(SNIP) For the last couple of weeks I have been
trying to be less technical about gum.
Speaking of being less technical, Malin Fabbri posted a
gum article I wrote here:
which describes a "less technical" way of doing gum,
digital negatives of course. It is a lossy way of making diginegs which
works good enough.
When I teach alt I teach the Precision Digital Negative
System, but I start the semester with it and so by the time gum printing comes
along they know the system well, though calibrating three different colors takes
more time than calibrating a single coating process. But it is
impossible to teach this system in a 2 day workshop where I am also trying to
teach tricolor gum, as you can imagine--the latter being more than a day in
itself. And then try doing that with non-Photoshop users.
Thus I was trying to figure out an easy way to get a good
enough tonal range in a gum print with trying to match the usual 4-6 stop range
of gum--how to get highlights to print in before the shadows block up. How to
make an adequate neg that was close enough to just inverting and printing it
The initial idea didn't pop into my head like Newton, but
springboarded off of Heinrich Boegh (sp) who in his solarplate book used a curve
that merely brought the top right endpoint of the line down to 80%. Still
straightline, a lossy method because he is cutting 20% of his tones, but it
works for him.
So what I did was experiment with the two end points of
the curve line going up and down and found that what I have on Malin's site was
the best for all colors, tho yellow could be a tad different (same finding in
PDN--yellow the outlier). Then I printed Parking Lot like this, and it did
take me more messing around with development but it works.
Oh, all ink negs on a 2400, but it worked the same on a
Clarion (?) Epson printer with MIS inks, too.
Now, it isn't as un-technical as merely inverting a neg
and printing it out on typing paper....or making a pinhole neg and using that
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