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A photogravure is a method of reproducing a photographic image to make large editions of prints. Photogravures were used in newspaper printing until offset lithography replaced it in 1910. Many photographers were opinionated about the quality of their reproductions, and often preferred photogravure for the rich tones that could be achieved through the process.

Photogravures are printed by contacting a transparent positive image with gelatin bichromate and exposing it to light. The sensitized gelatin solution hardens where it has been exposed to light, and when placed on a copper plate, the unexposed areas can be washed away. The plate can then be submerged in an acid bath, similar to the etching printmaking process. The image is thus successfully transferred to the metal plate, inked... Read more

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