By Maricon Williams
Lithography is a type of surface printing. It is both an art and a commercial printing process. It is used synonymously with offset printing which coincides with wholesale printing.
This type of printing is based on oil and water chemical repellence. Printing is done by drawing or painting designs on a prepared limestone. The stone needs to be moistened, so water is used to wash it but avoiding the part with the image. Through a roller, oily ink is applied. This ink sticks only to the drawing and is deterred by the wet parts. The ink is pressed hard on the paper in order to make the print.
In 1798, lithography was invented by Alois Senefelder in Germany. After two decades, it was adapted in England and the United States.
There was a desire to put colors in images. Thus, the use of multiple stones, each having one color to print, has been applied. The problem though is keeping the image detailed and permanent.
Early lithographs used one or two colors in the whole plate. This created what seemed to be a water-colored image. These lithographs were primarily used for landscape, seascape and other topographical illustrations.
Since early color lithographs were not able to emphasize the minutest details of the image, artist resorted to hand coloring technique to emphasize the details.
Simple prints with even color areas printed along side make up early chromolithographs. However, in the second half of the 19th century, more bright colors were discovered to augment lithography. Overprinting using gold and silver inks was also discovered. This discovered, has alleviated to some extent the variety of color and design.
In the Middle Ages, chromolithography was used in making gift books and handwork manuscripts. Nonetheless, this process is pretty costly only those that are affluent can afford it. The price was only slashed when steam-driven printing press was discovered.
In 1880's, lithography's hype came. It became widely used in printing magazines and ads. It is also in this era when photographic processes were being developed.
Nowadays, full color lithography offset printing wholesale is used primarily in photographic materials such as magazines and brochures.
Lithography is known for its ability to capture every detail, shading and light. Hence, it is resorted to in making advertising and promotional materials especially in wholesale printing. This is because quality lithography printing service is given at a wholesale price.
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