Thursday, September 9, 2010

I'm almost done with the aquatint on the Cave print from my last post, and started on a new one, the Mesa print, today for the third time. :P  Things just keep going wrong with it.
This will be #3 in a series of 5 prints. The Cave is #4. 

I've been airbrushing Z*Acryl hardground onto the copper plates for my hardground. It was humid today so it didn't dry as fast as I'm used to, and I ended up with it dripping down the plate the first time. Z*Acryl works best if applied in several very thin layers and will chip if it's too thick, leaving you with a blobby open-bitten line, which is why I like to airbrush it on. It means I had to wait patiently for it to dry between applying each layer, however.

In the end I did get it nice and even and matte. Sweet.
The color variations in the photo are from me sanding the plate in different directions. I sanded it with 400 grit sandpaper to give it a little tooth for the hardground to stick to. 

While cleaning the airbrush my air hose broke. It's lame but at least it waited to break until I was pretty much done with it. 

I transferred the image to the plate by laying it over a piece of embroidery tracing paper and tracing through both papers. I originally got the tracing paper for an embroidery project but found that it didn't work well for transferring images to the fabric I was using. It works great for this though. It comes in bright shades of yellow and blue and the colors show up very well against the hardground. It also actually sticks to it, unlike graphite.

I then traced the image AGAIN with the scribe, which is a pointy piece of metal, to scratch though the hardground. Considering I've done this whole process three times now and drew the image several times before that, I've lost track of how many times I've drawn this same image. o_0

The plate has now been etching in the ferric bath for 5 hours. I think it's time to take it out and go to bed.

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