Etching on Aluminium Plates

Stables Studio

Date: Saturday 24th and Sunday 25th February, 2024  (2-day workshop), (10-3pm both days)
Tutor: Lyn Nicholls
Cost: $200 Members, $240 Non-Members
Applications close: 10th February 2024

Places are limited to 8, be sure to book in early!

This workshop will show you how to do etching on aluminium plates using saline sulphate (ie copper sulphate mixed with salt).

A copper sulphate, salt and water solution provides a less toxic environment to etch aluminium plates – a safer and more accessible alternative to solutions used in other printing methods.

In this workshop Lyn will share how to prepare the aluminium plate, as well as bevel the edges of the plate, apply the ground, transfer your drawing, mix the etchant (saline sulphate) and get different shades on your plate.

The lesson will also teach you how to ink up the plates, set up the etching press, prepare the printmaking paper, make a registration sheet, and print a small edition.

No prior experience required.

Materials fee: Approximately $25-$30per person (actual amount to be confirmed).  This includes paper, ink, plates and tarletans.

Please bring on the day: 

  • Apron
  • Nitrile gloves
  • An etching needle, or a cheap sewing awl from Spotlight -the etching needles can be found at art supplies shops – approx. $4.
  • A simple line drawing on tracing paper (or baking paper). This could be a landscape or a person. The plate size can be in landscape or portrait and is 110mm wide x 200mm long (that’s about 4 and a half inches by almost 8 inches). You can also use a photo and simplify it if you like.
  • You can bring your own ink colours if you want, but black etching ink (water soluble) will be available.
  • Some cheap brushes of different thickness – especially fine ones.
  • You can also print on eco-printed paper if it is watercolour paper at least 180gsm. (Handmade paper might fall apart.)
  • Your lunch


This workshop is fully booked.