Congress Tap Room

I wrestle with the notion that my prints are often glorified revisions of my sketchbook drawings. That the prints lose the purity of the natural intuition of drawing from life that my sketches often have. I have thought of several solutions to this problem. The solution here is to simply treat the plate as if it were a piece of sketchbook paper, so the print is the sketch, retaining the quality of an image drawn from life. Yes, I took the sketchbook out of the equation entirely here. 

The idea of using a zinc plate as a piece of paper is scary for a number of reasons. The first is that unlike paper, zinc is expensive, and cannot nessicarily be discared, or flipped, like a single page in a sketchbook. This drawing better be good. Lines can be burninshed down (and I intend on doing this in the future), but that takes time and elbow grease. Another reason is that this method of Intaglio I am using, drypoint, is done by scrtaching and digging into the plate with a metal scribe. The deeper you scratch, the richer the line will print (if inked properly).  This again, takes time and is not nearly as quick as gliding over sketchbook paper with india ink flowing from a nib.  But I think that the payoff is there. Drypoint yields a brilliant range of values and what I love about the medium is the ability to move through states of the plate, meaning I can burnish some areas out, and scratch new areas in. Rembrandt's prints are a prime example of this. So, the impression of this plate just represents a stopping point. The plate will change, the image will change.  In time, impressions from the different states will give the feeling of moments past.