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Original Prints

We have a wide range of original prints available in the gallery, both framed and unframed, including Etchings, Linocuts, Screenprints, Wood Engravings and Woodcuts.  What is an Original Print?  An artist makes an original print as a distinct piece of art.  It is not a copy or reproduction of an existing work.  There are traditionally four main ...

We have a wide range of original prints available in the gallery, both framed and unframed, including Etchings, Linocuts, Screenprints, Wood Engravings and Woodcuts.  What is an Original Print?  An artist makes an original print as a distinct piece of art.  It is not a copy or reproduction of an existing work.  There are traditionally four main Printmaking processes - Etching, Lithography, Relief Printing (which includes Linocuts and Wood Engraving) and Screenprinting. To these has been added Digital Printmaking. The processes of Printmaking are technically demanding and each print takes considerable time to produce, being hand printed using non-mechanical methods. More complex prints are printed a number of times, depending on the complexity of the design and the colours used. Prints are generally made in editions and these editions are a fixed number so that the buyer knows how many have been produced. These are then titled, signed and numbered by the artist.


Original Prints 


  • Etchings
    In etching, the artist draws with a needle on to a copper, zinc or steel plate that has been covered with an acid resistant wax. When the plate is immersed in acid, the bare metal, exposed by the lines of the drawing, is eroded. The depth of the 'etch’ is controlled by the amount of time the acid is allowed to ‘bite’ the metal. The longer in acid, the deeper the line and the darker it will print. In order to obtain a print, viscous greasy ink is pushed into the etched grooves, then the surface is wiped clean with muslin, leaving only the etched areas retaining ink. The actual impression is made with a copper plate press, which is similar to an old washing mangle, with a large plank or 'bed’ between the rollers. The plate is placed on the bed, covered with dampened paper and backed with three or four felt blankets. These are then passed through the press under high pressure; the malleable paper is forced into the cuts and ridges in the plate and thus picks up the ink. When the paper is finally peeled off, it reveals a faithful mirror image of the etched drawing. This inking procedure is then repeated for each print in the edition. In aquatint etching resin powder is melted onto the metal plate to produce a tonal, textured surface and more than one colour may be used. Because etching plates are inked by hand, each print is unique.
  • Linocuts

    Linocuts are relief prints. The surface of a piece of lino is carved into with gouges or chisels to create the design. It is then inked with a roller. A sheet of paper is laid on top of the lino and the image is printed in a press. Because a linocut is basically like a giant stamp, the image appears in reverse after printing, so the artist needs to think backwards while carving the design, especially if it includes text. Linocuts can be as simple or as complex as the artist wishes. A different block may be used for different colours or the relief surface may be carved away between inkings to change the parts which are inked. Linocuts are generally produced in small editions as the lino block tends to deteriorate with use. Creating linocuts is not for the faint hearted. Once a cut is made, there’s no going back, but skilled printmakers can produce wonderful effects.

  • Wood Engravings
    The process of wood engraving is perfectly described by The Society of Wood Engravers. "Wood engraving is at once the simplest and one of the most exquisite forms of printmaking. The print is made, first, by engraving the reversed design or picture to be printed into the mirror-smooth surface of a block of endgrain wood. Box is best, though other woods and synthetic materials are now also used. Secondly, the block is rolled up with ink (on its top surface) and printed onto paper. The cuts that were made into the wood therefore come out as white, the remaining top surface which gets inked, as black; the artist is, in effect, drawing with light – with a white mark as opposed to the black mark that comes from a pencil, brush or pen. Most wood engravings tend to be closely worked and relatively small because the tools used are finely pointed. Because the finesse of wood engraving produces a particularly rich tonal range, wood engravings are usually, but by no means exclusively, black and white. The image that results can only be made by this particular process, just as paintings can only be made with paint or photographs with a camera. Printmaking is thus a potentially creative process: it is part of its nature that many prints can be taken from the block once it is engraved, but each of those prints is an original – made by that process, not copied".
  • Screenprints
    Screenprinting is basically a stencil process. A stencil is applied to a fine mesh (the screen) which has been stretched tightly over a frame. The stencil is painted, adhered, or exposed to the screen. The frame is set down on the paper and ink is then forced through the porous segments of the mesh with a flexible squeegee blade onto the paper below. Where the stencils cover the fabric mesh, the ink does not reach the paper. A separate screen must be created for each colour. As with other printmaking techniques, the artist may use multiple screens to create a multi-colour screen print. Screenprinting is one of the few printmaking processes in which pulling the print does not result in a reversed image.
  • Digital Prints

    Digital printmaking takes advantage of developments in technology and computing. A fine art digital print exists only in a digital format until it is printed. It is created on screen using varied processes. So, it is not a scan or photograph of an existing painting or print but an artwork created specifically for a pigment printer. The potential of digital printmaking is limitless and exciting.

  • Lithographs

    Lithography is a printing process based on the fact that grease and water do not mix. An image is drawn on a flat stone or metal plate using a greasy substance so that ink will adhere to it, while non-image areas are made ink-repellent. The printing surface is kept wet, so that a roller charged with oil-based ink can be rolled over the surface, and ink will only stick to the grease-receptive image area. Paper is then placed against the surface and the plate is run through a press. The plate can then be cleaned and re-drawn for additional layers and colours.

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Showing 1 - 12 of 70 items
Showing 1 - 12 of 70 items