Re: Blue-Black Cyanotype & Luster

From: Katharine Thayer ^lt;[email protected]>
Date: 10/04/05-02:34:10 AM Z
Message-id: <>

Well, I was going to suggest straight gum, but was afraid of being beat
up for my trouble; Henk is braver than I.

There was a thread recently where someone asked, what is the advantage
of using a cyanotype layer for the first layer for tricolor gum prints.
(BTW I personally object to this phrasing; anything called a tricolor
gum print should consist of three layers of gum IMO. If you're going to
do cyanotype and gum, then it should be called something other than
tricolor gum, sorry. Anyone pretending they are doing tricolor gum when
one of the layers is cyanotype, is just fooling him or herself).

Anyway the concensus seemed to be that the argument for doing
cyanotype-gum rather than tricolor gum is that the cyanotype layer gives
you a sharper and darker foundation for the other two colors. It's
darker, sure, than cyan-colored pigment, but it's also different than
doing tricolor gum, as I said.

To show that the cyanotype provides a sharper layer than a blue gum
layer would give, Chris provided a comparison of a target printed in gum
and in cyanotype, showing that for her, the gum doesn't hold the fine
detail as well as the cyanotype. As I said at the time, it's still an
open question as far as I'm concerned; my hesitation has to do with the
fact that Chris prints a very soft gum; her gum is so soft that it can
be softened and removed by being reintroduced to water and brushed after
it's been dried. I print gum to be completely insoluble. It seems to me
that a harder gum would be more capable of holding a crisp fine detail
than a softer gum, but until I am able to test this for myself, I won't
know for sure.

Until then, all I know is that my dark blue gums have been mistaken for
cyanotypes by those who should know the difference, so I am fairly
comfortable suggesting to Mark, along with Henk, that he just mix blue
and black pigments and print gum, easy as pie ;-).

As to whether gum is a cult --- it's a mighty odd-looking cult if that's
so, since I don't know if you could get very many gum printers into a
room without a riot breaking out. It's more like 20 cults of five or six
each. Come to gum, Mark.... Come here.....Come here....we're waiting
for you..... Hehehehehehe


D. Mark Andrews wrote:
> Forget toning, forget luster. Thanks for letting me down easy Henk! Alas you
> confirm my fears, but I'm going to give it go anyway and see what I can come
> up with.
> I agree with you about the cyanotype/gum combination. Why not just start
> with gum.
> BTW, I've left a sealed envelop to my children with strict instructions to
> open immediately upon me uttering, "I'm doing gum." I'm explained to them
> that gum printing is a cult and I lay out a plan for my abduction, and
> immediate re-programming at a camp in Montana before I can be fully
> indoctrinated. Hmm, gum....
> -----Original Message-----
> From: henk thijs []
> Sent: Tuesday, October 04, 2005 6:29 AM
> To:
> Subject: Re: Blue-Black Cyanotype & Luster
> Op 4 okt 2005 om 15:18 heeft Dave Rose het volgende geschreven:
> > Try printing a cyanotype/gum combination. Multiple printings with gum
> > will
> > create a luster or sheen, particularly in the shadow areas.
> In that case the question is :
> Why a cyanotype at all ?
> I also tried to tone cyanotypes to try to get some dark-blues, and
> after several tries I just switched to gum with prussianblue (or
> whatever blue) with ebony black (or whatever black). Lots of
> combinations, lots of different dark-blues.
> The luster.........(desirable the appearance in water)..........; apart
> from oil- and bromoil prints I never got a real nice 'luster', and when
> you follow the different threads during 10 years of alt-list , there is
> no real method.
> Bon courage,
> Henk
Received on Tue Oct 4 09:29:56 2005

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