Floral Typography - Engraving

While it was an academic subject at the workshop, this work was intended as a gift to a special person.

While it was an academic subject at the workshop, this work was intended as a gift to a special person.

Aquaforte, or in other words "etching, engraving in metal" was known since ancient times and was used for engraving decorations on weapons. It is a printmaking process consisting of a sheet of metal (usualy zinc or copper) which is corrodated with acid, for obtaining images transposed on paper by means of paint/colors. While the description is brief, the actual process is long and painstaking, demanding several days of delicate work. 

First the actual image. I used Illustrator and Photoshop for this. Then it was inversed, printed and copied to two pieces of metal (A4 size each), which were polished for 2 days. Then the metals were covered with a special lacquer, impervious to acid. Then the design was hand drawn with a fine point, and then, the pieces were subjected to the acid action, which attacks only the lines and surfaces that were uncovered by the pointed stylus. Then the pieces were covered with paint, which later was wiped, resulting in the paint to stick only to the corrodated metal. Final step was to print both metal pieces (one by one) on a sheet of soft paper and leave it to dry in a safe place.

The acid etching depending in the type of steel, desired effect, etc, requires different acid concentrations, temperatures, and close permament inspection of the work in process. This is a one of a kind work, completely hand made, with an artistic sense involved from the preparations of the design in a piece of paper to the preparation of the piece to be etched (polishing, etc) to the application of the acids, and control of the process.

Despite all the hard work, it's not an accurate result, but it's an interesting experiement, taking into account that this type of art is slowly dying. 


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