Re: Magnani Pescia et al.. for gumprinting

From: Christina Z. Anderson ^lt;[email protected]>
Date: 10/27/05-07:57:04 AM Z
Message-id: <005e01c5dafe$e41a62d0$4e6992d8@christinsh8zpi>

Dave and David,
Again (it's a miracle, Cactus Dave! We have agreed on numerous gum things
of late! It must be the Western mountain water) I agree with Dave here,
Rives has wonderful wet strength. I never had a problem with it
disintegrating. However I am not doing any larger than 16x20.

My problem with Rives is only one: when it is in combination with glyoxal
sizing. I have not tried Rives with two coats of glyoxal sizing, or it with
one coat of glut but until I do, I am making the assumption **in my
practice** that Rives needs a good size to be a suitable paper. Since I
prefer Fabriano anyway, I have no reason to go back.

Rives is a beautiful paper, but a printmaking paper, not a watercolor paper.
Printmaking papers need to have good strength and good absorbency to absorb
the inks. I would never think to use FAEW in a press--it is too well sized,
and too hard.

I did the mistake of buying a 100 sheet ream of Lenox paper for printmaking
while in grad school for the last 2 years, and compared with, say, Arches
Cover, it sucked. This does not mean Lenox is a bad paper, and for one, at
80 cents a sheet that was an incredible buy. But in side by side
comparisons it did not absorb ink as well as Cover and therefore I did not
get the richness I needed in silkscreen, etc., processes. It also did not
have the wet strength to be used in many gum layers so it was a bust. I
even tried it with VDB and it was grainy in comparison with Arches Platine
and Crane's Platinotype (which people say is same as Crane's Cover?).

If I used either Arches Cover or Lenox for gum, I would assume (perhaps
wrongly) that Cover would require more sizing than Lenox. Cover might
actually be my printmaking (i.e. press processes and silkscreen and
solarplate and intaglio and mezzotint) paper of choice. It is a velvety,
richly absorbent, strong paper.

As I also always look to a paper that is somewhat failproof (because you
need to simplify a class supply list when teaching college age students not
only for monetary reasons but for those students who decide to pull an
assignment out their butt the night before) I find in side by side
comparisons of Rives and FAEW that FAEW wins by a longshot in error-free
use.

That Kerik and Dave use Rives regularly (I've seen Kerik's work and it is
impeccable, Dave's work only online) shows that for some it is a fave paper.
It was the only one I used for years because I was taught on it. I myself
would not start out a beginning student on it, because my gums have made
such a drastic improvement by using a different paper that I don't think it
is just my brilliant techniique that made that jump :). And since I used
both full strength am di and lower dilution am di on it and got the same
results (speckling, staining) I do not relate its problems to strength of am
di but to strength of sizing and other possible gum practice.

Do me a favor; buy a sheet of each and try them side by side and report your
results. We can only develop anecdote into a body of knowledge by sharing.
Chris

> FWIW, I've used Rives BFK for gum and combination gum/cyanotype printing
> for
> years with excellent results. Despite what you may have read on the
> Internet, it does hold up well under repeated water immersion. Some of my
> prints have as many as 8 coatings on them. When I started gum printing
> (15
> years ago), I tested about 8 different papers. At that time, Rives BFK
> gave
> the best results, so that's what I've used ever since.
> All of these prints were made with Rives BFK:
> http://www.alternativephotography.com/artists/dave_rose.html
> Best regards,
> Dave Rose
> Powell, Wyoming
Received on Thu Oct 27 08:02:04 2005

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