Intaglio engraving on polycarbonate :

Creation of the site: Michel Caron in Royan (French).

To correspond : edit-art@wanadoo.fr

History of engravers:

Maso Finiguerra (1426-1464), Florentine goldsmith and engraver,

would be the inventor of the principle of intaglio.

In 1470, Martin Schongauer printed “Christ carrying his cross » in engraving,
28.8 x 43.3 cm, (Cincinnati Art Museum).

In 1488, Michelet Topie de Pymont, printed «Voyage de Breydenbach ».

In 1514, Albrecht Dürer printed « Melancolia » 23.9 x 16.8 cm.

Since the beginning of the printing of engravings all the printed proofs
were produced in monochrome.

Except overprinted by engraving in several plates.

Production of polychrome engraved proofs :

In a single pass on the press.
To do this, you must ink the engraved plate with different colors as a
painter would do on a canvas.


How to make intaglio prints?

Equipment
Preparing for engraving
Engraving
Inking the plates
Realization

Equipment

Engraving press:

You must have an engraving press, through an association,

an engraving workshop, or get one.

Press ref. : 130A, 408 mm cylinder, weight 42 kg.

Press ref. : 100V, 1100 mm cylinder, weight 480 kg.

A work table.

To work well, it is necessary to obtain a work table.

The top maybe 60 x 100 cm, otherwise it is possible to add
on top a sheet of plywood.

The desired height is 90 cm, it is possible to add feet to reach this height.

On a sheet of polycarbonate in the size of the table, place white paper using adhesive, place this assembly on the table to ink the engraved plate.

This will allow you to clearly see the engraving during inking, but also to prepare
the engraving inks.

After use, it is possible to remove all of the polycarbonate and the white paper
in order to use the table for other functions.


A work table.

To work well, it is necessary to obtain a work table.

The top maybe 60 x 100 cm, otherwise it is possible to add
on top a sheet of plywood.

The desired height is 90 cm, it is possible to add feet to reach this height.

On a sheet of polycarbonate in the size of the table, place white paper using adhesive, place this assembly on the table to ink the engraved plate.

This will allow you to clearly see the engraving during inking, but also to prepare the engraving inks.

After use, it is possible to remove all of the polycarbonate and the white paper
in order to use the table for other functions.

Swaddles :

Between the upper roller and the paper.

These are wool swaddles for intaglio with a thickness of 1.5 mm,
Currently we no longer find diapers, so we have to use felt pens

generally supplied with the purchase of the press (3 mm and 5 mm swaddles)
used one on top of the other the 3mm and the 5mm on top.

Plates for engraving :

This could be medium-hard copper plates between
1 and 2 mm thick, brass or zinc.

However, given the price of copper, I switched to polycarbonate sheets one millimeter thick, with a format of 100 x 60 cm, after cutting, allows you to
produce engravings of 60 x 42 cm.

   

Chisels :

To make engraving sizes ;

These are used to cut metal, engrave coins, medals,
copper for intaglio, pushing the chisel to make the cuts.

For polycarbonate, you must sharpen the chisels like a “cutter”, that is to say
slice - cut, with a chisel with a reduced cutting angle
(by 2 degrees) to make thin sizes and another chisel
at a steeper angle (4 degrees) for wider construction lines.

   

A bevel « edge cut » of the engraved boards,
to make chamfers around the engraved plates so as not to tear the paper.

   

A soaking tank :

In the format of sheets of printing paper.

Not having found a tank in the right size, I made a tank with Plexiglas or Altuglas 6 mm thick, cut with a circular saw, glued with special Plexiglas glue, adding acrylic spray seal for the bathroom. baths,

then painting the joints with the addition of a valve to drain the water from the tank.

Gardener's apron to protect against inks.

Printing paper sheets :

In cotton or pure thread, for my use, I chose cotton sheets – BFK RIVES,
very white paper with very short fibers
which allows a precise printing line, grape format: 50 x 65 cm of 250 gr

Tarlatan :

Cotton fabrics for wiping the inks off the engraved plate,
Typically starched tarlatan is used to wipe ink off copper engraved plates;
for polycarbonate, starch-free upholstery tarlatan should be used.


Paper towels :

To wipe the ink off the background of the engraved plate.

   

Inks for intaglio engraving,

"Charbonnel", because it is the only ink available, I recommend inks in tubes rather than in pots, use is easier, especially for beginners.

