U of S | Mailing List Archive | alt-photo-process-l | Re: smooth gravure tones!

Re: smooth gravure tones!

I agree. As a seasoned intaglio printmaker I'm sure you know this, but readers of the list or list archive may not, that the act of printing: ink combos, wiping technique, having a proper press, pressure, blanket thickness, use of a cover sheet, etc. can greatly affect the look of a print. These tools are as critical as almost anything we do by way of the creation of a digital film positive and plate. One can have a technically perfect plate and fall short with the wiping to make an otherwise great print, average looking. In pursuit of the "hard stuff" of adjustment curves and all, it's easy to gloss over the basic act of wiping which takes practice and skill to perfect. Tone, contrast, translucency, highlight and shadow detail, can all be controlled to a fair degree by inking, wiping, and printing techniques. It's an important skill and one I'm sure I could spend the rest of my time as a printmaker improving. All the books talk about wiping technique, but there's nothing better than getting on the fast track with some classes with (preferably master) printmakers who do this stuff daily. Working directly along side other printmakers too, I've learned alot.

I get richer blacks and smoother tone with Charbonnel Carbon Black - much more so than G&C inks which I found to have a more chalky quality to them. Not sure about gritty per se. Charbonnel are simply better quality inks.


SusanV wrote:
Hi Jon,

No please don't worry about "stating the obvious" with me... sometimes
it's the simple things that can trip me up, and it always pays to go
back over every little detail of process.  I do have Charbonnel ink
and will give it a try.  As I said, this G&C ink feels very gritty to


On 5/9/07, Jon Lybrook <jon@terabear.com> wrote:
Hey Susan,

Cool.  Sorry if I state the obvious about wiping, or anything else.
It's easy to skip over critical details assuming people all do it the
"correct" way.

I don't use G&C inks anymore. You might yry Charbonnel carbon black with
a dab of easy wipe (or straight up) and see what you think.  It soaks
into the plate like butter. :-)


SusanV wrote:
> Hey Jon,
> Thanks.. that's all very close to what I do anyway, but I'll really
> pay attention and see if there's something I can refine.  I also
> wonder if it's the ink I'm using, which really feels gritty, like fine