Wood Engraving

Wood engraving is a technique in printmaking where the ‘matrix’ worked by the artist is a block of wood. It is a variety of woodcut and so a relief printing technique, where ink is applied to the face of the block and printed by using relatively low pressure. A normal engraving, like an etching, has a metal plate as a matrix and is printed by the intaglio method.

Wood engraving traditionally utilizes the end grain of wood as a medium for engraving, while in the older technique of woodcut the softer side grain is used. The technique of wood engraving developed at the end of the 18th century and the beginning of the 19th century, with the works of Thomas Bewick.

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