Etching workshop with John T Freeman

Ref: S4D09042

Suitable for all


Course cancelled - scroll down for other

About this course

Discover traditional etching methods and experience a variety of techniques, including aquatint and soft ground, as you work on projects such as a portrait, landscape or an architectural subject. The art-historical context of this subtle and expressive printmaking medium will be revealed in lectures and demonstrations.

Course Description

Etching is a traditional method of printmaking that dates back 500 years. Sheets of metal are coated with a wax, marks are drawn onto the wax using steel etching needles. The metal sheets are then submerged into acid which bites into the metal exposed by the needle. The plate is then cleaned and further coats of wax can be applied to build up the drawing before prints are taken from the plate.

The course is suitable for both complete beginners and advanced students who wish to build upon their experience to explore and develop new approaches to etching.

If you are new to etching you will be introduced in a constructive way to the traditional methods and techniques. You will work on a portrait, a landscape, and an architectural subject that will incorporate a variety of techniques including aquatint, spit-bite and soft-ground.

If you are more advanced, you will have the opportunity to develop your practical skills and theoretical attitudes towards your own work placing it within the historical development of the etching tradition.

The tutor will demonstrate techniques and support you throughout the course with one-to-one sessions, group discussions and informative talks on the historical aspects of etching.

By the end of the course you will have gained knowledge and experience of the etching process as well as developed your technical and subjective approaches to making the etched image.


Arrival Day - this is the first date listed above

Courses start early evening. Residential students to arrive from 4pm, non-residential students to arrive by 6.45pm.

6.45pm: Welcome, followed by dinner (included).

8 - 9pm: First teaching session, attendance is essential.

Daily timetable

Classes 9.15 - 5pm, lunch is included.

From 6.30pm: Dinner (included for residential students).

Evening working - students may have access to workshops, but only with their tutor's permission and provided any health and safety guidelines are observed.

Last day

Classes 9.15am - 3pm, lunch is included.

Residential students are to vacate their rooms by 10am please.

(This timetable is for courses of more than one day in length. The tutor may make slight variations)

Course Materials


  • The cost of providing: inks, basic papers and chemicals.

What students need to bring

  • Beginners are advised to acquire 'Intaglio Printmaking' by Michael Barratt.
  • Paint-rags and overalls
  • Although images are provided to practice with please bring any personal imagery

Available to buy

  • Paper - Hahnemuhle pale
  • Tissue paper
  • Carbon paper
  • Tracing paper (thin)
  • Large sheets of blotting paper
  • Copper plate - approx 18 gauge

Please note this course is held in the Print Studio and the Auditorium, a ten minute walk from the main college through the gardens. Lunch and dinner are taken at the College but tea and coffee are provided for you at the Old Dairy.


John T Freeman

John T. Freeman was born in London 1958 and trained at Bath Academy of Art ( Corsham ) and Chelsea School of Art . He has taught since 1985 as a freelance tutor and lecturer to all levels of ability across a wide spectrum including the computer games industry , Lion Head and Media Molecule , Hurtwood House School, Watts Gallery, Tate Britain, and the Prince of Wales Drawing School.


Residential option available. Find out accommodation costs and how to book here.

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