ART - PAINTING - SCULPTURE - PRINTMAKING - OTHER MEDIA
are translucent water-based paints. The technique is based on the transparent
or glaze system of pigmentation that utilises the colour of the paper
for its whites and pale tints.
is an opaque watercolour, but is different from transparent watercolour
in that it has a definite, appreciable film thickness and creates an
actual paint layer. It has a brilliant light-reflecting quality and
is most popularly used in a high chromatic key or in strong contrasting
is a slow drying paint that is created by mixing pigments with oil,
linseed oil being the most traditional. Oil paints are usually opaque
and never dry fully, but rather develop a hard film. Since the sixteenth
century oil painting on canvas has been a standard medium for artists
as it can be easily manipulated and has great flexibility, making it
possible for an artist to achieve a layered or smooth, rich coloured
medium was developed in the middle of the twentieth century. Acrylic
is a type of synthetic resin based on polymer colours and the paint
is made by dispersing pigment in an acrylic emulsion. The artist can
thin these colours with water, but when they dry the resin particles
coalesce to form a tough, flexible, rubbery film that is impervious
to water. This paint is popular because it dries quickly enabling an
artist to work over a previously painted area almost immediately. Although
acrylics lack the manipulative qualities of oils and watercolours, artists
can produce a matt, semi-matt or glossy finish by mixing them with the
consists of drawing or painting with greasy crayons and inks on limestone
that has been ground down to a flat, smooth block. After several subsequent
manipulations, the stone is moistened with water wetting the sections
not covered by the crayon and leaving the areas of the greasy drawing
dry as grease repels water. Oil-based ink is then applied with a roller
and is repelled by the wet parts of the stone. The print made by pressing
paper against the inked drawing is an autographic replica, in reverse,
of the original drawing on stone.
Lithography Lithography was invented by Senefelder in 1798. It is a method of printing from a prepared flat stone or metal plate. A drawing is made on the stone or plate with a greasy crayon or tusche, and then washed with water. When ink is applied it sticks to the greasy drawing but runs off (or is resisted by) the wet surface allowing a print-- a lithograph-- to be made of the drawing. The artist, or other print maker under the artist's supervision, then covers the plate with a sheet of paper and runs both through a press under light pressure. For color lithography separate drawings are made for each color.
Art, Digital Painting and Digital Prints
digitally, or using a computer as a tool in the process, which results
in a work existing outside of the computer - perhaps in the form of
a lambda or giclee print, so that this digitally produced print can
be considered to be an 'original'. Work in this category may also exist
in the form of a video, or more recently, a DVD. Such videos and DVDs
will often be sold in limited editions, as with prints.
this category are sold subject to their being produced under the same
strictly limited editions as conventional prints. In other words, when
a print's edition has been fully run, the artist must not produce any
further prints in the series.
terms are often incorrectly assumed to be the same, but there are important
differences. A Monoprint has a single underlying image (such as an etched
plate or screen) that is made unique through a process of hand colouring
or surface alteration to the printed image. A series of monoprints may
be similar but are not identical. Monotypes are unique images and do
not have a repeatable matrix (etched plate or screen). Instead, a thin
even film of ink is rolled on to a plate which the artist then manipulates
by drawing into it, or by rubbing sections off. The print image is taken
directly from the plate.
Intaglio prints can be created through a number of processes, the common element
is that the printed area is recessed. These recessed areas are filled
with a greasy printer's ink and then the surface is carefully wiped
clean so that the ink remains only in the incised design. Types of intaglio
processes include; Etching, Drypoint, Aquatint, Mezzotint, and Collagraphs.
Etching: The metal plate is coated with an acid-resisting wax or 'ground'
that the artist draws into with a variety of tools, removing the ground
from the areas that are to print black. The plate is immersed in an
acid bath, which 'bites out' or etches the exposed areas. The etched
plate is inked and the surface is wiped clean, leaving ink only in the
etched depressions. Finally the plate is run through a press with dampened
paper - the pressure forces the paper into the etched areas of the plate,
transferring the ink onto the paper. Rembrandt van Rijn first popularized
Drypoint: Artists working in drypoint draw the image directly onto the plate using
a steel tipped 'pencil' that produces an added richness due to the burr
(or shaving of metal that is turned up at the furrow). As the burrs
are delicate and crush easily under the weight of the press, usually
less than 50 impressions can be made.
Aquatint: Aquatint is an etching technique which allows large areas of varying
tones to be printed, by means of a textured plate. The area to be etched
is dusted with a powdered resin and then heated to melt it onto the
surface. The plate is then placed in the acid bath to etch away the
tiny areas not protected by the granulated resin.
