A la poupée
A single plate is selectively inked in different colors, using stumps of rag known as a poupée.
An etching technique that creates printed tonal areas. Powdered rosin is distributed across a metal plate and adhered through heating. When the plate is submerged in a corrosive bath, tiny areas unprotected by the rosin particles are “eaten away”, creating recesses. Once the rosin is removed, the plate is inked, and ink collects in those areas with uneven surfaces.
Art Paper
Paper that has a smooth glossy finish which is made by adding a special coating.
Artist’s Proof
10% of the total number of prints in an edition remain the property of the artist, and are called Artist’s Proofs
A Japanese tool used in printing woodblocks. Made of bamboo leaves.
Reducing the satin on paper with chlorine or a similar chemical.
The material from which the image is cut or engraved.
Bon á tirer
Bon á tirer means “good to pull.” This is the first perfect impression of the work and the one that will be used to judge all other impressions in the edition. The BAT indicates the artist’s authorization to proceed with the edition; it is signed or initialed by the artist. All further impressions are compared to the BAT for quality. Any impression deviating from the BAT is destroyed.
A small hard roller used for applying ink to a plate or block.
A highly polished hand tool: Used to flatten detail in intaglio plates by intense rubbing.
The measurement of the thickness of paper, measured in thousandths of an inch or mils.
The process of adhering one piece of paper to another by using a liquid adhesive and running them together through the printing press. Chine is French for “China,” which refers to the thin Asian paper originally used with this technique, and collé means “glued.”
A technique of relief printing using any combination of actual elements such as cardboard, fabric, washes, carborundum (an abrasive powder), or found objects, which are adhered to a plate, inked, and printed.
An inscription found at the beginning or end of a book, including the printers name and other information relevant to the publication.
Leather sleeves placed over handles of rollers during inking up to prevent injury to the hands.
A planographic process employing the blueprint technique. See Neufert Suite by Guillermo Kuitca.
The process where the lithographic plate on a lithography printer has to have water applied before printing.
Stamping a design into the surface of an object or paper so that there’s an indent.
Digital printing
A general term for any technique that involves digital technology. Until the mid-1990s, most computer-made images were transferred photochemically onto traditional printing plates or screens. Since then, many artists have used high-resolution digital printing processes on computer-controlled printers. Sometimes the terms Inkjet (a type of printer), Giclée (the French term for inkjet), or Iris (a brand of printer) are used to refer to the printing process.
Direct Gravure
A photogravure and a direct gravure are made in the same way but in contrast to the photogravure which uses a photographically generated positive (Andrea Modica’s folio of landscape photogravures, Florida) the direct gravure uses a hand drawn positive (such as Mimosus soli by Janaina Tschäpe.)
Dot Screen
Also known as Stochastic Screen. It is a random dot screen which has space between each dot and it gives the appearance of a rich continuous tone to artwork when used to create photopolymer plates.
Dot Screen
Also known as Stochastic Screen. It is a random dot screen which has space between each dot and it gives the appearance of a rich continuous tone to artwork when used to create photopolymer plates.
An intaglio technique in which marks are cut directly into a metal plate using a tool with a sharp point. The drypoint needle is used like a pencil to incise lines into the plate, displacing ridges of metal called burrs. The plate is wiped with ink, which collects in the incisions as well as under the burrs. Damp paper is laid on the plate, and they are run through a press together, transferring ink from both the incision and the burr, resulting in the drypoint’s characteristic fuzzy line.
This is the term used for when a printed product doesn’t lose its shape when it’s opened.
Any process used to create a raised or depressed surface, sometimes without ink.
A technique that creates precise lines which swell in the middle and taper at the ends. Lines are incised into a bare metal plate using a burin, a tool with a V-shaped blade. The plate is wiped with ink, which collects in the incisions. Damp paper is laid on the plate, and they are run through a press together, transferring ink from the incisions to the paper.
A Spanish or Algerian grass, from which a strong smooth paper is made.
An intaglio technique that can create a wide variety of printed marks. A resist is first applied to a clean metal plate (such as zinc or copper). The resist is selectively scraped off to reveal the bare plate beneath. When the plate is placed in a corrosive acid bath, only the exposed metal areas corrode. The plate is then inked; ink remaining on the surface of the plate is wiped away with cheesecloth, news print, or hand-wiping. Damp paper is laid on the plate; paper and plate are run through a press, and the ink is transferred from the recesses to the paper.
In papermaking, the beating and separation of the fibres to form pulp.
The finishing touches of a print (for example, cutting the crop lines and adding protective gloss)
Fiber commonly used in Japanese papermaking characterized by long, fine, tough, glossy fibers. It is a very light but strong paper. Lesley Dill used gampi paper in the Poem Dress of Circulation and the print Gold Word Figure.
