Photogravures © Yelena Zhavoronkova

Friday – Sunday
February 7 – 9, 2020



Copper Plate Photogravure

Anton Belov Alternative Process & Darkroom, Inactive Workshops, One-of-a-Kind, Workshops

February 7 – 9, 2020

Learn traditional Copper Plate Photogravure, an alternative process printing technique that blends photography and printmaking.

with Unai San Martin

“The class was well organized. Unai made very good use of time guiding us through a very detail oriented process. Unai is an excellent teacher and made the whole process exciting and fun.”

— Jacqueline W.

This three-day intensive workshop is designed for photographers and printmakers that wish to learn the copperplate photogravure process. Students will be guided by Gravurist Unai San Martin through all the steps: making digital transparencies, exposing, etching and printing their work.  In this hands-on etching workshop, students will work with traditional copper plate and experiment with the photogravure process. Students will be able to complete up to three 8×10 inch copper plates and use an extensive array of papers and inks, producing limited-edition prints.


Copper Plate © Christy McDonald

Copper Plate © Christy McDonald

Photogravure, an intaglio process developed between 1850 and 1880, was one of the first successful printing techniques used to edition photographic images. Its tonal and archival qualities are so superb, that even after the arrival of more commercially viable processes in the early 20th century, photographers such as Alfred Stieglitz, Edward Curtis, and Paul Strand used it to edition some of their most important works. Fine art presses and book publishers still use the process today.


Digital Positive © Rory Earnshaw

Digital Positive © Rory Earnshaw


Class Schedule

Friday, 10AM–5PM: Introduction. History and real samples done in gravure. Making digital transparencies for gravure. Sensitizing, exposure and development. Etching.

Saturday, 10AM–5PM: More sensitizing, exposure and etching. Proofing the plates.

Sunday, 10AM–5PM: Fine printing. How to mix inks and damp paper. Printing techniques, (Chine Colle, etc..). Critique of prints.


Photogravure © Unai San Martin

Photogravure © Unai San Martin

Workshop presented by The Image Flow Photography Center, providing photography classes, custom printing services, and studio rentals.


Instructor Bio

Unai San Martin has won several prestigious awards for his evocative and subtle photogravures, including the Joan Miro and  Sotheby’s first prize, and the first prize in the National Printmaking Competition in Madrid. His work is in more than 20 museums as well as in collections in Europe and the United States, such as the Santa Barbara Museum of Art and the di Rosa Collection. Unai has made gravures and taught workshops on the process both locally and overseas for almost 20 years.

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