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Special Offer

Brushes on Sale! Only $4 each when buying four or more  See “Shop Accessories” -> “Brushes” for ordering.

Dear Loyal Solarplate Customers:

I hope the current times are treating you with good health and a good sense of awareness, especially through your art practices.

Our current situation regarding Solarplates is as follows. We have some 8X10 plates, whose stock is dwindling and not being replenished, we have run out of 6×8 and 4X5 plates, and we have created the “(Almost) 4×5” plates.

If you are interested in 8×10 plates, simply order them as usual. Please note that they are limited to ten per customer, so do not order more than ten. Purchases of more than ten 8 x 10 plates are subject to a restocking fee applicable to the refund of the price difference between ten plates and the purchased quantity. If you wish to purchase 6×8 or sizes that are not currently offered, you have the option of cutting them yourself or paying a cutting charge. It’s relatively simple to cut them yourself with a guillotine cutter but it is suggested you cut face up and with proper safety precautions.

If you are using the ‘cut off’ it must be trimmed with another cut.

Custom cutting can be available to you for an additional $2 fee per plate, keeping in mind that the cuts will be slightly smaller (approximately 1/32″) than the dimensions you request. If you are requesting 4X5″ plates, each will cost an extra $1.50. Since it takes additional work, please allow for slightly longer delivery time. Please check the “(Almost) 4” x 5” Solarplate” product to see availability. If you wish odd sizes, you will receive useable cutoffs.

Recommended cutters are the Kutrimmer or the Dahl. They are good, expensive and safer, since they have a clamp.

New Solarplate Information:

We are almost ready to launch the new Solarplates and are still investigating its potential and supply since so much has been changing with our current world pandemic. The good news is that the plate we are working with is the first and ‘original’ Solarplate that is described in the text “Printmaking in the Sun”. The book is out of print but may still be available through Amazon.

If you have any questions about this cutting procedure, please let us know.

Thank you for your continued business and support.

Dan Welden
President, Hampton Editions, Ltd.


An educational advertisement (with a tad of humor) by Dan Welden

I use the Solarplate Brushes because they are the most efficient way of inking non traditional surfaces. Since printmaking can consist of a wide variety of materials, techniques, and textures, printmakers are unique inventors and discoverers that adapt the best ways to be creative and productive. Unlike ordinary and standard inking techniques of carding, daubing, and rolling a plate, the right brush has the ability to penetrate more efficiently in certain surfaces. The brush is not meant to replace tradition. However, it can enhance and broaden the experience. Using the brush rather than a card can allow you to scratch your nose while inking.

WARNING: if you decide to use the Solarplate brush for exfoliating your skin, make sure there is no residual ink on it.

Asian inking techniques traditionally use soft brushes with pigment and water-based paste formulations for incredible effects on the ‘high’ uppermost portions of a wood block. I have adapted this technique and reversed it for western methods so as to ink both the ‘deep’ portions of the printing surface as well as higher levels by using a stiffer bristle brush. More practical than a shoe brush and similar to a body brush, the Solarplate brush fits comfortably in the hand, forcing the pigments into recessed areas more easily than any other method. I also find that the brush is more environmentally friendly since it uses less ink, better coverage and the ability to achieve subtle tones. There are many times that I choose to use the brush in such a manner as to eliminate the use of tarlatan completely.

Ergonomically speaking the brush takes less of a toll on my fingers, hands and wrist and allows me the capability of inking simultaneously with two brushes and both hands, on larger plates. Although the primary purpose of the brush was intended for developing plates and later cleaning the ink from them, it has become a multi-purpose tool that includes the use of mark making for monoprinting and painting. Since they are quite inexpensive, I use numerous ones with a swatch of each identifying color on the back.

WARNING: if you decide to use the Solarplate brush for exfoliating your skin, make sure there is no residual ink on it.

All inks can be modified to work, even if the ink has the viscosity of shoe polish. Ink can be altered with oil to become pliable enough to apply a circular application motion quite easily. I generally don’t clean the ink from the brush since it is used frequently. However if stored, it would be best to find a plastic lid container or a large empty sardine can with a some oil in the bottom to keep the bristles pliable and soft. When using the ‘oiled’ brush, simply stroke it on newspaper to remove excess oil. I also use an ink brush to wash out or clean plates with Dawn dish detergent which simultaneously cleans the brush. Inking plates, wood, linoleum, or synthetics has become more of a pleasure than a chore enabling the artist to obtain unique effects, especially with a la poupeé.

Authors serious note: The terms ‘high and deep’ stemming from the German hochdruck and tiefdruck were used by Albrecht Dürer. Somehow they have evolved into the confusing terms of ‘relief and intaglio’ and during my 60 plus years of making and teaching printmaking, I have witnessed abounding confusion.

But wait, there’s more: all brushes come with a lifetime guarantee to make masterpieces in the right hands!


The owner of this brush…………………your name……… an artist in her/his own right and has lifetime permission to use the Solarplate Brush in any safe manner deeming it creative, innovative and feasible, whereas that right shall extend to the entire life of its bristles and become employed by as many fingers that fit the printmakers glove. Furthermore and heretofore, the brush may have its own beneficiaries and heirs to live on in perpetuity in the creative world or suffer the penalties of becoming adapted for dish washing or toilet cleaning. The brush may not be used in any form of weaponry, or preparation for edible or human consumption, however its use may be expanded for animal or plant massage, engine and hydraulic maintenance or reselling on Craigslist.

Printmaking with SOLARPLATE is a simple approach and safer alternative to traditional etching and relief printing. SOLARPLATE is a prepared, light-sensitive polymer surface on a steel backing for artists to produce fine prints. Since Dan Welden’s development of the process in the 1970s, printmakers, painters, photographers, and art teachers interested in multiple impressions have found printmaking with SOLARPLATE an exciting adventure. All one needs is inspiration, a graphic image created on a transparent film (acetate or glass), sun or UV light, and ordinary tap water, and the process is ready to begin. Both positives and negatives can be utilized; intaglio and relief printing techniques can be applied.

Universities and art schools all over the world are using SOLARPLATE as part of their curriculum. The simple, spontaneous approach also makes it faster and more economical for use in professional printmaking workshops and collaborations with artists. Educators are replacing traditional acid techniques with SOLARPLATE due to safety regulations. Being photographic in nature, SOLARPLATE incorporates a broader range of techniques than any other printing medium.

Hampton Editions, Ltd. is the official distributor of SOLARPLATE.

Hampton Editions, Ltd. began as a subsidiary of Welden Graphics, established by Dan Welden in 1971. Collaborative publishing ventures included artists such as Robert Dash, Syd Solomon, Esteban Vicente, Willem de Kooning, Elaine de Kooning, Dan Flavin, Bill King, and Jane Freilicher. The evolution from a studio specializing in Stone Lithography publishing and printing into a workshop dealing with more diverse offerings took place during the 80s and 90s with the SOLARPLATE process gaining more momentum. Since the SOLARPLATE process was Dan Welden‘s own, he pioneered and promoted health and safety in printmaking since the beginning and is an example of a ‘more healthy, old time master printmaker’. Through the 90s and into the 2000s Hampton Editions, Ltd. has printed for artists including Eric Fischl, David Salle, and Lynda Benglis, among others.