Conti Prints

Conti Prints

I would like to introduce you to an art form used in the 19th Century by the leading newspaper battlefield artists to create an image that later would be turned into an engraving and shown in the newspapers of the day as we currently see photographs.

They are Conti drawings.

Conti is a form of chalk used on heavy colored paper along with graphite pencil to create the initial image. After the drawing was completed, it was delivered to the newspaper engraver who would then engrave a metal plate with the image, paying attention to the white chalk as the finer lines on the plate, thus creating a highlighted area. The plates were then used in the press to enhance the written battlefield story. This artistic approach was followed by many well known wartime artists such as Window Homer!

 

Over the years, I have enjoyed doing my portrait and battlefield sketches using the process.