Re: Direct Carbon Potential.
I have to agree with Sandy that the secretiveness must be more about
*perceived* potential commercial value than actual commercial value,
since decades have gone by without anyone seeming to capitalize on
this great potential. But as long as the belief endures, as in the
recent suggestion that the alt-photo list should generate thousands,
or perhaps even millions, of potential customers for a commercial
paper of this type, then the secretiveness will continue. In the
meantime, I'm more impressed by the results of those freely sharing
their methods to make really great direct carbon (gum) prints, such
On Jan 14, 2008, at 9:45 AM, Sandy King wrote:
First, I believe there is a lot of secrecy because some people
really believe there is some commercial value in a direct carbon
process. My belief is that they have are mistaken, and so far no
one has proven me wrong.
Why did Nadeau buy the secret? You would have to ask him that, but
I suspect that back then he also believed, as others sill appear to
believe, that there was some commercial gain to be made in
acquiring the coating machine and Echague's secrets. And he may
have been right since he apparently paid very little and may be
able to eventually sell what he acquired at auction for a lot more.
But in spite of having acquired a coating machine, and instructions
as to how to use it, and having at once time indicated that he
would be engaging in printing with the "Fressontpe" process, I
don't believe that Nadeau has made much if anything so far from the
process. I don't know this for sure as I don't have access to
Nadeau's business records, but that is my opinion.
At 8:24 AM -0700 1/14/08, Christina Z. Anderson wrote:
Hi All, I have absolutely no expertise in manufacturing anything
(except children) but what sort of strikes me is this. If there
is no commercial value to the manufacture of carbon paper
etc..Why is everyone so secretive about the process? Regards David H
OHMAGOSH David how astute you are...this gave me a good laugh this
When Pouncy introduced his Carbon process to the photographic
society he got trounced because he showed prints but did not
reveal the secrets of his process. He got accused of trying to
profit from it, then of being secretive because of taking out a
patent, and even though the records from that time SHOW that they
couldn't even tell the difference between a carbon (direct) and a
BW print, history to this day says there were "no halftones" etc.
etc.--even in the journals only a few decades later! Apparently
they did not read back far enough to remember, but Pouncy's son
William set the record straight when the gum convo started up
again in the 1890's.
The same today--secrecy surrounds the process and there IS
monetary gain to be had. One difference is that the direct carbon
today probably contains other colloids aside from just gum as did
Pouncy's process. However, as I have reported already to the
list, there was the use of methylated alcohol to harden the layer
which made it able to do a pure gum, post sensitized paper.
Anyway, my interest in a direct carbon paper is only mild, insofar
as in my gum research, gum printing was called so many different
names--carbon printing, direct carbon, bi-gum, pigment printing,
on and on so I had to read all of the literature in order to weed
out what I needed. In the process, I realized the extreme
commercial viability of the paper, and the only reason IMHO it did
not continue was the move towards straight photography in the 1920's.
If it weren't commercially viable, why would Nadeau buy the
"secret" as he says he did?
And, there is room for more than one direct carbon paper on the
market. I've come up with about 10 names from the 1900's all
competing at once.