1-Even layer of
powered resin being
dusted over the
plate surface.
2-Plate being heated,
resin melting.
3-Acid biting between
grains of resin.
4-Resin removed,
ready for proofing.


Aquatint is used to etch large areas of even tone. When large areas are etched, the acid bites evenly over the open area, creating a dark line around the edge when the plate is inked and wiped, this is especially so with either copper or zinc.

To create the desired tone, a fine even layer of powdered resin, which is acid resistant, is dusted over the surface of the plate. When the plate is heated, the resin melts and fixes to the plate.

Starting with the high lights, the design is painted out with acid resistant stop-out varnish. The acid bites into the metal plate between the individual grains of resin.

The tones are stopped-out and etched in stages, the longer in the acid the deeper the etch, therefore the darker the tones.