The Beauty of Monotype Ghost Prints
I’ve had this ghost print from a monotype in my flat files – just waiting to become something else for months. The beauty of monotype ghost prints is that you can take them anywhere you want with other media. They act as a perfect underpainting to get you launched into creating a new image.
Monotype Printmaking Process
This monotype started on a sheet of beveled plexi glass, coated with Daniel Smith Oil-based etching ink. With my reference photo propped nearby, I’ve drawn into the ink with the point of a pen, just to give myself a map in the pigment, and I’m using paper towels here to lift ink off the plate to clear areas of big sky.
Ready to Print
The ink (above) has been pushed, cleared, scraped, tapped into half-tones, grooved with pastel stumps, and it’s ready to have a sheet of soaked & blotted paper laid on top of the pigment, and rolled through an etching press to transfer the ink to the paper. Pulling the paper off the plate is *always* a surprise. It’s great fun.
Where to Learn More
If you’re new to the process of monotype printmaking, you can visit a playlist of tutorial videos on the process on my youtube channel here, and also check out a 5 minute video of this method from start to finish by a British printmaker named Chris Gollon, check this out.
Give it a Go
If you’ve never made a monotype, I hope you’ll give this flexible, no press required, inventive printmaking process a try. Follow along on any of the tutorial videos on my channel, and if questions come up, leave them in the comments here, or under the video you’re using to make your print. Have a monotype party with friends and share the results online so we can see. Tag me (@bdelpesco) on social media so I can check out the fruits of your labor. Whatya say? Let’s get started!
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I have done a few drawings. All in all, I have been less courageous than I expected to be. I refuse to give up before I get results, though. As I am at loose ends here, I might as well make the most of my time and study my craft. I have started down a hard path that requires great patience. ~Degas 1858 (age 24) in a letter to a friend while visiting Florence, Italy