Special thanks, Gordon, for the following- very long re Direct Carbon

From: Grafist@aol.com
Date: 03/12/04-04:31:04 AM Z
Message-id: <f5.38aa6c73.2d82eb68@aol.com>

>From John Grocott. Photographist. Interface Carbon Imbibition Direct Carbon
print system (I.C.I ) has a little to do with the following-
Gordon wrote:-
Date: 08/10/03 20:48:29 GMT Daylight Time

Lots of discussion in the past about Fresson, many details in 1998

see http://www.usask.ca/lists/alt-photo-process/1998/alt98a/
under Fresson/Artigue

The process depends on making the Fresson paper -which is very difficult
to make, and is still a trade-secret.

Luis Nadeau knows how to do it, but its difficult, and I doubt that Luis
will give away his research



Re: Artigue and Fresson Printing

Luis Nadeau (nadeaul@nbnet.nb.ca)
 Sun, 01 Feb 1998 18:00:48 -0400

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At 2:51 AM -0500 98/02/01, Art Chakalis wrote:


>He goes on to write that this machine is the one that Nadeau ultimately
>purchased and moved to Canada. Keep in mind that this is still hearsay
>it is interesting to note that though slightly different than your
>analysis it is surprisingly similar. If one assumes that the raw paper
>first coated with a base layer of white pigmented gelatin and that Ortiz
>was not giving the exact order in which the layers went down then the
>descriptions could both be of the same process/material.
>One other significant comment from Bill Foster is that after
>bought the machine he seemed to produce very few prints due to; being 80
>plus years old OR was his homemade paper not up to the standard of
>"Fresson Paper". I personally wonder if the process and/or machine were

It's not incomplete. During my two visits with him, I noticed that Ortiz
 was wearing very thick glasses, which he kept changing all the time. My
 first visit was in 1976, ten years after he bought the process and he was
 about 90 years old by then. He was not active at that time. I knew
 of the process yet so I just assumed that as with most processes, it
 be used by any old man. Was I wrong!

As mentioned in my books and here before, it took me a whole year before I
 got decent results with the process. About 90% of the problems were
 machine/coating related. On many occasions I felt like throwing in the
 towel. It was like a deaf person trying to learn to play violin from a
 book. What kept me going was the knowledge that the damn process had been
 in use for nearly a century and after 10 years of work and negotiations
 acquire it I wasn't going to give up that easily. I finally succeeded.
 hands-on training however, I would say that a period of about one week,
 with the original equipment and everything, would be enough to teach the
 process to someone with excellent eyesight and steady hands, who has
 already mastered a process like carbon transfer printing.

Contrary to what many people seem to believe, there is more to the process
 than mixing a few drops of liquid, hand-coat it on the paper and 10
 later you're ready to expose. This is no platinotype. The process is much
 more difficult than carbon transfer, a process above the heads of
 more than 90% of the people on this list. Not that it has to be. Most
 people could learn carbon transfer the same way people can learn
 or play piano. The fact of the matter is that most people don't have the
 dedication that is needed to achieve these things. It's so much more fun
 play golf:)

One of my customers (a wellknown museum) recently showed me 3 Fressons
 Ortiz made on paper coated by himself after 1966, when he was in his 80s.
 The quality is much inferior to his early work. This confirms that he was
 too old to master the manufacturing process by then.

>I hope that the analytical work in progress will provide some new and
>valuable information.

>From what I can see, you should have most of the formulas worked out by
 next ice age, at which point you'll only have to worry about the coating

Good luck.

Luis Nadeau
 Fredericton, New Brunswick, Canada

- endquote-

Some information about the layering



Re: Artigue and Fresson Printing

 Art Chakalis (achakali@freenet.columbus.oh.us)
 Tue, 13 Jan 1998 20:33:14 -0500 (EST)

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On Tue, 13 Jan 1998, Peter Charles Fredrick wrote:

