U of S | Mailing List Archive | alt-photo-process-l | Re: New Blog on the block

Re: New Blog on the block

On Tue, 21 Aug 2007, Clay Harmon wrote:

Well, as the author of that piece, I'll just chime in and tell you that my language was perhaps not precise enough. Dimensionally stable implies: "Won't change dimensions", and as you point out, humidity and other things can affect the dimensions of damn near any material.
Clay my friend, I'm going to express my amazement and nothing to do with humidity, material, or paper. How is it possible to write a "blog" with the first person pronoun used amply throughout, yet nowhere in maybe several thousand words IDENTIFY yourself, which is to say, reveal your name, or at least: "photo resident of Kingwood Texas."

I went back to double check, to be sure I hadn't missed a signature, and tootled around back to June (apparently the beginning) and found naught, zip, zero. Yet, when I made what could be interpreted as a skeptical comment, you immediately claim "authorship." Are you trying to embarrass me? You weren't planning the ploy of the CEO of (was it?) Whole Foods? (Wild Oats?) to make your own comments incognito?

In any event, beyond the training of mothers and photographers, I figure the basic rules of "authorship" still obtain, even in the age of wireless bloggery. We were taught in the 10th grade, if not younger, that one cannot, ought not, must not, use the pronoun "I" in an unsigned piece. I dare say the "editorial 'we'" could squeak by, assuming an editorial identity of some sort, as in "Modern League of Whole Plate Photographers," with an address for serving summonses. sending awards or offering corrections, but totally anonymous? Yet you speak up promptly now. Did you just forget? Consider it immodest? Or?

I admit I hadn't noticed the lack of signature, since I was rushed, and, given the evil nature of my browser and my own shortcomings in its use, needed all available brain cells to follow the material. But, as noted, I went back just now to be sure, and still found zip ID.

What I should have said is that any changes in dimensions are proportional. For example, when I treat COT320 or Platine with identical procedures, they still show non proportional dimensional changes. In other words, they make lousy papers for multiple printing because you will be 'on' in one direction and 'off' in another when you try to re-register your negative. I still haven't found a way to make a paper shrink or expand in only one direction.
It's my understanding that the "pressing" or rolling, whether hot press or cold press, is done in only one direction, which establishes the "non-proportional" shrink, yet I would still expect that with the fine-tuned protocol you describe, you'd get parity with most papers.

And yes, I will confess to being somewhat 'trained' with that paper. It works exceedingly well if you are consistent. If you procedures are more slapdash, it will give variable results.

Who would have figured that a 175gsm paper would make a great 3 layer gumover substrate? That sure wouldn't have passed my sniff test until I tried it.
Rives BFK has always been a workhorse, especially for gum, which is why it's been so good for students... (though admittedly I haven't bought any lately and papers do change).


On Aug 21, 2007, at 8:54 PM, Judy Seigel wrote:

Don, that is an interesting blog & very informative on many points, but it reminds me of something my Swiss pediatrician said more years ago than I care to reveal.

It was the custom of Swiss mothers to put the baby on the potty, and the potty on the floor and against a table leg, then tie a diaper around baby's waist plus the table leg after every feeding, starting at about 3 weeks. That is, the diaper acted as harness to fasten baby to table leg, hence sitting up on the potty. Eventually of course baby peed in the potty, and at some point or other (maybe when it could say, "Mutti, untie me") was considered "trained."

As the pediatrician pointed out, the baby wasn't trained: the mother was trained.

And that's what came to mind when I read the fellow's comment about his Rives BFK that, "once it is treated it is dimensionally stable." He then describes an exacting protocol, with every aspect of handling, from initial soak to ambient humidity, drying, coating and timing precisely controlled and the same.

With those factors rendered identical after an initial soak, any paper, including probably newsprint will be "dimensionally stable."

Which is to say, the photographer is trained.

(My own tests show that UNLESS treatment is thus identical, NO paper is "dimensionally stable.")