U of S | Mailing List Archive | alt-photo-process-l | RE: Gum on Masa

RE: Gum on Masa

What a visual feast! #55 beats anything else. It gives a hint of reality and leaves so much to the viewer's imagination. Gum, gum, gum!

> Date: Mon, 17 Mar 2008 07:30:02 -0600
> From: keith.gerling@gmail.com
> Subject: Gum on Masa
> To: alt-photo-process-l@usask.ca
> I've been making gum photos on Masa paper.. Here is a link to some
> current work featuring dancers:
> http://www.gumphoto.com/masa/index.htm
> Yes, too many - I'm still editing. As is usually the case with
> on-line gums, only a resemblance seems to exist between the displayed
> image and the actual print. Here is a close-up to demonstrate
> detail::
> http://www.gumphoto.com/masa/detail2.jpg
> As I have only used alternative substrates for the last 5 years
> (mostly aluminum and gessoed tar paper) it took me awhile to get the
> hang of printing on paper, especially a paper as thin as Masa, I had
> to re-learn the entire gumprinting process and to make the learning
> curve especially tricky I also am using inkjet negatives for the first
> time in nearly nine years. The Masa I purchase comes in sheets of
> 21x31, large enough for a decent sized print and cut in half provides
> almost the same perspective, so there is little waste (which isn't an
> issue anyway because it is so cheap). These are all gum over
> cyanotype and are 12x18 inches on half sheets. They were printed with
> baby-oiled paper negatives. Some observations:
> Masa is very thin, so on the positive side, it is 1) inexpensive, 2)
> very easy to register multiple layers, 3) very fast to dry.
> On the negative side, it is very flimsy and thus difficult to handle
> when wet. Also, and this is the biggest disadvantage I can see when
> compared to other papers, it gets very disagreeable when one attempts
> more than three layers of gum. I can do it, but it is certainly a
> challenge I'm not a huge fan of using cyanotype as my blue layer,
> but my usually practice of adding layer upon layer to build up density
> is not an option. However, it takes a cyano layer very nicely, so
> rich blacks can be had fairly easily.
> I'm working now with full sized sheets and the results are very
> promising. The biggest problem is keeping a larger oiled negative
> registered while trying to place it under a piece of glass with a
> sheet of mylar between the negative and the print. Much easier with a
> smaller print where I can use a contact printing frame.
> Keith

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  • References:
    • Gum on Masa
      • From: Keith Gerling <keith.gerling@gmail.com>