Read more about my printmaking process
Originally I used professional quality oil paints because they were on hand and made it easy to enjoy the immediacy the monotype. Monotype printmaking process is the simplest of the printing processes and for me using the most familiar tools and materials made the most sense. I was encouraged by a colleague who is a master printmaker to use lithographer’s ink instead. He suggested that the inks are more brilliant and more archival, having a lower oil content and no other binders, fillers or drying agents. I worked with these for a number of years until another printmaker introduced me to etching ink in TUBES. Brilliant! I find these easier to use. They are less stiff, and though very tacky, they can be thinned to the consistency of oil paint. Now I have the best of both experiences. In the photo below one can see a large aluminum plate. I prefer to create my images on aluminum plates because they are durable and eventually they can be recycled. Seen to the right of the plate is a finished print.
Goldenberg’s printmaking studio is a bit chilly in the winter months, but bundling up and elbow grease keep him warm as he continues prepping the inks.
A Simple definition of the Monotype….
The monotype occupies a place between the graphic arts and painting.
The usual monotype is a painting in any convenient medium that does not dry too rapidly – ordinarily oil paint, printing ink, or even aqueous paint – executed on a metal plate, a sheet of plate glass, or a sheet of plexiglass.
Paper is laid over the painting and rolled through a press or it can be held firmly and rubbed with a bone folder or the bowl of a large spoon. The resulting piece is a one of a kind print – the monotype.
Roger Goldenberg is “pulling” a monotype print from the aluminum plate that holds his painted design. Once the plate is ready to print, it is laid on the bed of the press and overlayed with a pristine sheet of printmaking paper. Wool protective blankets are they laid over the paper, tucking it in so to speak just before the artist hand cranks the bed between the roller bars in the same fashion as the old washing machines of the 1930’s that had ringers on them. In the lower left one can see the pressure adjustment nob that adjusts the pressure of the press’s roller on the press bed.
Over the years I have used printmaking in many forms to inspire my more involved work in oil painting. Early on I realized that the simpler means are a most immediate way to inform my more involved ideas. Also, one of my long-term goals has been to create an easily affordable body of work so that my friends can begin art collections of their own. Making works on paper has allowed this to happen while simultaneously creating artwork that is true to my voice and maintains my artistic integrity.