Friday, May 13, 2016

Etching for post sculpture

©2016 Barry Smith - Outline of a leaf (about 15cm long)
Well it had to happen at some stage - moving on from the transfer of design and resist to the actual etching.

An etch using our 1.2m long etching bath (aka timber frame and black plastic) can be done alone; but Fiona and I prefer to do it as a two person job - both from a getting it right, safety and handling perspective.

A couple of photos of the etching bath and making the etching solution - copper sulphate and salt.

©2016 Fiona Dempster - Adding the copper sulphate - nice blue
©2016 Fiona Dempster - Adding the salt - bit of a reaction and change of colour
The copper sludge that surfaces during the etching process; and the contrast between the cleaned etched plate and one straight out of the solution. The etching process generates quite a lot of fumes and heat so the work needs to be done outside in a well ventilated area; and a wet area for hosing off etc.

©2016 Fiona Dempster - Contrast of clean and uncleaned etched plates
©2016 Fiona Dempster- Copper rises to the surface - you can make out the resist shapes
©2016 Fiona Dempster - Copper rises to the surface - you can make out the resist shapes
And then after cleaning the resist off (a combination of methylated spirits and turps - alternating) the beauty of the etched pieces. The depth of etching is about .1 -.15mm deep.
©2016 Barry Smith - Three 1.05m panels - etched
©2016 Barry Smith- Detail of etched panels
©2016 Barry Smith- Solid etched leaf
©2016 Barry Smith - Etched panel for horizontal 'post'- seat
©2016 Barry Smith - Etched plate for top of large post and a few extra bits
Now it is on to the next stage of bringing the metal and wood together.


  1. Wow that looks fantastic Barry.

  2. I'm reading backwards so I've seen how beautiful these look on the timber. But I love seeing how you do things. Just fascinating, Barry.

  3. Hi P & C - I appreciate you checking out the etching progress - always good to share a bit of the process with fellow bloggers. Peace. B


Comments are welcomed - it is good to connect with fellow travellers.