Printmaking can easily be confused with limited edition prints, but there are definite and distinct differences.
Printmaking is an art in itself. It is practiced by both old masters and contemporary printmakers.
Examples of traditional print-making processes include linocut, woodcut, etching, screen-printing, monoprint and collograph. Creating an original print using one of these processes usually involves many hours in the studio, lots of patience and experience with an array of chemicals, plates and equipment.
First the artist must compose the image or images and design a drawing of their idea. Then they have to either cut out the image or raise the image- depending on the type of print making.
Inks are mixed and rolled out by the artist and the image is pressed onto paper by hand or passed through a hand-operated press. Each colour must be done seperately and so it a very time consuming process. Each print, although it may be one of a numbered series (or edition) is a unique, original, hand-crafted piece of art.
Although the image is the same in an edition of hand-made prints, no two are exactly identical as each one has been individually inked and printed. Slight differences in the amount of ink applied and the pressure on the press make each print unique. These prints are original artworks in their own right, unlike limited edition reproduced pieces.