Angus Grant Art

Paddling, Painting, Printing

Art print loch Morlich

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Printing workshop postponed

Sorry to report that the printing workshop I was due to teach on March 12 has had to be postponed for the time being.

Hopefully it can be rescheduled later this year. Many apologies if you were hoping to sign up – watch this space for further information!

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How to take the first easy steps in making beautiful prints

Angus grant fine art print highland cairngorms perch loch AlvieBusy few weeks coming up for me. I’m teaching a few classes organised by the Cairngorms Learning Partnership (CLP).

This Kingussie-based charity offers a range of courses in the Cairngorms National Park.

You can find the full list of those on offer by clicking here, but to give you a flavour, at the moment there’s felt-making, cooking and flower-arranging. Something for everyone!

I’m teaching a four-week silversmithing course, starting this week. It’s fully booked – which is great!

And next month, I’ll be running a one-day introductory printmaking workshop. This will give participants an overview of different types of printing, including intaglio and drypoint etching.

It takes place on Saturday March 12 – you can get more information or book your place by visiting the CLP’s website.*

Or you can visit my Events & Workshops page to see all of my upcoming classes.

*Since this blog was written, the class has been postponed. Click here for more information.

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Upcycling old etching plates

When a printmaker has finished printing an “Edition” it is traditional to destroy the artwork on the copper plate by scratching a great big cross on its surface. Another way to destroy the plate is to cut it into lots of wee pear shapes. You can then tap each of these into a handmade wooden mould, (gently to preserve the wee bit of the artwork left on the plate). After that you could drill a little hole in the top of the wee bit of copper and attach it to a super posh handmade lure with semi-precious stones and silver plate finishings to be sure to catch the most discerning trout, pike or salmon.


Mezzotint plate printmaking

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Mezzotint Etching

How to make your own mezzotint plate

Mezzotint plate printmaking

First take a nice shiny copper plate and rock the mezzotint rocker across its surface to cover it in lots of wee dots

Mezzotint plate printmaking

(1 hour later) As you add work across the surface of the plate you will create more and more wee dents that will hold the ink nicely.

Mezzotint plate printmaking

(4 hours later) After a while you will see that it is possible to create a nice black tone.


(8 hours later) After about a day of mezzotint rocking you will be close to getting a nice even texture to your plate. You will have decided that the £35 that the art shop was charging for machine mezzotinted plates was an absolute bargain. You will go to bed and dream about mezzotint rocking that night.


(12 hours later) You will have vowed never to mezzotint a copper plate by hand again, but your 10x15cm plate will print a nice rich plack.


You create your image on the mezzotinted plate by selectively polishing areas of the plate so they don’t hold the ink as well.

Mezzotint print of trout and moth y Angus Grant

The polished bits will be a lighter tone. You will have to make lots of wee test prints along the way to see how you’re doing.

MezzotintpPrint of a trout swimming towards a moth