An intaglio press

6 February 2016

I enjoyed my printmaking course at Gainsborough’s House very much, particularly intaglio (dry point and aluminium etch), and relief printing (lino). I was rather sad that I live too far from the workshop to use their facilities and continue printmaking. However, just a few weeks later, the opportunity arose to buy a secondhand intaglio press from my friend! 

Despite being a novice, I can appreciate of the wonderful potential of having a press; dry point and linocut printed be done not just on paper, but also fabric. The press can be used for embossing and chine collé, and prints onto paper can be combined into mixed media pieces with textiles. Second-hand presses rarely come up for sale on sites such as e-bay, and when they do, are in high demand.

After consideration of several weeks, I decided to buy the press. It is an Abig direct drive, with 50cm x 70cm print table. I have turned my hall into a print studio!

It took a several weeks for me to source and purchase the blankets and other consumables, but I am now equipped and ready to print! I have to admit to being somewhat apprehensive, because at Gainsborough’s house the presses were already set up by the tutors. I guess I just have to get stuck in, get to know my press and it’s capabilities – an exciting (but yet slightly daunting) prospect.


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