U of S | Mailing List Archive | alt-photo-process-l | Re: 3 questions (one of them dumb)

Re: 3 questions (one of them dumb)

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  • Subject: Re: 3 questions (one of them dumb)
  • From: Eric Neilsen <ejnphoto@sbcglobal.net>
  • Date: Thu, 20 Nov 2008 06:22:40 -0800 (PST)
  • Comments: "alt-photo-process mailing list"
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Judy, It was on the Epson Wide Format group or the Digital B&W group that the long explanation of how "Giclee" got it's start for naming prints. Back in the day, the iris printers were looking for a way to sell there prints and the term giclee was applied to the process. Since the ink spraying is part of the ink jet process many jumped on the band wagon as a cool name. Now there are even people out there trying to sell you certified giclees. Do we need certified gum, platinum, carbon, etc?
I'll look through the post there and send a link to info if any are interested.

From: Judy Seigel <jseigel@panix.com>
To: alt-photo-process-l@usask.ca
Cc: alt-photo-process-error@sask.usask.ca
Sent: Wednesday, November 19, 2008 10:54:16 PM
Subject: Re: 3 questions (one of them dumb)

On Tue, 18 Nov 2008, Richard Knoppow wrote:

>  A print using a material operating on a similar principle is a chromogenic
> print while dye transfer, three color carbon or carbro, three color gum or
> oil, are not chromogenic. I think this term is like "silver-gelatin" perhaps
> meant to clarify the exact process used to make a print but possibly
> confusing to naive buyers. Not quite as bad as Giclee, which is IMO a
> deliberate attempt at confusion. BTW, since Giclee really means an inkjet
> print its probably incorrect to use it for laser prints or color Xerox.

It's my understanding that the term "Giclee" (however it's spelled) is a
derivation from French slang for an ejaculation, referring to the "jet" of
the early printers. Whether it was meant to be "rude" or poetic, or
abstract and evocative, simply euphemistic, or all of the above, it did
begin as a term for inkjet, but... many expressions broaden. In fact
grammar does too... Common usage changes meanings all the time (as is
probably clear by derivations on every page of the dictionary).

However, "glicee" was (also if not primarily) used to obscure the fact
that the work was a regular inkjet print, in the way that English speakers
-- or anyway Americans -- often use a French word to, um, put on the

But that's not my other message either -- just one more & I'm outta