Direct To Plate Intaglio & Photogravure Workshop
Digital Direct to Plate Photopolymer (DTP) Gravure has the potential to allow a new user to make photogravures at the same standard as those practicing the traditional copper based methods but with 1/3 the cost and 1/10th the amount of labor. Our process matches your monitor.
Brand: Cone Editions
Please Note: In-Person Class Schedules are Subject to Change Due to Covid19 in 2021. Currently, we have been given the green light for hosting workshops provided all attendees have vaccination certificates and continue to wear masks. We have built an outdoor pavilion for meals. We can't guarantee the workshop dates will take place as listed if the CDC or State of Vermont imparts new rules due to a worsening of the pandemic, but we will always keep our attendees informed if anything changes.
Limited to six attendees. This workshop concentrates on a new Piezography method of producing photopolymer gravure plates by printing the positive image directly onto the pre-sensitized plate. No film is required. An exposing screen is not required. A vacuum exposing machine is not even required for this process. Yet the benefits are a much higher acuity and fidelity than available when using film positives, exposing screens, and vacuum exposing units. You can read more about our involvement in this process here.
The Piezography® Direct-to-Plate Photopolymer Gravure is a method in which an alternative Epson printer driver is manually tuned to manage Piezography Ultra HD Matte Black ink output and dithering with the purpose of printing a positive image directly onto the surface of a photopolymer plate. The complex calibration and linearization of the output is performed by a proprietary Piezography ICC profile. This process is ideally OS X compatible and that is how we prefer to teach it. But there is room for Windows. OS X offers color management potentials and products that Windows does not, hence our preference. This method allows anyone with a supported printer to change the OEM matte black to a higher quality matte black called UltraHD™ Matte Black. It is a full stop darker than the OEM and permits the use of much smaller dithering dots of ink. For those willing to give up three ink positions in their printer, they can learn a process that uses three inks and produces an even higher quality. Finally, those willing to use the Green Mountain Plate can produce prints from even finer resolution that this plate can uniquely achieve. It even permits the use of OEM inks.
As with any Piezography process, the linearization is perfectly suited to the medium and there is a screen display to print match that allows the user to edit their images without compensation curves and other unnecessary processes. The Piezography software method produces what appears to be a visual replicant of the aquatint photogravure process.
You'll learn how to process the plates in plain water, dry them, and ready them for inking by hand. In the etching studio, for the sake of health and safety, we will only use safe etching inks that clean up easily with water and do not produce fumes of any kind. What you learn however, is easily adaptable to oil based etching inks. You'll learn how to set up the etching press for the type of pressure required for photogravure. You'll learn how to calendar paper and prepare it for printing. You'll learn how to ink and wipe your own plates and pull your own prints!
Attendees must bring a laptop, but we provide professional grade large screen reference calibrator displays by Eizo and NEC. If you are not currently digitally equipped, please bring something for us to digitize for you. If you only have digital images and no laptop - bring them on a flash drive and you can use our computers. You should bring a series of images you wish to work with. All of the materials and fine art papers are included in the workshop costs. If you happen to have a portfolio, bring it with you. We would love to see and share.
Here is a list of what we will cover, followed by Travel and Housing information:
Overview of the Direct to Plate Photopolymner Gravure process
Studio Setup - Presses, Exposing Units, Inking areas, post print processing and drying
How to build a print flattener
The new Piezography Ultra HD matte black ink
Setting up Photoshop
Setting up Lightroom
The Piezography Direct to Plate method
Photopolymner plate Development and Hardening
Photopolymner plate Cutting
Safe etching inks vs conventional etching inks
Photopolymner plate inking and wiping
Paper preparation and calendaring
Etchnig Presses and their setup for gravure
Printing Photopolymner plates with an Etching Press
Editioning and production strategies
Print drying and flattening using a print drying flattener and how to build one yourself
Introduction to Piezography Professional Edition Toolset
Group print-show and talk
Questionnaire & Wrap-up
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