> Dear Art
> . . .
> I have a little present for you I have in my possession a
> of a section of Echague Fresson paper which I'm am sending onto you by
> snail mail as a loan could you copy and return to me .This photo-mic
> confirms in part Sandys friends observations ,the difference is as
> follows--:
> >>According to the analysis, the Fresson paper in question consisted of
> following, in this order:
> 1. a paper base, followed by
> 2. a thin coating of soft gelatin with a relatively thin black pigment
> dispersion, with a slight cool, ultramarine tone, followed by
> 3. a thicker layer of gelatin, harder than the first, with no pigment,
> followed by
> 4. a powdering of a very fine, dry pigment<<
> My paper shows--:
> 1. a paper base
> 2. my sample does not show this layer
> 3. Thick layer of colloid, constitution unknown but presumed to be
> 4. a thin layer of tightly packed very fine dry pigment and sitting
> up on the top of the paper surface
> >From this evidence we can presume that the coating consists of least
two layers
> a thick one sunk into the paper base and a thin one containing tightly
> packed pigment, riding piggyback on the thicker base base coating,
which we
> could perhaps see as a rather thick sizing layer? Also the fact that
> pigment layer is perched right up on the surface of the paper provides
> significant clues to the manner of coating which I am sure must be
> mechanical in nature.
> pete


When the photomichrogragh arrives I will scan it into a file and share it
 with whomever might want to look at it. I can send it as a JPEG image and
 attach it to a note for those who request a copy. I will promptly return
 the original to you.

It is good of you to share the information.

Thanks, Art

Art Chakalis
 Columbus, Ohio, USA

- endquote -

More from

- quote -

Re: Artigue and Fresson Printing

 Sandy King (sanking@hubcap.clemson.edu)
 Sun, 01 Feb 1998 10:46:05 -0400

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Thank you for sharing the contents of Bill Foster's letter. I would not be
 at all surprised but that his description of Fresson as having four
 one of clear gelating and three in colored gelatin is not correct.

Almost ten years ago Russ Young, the editor of The New Pictorialist,
 published a short article by me on Ortiz Echague in which I engaged in
 conjecture about the manufacture of Fresson paper. My conclusion, based
 several references in the literature and conversations with Gerardo
 (a friend of Echague who knew a lot about his working technique), was
 close to what Mr. Foster indicates. In that article I wrote:

"In addition to its documentary and ideological values, the photography of
 Echage has an aesthetic quality which is substantially enhanced by the
 plastic qualities inherent in the direct carbon process he used. He
 apparently began experimenting with direct carbon and gum bichromate
 sometime in 1906; in October of that year an article in Graphos Ilustrado
 observed that Echage was "competing with a clear disadvantage because of
 his inability to use the pigment processes, which he is only now
 to cultivate." What is certain is that by 1915, the year he returned from
 Africa, Echage had become an acknowledged master of Fresson, a process
 which he continued to use throughout his life, eventually producing some
 1500 of these direct carbon prints. When in 1966 the Fresson family
 distributing to the public their Fresson papers they provided
 with detailed working procedures which he used to manufacture the paper.
 However, by agreement with the Fresson's Ortiz-Echage did not refer to
 this paper as Fresson, which is why after 1966 he call his printing
 carbondir (carbon + directo), which of course means direct carbon in
 English. In 1979 an aging Ortiz-Echage sold to the Canadian Luis Nadeau
 this carbondir process, including the coating machine used in the
 manufacture of the paper. Although Ortiz-Echage did not reveal the secret
 of the process, and Nadeau himself has shed little light on the
 of his Fressontype paper, a study of the early literature suggests that
 Fresson paper was manufactured by coating a sized paper with several
 of pigmented colloid, varying in terms of pigment density from very pale
 almost completely opaque. Moreover, for the process to work well each of
 the colloid layers needs to be of a different sensitivity than its
 neighbor, with the most sensitive coating (and palest) on the bottom and
 the least sensitive (and most opaque) on the top. The theory behind this
 coating procedure is identical to that which is employed in the
 of multiple-layer gum prints, the only exception being that in Fresson
 of the layers were applied at once and only one printing and developing
 were required. Thodore Henri-Fresson was probably not the first to
 understand the principle that made his paper work but better than others
 was able to apply solid engineering principles to the problem of coating
 paper with several thin colloid layers."


Sandy King

- endquote

Gordon J. Holtslander Dept. of Biology
holtsg@duke.usask.ca 112 Science Place
http://duke.usask.ca/~holtsg University of Saskatchewan
Tel (306) 966-4433 Saskatoon, Saskatchewan
Fax (306) 966-4461 Canada S7N 5E2
Received on Fri Mar 12 04:31:26 2004

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