[alt-photo] Re: casein

Christina Anderson zphoto at montana.net
Sat Feb 26 21:59:14 GMT 2011

Thanks, Alberto and Peter, for the comments,

When viewing Franklin's casein prints in person, it seemed the grain was very fine, miniscule. The colors were brighter but still transparent. Delicate is the word I would describe. And the layer looked very finely grained and very thin. Ultra thin. No gloss anywhere like in a gum print. So those were the differences I perceived in my lowly experience, only seeing a handful of caseins in person.

Just think, Alberto, I will be able to see your caseins in person soon!

Christina Z. Anderson

On Feb 26, 2011, at 2:52 PM, Peter Blackburn wrote:

> Hello Alberto:
> It's been my experience in gum/casein printing that how a print appears does not necessarily have anything to do with just the vehicle/binder. Here in North Texas we have recently formed an alternative processes group which meets once a month—a wonderful and extremely talented group of artists I must say. I have shown my gum and casein work together side-by-side and no one has been able to tell them apart. They are, or can be, indistinguishable— which my point to them and to you is that gum and casein can be viewed as alternatives to each other. Both are saturated when I want them so, and subdued when the imagery calls for it. It's all based on many factors such as negative preparation, pigment choices, exposure, water bath handling, etc, etc. The only caveat here is that after working with casein for a long time, making it from powdered milk, then from dried casein, and now, directly from cheese, I find the direct method makse a great difference and is the best approach for my work.
> I still consider myself a dedicated gum printer and only resorted to learning casein when several years back the weather did not cooperate for gum printing for many weeks. Sometime in the near future I will blog about that valuable experience and comment more on casein at alternativephotography.com.
> Well, the heavy overcast today prevented both gum and casein printing here in the Dallas area. Cheers all! 
> Peter J. Blackburn
>> From: alt.list at albertonovo.it
>> To: alt-photo-process-list at lists.altphotolist.org
>> Date: Sat, 26 Feb 2011 22:23:02 +0100
>> Subject: [alt-photo] Re: casein
>>> Anyway, I do have a point to share in this email that may be of use to the one or two casein printers in existence: has anyone tried this from Kremer instead of making the somewhat laborious casein/ammonia mixture? SInce it uses borax and is already in suspension, it would seem to be a great substitution. But I'm the first to admit I am an armchair casein printer, never having done it, and certainly would not make it my process of choice because of my commitment to gum.
>>> I found the patent on casein as well. It is not 271 but patent 2,716,061. 1955. Lupo. But two sources on the web said the process in fact dated from 1908 and don't know about that.
>> Chris, I made some casein prints some years ago. I tried both casein form 
>> acidified powdered milk and from pure casein, dissolved in borax and in 
>> ammonia. I deem the ammonia solution better than that in borax because all 
>> the excess of ammonia evaporates during drying.
>> In muy poor experience, I could define the look of gum and casein print as:
>> gum:watercolor=casein:tempera
>> My casein prints are in the Rodolfo Namias Group site, but I have to say 
>> that I was interested chiefly to apply the different behaviour of casein vs. 
>> gum arabic to a few specific images and one pigment. 
>> As for the patent, I can add that there are lot of patents about using 
>> alkaline casein and dichromate as a resist for the etching of TV color 
>> screens, chiefly because casein is insoluble in acids. So, the alkalinizing 
>> agent (sodium hydroxyde, borax and ammonia), the ratios with dichromate, 
>> etc. have benn well studied. 
>> And finally, a member of Gruppo Namias tried casein print using my detailed 
>> notes, but he had very inconsistent results... 
>> Alberto
>> www.grupponamias.com
>> www.alternativephotography.com/wp/photographers/rodolfo-namias-group
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