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3 Tutorials that teach Works on Paper: Drawing, Printmaking, Photography
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Works on Paper: Drawing, Printmaking, Photography

Works on Paper: Drawing, Printmaking, Photography

Author: Ian McConnell
Description:

This lesson will explore works of art made on paper.

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Tutorial

Works of art on paper

Learning about the types of two dimensional artwork made on paper

Citations: Image of St Anne Public Domain http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Leonardo_-_St._Anne_cartoon-alternative-downsampled.jpg; Image of pastel drawing Public Domain http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Brooklyn_Museum_-_On_the_Cliff_-_Theodore_Robinson.jpg; Image of charcoal drawing Public Domain http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Brooklyn_Museum_-_On_the_Cliff_-_Theodore_Robinson.jpg; Image of etching Public Domain http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Rembrandt_The_Three_Crosses_1653.jpg; Image of Lincoln Public Domain http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Abraham_Lincoln_November_1863.jpg

Video Transcription

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[MUSIC PLAYING] Hello. I'd like to welcome you to this episode of Exploring Art History with Ian. My name is Ian McConnell. And today's lesson is about works of art on paper. As you're watching the video, feel free to pause, move forward, or rewind as many times you feel it is necessary. And as soon as you're ready, we can begin.

Today's objectives or the things you're going to learn today are listed below. By the end of the lesson today, you will be able to identify and define today's key terms, identify the three main types of works on paper, and that's it. The those key terms for today, as always, are listed in yellow.

First key term is drawing, a work of art made by marking lines, usually with a pen, pencil, or other instrument on a sheet of paper. Printmaking is the production of works of art by pressing a sheet of paper against some sort of printing block, often with the help of a printing press. Photography is production of images using photosensitive materials on a sheet of paper or metal.

Relief is a type of printmaking, such as woodblock, in which the paper comes into contact with the highest parts of the surface of the printing plate. Intaglio is the opposite of relief, in which the lowest parts of the printing plate receive ink and the paper is pressed into them. Engraving is a form of intaglio printing.

Works on paper are drawings, prints, photographs, and other two dimensional works of art made on paper. And photosensitive means sensitive to light. The big idea or common thread or theme for this lesson is that works of paper include drawing, printmaking, and photography.

So types of drawing. Why do we care? Well, drawing in some form is one of the simplest types of artwork. And what I mean by that is that it's arguably the most intuitive for people and easiest to begin.

Think of little kids or yourself as a kid. We draw in some way long before we write. The more common methods of rendering a drawing on paper include pen, ink, charcoal, pastel, and graphite.

Other examples do exist, like this chalk drawing of St. Anne by Leonardo da Vinci. And here are two other examples by different artists. A pastel drawing and a charcoal drawing.

Printmaking refers to the art of making multiple impressions, usually ink impressions on paper of a piece of artwork from one physical, original plate that has rendered in a solid material, like wood or metal. It's important to point out that the impressions are not considered copies, but original works of art given that all the impressions originate from the same source.

So there are two types. Relief and intaglio. And why do we care? Well, it was and still is a popular form of artwork. One of the main benefits is that you can, in theory, produce an endless amount of original impressions from one master plate.

There are two types we're going to talk about. Relief and intaglio, two different methods of producing prints. The processes of which I'm going to explain on the next two slides.

Now relief is where an image is carved out of a solid medium, like wood or metal. And if it's wood, it's called a woodblock. And the image rises above the medium, very much like an ink stamp. And ink is spread over the raised image and then pressed into a sheet of paper, most commonly, creating the impression of the image.

So this is the process. We begin with our solid metal block on the left. It could be wood. But the image-- as you can see-- is raised. It's above the rest of the woodblock.

Here's our piece of paper. So the ink is spread across the image and then is stamped or pressed on to the piece of paper, leaving the image on the paper. So that is relief printmaking.

The other type is intaglio printmaking. And in intaglio, it's a different process, but produces a similar result. With intaglio, the image is carved into, again, a solid medium, like metal or wood, but it's literally recessed or sunken into it. And then ink is then filled into the recesses and then the piece of paper is pressed onto the image.

So here's our process again. We have our metal block, but it could be wood on the left. And then the image is carved into it. It's recessed or sunken into the solid block. Our piece of paper is on the right. We fill the reservoir with ink. And then instead of stamping the piece of paper, the piece of paper is pressed on to the metal block, leaving the image on the paper.

And the last type of work of art on paper we're going to talk about is called photography. And originally, the process of producing a photograph was very different than what we experience today with digital cameras operating in a very different way than traditional cameras. But traditionally, photosensitive chemicals and the chemical originally being silver chloride will react with light to capture an image, which is then transferred to paper.

And again, photosensitive means light sensitive. So why do we care? Well, the invention of photography meant that people could capture actual real-life images, which if you can imagine, back in the day when it first came out, that was a pretty big deal.

Sometimes the question of why is it considered art comes up. But remember, even in photography the image is manipulated in some way by the artist, and the subject matter is left to interpretation by the viewer. So an example of manipulating the image would be when people are asked to smile for a photograph.

So that brings us to the end of this lesson. Let's take a look at our objectives to see if we met them. Now that you've seen the lesson, are you able to identify and define today's key terms? And can you identify the three main types of works on paper? Once again, the big idea is that works on paper include drawing, printmaking, and photography.

Well, that's it for today. I'd like to thank you for joining me. And I will see you next time.

TERMS TO KNOW
  • Drawing

    A work of art made by marking lines, usually with a pen, pencil, or other instrument, on a sheet of paper.

  • Print Making

    The production of works of art by pressing a sheet of paper against some sort of printing block, often with the help of a printing press.

  • Photography

    The production of images using photosensitive materials on a sheet of paper or metal.

  • Relief

    A type of printmaking, such as woodblock, in which the paper comes into contact with the highest parts of the surface of the printing plate.

  • Intaglio

    The opposite of relief, in which the lowest parts of the printing plate receive ink and the paper is pressed into them. Engraving is a form of intaglio printing.

  • Works on Paper

    Drawings, prints, photographs, and other two-dimensional works of art made on paper.

  • Photo-sensitive

    Sensitive to light.