Alternative Etching Techniques



For this etching workshop we will be focussing on the more painterly techniques etching has to offer. The two main techniques we will be teaching is gum lift aquatint (similar to a sugar lift aquatint but faster) and spray aquatint.Gum lift is a technique that uses a stopping out method of drawing. The gum is painted onto the copper/brass plate. After the gum solution has dried a thin layer of liquid hardground is painted over the whole surface of the plate, including the image area. After the liquid hardground has dried, the plate is submerged into a bath of steaming hot water, which causes the gum to swell, dissolve and eventually lift completely to reveal the blocked out painted area of your drawing. The remaining liquid hardground defines the marks you have made with the gum solution and protects your non-image areas. A spray-paint or rosin aquatint can then be used to give a grainy or dense colour feel to your image (York: 2008:113). The process is quite unique and magical and promises to be very exciting. For more info or to register contact Marika Bell at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.



Nathan Oliviera, Angel Rocker, 2005

Color sugar lift aquatint on with aquatint and drypoint, 35x36 inches. 


York, E. (Ed.). 2008. Magical Secrets about Aquatint:Spit Bite, Sugar Lift & Other Etched Tones Step-by-Step. Berkeley: Crown Point Press.  






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