Two months ago, I posted up some line drawing etchings in to hardground on this blog and mentioned that the plate was going to be aquatinted. Aquatint is done by covering the plate in tiny, acryllic droplets and then using a stopping out fluid on areas of the plate to mask them before etching the plate in the acid bath. The areas under the stop out remain unetched, while the remainder of the plate will produce darker tones when it's printed, as the acid will have eaten in to plate enough to hold more ink. The process is long and labour intensive, but I wanted more practice at aquatinting for another project I have in mind.
The zinc plate required two applications of aquatint, fourteen hours of burnishing and nine states before it got to the stage where I was happy with it!
|1st state - original line drawing
|2nd state - after first aquatinting
|7th state - after second application of aquatint
|9th and final state!
Two small editions have been produced from this image, but I'll post more details about them later this week.