Graphic Chemical & Ink Company is a world leader in the fine art field of printmaking. We manufacture our own time-tested inks for etching, litho and relief printing, as well as sell screen print inks, papers, tools, chemistry, plates and supplies for all of a printmaker's needs

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Location: Villa Park, Illinois, United States

I have worked for Graphic Chemical & Ink Company since 1968 - with a brief hiatus(almost 4 years) to travel the World courtesy of my uncle. Sadly it turns out it was my Uncle Sam, and I wasn't too thrilled about the places that he chose to send me. My wife and I have run Graphic Chemical for many years, and have enjoyed the travel that comes with the position. We get to meet our customers (and the occasional vendor) from all over the World

Monday, April 02, 2007


Ever since the 1930's, Graphic Chemical has printed a catalog of printmaking materials. To many in the industry Printmakers Materials is the industry bible, used in numerous classrooms as supplemental text material.

Sure we have a commercial spin to it, but it remains what it has become over the years - a folksy text, geared to imparting information without presenting a bias (except possibly a bias towards top quality materials).

The newest edition of Printmakers Materials, is currently at the printers, with an expected delivery date of March 26. As usual, our timimg is impeccable. We'll have the books just after Southern Graphics Conference in Kansas City.

The catalog is the only place that you can find everything that a printmaker needs in one location. Actually, it's everything that a printmaker needs, except presses. We sold our press line to Printmakers Machine Company 31 years ago, although they still rent space from us.

One of the unique things about our catalog is that we give equal billing to a number of competitive products. For example, we manufacture the finest etching inks available anywhere, but we also handle Caligo, Charbonnel, Faust and Akua inks. Our lithographic inks are unmatched, but we carry Charbonnel and Hanco, too. While our relief inks are the best around, Speedball, Caligo and PPI are also featured in our catalog. We absolutely try to have everything that a printmaker needs to complete whatever type of print they are doing.

Graphic Chemical didn't invent pre-sensitized plates for printmaking, but we did discover one of the most popular coated zinc plates at a time when printmaking was poised to move towards photo plates. Our Copper plates have been used by the newest beginner to create a drypoint up to, and including, the most professional application around - the Presidential Inaugural Invitations. Zinc and Steel plates are also available in more sizes and more styles than anywhere else. Photopolymer plates are a relatively new option to printmaking, but Graphic was there at the beginning providing them for the ground breakers in many techniques.

Nobody carries more tools than we do (and I mean nobody, because we represent several manufacturers and carry complete lines from each!). Our paper selection is also unmatched by anyone. We try to have the lowest prices available, too.

As a new addition to our web site, you can now download the catalog, by section directly from your computer.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi Dean, I used to get the GC Catalogue every year and it had tons of how-to info but I don't think the on-line catalog is as useful. The last catalogue I got some years ago seemed to be a zerox listing of materials.I would love to get the catalogue again if it is similar to 25 or 30 years ago! Whoops giving away too much info. I also toured the Graphic Chemical building in Illinois and that was so memorable and everyone knew so much. I am sure it has changed since then but I seem to remember your name from long ago too. I am getting back into printmaking and really like the forum. Thank you

5:11 PM  
Blogger Printblog said...

Well, a few years ago, we did publish a price list in leu of the whole catalog for a brief period of time. Needless to say it didn't have the same in=mpact as the whole book, so returned to a level of sanity that got GC to where it is today.

You can, take a peek atthe hard copy of the catalog by going on the webpage ( and clicking on the button to order a catalog. It will then ask if you want a paper copy or to download pdf files of the book, by section.

As to touring our plant, we always welcome customers to come in and see the whole operation - something that most ink companies wouldn't even consider (the exception being the Caligo plant which afforded me the opportunity a number of years ago when I visited them). The only changes that you would notice today from your previous visit would be the the offices are a little more open than before.

Contact us to get a hard copy of the catalog. I believe that you'll be impressed.

6:20 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanks, just ordered, can't wait!

3:46 PM  

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