View Full Version : Monotype Questions

11-15-2002, 09:11 AM

Please talk to me about monotype prints, I have done some reading on the subject but I still have several questions. I plan to use the prints as a foundation to draw into with charcoal, India ink, pastels, etc.

1) Im using Plexiglas and have sanded it with 220-grit sandpaper to avoid beading. I then used dishwashing liquid to coat the plate. I assume that any dishwashing liquid will do and that it does not have to be dish washer machine dishwashing liquid. However, this gives me a very thick coat on the plate should it be so thick. Can it be cut or do you recommend a certain brand? It is cheaper than gum Arabic.
2) Im experimenting with all sort of water-based media, gouache, watercolor, and speedball ink is there something you would recommend.
3) I am working by hand but I noticed that there is an Italian school etching press for $169.00 that seem to be able to handle a 9x12 or even a wee bit larger. Would this be a good Christmas present for me will there be a noticeable difference in the hand done and pressed prints.
4) Can you successful mix watercolor or gouache into the water based inks and will it hold up over time.


11-16-2002, 04:10 PM
For what it's worth...

I just use glass or regular plexiglass. I don't know why you'd sand it. But...

I use oil based printing inks or paints, not water soluble. This is for 2 reasons. 1. Acrylics dry too fast to do monoprinting in my experience. 2. I have not found any water-based inks that are classed are archival and lightfast, only student grade ones.

The printmakers I work with put monoprints through their etching presses. It's very nice. They just paint the monoprint on shiney card - or mount/mattboard varnished with button polish or yacht varnish. Printing through a press gives a very different finish. Handpressed you'll see the brushstrokes and such. Done in a press you get nice solid areas. I like both but handpress mine myself.


11-16-2002, 05:40 PM
The reason I sand the Plexiglas is to prevent the water from beading when I paint on it with watercolor. I have one edge of the BKF Rives paper taped to the Plexiglas with masking tape and after I paint a few strokes - I flip the paper down before the paint dries and rub my hand over it. I then lift the paper see what I have and paint a few more strokes following through the same process. Generally I have one of my drawing beneath the Plexiglas to use as a master as I apply the paint. I hope this makes some sense. Thanks for the information. I'm wondering if I could substitute oil inks for the water color. Can you paint it directly on the Pglas?

11-17-2002, 02:00 AM
Hi Roloc,
My hubby got me that little Italian press from Jerry's Arterama as a gift last Christmas...I think it was a fantastic gift. :D Definately add it to your Christmas list!
I use the press and also do printing by hand, depending on the effect I want in the finished piece. Like Tina said -- both are a very different finsh.

I also use watercolor paints...and whatever other mediums I have around. My latest experiment was done using pastels and quite damp paper. That's what's so much fun about monotypes...almost anything goes! Whatever paint or ink you use, just make sure it's artist grade.


Greg C.
11-17-2002, 02:12 PM
Try coating the plexi in gum arabic rather than sanding. This seems to make the paint lift off easier when you print and makes it much easier to get an even printing from hand rubbing.