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Q1. What is Lithography?

ANSWER: Lithography is a kind of planography that was invented by Bavarian author Alois Senefelder in 1796. The printing process uses chemical changes to create an image, and it is produced from the repulsion of oil and water.

After having drawn an image on the surface of the plate with the oil-based mediums, it is placed in a weak acid solution of gum arabic in water. The surface without the image is oxidized by gum arabic. Part of the image is a hydrophobic; the blank space is hydrophilic. When a proper oil ink is painted on the wet plate with a roller, the ink will stick only to the image and the blank space remain clean with the water.

The plate and paper are run through a press to apply even pressure over the surface. The ink is transferred to the paper, off the plate.

In the early days of lithography, a smooth piece of limestone was used. The name "lithos" of lithography is the ancient Greek word to stone. In the modern method, a thin flexible aluminum plate is often used in place of stone tablets.

Q2. What is Plywoodgraphy?

ANSWER: Plywoodgraphy is new technique concerning planography. A plywood board is used instead of stone or aluminum, namely, a wood version of lithography. It has characteristics of xylography and lithography.

It is possible to carve with a chisel and to print polychrome by using watercolors together. Moreover, one is able to achieve a peculiar feel of wood grain on prints, and able to make matiere on plywood board by a mixture having equal portions of gesso and talc.

Q3. What kinds of printing are there?

ANSWER: Represent as follows.

  • relief printing:
    • woodblock printing / gravure sur bois (FR)
      • woodcut / gravure sur bois de fil (FR)
      • wood engraving / gravure sur bois de bout (FR)
    • linocut / linoleum (FR)
    • paper printing
    • stamping
  • intaglio printing:
    • copperplate print / gravure sur cuivre (FR)
      • etching / eau-forte (FR)
      • drypoint / pointe-seche (FR)
      • engraving / burin (FR)
      • aquatint / aquatinte (FR)
      • mezzotint / manière noir (FR)
      • roulette
      • sugar aquatint
      • soft ground etching / vernis mou(FR)
      • photoengraving / héliogravure (FR)
      • mixographia
      • carborundum
    • able to use other materials besides copperplate for intaglio printing: varnished woodblock, iron, vinyl chloride board, aluminium, glass, etc....
  • planographic printing:
    • lithograph / lithographie (FR)
    • plywoodgraph / contreplaquégraphie (FR)
    • offset printing / imprimerie offset (FR)
    • waterless planograph
      • waterless lithograph
      • waterless plywoodgraph
      • waterless offset printing
  • stencil printing:
    • silkscreen / sérigraphie (FR)
    • stencil / pochoir (FR)
    • mimeograph / polycopié (FR)
  • other technique:
    • monotype
    • cliches-verre
    • collage
    • handmade-print
    • mixed media
    • giclee
    • chibachrome
    • handcoloring / coloré a la main (FR)

Q4.   What is Edition Number?

ANSWER: It is a serial number for putting artworks in order. The numerator signifies the sequential number of the edition, the denominator signifies total number of editions printed. You can know how many sheets are there the artwork in the world with the edition number.

Basically, there is no difference in the value of the work by edition numbers.

Q5.   What is the Brief Sketches?

ANSWER: Represent as follows.

  • A.P. - Artist Proof: for keeping by artist
  • E.A. - Épreuve d'Artiste (FR): for keeping by artist
  • E.E. - Épreuve d'Essai (FR): test print
  • H.C. - Hors de Commerce (FR): not for sale
  • P.P. - Printer's Proof: for keeping by printer (publisher)
  • T.P. - Trial Proof: test print

Q6.   What is Original Print?

ANSWER: Original Print is defined as the artist should draft the design only for the print, and all processes of the print (primarily Plate Making, Printing, Signing and Numbering) should be done by the artist, or printed by printer under the supervision of artist at least. However, often there is the case which was made the print plate and printed by printer, and after, just only signed and numbered by the artist. Completion form as the work must be the print.

Generally the difference of the Original Print, Reissued Print, Later Print and Reproduction Print is not understood enough. Original Print is different from the following.

  • Reissued Print: remade the print plate from the first edition which was published before.
  • Later Print: additional printed on and after second edition.
  • Reproduction Print: performed plate-making and the printing based on the original pictures (such as the oil painting) by the third party.

Q7.   What is Ex-libris?

ANSWER: Ex-libris means "from the books of..." in Latin, also known as "Bookplate" in English. It is a small decorative label pasted into a book, usually on the inside front cover, for indicating its owner.

usually the name of the owner is inscribed with following words such as:

  • from the books of...
  • from the library of...
  • ex libris...

Any motif that relates to the owner of the book: motto, device, coat-of-arms, crest, badge, etc... are designed by artist at the request of the owner, and it is often made with print.

There are many artistically valuable works in this category. They are called "jewel of paper" and collected by Ex-libris lovers.