Monotype: Plume Verte

monotype portrait with watercolor

Plume Vert 6×4 Monotype Ghost print with watercolor

The Beauty of Ghost Prints

When I made a monotype of this portrait in 2006, I had enough ink on the zinc plate to pull three ghost prints, which is unusual with monotypes (for me). There’s nothing incised on the plate with this form of printmaking. You’re simply pushing pigment around (in this case, black, oil based etching ink) on a very smooth zinc plate.

Pulling the Print

When you get the image you’re aiming for, you take a deep breath, and press the still-wet pigments against a sheet of paper, and voila!, you have a monotype.  If there’s enough ink left on the plate, you can place another sheet of paper against the ink, tighten the press, and push it through again. In this case, I did that three times.

Painting Watercolor on a Ghost Print

You can see in the image at the bottom of this post that the last ghost was very faint, but there was just enough structure to have fun with watercolor glazing on top of the ghost print. It was a lovely time in my studio, and poignant, because it’s the last print of this particular monotype of my gr-aunt Arzelia when she was sixteen. I’m betting I’ll use the reference photo again, because I love it, but for now, and for this monotype ghost, she’s the last one.

monotype ghost print

Glazing watercolor over the print

Want to Make a Monotype?

If you’ve never tried to make a monotype, I posted a series of video tutorials on monotype methods on YouTube. Grab a sketchbook and check them out here. If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to leave them in the comments, or come back to this blog post and leave them here. What will you make first?

Thanks for stopping by and I’ll see you in the next post!


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6 Responses to Monotype: Plume Verte

  1. John Brisson 23/03/2013 at 7:50 am #

    It’s great. Such an ‘old fashion’ look to it!


  2. Dan Kent 20/03/2013 at 12:43 pm #

    I love this portrait, and enjoyed hearing how you made this lucky third image.

  3. Barbara Muir 20/03/2013 at 9:07 am #

    Beautiful image Belinda. I like the quote, especially the part about rules. Picasso, whether you like him or not, would have upset this fellow.

    Basic rules are like a trampoline — they send us up there, but we have to jump again. We make that decision.

    XO Barbara

  4. dinahmow 19/03/2013 at 9:47 pm #

    ooh! I like this one, Belinda;especially the final ghost.Very reminiscent of old, faded Daguerrotypes.


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