Oct 26, 2007

They Give Like Sighs. (Intaglio)

I sat down with my new copper plate, it had a fresh coat of soft ground and blank piece of tracing paper on top. I started drawing trees as if I knew how to draw trees and knew what kind of trees I was drawing. I was working with a poem in mind and after several months of struggling with this plate I had to admit that the poem called for birch trees. The letters on the ground are what I love about this print. They took forever!

I spent hours writing them on tracing paper then spent hours tracing them backwards onto the softground and then I etched my plate too long! The acid broke through the ground and I lost half the letters. I started over, writing the letters on tracing paper...this time I decided to line etch them so I could leave them in the acid longer without worrying about the ground breaking down. I transferred the letters from the tracing paper onto the asphaltum ground by running them through the press. I then spent hours carving the letters out before I etched them again. The letters came out this time but they were so much darker than the softground trees I decided to use drypoint to bring the trees back out. When the plate was finally "done" I was disappointed in the upper branches and am considering cutting the plate down and re-editioning it.

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