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  • Writer's picturePascal Lagesse

The printing process

Updated: Nov 26, 2021

I started printing during my studies in graphic design in 1989. I was immediately impressed by this technique where one could reproduce a drawing in many copies. At the university we had a large press for printing in A1 format. Coming back to Mauritius in 1992, I bought a printing press from Rougier et Plé and started printing from zinc and copper plates.

Etching on copper plate showing a house in Rodrigues by Mauritian artist Pascal Lagesse
Etching on copper plate by Mauritian artist Pascal Lagesse

The technique was simple ; I had to draw backwards with something pointy on a plate covered with an acid impervious substance and then place the plate in acid for it to etch the lines where the acid impervious substance had been removed. It was simple but not easy… I had fun printing landscapes on metal plates until the time I found solar plates. These are uv sensitive plates on which a drawing made on transparent celluloïd is applied. The plate is then placed un sunlight and the opaque strokes on the celluloïd are not exposed to uv and the transparent part of the plastic is exposed. The exposed parts of the plate harden while the non exposed parts can be washed off with water. Drawings and photos can be printed this way. Lately I started monoprints which are unique prints and this too is a great adventure.

Abstract color monoprint by Mauritian artist Pascal Lagesse
Abstract monoprint by Mauritian artist Pascal Lagesse

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