On a printed image, another lighter image in the same print is called ghosting because of the lighter, ghostly finish.
A cutting tool with a broad curved edge, used to clear large areas of unwanted material from relief blocks.
In general, any surface covering of a plate or stone that the artist removes with various tools or chemical solutions to create an image. For instance, in etching, an acid-resistant coating applied to the face of a metal plate to protect uncut areas from the action of the acid. Can be hard-ground or soft-ground.
Graphicstudio invented the technique of heliorelief which allows photographic images to be transferred to a block of wood. The image is then placed into relief not by traditional hand cutting but by sandblasting.  The technique amplifies the possibilities of woodcut, freeing the artist of the constraints of the wood grain. See Kiki Smith’s artist book The Vitreous Body for an example of heliorelief.
A print made directly from an inked stone, plate or woodblock.
A term for the family of printing techniques which transfers ink from the recesses of a matrix, rather than from its surface. Techniques using intaglio printing include etching, engraving, drypoint, aquatint, and mezzotint. Intaglio comes from the Italian word intaglaire, which means “to incise.”
A relief technique using a sheet of linoleum from which shapes are gouged away using chisels or knives, leaving the printing image as the raised surface. Ink is transferred from the surface of the block by the application of pressure. Linoleum is softer and therefore easier to carve than wood; however, it exhibits neither wood’s characteristic grain nor its durability.
A flooring material made of linseed oil and cork dust on a hessian support.
A planographic technique that can print a variety of drawn and painterly marks. Traditionally, a grease pencil or tusche (greasy watercolor) is applied to a flat slab of limestone, selectively filling the stone’s pores. A chemical mixture securely bonds the stone before water is used to fill the remaining pores. The oil-based ink used is attracted only to those areas that have retained grease. Damp paper is laid on the face of the stone, and they are run through a press together, transferring ink from the surface. Aluminum plates may also be used.
Mail Art
Is an artistic movement centered on sending small-scale works through the postal service. It initially developed out of what eventually became Ray Johnson’s New York Correspondence School and the Fluxus movements of the 1960s, though it has since developed into a global movement that continues to the present.
In printmaking the surface of – the plate, stone, block, stencil on which the image is formed for printing.
An intaglio technique in which the surface of a metal plate is first uniformly pitted using a rocker. A mezzotint rocker is serrated on the bottom and must be rocked back and forth by hand, a demanding task.
A technique involving the painting, rolling, or scraping of ink onto a uniform surface, which is transferred to paper by the application of pressure. Because the monotype matrix is unaltered and each unique inking is transferred in a single printing, the print cannot be duplicated, hence its name.
Offset Printing
A technique commonly used in commercial printing where an image is transferred first to a rubber cylinder on a mechanized press, from which it is then printed onto paper. An indirect process, offset printing is beneficial because it does not reverse the image from the matrix, nor does the matrix deteriorate quickly. A common use of this technique is offset lithography.
The quality of the paper defines the opaqueness of it. If it isn’t opaque enough, your design might show through to the other side.
Pantone Colour
A universal colour language that designers, printing companies and brand owners use. This helps the right colour to be achieved again and again.
A lamination of a woodpulp base with two wood-free card faces. Not suitable for archival purposes.
A general term for any metal plate process in which an image has been transferred to a metal surface by photographic means. A corrosive bath is used to incise the image into the plate before inking and printing. Photoetching is a term alternatively used.

The design is created on a flat surface with no perceptible variation in depth, as in lithography.
Plate tone
Tone created in intaglio prints by leaving a film of ink on the plate when it is wiped before printing.
A print is any image that is transferred from a matrix. A matrix is a physical surface that can be manipulated to hold ink. Most, though not all, matrices are able to print the same image many times.
Progressive Proofs
A series of proofs of a multi colour print showing the progressive addition of the individual colours to the image.
Progressive Proofs
In multi-coloring printing, a different stone or plate must be made foe each color used. Progressive Proofs are single-color impressions from each of the different plates or stones. Combined together, impressions from each stone or plate on the same paper will result in an impression comparable to the bon á tirer (BAT). As each Progressive Proof shows only a portion of the entire image, these proofs are primarily valuable as documentation. The artist does not sign progressive Proofs.
An inked impression pulled from an inked plate, block, stone, or screen.
The best way to avoid expensive mistakes in printing. It’s important to pay close attention to the proofs you receive to ensure the design, copy and colour has no errors. 
The color space of Red, Green and Blue which computers use to display images on your screen. An RGB computer file must be translated into CMYK in order to be printed accurately.
Rag Paper
Paper made from 100% cotton or linen.
