I recently had the wonderful experience of learning how to do a traditional form of printmaking with Patricia Wynne at Studio 16. The method is called intaglio and it involves using solvents, acid, a zinc or copper plate and a tool to scratch into the plate that will hold ink to create an image. I found a wonderful YouTube video that describes the process of intaglio printing and all the different methods that are used to inscribe a line. I highly recommend that you see the video as it gives you a visual and oral overview of what the process is all about.
I did 2 prints during the workshop. One is a line drawing of my iguana, Father Mulcahy. Father Mulcahy died on November 1st 2010 and I wanted to do something in honor of him. I printed the plate on several types of paper and different colored inks. I will do more experimenting with hand tinting the prints with watercolor and colored pencil.
My second print was purely experimental. I wanted to try to do a very free formed multi-dimensional abstract. I used solvents and a "sugar lift" to create an organic multi layered texture. I was thrilled with the results. I am not sure where I am going with this but I love the fluid and spontaneous nature of this technique and I plan to do more experimentation in the near future.
If you have any thoughts or experiences with intaglio printmaking I would love to hear from you!