Papermaking involves mixing vegetable fibers and water into a paste which is then drained, pressed and dried in a mould until a sheet is formed. This has to be sized with glue or gelatine to give the paper its final appearance. Linen or cotton rags are used to make good quality paper for printmaking. “India” and Japanese papers are also imported for this use on account of their high quality. Tracing paper is used for transferring a drawing onto the plate or block. Formerly the paper with the drawing on it was covered on the verso with black or red chalk and the design was transferred to the plate by indenting its outlines on the recto. The drawing may also be pricked for transfer. Special transfer paper is used in lithography to transfer the image from the paper on which it has been drawn onto the stone. It is grained if the image has been drawn in chalk or crayon. A smooth autographic paper is used for transferring ink drawings (see: transfer). Various types of sensitized papers are used in photomechanical methods. Tissue paper is used for protecting freshly printed sheets and for wiping the plate after inking in intaglio printing. Blotting paper is used on sheets of dampened paper before printing, and for drying plates after they have been etched and washed before printing.

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