Multiple printed images in correct alignment upon the surface of the paper
The correct alignment of separate plates, blocks, stones, or screens with respect to one another. This is crucial in the making of multicolor prints.
The image is printed from the raised portions of a carved, etched, or cast block or other rigid material. The printing surface stands in relief above the rest of the block, as in woodcut.
In intaglio, a means of enriching the lines of a whipped plate by gently flicking them with a loose piece of tarlatan, causing some of the ink to lift out of the plate.
Scratch Resistance
Depending on the technique used, it can be difficult to scratch or cause damage to products because the physical properties will have been dramatically improved.
Silk or synthetic mesh is stretched tightly over a frame. A stencil is adhered to the fabric, blocking the nonprinting areas. The image areas are open fabric through which ink is forced with a squeegee.
Short Ink
Ink that is stiff, cannot be drawn out between the finger and thumb without breaking.
Softground etching
The artist draws with a pencil on a piece of paper that is placed over a special soft etching ground. The pressure of the pencil causes the ground to adhere to the paper, recording the texture of the paper on the plate. The plate is then bitten with acid, the remaining ground is removed, and the plate is inked and printed.
Solar Plate
Is composed of thin steel backing with a surface coating of light sensitive photopolymer and can be used for relief and intaglio printmaking. UV light hardens the areas not blocked out by carbon (the artwork) and these unexposed areas wash out with tap water to reveal the etched surface. The plate is particularly durable and it is possible to make large editions from a photopolymer plate.
Steel Engraving
The engraving process applied to steel plates.
Stencil (or pochoir)
Prints are hand-colored through specially cut stencils.
This is what’s receiving your printed images and content. It can be paper, card, foil or whatever. It can also massively alter the impact of printed pieces.
Sugarlift aquatint
The artist draws on the metal plate using a mixture of sugar syrup and ink. When dry, the entire plate is covered with a varnish that is impervious to acid and then placed in warm water. As the sugar melts, it lifts off the varnish and exposes the metal plate where the artist had drawn. These areas are then aquatinted.
Surface Rolled
Ink applied to the surface of a plate, block, or stone, using a roller or brayer.
A Japanese paper, white, contains 20% kozo fibre.
Transfer Paper
A specially coated paper, used in lithography to transfer a drawing to a stone or plate.
A transparent positive photograph.
This is the line cut to produce the finished size. The trim cuts through the bleed area to ensure a continuous and sharp edge around a design.
Ultraviolet Light
UV light is a form of radiation which isn’t visible to the human eye, it’s in an invisible part of the electromagnetic spectrum. In LED UV printing technology, this light is what instantly dries the ink. 

In relief and intaglio, cutting or biting outwards below the surface of the block or plate
French term for wove paper.
An illustration where the background gradually fades away until it blends into the unprinted paper.
Viscosity Printing
In intaglio a method of printing two or more colours of differing viscosity on the same plate. The plate needs to be etched to several levels, and the technique involves the use of hard and soft rollers with fat and lean inks.
A paper made without sizing.
An identifying mark in printed in a sheet of paper during its manufacture. Shows as lighter in tone than the surrounding paper when held to the light.
A logo or design printed onto the paper. It’s only visible under light.
A screenprinting process in which pigmented beeswax rather than traditional printing ink is pressed through the stencil-covered screen, a steel mesh screen that is heated to prevent the wax from setting. It is possible to achieve printed surfaces of great variety using this method. Printed wax may be left unmodified, revealing the woven texture of the screen, or “burned-in” with a torch, for a smooth surface with a more fluid, encaustic-like appearance, and burnished to a high sheen. Consecutive layers of wax may be forced through the screen to create a multilayered surface of low relief. See Sky’s Four Sides by Pat Steir and John Yau for an example of waxtype.
An abrasive stone used with water for sharpening metal tools.
White Spirit
Mineral turps.
Wood engraving
A relief technique requiring a hard plank of wood, which is incised with fine lines using sharp tools. Unlike the woodcut, a wood engraving requires a harder plank whose face is cut perpendicular to the grain. Ink is transferred from the surface of the block by the application of pressure.
A relief technique using a plank of wood from which shapes are gouged away using chisels or knives, leaving the printing image as the raised surface. Ink is transferred from the surface of the block by the application of pressure. Woodcuts are characteristic both for the grain that is often evident in the printed image, as well as for their durability.
Woodpulp Paper
Paper made entirely or primarily from cellulose derived from woodpulp.
Work and Turn
One side of paper has the front and back of a print. When the printing is complete, the paper is turned over and the back and front is printed – creating two copies of the print.
Working Proof
A trial proof with additions and corrections.
Wood Engraving.
A19th Century term denoting lithography on zinc plates.