Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Aquatint struggles

I love etchings but when I attempt to add tones with aquatint, it's always a challenge! I usually use an airbrush to spray a liquid acrylic hardground on the plate after I do some line etching and then use an acrylic stop-out solution to block out lighter tones as I progress through the etching process. Well!!....sometimes it works very well and sometimes it's takes a lot more effort to get it just the way I want it. I need a little more space in my studio than I have to do the spraying process so I have to do it outside at my house which means a lot of running around to get all the needed supplies in the appropriate location. Makes me a little crazy! Especially if the wind is blowing or it's raining!
With the airbrush, you  spray little acrylic dots on the copper plate and then when you place the plate in the etching solution, the solution etches the spaces between the dots and an area of nice solid tone is created - you hope! Actually, you may not care if you create a nice solid tone. Maybe you want it to be depends on the effect you want. Really, the effects you can get by varying one thing or the other is all quite fascinating!

I've been working on this plate and as you can see, the aquatint process did not give me some even tones. (Maybe I placed it in the etching solution too long...) In some areas I may decide to keep it that way, but I know I want to re-do the aquatint process in other areas.
Here's the result of my efforts so far:

There is much more work to be done!

plate inked up

first printing


  1. Does the upper picture show a terra cota plate ?

  2. Hmm...I can see why you say that. Really it is a photo of my copper plate under some poor lighting conditions!


  3. J'aime bien ! je trouve ça beau. Done is better than perfect
    Bon week end à toi Anne;)

    1. Bonjour à toi!
      Je trouve intéressante la gravure comme ça mais j'ai quelques luttes ce temps pour trouver les tonalités que je veux. J'ai besoin faire un peu de temps pour trouver la réponse à mon dilemme. Je me sens impatient pour cela!

      Have a nice Sunday.
      J'espère que tu as du bon temps pour créer.