Print is a generic term for an image made with the help of a board (wood, metal, stone ...) that was previously etched and inked, obtained on paper using a printing press. The printing of a print can be made in several copies named " tests ". It is called "original print" is an original print designed, and executed on the board by one and the same artist. However, the number of prints of high quality have been performed by artists other painters or cartoonists, it is the " interpretation prints ".
Some Latin abbreviations are shown under the topic help you identify the different stakeholders
pinx. - pinxit = peignit
del. - delin. - delineavit = dessina
comp. - composuit = composa
inv. - invenit = inventa
sc. - sculps. - sculpsit = tailla
inc - incidit. = grava
f. - fe. - fecit. = fit
lith. = lithographia
The handwritten signature of the artist and the justification of the draw, in the lower margin, appear only at the end of the XIX° century. The proofs of a same draw are not perfectly identical, because of the manual intervention (ink pressure). Independently of these events are final, there are proofs showing different stages in the development of the board, The artist performs some prints of a few events in the course of its work, before you rework the board in order to obtain the final result. These tests, referred to as the "states" are listed in the order of evolution of the work.
The various techniques leading to the drawing of the print can be grouped according to whether one considers the material (wood, metal, stone...), or the method of preparation (manual or chemical), but the classification is the most classical is based on the method of draw.
We distinguish four categories :
I - relief Printing ( Size savings)
A Woodcut - woodcut-called "thread"
If the process is known in China since the VII°century, its appearance in Europe is located at the end of the XIV° century. The wooden plate is cut in the direction of the fiber. It is cut with the knife and gouge to hollow out the parts that will remain white for the draw, leaving the embossed pattern, this is the one which, once inked, will print on the paper. Using several woods, each representing a part of the drawing and overlaying prints on a single sheet it is possible to achieve printing in color. Using a color gradient you get a burning in the cameo says "clear-obscure" or "chiaroscuro" (a process in vogue in the sixteenth century).
B - Woodcut - woodcut it says "the end"
This process has been presented for the first time in 1771 by a recorder English, Thomas Bewick. The opposite of "wood wire" we use the wood cut transversely to the trunk. The engraving of the drawing is executed with a chisel.
C - Linocut
The technique is the same as that used for the grain. We use linoleum, which is more economical and much easier to work than hard wood.
The size savings can be executed in the same manner on plates of metal. The copper, the more hard the wood is little used. The lead, the more tender does not allow to draw important only after they have been coated by electrolysis a thin film of steel or copper.
E Metal Zincographie
The pattern is executed on a plate of zinc, ink, litho or crayon, the parties are not protected by the design are then carved by acid baths.
F Metal Screened
It knows only a limited number of prints thus produced. This technique, which originated in the workshops of the goldsmiths, made in the second half of the XV° century, it is only very rarely used. A copper plate is hollowed out using a punch, creating the white parts in the form of dots, crosses or stars. We get the proofs by stamping.
II intaglio Printing (intaglio)
Different techniques may be used for a single print. A draw full-color, is obtained either with a board that is unique in encrant every part of different colors, or by superimposing several plates, each for a particular color.
A - Chisel
It is the most ancient technique of engraving in intaglio, the origin of the rubbings that the goldsmiths in their work ornament on metal to keep a testimony. Appeared in the middle of the XV° century, simultaneously in Italy and Germany, this technique is spreading in other countries, from the XVI°Century. The engraver carves the copper plate, using a tool steel called a burin. The drawing is thus formed by furrows more or less deep v-shaped. The plate is then inked and wiped clean. Under intense pressure, the damp paper will mold into the cavity and retains the ink, giving a slight relief to the touch. The pressure exerted by the press in intaglio, leaves the trace of the "kick plate" commonly known as a " bowl ". In 1820, an englishman, Charles Heath replaced the copper plate by a steel plate, allowing draws to be almost unlimited.
B Burn to the dotted line
Although known for a long time, engraving in the dotted line, knows a real success from the Xviiith century. The copper plate is covered with a multitude of small points hit with a punch.
C - dry Point
The use of the dry point dates back to the Fifteenth century. The artist draws with a needle on a metal plate. The "beard" formed by the metal torn, are preserved to retain the ink.
D - black method ( Mezzotinte)
This technique was discovered in 1642 by the German Ludwig Von Siegen. We obtain the image by a process of scratching on a copper plate, previously covered with a grenage, leaving no smooth surface. Left as what the test would be a black uniform, crushing, more or less, the grain or buffing, we obtain gradients of up to white.
E - Water-strong -
The process is used since the XV° century. It brings together, under the generic name of water - strong, all the techniques of engraving with acid, a metal plate united. The metal plate is covered with a varnish, we are running a drawing with a point. The passage in a bath of acid hollow (bites) the parties released, while the parts coated are protected.
F soft Nail
For this variant, the etching is applied to a sheet of paper on the board, coated with a soft nail. The drawing is executed on the sheet, torn out of its socket, leaving the line apparent on the plate.
G - Way pencil
Used for the first time during the XVIII° century, the engraving in the manner of a pencil is intended to reproduce the more faithfully, drawing ( pencil, chalk, or blood). The drawing is executed on a sheet of copper coated with a hard varnish, in which instruments ( roulette, wheel, stamp ) leave a footprint after their end.
Invented in the middle of the XVIII° century by the French Jean-Baptiste Leprince, aquatint makes an effect mimicking the wash. The copper plate is covered with powder ( bitumen, resin, or other ) to be fixed by heating. The acid ate away at the copper between the grains, gives the impression of half-tones.
III flat Printing
Invented in Bavaria to 1796-1798 by Aloys Senefelder, the process is suffused with success in the NINETEENTH century. The drawing, executed with a greasy ink, is fixed on the stone lithographic. Thanks to its chemical properties the stone is wet, retains the ink printing on the parts drawn and the refuse on the parties intact. The drawing is executed directly on the stone using various tools : chalk lithograph, pen, brush, brush...The stone can be replaced by a sheet of zinc.
The drawing is executed on paper autographique and then transferred to the stone or the zinc by pressure.
IV Other processes
A Screen Printing
Screen printing has for ancestor the stencils used well before our era, in the Far East, to the decor fabric. The color is applied in the part hollowed out of a single sheet (paper, metal, leather, etc.) using a brush. The stencil is also used to put color prints in black). In 1907, Great Britain, Samuel Simon perfects the process of using a stencil delimited by a varnish on the silk. Very fast in the invention, for the textile industry, is finding new applications. The inking is done by sifting through the parts that remained uncovered.
The cliché-verre was developed around 1850, is not, strictly speaking, a printing process. The drawing is traced on a glass plate coated with collodion, the negative thus obtained, is then shot as a photograph.