To clean the ink :

gasoline F, which costs less than turpentine and has less odor.

Household scouring cream for washing your hands.

Sheets of blotting paper :

To wring out printing papers after soaking, but also to place the printed
sheets between two blotters.

You have to make ink with the formula of old inks.

   

Soft black soap with linseed oil.

Clarified linseed oil : (standolie).

Stand oil is a linseed oil polymerized in the absence of air.

It improves the fluidity of the paste and helps blur brush marks.

It can be used pure, but due to its high viscosity,
t is preferable to dilute it with essences.

It is particularly suitable for glazing and detail work.

It considerably reduces brush marks.

Mixed with oil color, it gives suppleness and
gives resistance to the touch.

Slow down drying. Low yellowing. Promotes shine.

Aspic essence (lavender, glaze).

Fatty oil, polymerized cooked No. 3 « Joop Stoop ».

« Charbonnel » intaglio fatty oil.

Implementation :

30 gr soft black soap.

30 gr clarified linseed oil (standolie).

1.75 gr Aspic essence.

Emulsify the soap, linseed oil and aspic.

Add 40 g of cooked polymerized fatty oil.

Then 10 to 30 g of pigment.

Preparing for engraving

On the press table, place a melamine plate (thickness 19 mm) of the table dimension.

   

Add a flat field to the outfield on this extension In the center, draw an axis with a pencil on the table and on the flat field.

Trace the size of the sheet of printing paper (50 x 65 cm) and a horizontal
axis of this sheet (250 mm).

   

These axes will be used to center the engraved plate and position the printing sheet
on the flat field and the central axis.

If the engraving is of a smaller format, the engraved plate will be centered on
this axis, the printing paper will be centered by tracing on the back of the sheet
the centering axes.

If you have scraps of laminated cardboard, cut small pieces of cardboard which will be used to mix the ink and spread it on the engraved plate, also obtain brushes
to apply the ink on the small surfaces of the engraved plate.

Engraving :

Cut the polycarbonate sheet using a ruler and a sharp cutter
on the back of the plate, trace the center axes, make a cut on the outside
of the 1 cm long plate, then in this size mark the axes with a felt-tip pen.

Use a permanent marker for CD/DVD, which does not erase with gasoline F,
but fades with alcohol.

It is preferable to have prepared a drawing or photograph as a model,
however, the image will need to be upside down horizontally,
because it is flipped during printing.

Fix the model to be engraved on the polycarbonate using adhesive or double-sided tape.

Place everything on the table to work.

   

Start engraving using the larger chisel to mark the outside of the subject
or important parts.

Then notch the other parts with the other, finer chisel.

When cutting, the edges of the hollow part are found on the surface
of the engraved plate.

This relief must be removed using a new cutter placed perpendicularly
to the plaque engraved on the entire surface.

If we do not remove this lip, the ink will be positioned on each side of the lip
may not fit into the size which will remain blank when drawn,
this can be useful in certain conditions.

In order for the engraving ink to adhere to the plate in certain places, it must be frosted.

This is possible with abrasive paper (in photo).

Can also be used for shading.

After finishing the sizes, make a chamfer around the plate
using the bevel edge or coarse sandpaper.

Realization:

Warning: the indications given here are the result of research in order to optimize the best result if you use another product, the indications may need to be adapted
to this new variant.

Soak the paper in water for an hour.

Then position the sheet of paper between blotting pads to wring it out.

   

Place the different colors of ink on the inking plate.

Add next to each color 25% of old ink prepared according to the formula indicated above, which makes it possible to fluidize the ink without changing the color and makes it easier to ink and wipe off the engraved plate.

   

The ink will be applied using cardboard, brushes or even tarlatan
or other material.

Wipe the plate with the tarlatan.

Optionally, standardize the ink of the backgrounds outside the sizes with a paper
non-absorbent (toilet paper).

To lighten certain parts of the image, use a paper towel without pressing,
very slightly.

However, it is important to carry out a control test
monochrome and carry out any retouching.

Clean your hands using paper towels and gasoline F.

Position the engraved, inked plate on the press.

Wash your hands with household scouring cream.

Then position the sheet of paper on the engraved plate using the marks on the press.

----------------------------------

The way of anchoring the engraved supports can be applied to different

types of works:

Etching – intaglio – drypoint – aquatint

wood engraving - linoleum - lithography.


Top of page

Return to the page d’accueil