I find the unique marks and shapes of the ink on the papers that result from making prints by hand very appealing to view, but often quite challenging to create.
In the three different areas of printmaking that I choose to focus on, the marks that appear in the prints are varied and inherent to the process of making each type of print. All plates for these must be prepared in reverse to print the image in the correct way.
The marks that appear in the print produced by carving and inking the plates of woodcuts and linocuts, have a special quality that intrinsically identifies the print. They are made by inking and printing the remaining surface of a carved plate. This is called a relief printing process.
Etching lines and marks are dependent upon the drawing on the plate, and the work of the acid, on those areas of the plate that are exposed by this drawing.
Solar etchings rely upon the transfer of marks from a drawing to the plate and variations of exposure to the sun, to harden these areas of the plate in different ways. The marks on these two types of prints can be similar in appearance. They are made by inking the incised lines and tones on the plate and wiping away the surface ink before printing with pressure through a press. This is called an intaglio printing process
In making my prints I am always intrigued by the serendipity of the process and the wonderful surprise of viewing the finished print.