States in printmaking are permanent changes to the plate (matrix) made by the artist. A print pulled during each state change records the changes the image undergoes. I usually pull at least two, sometimes three prints for each state change. I use them for reference and sometimes I draw on them directly or put them in the copy machine and work on the image that way.
When you put all the states together, you can see the progression of changes the artist has done to the plate. In my case, the changes include adding lines (line etching) or tonal areas (aquatint), scraping and burnishing (lightening or erasing previously etched areas), and adding new marks to improve the composition.
|The first and second states.|
|The third and fourth states|
|The fifth and sixth states|
At this point, I pulled another sixth state print, took a peek on the press bed and it was a bit light. So I re-positioned it and ran it back through the press to pick up more ink. It became misaligned and wasn't a good print; however, it gave me an idea. I loved the way the off-set image created "shadows".
|Screwed-up sixth state image- inspiration can come for anywhere!|
So I added a medium grey aquatint to the plate.
Check out the next states.
|The seventh and eighth states showing a major change- the shadows.|
|The ninth and tenth states|
|The last state, number eleven|
Look for more information on the edition soon!