The application of ink on plate will affect the print. The process of ink application may also influence plate integrity and the subsequent prints. The ink must be carefully applied through the use of a brayer. It will ensure that abrasion is minimized when the ink is applied to plate. Proper wiping methods must be followed to make sure that the prints have optimal depth, tone, and richness. The result of overwiping is a brighter but flatter print. Details can be lost if the plate has excessive ink.
Charge the plate before ink application
The plate must be charged first prior to the application of ink. It should be rolled on smooth and nice. The aim is to cover full plate with ink. It must be completely covered before it gets wiped. There could be a need to charge roller multiple times. This depends on the plate size. Tarlatan should be used to wipe the plate.
Tarlatan is a kind of cheesecloth with starch in it. The plate will be wiped with this cloth. The material must be prepared in advance by soaking the same with water. The soak must be about 20 minutes. It should be agitated during the soak. Then the cloth should be brought out and wrung. It should then be dried. This drying removes the starch which may lead to scratches on the plate. The result will be better.
Post drying, the tarlatan should be pulled away as the starch may cause the material to stick a bit. The best method during this phase is to begin the wipe process with the tarlatan which is considered the dirtiest. The next dirty tarlatan should be used after the first becomes unusable. The work should involve successively clean tarlatans. The ink should be applied on to the plate in a twisting motion. It will involve applying a small force and pushing ink into the microscopic pits which permit the plate to hold ink. Then it must be twisted in a single direction while being wiped. The direction will then be changed at the end of the plate. This will enable the ink to be in different angles into plate. This results in a much richer image.
The initial circular motion softens the ink. The activity makes the compound a malleable one and will help the operator to do what he or she wants. The edges should be wiped last.