Out of the Cube Blog

This article has been written and submitted by Noeleen Kleve. She has used this technique for her exhibited print Misconstruction.

The photopolymer, a relatively young intaglio process (about 30 years old) is environmentally friendly, because no acid is employed during the plate production. The process involves light-sensitive plates, using drawings and positive imagery. The photopolymer plate (or matrix) is printed as with etching.

Like etching, this process begins with a brass or copper plate, but also incorporates a light-sensitive film adhered to the plate. The artist’s image can originate from a hand- or digitally-based artwork, which is then transformed into a high quality half-tone film positive. The polymer plate is exposed to the positive after an initial exposure to an aquatint screen. The plate is developed in a mild alkaline solution, which washes away the unhardened photopolymer creating fine recessed crevices.

The photopolymer plate is hand-inked and printed in the same manner as a traditional etched plate for each individual print, using an etching press.



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