Tuesday, 11 June 2013

Photopolymer etching or solar plate

That's what I learnt how to make this weekend at Red Hot Press. It was a great two-day workshop in which we created intaglio and relief plates. The above is a two-plate print; the sepia is intaglio and the yellow, relief (that's supposed to be a honeycomb by the way, not tyre tracks through road marking paint. Having painstakingly laid out the intaglio element of the print, I was rather winging it with the relief. I quite like it though - not bad for a first attempt).

My plan is to use this technique in conjunction with regular etching and possibly some monoprint thrown in for good measure. The detail you can get using the solar plates is amazing and far exceeded my expectations - the bug wings for example. I'd like to introduce some diagrammatic elements into my images and this technique seems ideal for that (it is an industrial process after all). Hopefully it will speed things up as well - no more spending a couple of days solid transferring copperplate handwriting backwards onto a plate!

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