Famously used by Picasso in his etchings, sugarlift is a process which, when combined with aquatint, enables a broad range of painterly marks and tonal values to be created on a metal plate. It can be used on its own or in-combination with other etching techniques such as hard and soft ground. Spend a day exploring this fascinating technique with our technician Kate – for etchers who want to develop their work and expand their skillset.
Images are created by painting a saturated sugar solution onto a metal plate and covering with a waxy ground. Once dry, the plate is immersed in hot water, dissolving the areas painted with the sugar solution and ‘lifting’ them off the plate to reveal open areas of metal underneath. An aquatint is then applied, and the plate is etched, stopping out in-between etches if desired to create multiple tonal values.
On this course we will be working on A5-size copper plates and etching with a ferric chloride solution. Goggles and gloves will provided, but please note that we will be using grounds and varnishes which require the use of solvents to remove, so this course is not suitable for those who have any allergies or sensitivities to these products, or for pregnant women.
Your tutor: Kate Desforges
Kathryn Desforges is an artist and printmaker based in West Yorkshire. She makes, exhibits and sells limited edition, handmade original contemporary prints and artist books. Kate is Studio Co-ordinator and Technician at West Yorkshire Print Workshop and has been using etching in her practice for over 15 years.
Intermediate / experienced printmakers. For beginners, we recommend our weekend Intro to: Etching course to get acquainted with the basics of etching first.
All course prices include basic materials such as inks, paper, tools and equipment.
What should I prepare beforehand?
All materials and equipment will be provided. You are welcome to bring general reference material – drawings, images, photographs or books for example – to use as inspiration, but you are advised not to prepare a specific image beforehand – this course is about learning the technique and exploring the mark-making possibilities of the medium, and the emphasis will be on playing with mark-making and enjoying unexpected outcomes. Please do also bring any of your favourite mark-making tools, and we advise bringing along an apron or old shirt to avoid getting mucky!
Each stage of the process will be demonstrated first, and students will be supported and guided throughout.
Covid-19 safety :
As a result of the ongoing pandemic, our workshops and the way we run courses looks a little different. We continue to have everyone’s safety as our main priority. It might not be quite the same as it was before but your ability to get stuck in and enjoy a spot of printmaking remains the same. Added measures to keep you safe include:
- All courses working with reduced numbers or alternate spaces to aid greater social ventilation and social distancing.
- Requesting that everyone in communal areas of the workshop, if able, continues to wear either a face covering, mask or a visor.
- Hand sanitiser provided on entry and additional cleaning measures in place.
- Removal of any shared equipment or materials wherever possible.
Full guidance on our Covid-19 policies and risk assessment can be found on our website here.
After attending this course you can join our workshop as a member and continue to use our facilities to make and develop your own work. The sooner the better, as the longer you leave it the more you are likely to forget! If you join up within one month of attending the course you will receive a £5 discount. Find out more about the benefits of membership here: https://www.wypw.org/shop/standard-membership/
- If you have to cancel:
- 16-12 weeks before the course: 50 % of the fee will be retained by WYPW
- Less than 12 weeks before the course: 100% of the fee will be retained by WYPW
- Please note that full payment is required for non-attendance on a booking that has been transferred.
- If we have to cancel: