I am searching for more information and resources about a technique I really like: unfortunately, I don't know its name.

It is based on a layout in which everything is drawn with dots of several size, the size giving the intensity of shade.

It's really close to the technique used for black and white printing of pictures on old newspapers. Maybe it's even the same technique name.

The results could be things like this one:

enter image description here


2 Answers 2


It's called a Halftone

From Wikipedia:

Halftone is the reprographic technique that simulates continuous tone imagery through the use of dots, varying either in size, in shape or in spacing. "Halftone" can also be used to refer specifically to the image that is produced by this process.

It is used to produce the appearance of continuous tone images in printing. It used to require a copy camera, screens, and photostats. With the age of digital prepress it's now something software does upon output.

Halftones can use dots, squares, lines, or even type characters if so desired thanks to the modern age of digital publishing.

Some illustration techniques will increase the size of the halftone for effect.

  • Thanx. I've started googling. And from times to times I also find the process name "dithering". Commented Jan 15, 2013 at 23:26
  • 2
    Dithering is different. Dithering is a digital process wherein pixels are "scattered" between colors in order to produce an appearance which appears smoother. Dithering is not the same as a halftone.
    – Scott
    Commented Jan 16, 2013 at 0:10
  • Yes, not the same thing but analogous results, pleasing my eye. Commented Jan 16, 2013 at 0:12
  • 4
    Pointilism may also be a useful point of reference to you since it encompasses the basic concept behind halftone printing. Commented Jan 16, 2013 at 6:36

stipple portrait made famous by the wall street journal

  • 1
    I disagree. Stipple and halftone are two different things. And this is clearly halftone.
    – Wolff
    Commented Feb 2, 2022 at 20:45

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