A colouring method where coloured ink is applied directly to the surface of the plate.

As issued

Any folds, colouring or binding holes in a print with this annotation are intended as such by the publisher, and not a result of damaging over time.


The engraver's main tool. It has a v-shaped faceted blade and is used for engraving into a metal plate.


A printing and publication method in which the image is printed on very thin paper, and the thin sheet is mounted to a carrier or backing sheet, all in a single pass through the press. This allows the artist to print on the more delicate surface of the thinner sheet, which holds finer detail. This is sometimes also referred to as Chine-appliqué.

Counter proof

An impression of an engraving or etching printed from a wet proof. A piece of damp printing-paper is placed over the proof printing while it is still wet. Both are then passed through the printing-press. This enables the artist to see what the plate looks like, and helps in identifying mistakes.


The faint impression, usually a few mms. around the image. This is the impression the plate makes on the damp paper as it is pressurized during printing. A common identifier for intaglio printing techniques, as these necessarily need to be pressed much harder to imprint on the paper. However, not all intaglio prints show a platemark, so the absence of a platemark is no hard exclusive factor.

Printer's crease

This term occurs in our condition descriptions. A printer's crease is the result of a small fold in the sheet when it is put under the press. The impression is printed onto the sheet as usual, so when the crease is flattened a thin sliver of the paper remains without impression.


Also 'Artist's Proof' or 'Epreuve d'Artiste'. An impression taken from a plate in progress. This is done by the artist to see the result of etching or engraving so far.


The Recto of a sheet is the front, usually the side with the image printed on it. This term is actually more related to bibliography, where the Recto is the right page when a book is opened.


A large number etchings exist in multiple versions. An artist might have gained new insights, ultimately been unhappy with the end result of a plate, or simply worked on a plate some more after already printing a number of copies from the plate. It is important to realise that states differ from proofs. Proofs are singular printings during the initial etching process. A state is an actual published product, comparable with a new (and revised) edition of a book.


The Verso of a sheet is the rear, usually the side with nothing (or text, if the print is from a book) printed on it. This term is actually more related to bibliography, where the Verso is the left page when a book is opened.