Using a machine to make prints – whatever next…plastic?

Well, I have carried on with the dremel lookalike experimentation and have progressed a bit further. First I did an additional set of marks on a plate – this was because I also recently acquired online a set of diamond tipped engraving tools for less than £2 with free postage!  There are 30 different sized and shaped head attachments to try out – will playtime never end?  Here is a small plate of marks made on a piece of aluminium that had previously had etching ground applied.  I am showing two versions of the print – one with the ink wiped off the surface of the plate and one with some ink left on (thin) in places.

I then found a piece of plastic that had been lying around for ages – a remnant of a large sheet I had bought from the local hardware superstore to use in lithography, but it was the wrong sort. Anyway, it was a wet day, I was in my shed and had nothing better to do so I thought I would give it a try.  It was strange engraving on plastic as it leaves a burr.  I started to scrape this off, but was a bit worried I would scratch the plastic so I left most of it.  I really liked the fact that I was working with a cheap material – it wasn’t going to break the bank if I went wrong and that was quite relaxing. I could sketch fairly loosely, except when it caught a bit on the plastic.  This is a print taken from it – some of the marks look a bit mechanical, but overall I am quite pleased with the effect. I have made the image large so that you can see the juddering of the lines caused by the machine. If I set the speed faster, this seems to be less noticeable.