A large component for the inspiration in my monotype print work is derived from black and white photographs from the 1930s-50s collected from estate sales, antique malls or online of unknown/unnamed people. I enjoy getting to know these unidentified people from the past through the strokes of my finger while lifting ink off the plate as their likeness emerges. I often dream up their stories as I try to capture their sprit and energy. Using only black or sepia ink forces me to find purity in my imagery without relying on color to convey mood and emotion.
Most of these monotype prints were created by inking the entire surface of a smooth plexi-glass plate with oil or water based etching ink applied via a roller. Then using rags and q-tips, ink was removed from the plate to create a subtractive image, e.g. creating lights from a field of opaque color. The image was then transferred onto a sheet of paper by pressing the two together using a printing press. Monotype printing produces a unique singular print; most of the ink is removed during the initial pressing. Although a subsequent reprinting is sometimes possible, it differs greatly from the first print. These secondary prints from the original plate are called "ghost prints”.