A world in glorious black and white.
April 7, 2011 5:55 PM   Subscribe

Peter Milton's etching and engraving work takes on the detailed nuance of fine B&W silver prints. Peter is colour blind.
posted by arse_hat (5 comments total) 10 users marked this as a favorite
These are quite beautiful.
posted by device55 at 6:11 PM on April 7, 2011

Thanks, I wasn't familiar with his work and these are great.
posted by cedar at 7:37 PM on April 7, 2011

Thanks, these are interesting. His normal technique appears to lie somewhere between traditional printmaking via etching/engraving and photography.
"By 1975, when Milton produced Daylilies, he had begun to draw on transparent Mylar and to etch his copper plates with the aid of photo-resist coating, which hardens when exposed to ultraviolet light but remains soft and permeable wherever covered by a mark. Interposed between the coating and the light, the marks made by a drawing, photograph, or collage leave the coating beneath them penetrable, so that when the coated plate is immersed in acid, the acid will bite in the trail or shadow (so to speak) of the marks.6 This method of etching allows Milton to combine on one plate an indefinite number of drawings and photographs that can be directly transferred."*
That article goes on to suggest that he mostly uses photos as guides but the majority of prints I looked at seemed more in the way of photo-mechanical developments than true printmaking in the inked copperplate on paper pressing species. Certainly, a lot of the images look as much like photos as they do etchings. Is it a nitpick? Maybe. I'm not saying that the guy's work isn't worthy or commendable or art, but I don't know that in a strict classification sense whether a lot of his output belongs in the group marked "printmaking".
posted by peacay at 9:05 PM on April 7, 2011

Gorgeous. As someone who's also colorblind, it's always awesome to see a work of art and not have to worry that I'm missing something.
posted by zarq at 7:15 AM on April 8, 2011

Peacay, it sounds like the process of making his works is traditional printmaking (etching and inking a plate, pulling a print) and that he's just using less traditional ways of getting the image on the plate.

His photo/collage process for getting the image on the plate isn't too different from many forms of screenprinting, yes? Very common there to use light-reactive emulsions and photocopies on transparencies to define where the ink will be blocked (the area that's exposed to light) and where the ink will pass (the area where the dark line on the transparency that prevents light reaching the emulsion on the screen). Except in his case, the unreacted stuff is what gets etched by the acid and so is where the marks are made in the final work.
posted by Sublimity at 8:08 AM on April 8, 2011

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