5 reasons to try drypoint printing

5 reasons to try drypoint printing

If you are looking to expand your artistic skills, why not have a go at drypoint printmaking? Drypoint printing is a printmaking technique where incisions are created on the surface of a copper plate with a hard-pointed needle. Using the drypoint technique, one can make illustrations or expressive sketches, which can then produce an edition of prints.

A place to try your hand at drypoint printing is the STPI – Creative Workshop and Gallery in Robertson Quay. It conducts drypoint printings workshops where participants get to print their own mini portraits.

Curious about drypoint printing? Here are five reasons for why you should give it a go.

Drypoint printing is suitable for anyone
It is a simple form of printmaking that even beginners can easily master. Prints are often created by using a needle to create incisions on the surface, and the technique is similar to drawing, which makes it easy for first-timers to grasp. Other printmaking techniques such as etching, for example, uses chemicals to produce incised lines in a metal printing plate, which requires more skill to control.

Your print is unique
Unlike a digital print, every print made by the printmaking technique is unique. The outcome of each print is based on how the plate is prepared and inked by hand, and everything from the application of ink to the pressure applied during printing is never exactly the same.

You will become more zen
To create the desired print, one usually has to go through multiple test prints and a few rounds of experimenting, trying out different types of paper, ink, ways of applying the ink and the pressure applied during printing. The process requires patience, but it also involves creativity, which makes it ultimately enjoyable and rewarding. 

You gain life skills
Through sketching on the print plate, one learns to express and communicate their emotions and ideas. Experimenting with different print techniques, on the other hand, trains one to develop problem-solving techniques.

It inspires creativity
Once you have learnt the drypoint technique, take printmaking to further heights by combining it with other printmaking techniques such as relief, intaglio, lithography and screen-printing. The combinations of the four basic techniques, allows for endless possibilities.

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