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Intaglio (Includes: Engraving, Incising, Etc.)

Engraving, Etching, Dry Point, Mezzotint, and Aquatint: These are all examples of the intaglio process used in printmaking. All are created by removing or incising the surface by physical or chemical force. When employing these techniques into encaustic, they are not used as defined in printmaking. The technique is rather loosely followed, taking what is possible and employing it. Screen-printing or Silk screening will also be mentioned here. To employ intaglio techniques you will need the appropriate tool. Carving Tools, Scribe, Twisted Scribe, Needles, Pins, etc., Burnishers, etcetera- can all be used in this technique.

This technique is a rather simple one, which requires you to carve into the layer(s) of wax by dragging or pushing with a tool. Exposing the layer(s) underneath can easily be achieved by remove only the layer(s) you wish; this takes practice and may require a thick under layer of encaustic. Different tools offer different results: for example a burnisher pushes the paint aside, creating ridges (known as burs in dry point) along the edges of the cup shaped incision; if there are under layers, they will be highly evident- rather than using a straight gouge. On the other hand, the burs can be beneficial by acting as a dam, holding back liquid wax from spilling into another section; this technique takes lots of practice and can be a challenge even for experts.

Screen-printing or Silk screening is really no different from the method used in printmaking, except that you are printing on the encaustic surface instead of paper or cloth. Remember when employing this method to use a compatible ink or paint, some inks may affect the binding properties of the wax if they are fused between layers; if you are not sure, make a practice sample. If you plan to print on the surface of the wax when the encaustic is finished, it is best to fuse the surface lightly.

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Revisiting old topics and filling in holes is quite a chore, yet a necessary one, one that will offer more quality information. For example: recent activity and questions surrounding hardboard and/or masonite, has directed our attention to fill in the blanks on that topic (currently under revision/addition), as well as, more about gesso (specifically encaustic gesso) and other topics (search the tabs), all are in the works. 

Prior years were to get as much general information as possible up and available- a starting point. More and more however, new topics are focused and detailed, and old ones will be getting revisiting; removing any possibility of confusion. 

I should point out that this is a one person operation (takes me awhile to get around to everything, ohh yeah, I should make some art), Anyway, where was I?, oh! one person operation..., even though I tend to refer in posts and topics as we, it is to remove the need to revisit things later when it really is we. All of this whilst working, making art, and whatever may be the case.

As always, I welcome any opinions, comments, and questions- simply contact me.

Thank you
Sincerely
Jonathan Parks