U of S | Mailing List Archive | alt-photo-process-l | Re: oil printing

Re: oil printing


sorry I missed your first name (and indeed, as a Dutch I should have known, although I did have a nephew that was called Thijs as a first name....), but in fact I didn't react to a post by you. I replied to what in my emaillist appeared as a first-post thread by Judy with the subject 'oilprint'. A reference was made to something you posted (in another subject thread maybe??), and was referred to by Judy. Since I didn't quite get what Judy meant by her reply, I replied with some questions.
That I do not know that you're apparentely the expert on this subject, I just didn't know, but would love to hear more about the procedings.
Sorry if I'm stepping on some toes here...


ps. And maybe you could refer te me in the first person, and address me personnally, in stead of referring to me in the third person. Just something I find rather friendly....

2008/9/28 henk thijs <henk.thijs@hetnet.nl>

On 27 sep 2008, at 9:09, Dirk-Jan Treffers wrote:

Judy, Katherine,

My sincere apologies for the confusion... My question indeed was related to oilprinting. (I try to stick to the subject...). I replied to a reply of Judy to Thijs with the subject oilprinting, and Judy mentioned Demachy in relation to the early years when oilprinting 'hove into view'... so

Maybe Dirk-Jan could refer to Henk and not to Thijs; as a dutch he should know that Henk is a first name (and more likely a first name then Thijs) and maybe he could react on the fact that I explained the 'oilprinting' because I do this process for years now.
Besides be careful in mentioning 'no hardener' for gelatine in the case of oilprinting.
Just check the alt-list-archives, and if someone is really interested i can copy the 'hands-on' doing so.

I immediately assumed that this Demachy-guy (or gal) was an expert in the oilprint process... I'm sorry, I'm a real newby at all this. Have absolutely no idea who this Demachy guy is, everybody keeps reffering to ;-)
The URL I tried to refer to, was the recipe on alternative photography for oilprinting, sorry Judy, no reference to your recipe on that site was meant on my part.
The fact that Judy just mentioned that she didn't write anything about oilprinting, may have been the subject of my confusion. Indeed, I got 'hit' by the subject oilprinting, since the gumprinting I tried, but could get any satisfactory results in. Therefore that subject got my attention. Since Judy didn't explicitly mentioned that she was changing for oilprint to gumprint, I didn't catch on... This is absolutely no blame on your behalf, Judy, please don't feel that way!
Sometimes it's just a little hhard for beginners to follow subject. And I agree, when the subject changes, people do chime in, and usually it's clear to everone (also me) that the original subject no longer is valid...

But luckily, Katherine 'chimed in' with the answer I was looking for, and together with other references to oilprint, I'm a lot further in knowledge for oilprinting than I was in gumprinting, so you both helped along the way! So Katherine, thanx very much for your answer. And I'll promise to keep an eye open for change of subjects when Demachy's name is mentioned....

And Judy: Looking forward to hear from you with more details. Just the fact that you've actually GOT articles at home the go 102 years back makes me jealous... I don't even know of a library in the Netherlands where I could go search for that kind of information....

Thanks both of you!

kind regards!


2008/9/27 Judy Seigel <jseigel@panix.com>

Since Dirk-Jan Treffers' question referred to "the same recipe on alternativephotography.com," where the original of Post-Factory #1 is posted, and includes my instructions for sizing in gum printing, I assumed that that was the reference (also because I hadn't yet written anything about oil printing). Though frankly with "oil printing" on my mind, I didn't register the change of subject, nor would changing subject line at that point necessarily have been constructive, since the question was asked under "oil printing."

Not to mention that a question about oil printing concluded his e-mail.

As for changing subject lines generally, we see here that that's a rule, sometimes necessarily honored in the breach. (Not to mention that with "oil printing" on my mind, I didn't think of it, tho maybe I said that.) When I logged on earlier this evening there were, by actual count, some 5000 e-mails subject-lined -- oops, after a brain-drain off-list operation, I forget what, but as so often happens, the conversation got pretty far afield, but was lively, and interesting, or so I recall.

In sum, the rule about changing subject lines is theoretically good (tho I sometimes feel I'm the only one does that), but what happens in reality is that a "conversational" exchange takes place that has no predictable subject line, folks just chime in, and inserting one would be a discontinuity, a wrench in the gears of the kind of semi-social or friendly and personal exchange that tends to build community, but can't be charted in advance.

Not to mention free association. Also, that if I changed the subject line on this "reply," the answer I provide here would be lost.

I'll add now, at 12:45 AM, that I found several references to oil printing, too many and varied to summarize simply, and obviously I haven't tried any of them.  I will return, probably tomorrow (or rather, later today) with info and so forth, tho I share now what strikes me as the most important fact I gleaned. (And gleaned is the word, it didn't present itself readily -- more proof of what I've said so often: the trouble with how-to articles is they're written by experts, who don't realize that the info in their heads isn't on the page. And/or that a reader 102 years into the future won't necessarily get all their references.)

In any event, I finally realized that when "oil printing" articles mention "ink," they don't mean the kind you dip your quill pen into, but *printers' ink,* generally greasy and thick, needing to be thinned. Maybe that's obvious to printmakers, but wasn't to me.


 > > On Thu, 25 Sep 2008, Dirk-Jan Treffers wrote:


Just a wondering thought: Is it on purpose that you omit the use of hardener
in your gelatine layer? I also found more or less the same recipe on
alternativephotogrphy.com, and there also the use of a hardening agent like
glyoxal wasn't mentioned.
Is that correct, and if so, what's the reason for that?

I haven't seen what's actually on the website, but in the actual Issue #1 of Post-Factory (with subsequent mentions and further testing in later issues) the sizing section (in what you might call a "sidebar") MOST DEFINITELY has the hardening. I do NOT however put the hardener in the gelatin, for various reasons including in case I have some gelatine left (I vat size, so have mixed up a heap), I can use it the next day, or put it in the fridge, and keep for a week... also I just don't like the idea -- maybe because that's not the way I was taught, or there really is some difference, but IMO the hardener IN the gelatin is a PITA, with no advantage.

In fact I doubt just rinsing would avoid the glyoxal yellowing, if it's in the gelatin, tho that's just a guess, or maybe a prejudice, but reducing the glyoxal enough so it wouldn't yellow without being able to rinse it as a separate coat, might possibly have a downside. (Or, in other words, if it ain't broke, why fix it?)

And another question (you see, I'm curious)... why is that in oilprinting, a
negative is used, while in the gumoil process (which sounds more or less the
same...) you need a positive....

I forget exactly what "gumoil" was -- but remember that at the time I considered it absolute nonsense.... What the guy (whose name I also forget) was an absolute GENIUS at, however, was PR:  I don't think there was a photo publication or a photo-related publication that didn't give him an article....

(And that was when we had a BUNCH of photo publications !)