U of S | Mailing List Archive | alt-photo-process-l | Re: lumenprints not chromo?

Re: lumenprints not chromo?

comments below...

On May 7, 2009, at 10:38 AM, Christina Z. Anderson wrote:

Thanks for posting about all the stuff, below. Will use the links in
the fall when teaching pinhole again...

Please let us know about the fix and pinhole. 6 month exposures????
Wow. The student doing a 2 week indoor one was blown away enough.
He couldn't even get a semester grade if he went to 6 months :)
Perhaps pinhole is too weak of a light to expose the paper enough to
make it stay after fixing, within reasonable exposure times?
Mark Matusz's posting to his link on processing lumen prints has some
things I'll try. I've been wanting to try this out again for some
time, so this has been a good kick start for me. Scanning the
negatives without fixing them is not really a problem, but I would
like to see more interesting colors in the negatives. Mark suggests
toning the negative before fixing them in a a diluted mix.

Maybe I could bolt my pinhole to my deck outside and just leave
paper in it over the summer and see what happens. You have totally
inspired me. I'd have to waterproof my camera somehow...
I use tins for fairly water-tight cameras. Most any tin can will do.
The Illy expresso coffee can is especially nice as it has a screw-on
lid that's covered with a soft plastic that seals it from water (and
keeps the flavor in its former life). I use glue to adhere the
pinhole to the inside of the can and prevent water from leaking in
through the can opening. Then I add photo or duct tape over that. I
usually get a little water inside anyway but that can be interesting.

- Gregg


Christina Z. Anderson
----- Original Message ----- From: "Gregg Kemp" <gregg.kemp@gmail.com>
To: <alt-photo-process-l@usask.ca>
Sent: Thursday, May 07, 2009 8:13 AM
Subject: Re: lumenprints not chromo?

Chris, thanks for putting the images back up. I love the color ones
can get out of b&w paper.

As far as doing this with pinhole, I have been doing 6 month exposures
for the last couple of years. I have never tried to fix one of these,
but since I have already scanned them all, I could certainly put them
in a fixer to see how they do. The tests I have done with fixer was
using Arista fixer on exposures of only a few days and those are the
ones the images disappeared on. I was using Arista grade 2 paper
then, but now trying several warm-tone papers (Kentmere and Foma). So
I'll try to fix some of my 6-month ones to see what happens.

For anyone interested and doesn't know these sites below, they provide
information and examples of pinhole "solargraphs" or "solarigraphs"
which is a name being used to describe the lumen prints process in a
pinhole camera.

This is Tarja Trygg's web site for her global solargraph project. She
sends out hundreds of pinhole cameras made from film canisters and
loaded with paper each year to her "helpers" to make 3 - 6 month

The Solaris project is an early exploration of this technique in 2000.

Some current practitioners:
(Diego Lopez Calvin)
http://www.pinholephotography.org/ (Justin Quinnell in England)
http://greggkemp.com/simpleviewer/solar-pinhole/ (my own)

- Gregg

On May 6, 2009, at 7:05 PM, Christina Z. Anderson wrote:

Gregg, here it is:
and I left you a message there :) Apparently I had removed the
image already and didn't remember.

What I find with lumenprints is when the students first do them,
they assume that the process moves faster than it does and then
end up fixing it way before it is exposed enough. That first try,
there will be students whose prints "disappear". Then they put
the next print outside in the morning and leave it (incredulously
to them) all day, go to school, come home, eat dinner, watch TV,
take a bath, and that's when it is successful.

How this time amount translates to pinhole is the big question. No
matter what you do, the fix changes the colors. But if exposed
long enough, the image doesn't disappear. But to equate an all
day exposure outside full sun to get the same color that stays for
a pinhole exposure, that is the question. How does one compute
an equivalent exposure to a 6 hr no focal length to a 90 day huge
focal length??? And then add to that using warmtone paper which
gives the wonderful pinks and terracottas, and that is even
slower....although Ilford warmtone is pretty fast.

One of my students did a 2 week indoors exposure which was faint
yellow only....after fixing.

This really is the incredible benefit to teaching is having 18
"testees" at one time on a process. This week was Blurb book
critique and I have 15 blurb books awaiting me with all KINDS of
problems (and successes!) to learn from!


Christina Z. Anderson
----- Original Message ----- From: "Gregg Kemp"
To: <alt-photo-process-l@usask.ca>
Sent: Wednesday, May 06, 2009 3:44 PM
Subject: Re: lumenprints not chromo?

My attempts at using fixer with similar multi-day pinhole
exposures resulted in the image pretty much disappearing off the
paper. I used Arista fixer at normal strength and diluted as
much as 1:20, but always lost most of the image. Perhaps a
different fixer would work better?

I also had problems scanning at first, but that may just be my
scanner (an Epson 3200). I found that if I scanned a 5x7 negative
at more than 600 dpi, the scanner would pause during the scan.
And the scan would show a slight darkening after the pause. So I
now scan at 600 dpi. But perhaps a scanner with more memory or
more memory on my computer would not do this. My suggestion is
to scan a plain piece of paper at the resolution you plan to use
before scanning the actual negative, just to be safe. I also put
a piece of black felt behind the negative before scanning, in
hopes of keeping down the amount of light bouncing around - just
superstition perhaps.

Chris - I looked for the student work on your website that you
mentioned, but didn't find it. Would you please post the URL?


On May 6, 2009, at 3:03 PM, Christina Z. Anderson wrote:

I always fix mine. There is a noticeable loss of density and
color shift in the fix. I also know that Jerry Burchfield who
does all those Amazon exposures brings all images back in a
black plastic bag to the States and fixes at one time. Unless he
has changed his process in the last couple years, all of his
previous lumenprints were fixed and I have never heard of not
fixing before...however, the idea to scan before fixing is a
great one and then you get a two- for-the-price-of-one special.

My prints do not fade once fixed and archivally washed and
treated as if a normal BW print. You can see student examples
on my website, and see how brilliant they are--with fixing.

Re: scanning. I would find it shocking that a 90 day pinhole
exposure lumenprint (chromo is a different process entirely
because it uses darkroom chemistry, developer, activator,
stabilizer) that will never touch the developer but go straight
into the fix, would be affected by a one minute scan.

You will also notice a distinct color shift when dry prints are
rewetted. But then it reverts again when dry.


Christina Z. Anderson
----- Original Message ----- From: "Weber, Scott B" <sweber@mail.barry.edu
To: <alt-photo-process-l@usask.ca>
Sent: Wednesday, May 06, 2009 12:06 PM

Just completed a 90 day pinhole exposure on gelatin silver
paper. Chromoscedasic print. The image looks good, but do I fix
this? Maybe some thiosulfate? Or should I leave it? My plan
is to scan it but will the light in the scanner affect the

Scott B. Weber
Associate Professor of Photography
Department of Fine Arts
Barry University
Miami Shores, Florida
305 899 4922