process referred to as mezzotint was discovered as a means of creating tonal values. It had the capability of creating rich dark tones but was also very time consuming and by the 1820's it was used in combination with other etching techniques.

The print I have seems to be a combination of these techniques and was done by Leopold Flameng (1831 - 1911).

By clicking on the image you can see these parallel lines as well as little dots in between to further a tonal effect.

1 comment:

  1. I'd forgotten about this print. I'm so glad it still brings pleasure to you. I love the way you research things. Thanks for the explanation. Very interesting.