Lithography differs from any other printmaking techniques; etching, relief, intaglio, screen print, because it uses different materials and processes. The etching process in lithography chemically changes the surface of the matrix and the image is printed from the flat surface of the plate or stone. This is called planographic printing.
The artist draws on the grained stone or metal plate. For a single colour print, this is the only drawing. To make a two colour print, another plate or stone is needed. The drawing is made using materials like those used for drawing on paper, crayons/ pencils, inks and washes. These drawing materials have a high grease content which reacts with the etch in the processing.
The processing, called ‘etching’ is done to stabilise the drawing enabling it to become a printing matrix. Two etches are completed before the image is ready for printing. This processing causes the ink from the roller to be attracted to the greasy drawing at the same time that the non drawn areas, moistened with water, to repel the greasy ink. The image is inked in the desired colour.
The Lemonade Press offers collaborative edition printing. We work closely with artists to realise their ideas. All technical aspects are handled by the printmaker leaving the artist free to work on the creative aspects. During this process both artist and printmaker work together through technical discussion and proofing sessions to come to a signed-off approval to print.
Often an artist’s practice does not include printmaking or lithography, but it is always a fascinating endeavour to see how they utilise the tools printmaking offers. All prints are made by hand with lightfast inks on acid free specialist printmaking paper to ensure a consistently high-quality finish.
The lithography studio is open-access and is available to anyone with an interest in printmaking.
Read more about our open-access memberships here.
The Lemonade Press,
Elm Road Studios,
7 Elm Rd, Bristol,
Mon - Fri: 0900-1700