This is a research guide for finding materials on printmaking in the Greenfield Library at the University of the Arts. Reference materials are listed first, followed by a list of suggested subject headings for searching library catalogs. Periodical indexes to magazine articles and newspapers are next, followed by style manuals and finally Web sites. If you have questions about this topic please see the librarian's e-mail address at the end of this document.

If you're interested in printmaking, you may also be interested in our subject guides on Book Arts and on Type and Type Founding.


he first place to look when beginning research on a topic is in reference material: specialized dictionaries, encyclopedias or handbooks. These allow you to check names, dates and places, find additional information, look up unknown terms, and check for the proper spelling of words. They are particularly helpful for finding basic background information on a topic, and are often the only place many students may need to look to find answers to their questions. They may include bibliographies (lists of additional materials on a topic, usually considered by the author to be the best materials on that topic) that you can use to find other materials.

Call numbers are for the Greenfield Library unless otherwise indicated.

For an overview of the history of printmaking: Dictionary of Art. Grove, 1996.
REF 703 D561t. Vol. 25, pp. 596-633.
Check the index, volume 34, for more specific entries. See also separate entries for woodcut, wood-engraving, collagraph, aquatint, broadside, etching, drypoint, etc., and under names of countries. The index for this title is quite deep; check through it carefully. The Grove Dictionary of Art is also available online to the UArts community through our Research Tools and Resources page at

The New Encyclopaedia Britannica. Encyclopaedia Britannica, c1992.
REF 031 N42 1992 Vol. 26, pp. 112-134.
Article covers the major techniques and the history of printmaking. Good bibliography at the end of the article. See the Encyclopaedia Britannica Micropaedia (blue spines), volume 9, p. 708, for references to printmaking in other articles, as well as the index, volume 32.

Encyclopedia of World Art. McGraw-Hill [1959-c1987]
REF 703 En2
See Volume 15, Index volume, page 172, for "engravings and other print media." The main article is in volume 4, pp. 748-85. Article covers the significance of the art of engraving, printing, color prints, combined processes, and historical accounts of the Western world, Islamic world, India, China and Japan. Extensive bibliography.

Goldman, Paul. Looking at Prints, Drawings, and Watercolours : A Guide to Technical Terms. British Museum Publications ; J. Paul Getty Museum, c1988.
REF 760.03 G569L

Gascoigne, Bamber. How to Identify Prints : A Complete Guide to Manual and Mechanical Processes from Woodcut to Ink Jet. Thames and Hudson, 1986.
REF 769.17 G211h
Considered by some experts to be the best source on how to identify prints.

Health and Safety in Printmaking : A Manual for Printmakers. PUBLISHER, YEAR.
REF 760.28 H349. Also a circulating copy in the Open Stacks.

Martin, Judy. The Encyclopedia of Printmaking Techniques. Running Press, c1993.
REF 760.28 M346e
Step-by-step printmaking processes and tools; lots of photographs.

Mayer, Ralph. HarperCollins Dictionary of Art Terms and Techniques. 2nd ed. HarperPerennial, c1992.
REF 751 M45h 1992
A good basic dictionary of all kinds of art terms. Definitions are longer than most other dictionaries.

Graphic Arts Manual. Arno Press, c1980.
REF 686.20202 G767 1980
Directed toward graphic arts rather than fine-art prints, nevertheless a thorough manual that may be useful.

Pocket Pal: A Graphic Arts Production Handbook. International Paper, c1992.
REF 686.2028 P751 1992
Again, directed to graphic arts rather than fine arts but a classic title, very useful.

Searching the Catalog by Subject

Use the University Libraries catalog to find books, videos, CDs, scores, journal titles, etc. To locate all of the materials the library holds on a topic, it is most efficient to search by Subject. Use the following subject headings in the online catalog. Be careful to follow the exact spelling and form. These subject headings are standard and are used in most libraries.

There are many more subject headings for printmaking besides those listed as examples below; to find circulating books in this and other libraries please check Library of Congress Subject Headings (four big red books behind the card catalog in the Greenfield Library) to find the terms most appropriate for you

Please note that the word "printmaking" is not a subject heading used in the catalog. Use PRINTS--TECHNIQUE instead of "printmaking".



Periodical indexes are research tools that allow you to search for articles in journals and magazines.

Be aware that there are different ways to find an article once you pull up a citation in the index:

  • See if there is a link in the index you're using to a full-text article online and download it or e-mail it to yourself.
  • See if the UArts Libraries hold the journal title. Look up the journal title in the catalog and look at the holdings.
  • See what other libraries in the area hold the journal.
  • Use interlibrary loan to request materials not owned by the UArts Libraries.


On the Web:
Go to the library's Electronic Indexes and Databases page for descriptions of Web-based periodical index subscriptions.

Style Manuals: Citing Your Sources

When you find information on a topic, no matter what format it takes (book, journal, Web page), there are style manuals to show you the correct way to give cite those sources in a paper.


Searching the Web can be overwhelming. If you are using the Internet for research you want to choose sites that meet the standards of accuracy, currency and authority.

Below are just a few print-related sites that may be of interest to the University of the Arts community.

American Color Print Society

Color Printing in the Nineteenth Century: An Exhibition at the Hugh M. Morris Library, University of Delaware Library, Newark, Delaware August 27 - December 19, 1996. Curated by Iris R. Snyder.

The Floating World of Ukiyo-e: Shadows, Dreams, and Substance: A Library of Congress Exhibition

International Print Center New York
Extensive set of links:

Print Council of America
"The Print Council of America is a professional organization of print specialists with a current membership of 200 individuals most of whom represent collections of works of art on paper throughout the United States and Canada. While the organization is comprised primarily of museum curators, it also includes university professors, conservators of works on paper, and independent scholars with a strong commitment to the study of prints." from Introduction. See their Online Resources, one of their links under Studying Prints.

Viewing Japanese Prints / Designed and Written by John Fiorillo
In addition to the site, see his Recommended Websites.

Wood Engraving: An Art Lost and Found: Featuring the Prints of Kent Kissinger And works from the Rare Books and Texana Collections. Willis Library, University of North Texas, June 1 - September 30, 1997 - David Bull's World of Woodblock Printmaking
Bull is a printmaker who specializes in Japanese woodblock technique. Interesting set of links.

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