[alt-photo] Re: color theory?

Diana Bloomfield dhbloomfield at bellsouth.net
Tue Nov 22 20:38:15 GMT 2011

That's a good point, Paul.  I'll second that.  And that "beautiful  
uncertainty"  might make the process frustrating at times, but  that's  
such a great way to put it, and it does make it all so much more  

On Nov 22, 2011, at 3:33 PM, Paul Viapiano wrote:

> Kurt,
> A lot is decided as the print unfolds...many times a color won't  
> print as dark or as saturated as you planned, which will make your  
> next move different than you originally thought.
> There's a beautiful uncertainty to gum that allows one to go with  
> the flow. Many times I planned on doing 3 layers and ended up with 5  
> or 6, because the print didn't say *finished* to me...
> Paul
> ----- Original Message ----- From: "Kurt Nagy"  
> <kakarott76 at hotmail.com>
> To: "The alternative photographic processes mailing list" <alt-photo-process-list at lists.altphotolist.org 
> >
> Cc: "The alternative photographic processes mailing list" <alt-photo-process-list at lists.altphotolist.org 
> >
> Sent: Tuesday, November 22, 2011 12:27 PM
> Subject: [alt-photo] Re: color theory?
>> Thats what I was looking for,
>> I mainly work with traditional b/w in my darkroom so I was looking  
>> for a game plan on how to attack multi-layer colors from a single  
>> negative.  I'd seen several beautiful prints that had upwards of 8  
>> layers but wasn't quite sure how the artist picked their colors.   
>> Obviously it's subjective to the image and what you're wanting to  
>> convey but I like having a starting point to experiment from ;)
>> Thanks for the reply
>> On Nov 22, 2011, at 2:02 PM, Diana Bloomfield <dhbloomfield at bellsouth.net 
>> > wrote:
>>> Well, okay, since nobody else answered, I'll just say what I do.   
>>> I mentioned to someone recently that I use only about 3, maybe 4,  
>>> pigments, and then they saw this big old tray of watercolor  
>>> pigments, filled to the brim, in my studio.  They asked what  
>>> happened to my "3 or 4 pigments" that I use.  I then had to  
>>> explain how many shades there really are of blue or yellow or  
>>> magenta-- kind of like trying to find the perfect gray wall  
>>> color-- some have bluish or violet casts; others have green casts;  
>>> still others have a red cast . . .  (I just painted my living room  
>>> wall a deep taupe gray, so I am way too familiar with that perfect  
>>> elusive gray-- though I think I found it in Ben Moore's "Ashley  
>>> Gray," in case anybody cares.)
>>> Everybody is different, but I tend to stick with either Daniel  
>>> Smith watercolors or M. Graham, and typically use a Prussian blue  
>>> for my cyan layer; a quinacridone gold for the yellow; and  
>>> something to the left of a real magenta for my magenta layer  
>>> (typically a burnt scarlet).  For some reason, whenever I use a  
>>> real magenta, things come out a little too pink for my taste.  
>>> Those are for tri-colors.  For multi-layer prints, from one b&w  
>>> negative, I stick with a lot of warm browns and maybe a prussian  
>>> blue to darken shadows and maybe a gold for some highlights.  I  
>>> don't do a lot from one negative, but when I do, that's what I  
>>> do..  That's kind of vague, I guess, but there you have it.
>>> Diana
>>> On Nov 22, 2011, at 11:10 AM, Kurt Nagy wrote:
>>>> Since we're on the subject of our individual process.
>>>> How does everyone decide what combination of colors to use for a  
>>>> given print.  Not a tricolor per say but a multilayer print.  I'm  
>>>> rather new at gum printing and have had success with single layer  
>>>> and even single negative tricolor but I haven't tried  
>>>> multilayers, mainly cause I'm not sure what works best.
>>>> I guess this is more of a color theory question.
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