General paper for alternative printing

Discussion in 'Alternative Processes' started by JG Motamedi, Feb 22, 2007.

  1. JG Motamedi

    JG Motamedi Member

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    I am about to embark on a few months experiment of alternative printing processes (Kallitypes, Van Dyke, Cyanotypes, maybe others); primarily to teach myself the rudiments of the techniques and also to find a process which works for my images.

    I am looking for a single paper which will work with these processes; preferably one which is relatively cheap. I realize that this is far from optimal, but I can not easy purchase and receive shipments where I am currently located.

    So, any suggestions for an inexpensive paper which works for Kallitypes, Vandyke and other hand coated processes?
     
  2. donbga

    donbga Member

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    You may be interested in Weston’s Diploma Parchment which you can order from here:

    http://www.crane.com/business/westonpapers/platinumpalladium.aspx

    It meets all of the criteria that you have listed.
     
  3. TheFlyingCamera

    TheFlyingCamera Membership Council Council

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    Aside from the cheap specification, Bergger COT 320 is a terrific all-purpose alt process paper. Price though probably takes it out of the running.
     
  4. Jim Noel

    Jim Noel Member

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    I second the suggestion of Weston paper. After years of using a variety of other papers, I now use this paper for every process except gum and albumen.

    It is light weight, but holds up well when wet.
    It takes coatings easily and there is no need to acidify it prior to coating which is necessary with some other popular papers.
    It clears beautifully with a variety of clearing agents.
    It is inexpensive.
    Even if it cost more, I would stay with it as I find it to be the best all around paper I have used.
    Jim
     
  5. JG Motamedi

    JG Motamedi Member

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    The Weston paper sounds perfect! Many thanks.

    Jim, why doesn't this paper work for albumen? I have been using Strathmore 500, but it isn't a cheap paper, and isn't always easy to find.
     
  6. cperez

    cperez Member

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    I too have fallen in love with Crane's Weston Diploma.

    It's fairly warm paper. For anything larger than 5x7 I have taken to mounting my images in the cream colored museum 4 ply rag.

    If you must have a whiter base, try Arches Plantane(sp?). With a little care in shopping it can be found for a LOT less than COT320.
     
  7. doughowk

    doughowk Subscriber

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    You can get Arches Platine from Daniel Smith for $4.62 per sheet on orders of 25 sheets or more. The Weston paper is only around $1.25 per sheet for 50 sheets. I love Arches Platine for its weight, strength, pure whiteness and sizing; but its expensive for experimenting. So I've been trying the Weston paper for Kallitypes & other processes. If your negs are much larger than 8X10, be careful in handling it wet. The warm color is + or - depending on your perception. Otherwise, it makes for an attractive alternative.
     
  8. Mark Fisher

    Mark Fisher Subscriber

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    Platine and Rives BFK are quite nice and BFK is pretty inexpensive. I've only used it for iron based processes, though (cyano, kallitype, vandyke). I like a thicker paper.

    Makr
     
  9. Lukas Werth

    Lukas Werth Member

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    I recently tested some sheets of the Crane Weston paper; I also think it is very good, and, if I understand correctly, inexpensive.

    Rives BFK is alkaline buffered, and, I think, generally not such a good choice for siderotypes (iron salt prints). Arches Platine works well - if you get a good batch. A big disadvantage of this paper is, however, that bad batches are not that infrequent, and that they sometimes seem to tinker with the formulation. And, it is not cheap.

    Fabriano papers (Artistico, maybe 5) are also worth a consideration; here in Europe they are noticeably cheaper than, for instance, Arches Platine, BUT they are alkaline buffered, and therefoere need an acid pre-treatment for most siderotypes.

    Weston might really be a good choice to start with, particularly in the USA.
     
  10. Jim Noel

    Jim Noel Member

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    The paper can be use with albumen, but it is difficult to get the gloss which is typical of albumen prints.
    I use Strathmore 500, plate finish, single ply for albumen with great success.
     
  11. sanking

    sanking Member

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    I have used the Weston parchment paper with several of the iron based processes and strongly recommend it. For the money there is nothing out there that works as well.

    There are two issues. First, the Weston paper does not have a lot of wet strengh, so you will have to treat it very carefully in processing. And second, the color is very warm. If you are looking for a really white surface you will not like the Weston. But I like the look a lot.

    If money is no obstacle, and you like a really white surface, it is impossible to beat COP 320. Or is tht 302?

    Sandy
     
  12. Loris Medici

    Loris Medici Member

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    Hi Sandy, it's Bergger COT 320. I'm also using Weston paper and like it a lot too. It didn't gave me troubles up to 11x14" size - but I was printing on 77gsm Japanese paper lately, so I'm quite used to work with thin / weak papers.

    Regards,
    Loris.
     
  13. chrisofwlp

    chrisofwlp Member

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    I Would like to try the Weston paper for cyanos. Where can I purchase some individual sheets? I ran a quick search on google and could only find it in fifty sheet packages. Perhaps I could purchase some off of one of you?

    Christopher breitenstein
     
  14. eggshell

    eggshell Member

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  15. buze

    buze Member

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    I use Canson Drawing paper. Well I use the BACK of the paper. 180gsm, can take a lot of wet processing, and is very, very, very cheap. A4 Gummed Pad, 30 sheets : £3.35. Beat that !

    From the seller "artyfolks" on eBay:
    (No link to said seller, just a happy customer)