U of S | Mailing List Archive | alt-photo-process-l | Re: Gum on masa, again

Re: Gum on masa, again

I think maybe you're missing the point about the masa as well; as I
said before, I didn't have this problem when printing in smaller
sizes, it's only with the half sheets that I'm having this problem.
So if you don't have the problem with smaller sheets, that won't tell
us anything particularly.

On Oct 10, 2008, at 1:56 PM, Loris Medici wrote:

I just finished sizing about 8 Masa sheets cut to 11x14" size, will
try to
print a 7x10" image on them. Will use the same curve I devised from
Fabriano tests, so maybe the result won't be as good as Fabriano,
but the
question is cracking so I won't bother to curve this particular
paper for
these tests. (I expect registration problems too; since the thin
paper is
more affected of the image shrinkage caused by drying / hardening
gum -

My biggest print was about 9x12". BTW, the carbon tissues I've made on
that paper were full sheet...

I stated which side I use in my first message; it's the front side
(watermark reads right). It's a quite smooth paper to my eye. In
fact, the
Hahnemuehle Photo Rag smooth inkjet paper I have in my closet is more
textured than Fabriano...

In my view, that's not a grid pattern. It's simply the irregular marks
left by the excessively swelled drying gum (including micro bubbles /
cracks). Besides, what you see is heavily accentuated by the strong
relatively oblique light of the scanner (plus the 4x magnification)
- it's
not visible to the naked eye. Also, it's not regular, therefore
can't be
labeled as gridline since gridlines, by definition, should exhibit a
regular pattern.

You say it's more pronounced / visible on one coat, see this:
It's a 400dpi scan at 100% of a one coat gum (first layer of a
later multi
coat print) made on Fabriano - the pigment load / density is close
to your
style of printing (as I get it). Do you see any pattern? I can
assure you
that I don't see anything that wasn't present in the negative...


10 Ekim 2008, Cuma, 11:13 pm tarihinde, Katharine Thayer yazmış:

Mine has no barcode on it; it's just the paper that is identified in
the Daniel Smith catalog as "masa."  How big did you print on it?

As to the Fabriano, what side do you print on?  It's the wire side
(the side from which the watermark reads correctly) that I get the
gridlines that I find objectionable.   I do recommend it for a
beginner paper because  it coats easily and prints fairly reliably,
on other words is a fairly forgivable paper, but I also recommend
that if people do use it, they print on the felt side rather than the
wire side.   I don't use it myself because I don't care for the
surface texture and prefer a smoother paper.

  It was on hybridphoto that I first posted those gridlines, but they
are now posted on my website.


I do see some grid texture on your detail;  the grid is somewhat
obscured by the multiple printings, but you can still see the piling
up of the gum/pigment on the grid of the paper, especially in areas
where there is more gum laid down. My demo prints are one-coat, so
they show the grid more plainly, but I just prefer not to print on
gridlines at all, single or multiple.  But, as I've always said, each
to his own.

On Oct 10, 2008, at 11:49 AM, Loris Medici wrote:

Katharine, what is the product number in the barcode?
Mine says AWAGAMI MASA BRIGHT WHITE 86gsm 4530190907590... You're
describing it as if it's different paper than what I got!? Never
got any
cracking myself...

Another good example for "different people - different experience"
is the
Fabriano Artistico pattern: I remember reading your comments about
paper somewhere (could be either in apug.org or hybridphoto.com -
remember exactly); you were complaining about the ugly pattern
you get
when printing on that paper. I've printed on Artistico, always on
front side (watermark reads correctly) and never encountered any

See a 400dpi (makes something like 4.1x magnification when viewed
at 100%
zoom on screen) detail scan of my last print here:

(a crop that can represent all the tones - not colors - in the

No pattern?

Sometimes, there are just too many variables which makes specific
and procedures work for some, but not for others. On the other
hand, this
cracking case is pretty basic and is causing quite a confusion on
my part.

Anyway, being a little more experienced now, I will start to size
Masa sheets, to try it again (my very first tries were on Masa).
is indeed a nice paper for gum (also, I can buy it locally -> a big
to me) but the price is pretty high. So, I'm still interested in
Masa for
gums -> will see it (and try it to make work) for myself and report


10 Ekim 2008, Cuma, 7:52 pm tarihinde, Katharine Thayer yazmÄ

Um, well thanks, but I'm not finding this to be so, that the paper
is so strong it doesn't disintegrate in water if left to soak, even
for a long time, if "disintegrate" is interpreted broadly enough to
include these cracks I get in the backing (that's the word I was
looking for, cracks). I left a plain piece of the paper to soak
overnight, just to see what would happen, and the same thing:
cracks in the fuzzy backing, all over the paper. You see these
cracks from the back (upper surface as the paper is floating face
downward) as dark lines, and they also show in the face as narrow
creases. So it's not that I'm lifting the edges and causing these
tiny creases in the paper, it's soaking the paper that's
causing the
problem. It's as if the fuzzy stuff separates slightly in places.
So using a screen to support the paper in the water wouldn't
help the

I was hoping to wake up to an answer this morning; I was
hoping for
something like "oh, forgot to tell you about that part; you have to
pour Everclear on the paper before you coat it and that keeps it
happening" or some such. When I did those little test prints a
couple of years ago, I didn't have this problem, but those papers
were smaller, more like 8x10. These papers I'm using now are half
sheets, 15.5" by 21". I've now thrown away about a dozen half
and spent two days at this; I could have bought three sheets of my
usual paper and had half a dozen nice prints by now. I guess
for me
this is a lesson in the value of spending money to save money.
really fascinating how different people's experience is with
different materials. I was attracted to this paper by Keith's
exclamation on the list "I really love this paper!" and by his
prints, and by Rajul's and others' prints on masa, but now I can
without reservation, "I truly despise this paper." Now I know how
people feel when they try something I've enthused about and they
don't find it as wonderful as I do.

I've always prided myself on being able to print gum on just about
any paper there is. I've printed on many Japanese papers including
silk tissue (now there's a paper that truly has wet strength!) on
typing paper, on cardstock, inkjet paper, Bristol board, mat board,
on all kinds of printing and watercolor papers, but I think
this one
has got me beat.

On Oct 9, 2008, at 11:48 PM, Loris Medici wrote:


I don't think there are that much different batches of the same
circulate (as you describe in your previous message), because I
two packs of this with almost one year between the orders and it
different at all.

This paper is very strong in water (= won't disintegrate) even if
you let
it soaking for more than 24 hours. I know that because I've made
tissue on such soaked paper and there wasn't a slightest hint of

I didn't printed large (bigger than 9x12") on Masa and not many
times but
never had that type of creasing in the stage of development too.

I had wrinkles instead (especially while using hair dryer between
to work quickly).

I guess Keith would be more helpful in solving your problem with


10 Ekim 2008, Cuma, 8:17 am tarihinde, Katharine Thayer

On Oct 9, 2008, at 8:35 PM, Katharine Thayer wrote:

the thing that ruins prints for me is that when the paper gets
through, it becomes very fragile; any disturbance of the paper
(gently picking up an edge to look at how it's developing, etc)
opens a crease, almost a tear, that tends to run diagonally
the print but can go in any direction, and there can be more
one of them.

In case anyone's having trouble picturing this:


this isn't the whole print, just as much of it as would fit on
scanner bed.