Mezzotint: This is perhaps the most labour intensive intaglio process and involves
a plate being 'rocked' with a curved, notched blade until the surface
is entirely and evenly pitted, creating a rough surface that prints
black. Scraping the burr off or polishing the plate smooth creates half-tones
and light. Colour mezzotints require a separate plate for each colour
which will be printed separately on top of the previous colour in different
Collagraphs: Derived from the word 'collage,' Collagraphs are created by building
up an image on a surface (cardboard, metal, or plastic) with glue and
other materials thereby creating recessed areas where the ink is retained.
the oldest printing technique and refers to the cutting away of part
of the surface of a block of material so that the image area to be printed
stands out in relief. Woodcuts or woodblock prints are made by cutting
into the surface of a smooth piece of hardwood with a knife, and V and
U gouges are used to create more delicate lines. When printed, the area
that has been cut away remains white and the raised surface is visible.
A separate block is required for each colour. Printmakers rarely use
more than three or four colours for aesthetic purposes. The linocut,
a twentieth century adaptation of woodcuts, uses linoleum in place of
wood and while it is easier to work with, it will not take very delicate
or subtle cutting.
/ Serigraphy / Silkscreen Printing
is a twentieth century multicolour printmaking technique developed in
America. The stencil process involves placing designs on a silk or nylon
mesh screen that is attached to a wooden or metal frame about two inches
deep, with the screen fabric at the bottom. Various film-forming materials,
as well as hand-cut film stencils and photo-sensitive emulsions, are
used as resists. Colour is poured into the frame which is placed in
contact with the surface to be printed on. The colour is scraped over
the stencil with a squeegee and deposited on the paper through the meshes
of the uncoated areas of fabric.
Pencil / Charcoal / Chalk
lead pencils are made of graphite mixed with variable amounts of clay
according to the degree of hardness required, with the softest varieties
containing little or no clay. The paper texture must be coarse so that
it 'files' down the pencil. Charcoal, due to its crumbly nature, can
be used either for wispy strokes or shading, and is good for creating
strong dark lines - the drawback with charcoal is that it smudges and
tends to break easily. Chalk is usually used for shading.
are normally sold in three grades: soft, medium and hard. The soft is
universally used, the other two mainly for special effects. The soft
texture of pastels allows them to be easily manipulated. One of the
charms of the finished drawing is its texture, as manipulations of the
crayons produce a varied effect: thin or thick, smooth or rough, level
Ink has been used for many centuries in the Far East, and used to be sold
in sticks that were rubbed with water in shallow mortars. Modern ink
is sold in liquid form, either soluble or waterproof; the former is
more suited to fine lines and delicate manipulations and effects, and
coloured ink can be applied to wet paper to produce magnificent spreading
Collage became recognised as a serious art form in the early twentieth century.
The term is derived from a nineteenth century craft called 'papiers
collés' in which a variety of found objects including fabric,
newspapers and cardboard are adhered to a flat surface to create a work
of art. Decoupage refers to the pasting of cutouts all-over a surface
rather than the use of cutouts as individual shapes or patterns in a
'Digital Art' encompasses three different categories:
Art Work produced digitally, or using a computer as a
tool in the process, which results in a work existing outside of the
computer - perhaps in the form of a lambda or giclee print, so that
this digitally produced print can be considered to be an 'original'.
Work in this category may also exist in the form of a video, or more
recently, a DVD. Such videos and DVDs will often be sold in limited
editions, as with prints.
produced reproduction of an artwork already existing in
another form, for example a painting.
- Work produced to be viewed via digital means, which cannot
be easily 'owned', such as web-art.
is a reductive or subtractive technique in which the artist removes
the material through cutting or abrading a block of material to create
a piece. Wood is very pliable and is therefore easy to carve, although
it is subject to humidity and extreme temperatures as it breathes more
than stone, and must be dried and cured prior to carving to prevent
subsequent splitting or warping. Marble, the stone used most often since
ancient Greece, is very hard and difficult to carve; alabaster, which
has a similar aesthetic property to marble, is soft and easy to carve;
limestone, granite and sandstone are also popular media.
is the process in which a three-dimensional form is shaped from clay
or wax. Clay works are placed in a kiln or oven to be fired and the
firing process makes the clay permanent and durable.
substance such as plastic, clay or molten metal is poured into a cast,
a mould which is made from a clay or wax model. Bronze (an alloy of
copper and tin) is often used in casting, but concrete and resin can
also be cast.
A technique for creating
forms by mixing wet paper pulp with glue or paste. The form hardens
as it dries, and becomes suitable for painting.
refers to work such as welded metal constructions in which pre-formed
elements are joined and was evident in the revolutionary art movements
during the first quarter of the twentieth century in France, Russia