Lithography & Etching
In 1983, I enrolled in the Maryland Institute of Art and studied lithography from John Larfage. Lithographs are made by making an image with grease on stone or metal plate, zinc or copper and printing it on a press with black or colored ink. In using color for either medium, a different stone or plate is used for each color; yellow, red, blue. The “Winter on Mill Creek” is a lithograph done on a stone.
In 1985, I enrolled in an etching class taught by Jane Eccles. An etching is made by making the image by either incising the metal plate by a tool or etching the plate with acid or salt. 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 1986, I purchased my own one ton American French Tool etching press which I used for print making ‘till 2000 in Princeton, NJ.
I also enjoyed doing aquatints, a type of etching. An example is “Snow Oak”. An aquatint is a printmaking process that allows the artist to achieve tonal variations which are not, as in engraving, etching or drypoint, based on the varying distances between patterns of engraved or etched lines.
A drypoint etching is a printmaking technique in which an image is incised into a plate (or "matrix") with a hard-pointed "needle" of sharp metal or diamond point. “Cow Fence” is an example of this technique that was completed in my studio in NJ.
Once I moved to Chestertown, MD, I used the press for Monotypes (no acid is used). A Monotype is made by painting with water color or an opaque medium on a plastic plate , then passing it thru the press for a one-off print. I started to print larger monotypes with multiple plates using sheets of frosted mylar on the one ton press.
Eventually I gave the press to Anne Arundel Community College in 2008 and began printing monotypes on a small Dick Blick portable press. In 2017, I still teach the monotype technique on this press.
I became fascinated with the grain mills around the Eastern Shore of Maryland. To me they were like pyramids, monuments to the farming industry. The monotype “Lynch" is an example.