U of S | Mailing List Archive | alt-photo-process-l | Re: ironing gum prints and other musings

Re: ironing gum prints and other musings

Clay, Jack, Judy,

Clay, it wasn't Marty McCutcheon by any chance who took to gum printing like a duck to water?

Jack, this is too funny, below. Years ago I was into stained glass and I used to (and still do when thinking about it) grit my teeth when entering my studio. I took a quilting class at that time and gave up stained glass within a year because I could piece color together and handle it comfortably, squish it, touch it, bring it with me to restaurants, all kinds of benefits. Glass was too sharp and hard and scary. When taking my first and only pottery class I had to intellectually tell myself NOT to take up another medium because the tactile, mushy, hands-on, sensual experience of clay at the wheel was way too appealing. So I am 100% for hands-on. And which is why glassblowing and blacksmithing are never something I have thought of doing.

BTW I look at your beautiful candleabras every day; they are sitting on my window sill right by my desk! That is what is so neat about art--the artist is attached. So you have little bits and pieces of you spread all over the country I'm sure!

Judy, don't you feel special that you were Sookang's teacher?? Sarah Vowell graduated from here and I noticed faculty pretty proud who taught her.

As to the subject of why some students link up so tightly with a new
media such as gum, I have always thought that different individuals
find their niche (if they find it) based in part on the resistance of
the medium. When I teach blacksmithing I am working with students
trying to get a grasp of a very resistant material that is too hot to
touch. Glassblowing and blacksmithing are basically the same.. the
stuff must be hot to work it and as a result you are always separated
from the material by intervening tools. The difference is the
resistance of the material. You should see the frustration of a
"natural potter" working with either media, they can't stand not being
able to touch the stuff. Gum has way more resistance than most photo
processes. It takes a long time to make a finished multi layer print
and the steps are non-specific in their results (that is there are so
many variables involved that results must be felt by intuition).

On 5/1/08, wcharmon@wt.net <wcharmon@wt.net> wrote:
I think this is true with a lot of alt-processes, but particularly true
for gum. A recent example of this was about a month ago. A friend was in
town for Fotofest, and wanted to learn a little about doing some gumovers.
For various reasons, the time we had allocated got jammed up, so it
amounted to about 4 hours of so-called 'instruction', from sizing to
coating to exposing and developing. We did 2 coats of gum on two of his
images. He's back home and sending me jpegs of what he has done since
then, and holy-moly, he's got it. Amazing. But I think the key is, he both
'got it' and liked it right away, and the rest just amounts to doing it
enough to learn a little more each day.