Definitions and terms used in the fine arts print field have been varied. The older, even sometimes archaic, meanings are not necessarily the same today. There are terms that are quite colloquial to a locality. Then we have the user's interpretation whether artist, publisher, gallery, curator, museum, collector or consumer. We hope this glossary is of some assistance.
Deckle Edge
The uneven, feathered edge of a paper.
DEL., (Delineavit)
"Has Drawn It" (Latin).
Detail Studies
A small part (or detail) sketch of an image for eventual use in the overall image.
The art or act of representing something on a surface by means of lines and shades. Drawings may be done in pencil, charcoal, crayon, ink, or chalk.
Pen (ink)
An intaglio process using a needle-like tool to scratch a design into a printing plate. The burrs that are left on both sides of the line also form a part of the finished design, giving drypoint print a softer line quality than an engraving.
In offset lithography, a term used to describe a process by which the saturation of single color is enhanced by using two colors.
Dye Transfer
A color photographic print made from gelatine matrices using fade-resistant dyes.
Épreuve d'Artiste - artist proof.
The total number of copies printed from the same plates and published about the same time, e.g. First Edition, Limited Edition, etc.
Edition Description

Artist Proof - (Proof prior to printing finalized edition)
Bon à Tirer - (good to pull (Lit.); good to print (contemp.))
Cancellation Proof - (Evidence of destruction of plates)
Chop Marks - (Printers seal or blind stamp)
DEL., Delineavit - (Had done it)
Épreuve d'Artiste - (see Artist's Proof)
Estate Signed - (Signed by the estate of the artist)
ETAT - (State proof)
EXC., ESCUD., Escudit - (Has published it)
FEC., f., F., Fecit - (Has made it (usually engraving))
FORMIS., - (In the stock of the publisher)
Hors Commerce (H.C.) - (Not for sale)
IMP., Impress it - (has printed it)
INC., Incisit - (has engraved it)
INV., Invenit - (has designed it)
Limited Edition - (Identical prints of the same edition, numbered in sequence (or other marks) to
denote limited production. A state maximum number of printed copies or impressions.
LITH - (Drawn or printed on stone or plate)
Numbered Print - (Sequentially numbered print. See Numbered Print.)
Open Edition - (Standard edition - unlimited)
Personal Commission - (Time limited edition for others produced jointly with the publisher)
PINX., Pinxit - (has painted it)
Presentation Proof - (Specially-designed, extra-worked proof)
Printers Proof - (Printers copy)
Proof - (Individual impression prior to the published edition)
Publisher's Proof - (See Hors Commerce)
Remarque - (Additioal original drawing or marking on print (usually in the border) by the artist)
SCULP., SC., Sculpit - (has engraved it)
Signature - (Artist's original signature (unless printed in the plate)
Signed in the Plate - (Printed signature)
State Proof (ETAT.) - (Artist's reworking of plates for another proof
Time Limited - (An edition where the size (quantity) is determined by the number of orders received prior to specific date)
Trial proof (T / P), (Épreuve d'Essai) - (Artist initial test painting to determine next changes or corrections)

A design in paper which is molded or shows relief.
An intaglio method of printing using a metal that has been inscribed with a sharp tool called a burin, and printed in a press. The prints, engravings, are characterized by clean, sharp, regular lines used to create depth and perspective. Examples of engraving include Copper, Relief, Steel, Stone, and Wood.
Épreuve d'Artiste
French (see Artist's Proof).
Estate Signed

Art which has been signed or stamped with authorization of the artist's estate, usually for identification purposes.

See State Proof.
An intaglio method of printing using a tool to incise a design on a metal plate that has been coated with an acid-resistant substance called the "ground." The plate is then subjected to an acid bath which etches the exposed areas. Etchings are characterized by a greater variety in tonal values with less regularity of line. Examples of etching include Aquatint, Drypoint, Intaglio, and Softground.
An exact reproduction.
FEC f. F. Fecit
"Has Made It." (Latin).
Fine Art Print
A term used to describe quality prints.
A means of securing artwork to a rigid support so all edges are visible. This is usually done when the edges of the paper are deckled or decorative, or if the image extends to the paper's borders.
A series of images in a protective case.
In the stock of the publisher. (Latin).
A discoloration of paper, characterized by dull rusty spots or patches variously atttributed to mold growth or impurities in the paper's manufacture. The condition may develop or be accelerated if paper is exposed to extreme light or dampness.
A-B    C    D-F    G-K     L-N   O-Q    R-S     T-Z 
(Original works of art on paper)
A-B    C    D-F    G-K     L-N   O-Q    R-S     T-Z 
Untitled Document
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