This class is an introduction to the polymer photogravure process, a non-toxic alternative to the traditional copperplate photogravure process. This intaglio printing process enables the artist to produce continuous-tone photographic images using ink and paper. Plate-making, inking, wiping and printing techniques will be covered in this class and the student will leave with 8-12 etched plates and numerous prints from each plate. ⇒
I will be teaching my final polymer photogravure workshop in Asheville this January. Bookworks will be closing as a public-facing entity at the end of March 2019, and this is the last photogravure class I will be teaching there.
The workshop will use a modern polymer coated plate to create an intaglio-etched surface, which will then produce the photographic gradation of tones making the photogravure one of the most beautiful continuous tone photographic printing process. The process presents a fantastic opportunity to expand the range of visual content that can be included in books and other similar projects.
This is a two and a half day workshop that will introduce you to the basics of making polymer photogravure plates. Bring your digital files on Friday evening and walk away with some beautiful photogravures by Sunday afternoon. Sign up at the Asheville Bookworks website.
BWMastery.com has created a Mac-based software tool called QuadToneProfiler-QuickCurve that enables a very streamlined linearization workflow for making digital positives for steel-backed polymer plates. This is a 20-page pdf description of that workflow. PDF files this size choke my CMS, so to download this file, please click this link
This is a downloadable template file that assists in making even screen exposure strips on an A6 plate during the calibration process for polymer photogravure. It is in the form of pdf that should be printed off at 100% scale on a laser printer or inkjet printer. The markings allow an opaque card to reveal additional plate material under the screen in even increments. Its use is described in the book Polymer Photogravure: A Step-By-Step Manual Highlighting Artists and Their Creative Practice available here.
This is a rather large tiff file used to test the smoothness of all your digital negative/positive work. In particular, the positive and negative circle gradients have a way of making ‘ramps’ in your correction curves very obvious.
Quadtone RIP profiles for making digital positives on the Epson R3000, 7800 and 1400 printers. These were created for use with the Toyobo KM73 flexographic plates. For more detailed information on the process go to polymerphotogravure.com.
A reasonably current list of resources for pt/pd printing.
This is a photoshop script written by my good friend and computer maestro David Eisenlord that painlessly creates a gray-curve-linearization Photoshop curve that can then be directly loaded into the QTR ink profile that is being built. This curve takes the headache out of thinking in ‘negative space’ during the QTR calibration process. As in, oh wait, my highlights are too dark, so that means I need to add more ink, right?
This script helps to minimize some of the mental gymnastics involved. I use it in the QTR tutorial download on my site.