I love hand-drawing my etching. Photo-etching is a really beautiful technique but for me you can’t beat hand-drawn. To do so i use my scribe to scrape away at the dried in etching grounds to form my pattern.
This is the final drawn design.
Popped into an acid bath, which is then put into another tray filled with boiling water bain-marie style.
As the metal etches little air bubbles form on the metal, which need to be brushed away to keep it from etching unevenly. As this design has quite a lot of the metal exposed which makes for quite a fast etch, this only took 20/30minutes to etch to a medium depth (ie. the longer you leave it in the deeper the etch and the more metal exposed the faster it etches, it seems that the increase of exposed metal is a catalyst for the etch).
Now time for the dirty bit! Cleaning away the horrible black stuff using white spirits and an old toothbrush (i always put on disposable gloves, even though the white spirits eats away at them a little bit, they still help prevent most of the black stuff from staining my hands).
This is it all cleaned up… pretty huh?!
And this is the piece all polished up!
Tomorrow i will put it all together and finish up the chain!