more on Fabriano Artistico

From: Ryuji Suzuki ^lt;[email protected]>
Date: 07/11/04-08:46:53 PM Z
Message-id: <>

I know not many people do silver gelatin but here's some more results.

From: Ryuji Suzuki <>
Subject: coating with rollers, vellum, Fabriano Artistico
Date: Sat, 10 Jul 2004 23:55:51 -0400 (EDT)

> I am also trying Fabriano Artistico pure white "soft press" 300 g/m^2.
> I asked for hot press but they said they don't have it and gave me
> soft press as the closest surface. It didnt look very smooth surface
> but I tried it anyway. I coated this paper with emulsion without any
> additional sizing, but the paper seems to dry much flatter than other
> papers I've tried (mostly Rives BFK and Magnani Pescia, both
> 300g/m^2). (I didn't print/process this batch of paper because it was
> time to coat my teeth with Sangiovese...)

So I printed them, and coated more for next printing.

The paper doesn't absorb much emulsion and it takes some work to make
an even film of emulsion to stay on top of the paper. I learned to
use liberal amount of wetting agent (Triton X-100) and antifoaming
agent (silicon oil emulsion) when roller coating this paper, because
emulsion didn't spread well on the paper surface with the amount I
found to work well for those printmaking papers. But this is not a big

Emulsion had to be coated 3 times (each after drying the previous
coat) to get good coating weight. The coated paper gave nicely
detailed images (though much less sharp than commercial enlarging
papers due to lack of baryta or resin coat) but the paper texture was
very emphasized especially in dark area. With those printmaking papers
images were less sharp but paper texture was less apparent.

Then I toned prints in selenium plus polysulfide toner (similar to
discontinued Polytoner). Neither the emulsion nor the paper got
stained. Some commercial papers, as well as some of my homemade
enlarging papers get stained even with all precautionary measures I
know of. When I washed the prints, I cut out samples from test strips
every 10 minutes and run residual hypo test (HT-2 silver nitrate
test). The residual fixer/toner washed out from both emulsion and the
paper base to the level generally considered archival in time that's
comparable to washing time for commercial baryta papers to the same
residual hypo level (in my processing chemicals and water, 20-30

I also like strong body of this paper even when it's wet. I feel it's
much easier to make larger prints on this paper than other papers I
tried. The paper does curl a bit when emulsion dries, but not as much
as what I had with Rives or Magnani.

One area I don't like is that I need to coat 3 times. Tests with 1-2
coats weren't good enough. (I can tell while coating because not much
emulsion gets coated on paper after each coating.) I am hoping that
this can be solved by making next batch of emulsion more concentrated
to make up for thinner coat.

Overall, I think this is a great paper, better than those printmaking
papers, as far as my silver gelatin prints are concerned, because I
don't have to size the paper yet get good details. My next task is to
find smoother surface and optimal emulsion concentration.

(Christina Anderson told me about this paper first, when I was
struggling to improve sharpness with Magnani Pescia. I wish I tested
it sooner!!!)

Ryuji Suzuki
"You have to realize that junk is not the problem in and of itself.
Junk is the symptom, not the problem."
(Bob Dylan 1971; source: No Direction Home by Robert Shelton)
Received on Sun Jul 11 20:47:33 2004

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