Stippling is the creation of a pattern simulating varying degrees of solidity or shading by using small dots.

The difference between Pointillism and Stipple

It’s a common mistake made by many artists to confuse these two terms. Both techniques use dots to create an image and the confusion between the two is quite understandable.

If you are creating an ink drawing using a single color ink for the entire drawing, you are using Stipple. It doesnt matter what color it is… it’s most likely black, but it could be blue, brown, red, etc… as long as the entire drawing uses only one color. The idea behind stipple is to use dots to create shades and tones, contrast etc.

Pointillism is when dots of multiple colors are used. Instead of blending colors together as you might in an oil painting, dots of different colors are overlapped to create specific colors.

Below “The Papal Palace, Avignon”, 1900 by Paul Signac (1862–1935), anarchist and revolutionary who together with Georges Seurat were the architects of Pointillism and Divisionism in france at the end of the 19th century.

“A Sunday on La Grande Jatte”, 1884 by Georges Seurat (1859–1891)


Étienne Delaune – Africca, from series titled “The Four Parts Of The World” engraving, 1575

Giulio Campagnola, engraving with stippling, 1509.

“The astrologer; a bearded man measuring a clestial globe next to a monster”

Source: Stippling


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