physautotype my first go

Discussion in 'Alternative Processes' started by Akki14, Dec 4, 2007.

  1. Akki14

    Akki14 Member

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    [​IMG]
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/fishies_go_pook/2086062243/

    [​IMG]
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/fishies_go_pook/2086023553/

    This is an utter swine to photograph well but it's actually quite detailed. I think I overexposed this one. I made a nice enlarged positive from this picture http://www.flickr.com/photos/fishies_go_pook/502375777/in/set-72157600504224851/
    and using Howard Efner's post on the Bostick & Sullivan forums, I used about 1 gram of violin rosin (student grade £1.99) and dissolved it in 100ml Methylated Spirit (purple, bought from ironmongers for £2.39). I used about 2ml poured onto a clean, dry piece of 4x6inch glass (from a clip frame, surprisingly nice milled edges too! 4pack of clip frames £1.99) and let it dry overnight. Then I put my enlarged positive on top of the plate with some mylar (from some christmas packaging a few years ago)between the positive and the plate to help prevent sticking (and it did get sticky/tacky). Put it under my philips facial tanner for 5.5 hours, took it out, noticed there was a bit of a ghost image on it. Made a little "fume box" out of a tupperware-type box, some bits of cardboard tubing as plate supports and a glass ashtray of white spirit in the middle of the 4 plate supports. Developed it for about 20minutes, although i didn't see much change after 5 minutes.
    It just looks like a piece of frosted glass if it's sitting on a table but once you pick it up and hold it up to the light, it's amazing. The rosin particles scatter the light so if you hold it right up to a light, you get a shimmery rainbow effect (and a negative image. to view the positive image you hold the plate at an angle and have a dark-ish background to view it through).

    This is a really simple, albeit a bit long on the exposure times, process and there really should be more people out there playing with this! The materials are so readily available especially if you're as lucky as me and have a musical instrument shop within walking distance. There's a few things I want to fiddle with... I think I have slightly too much rosin in my mixture because my scales can't accurately weigh 1g, I need to learn how to coat plates a bit better, need to try to do less exposure time, etc, but I still have another 3 pieces of glass to do all that with.

    Can't tell I'm excited about this stuff, huh? :D
     
  2. DarkroomExperimente

    DarkroomExperimente Member

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    very cool!! congratulations!!
     
  3. Akki14

    Akki14 Member

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    Oh fiddlesticks. I did a perfectly coated plate lastnight to try again, I got everything set up, noticed the mylar I used yesterday had rosin stuck on it, decided to try some plastic from those plastic paper pockets.. well that totally wrinkled up under the very slightly heat produced by the UV light bank and gave an awful orangepeel effect to the plate and ruined it totally. Really really peeved.:mad: I guess i should go out and get some mylar/acetate today when I go to the art store :rolleyes:
     
  4. htmlguru4242

    htmlguru4242 Member

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    Wow. The pictures aren't easy to see (which is understandable), but the visible bits look positively amazing! How contrasty/ easy to see is the image in reality?

    I'm going to have to try this, as I certainly have more than enough violin rosin hanging around.

    Do you have a link to the post on the Bostick&Sullivan forums that you mentioned? (Though I suppose I should go searching myself).
     
  5. Akki14

    Akki14 Member

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    http://bostick-sullivan.invisionzone.com/index.php?showtopic=58
    Apparently you should use the light coloured kinds and, just my opinion (not tried it) i'd avoid the fancy rosins with gold dust and stuff in them :D It's not hard to see the image once you have it in the right place held up to the light (so it looks like a positive). It's really quite impressive. Bruce in Australia on here first posted photos of one a few months ago which got me interested in it. He posted in the above thread as well if you want to see his photos. His are much more impressive than mine!
     
  6. brucej

    brucej Member

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    Good try heather, looks like you are on the right track, today i bought some Piranito brand rosin, made in germany, its in a small block has the colour of honey.
    I plan to clean some of my lavender oil plates and try the rosin just for fun.
    This rosin is really sticky compared to lavender oil
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 7, 2007
  7. Akki14

    Akki14 Member

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    Yeah the violin rosin looks like and breaks apart like a boiled sweetie too. I try to break it up while holding it in the cloth that comes with it then weigh out by shaking out the pieces onto a piece of paper on my scale.
    I've really had some setbacks and haven't gotten an image since the first one. First it seemed like the plates were overheating (after I bought proper 180micron acetate) so I put a fan on the contact printing frame and UV unit, that helped, but the acetate I bought appears to be blocking the UV. I just had a scrap piece of acetate like from toy packaging for the first one. So at the moment there's a plate with the old piece of acetate inbetween the positive and the plate underneath my UV light. Only got about 3 hours on it yesterday so am going to give it another 2 today then see what I get.
     
  8. brucej

    brucej Member

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    I made a 1% w/v mix of the rosin in meths, and painted it on a glass plate, gee its thick when dried, the glass was very frosty, much more than my lavender oil mix.
    I used meths in a squeeze bottle to force fume devolop the plate in about 100 micro seconds, my first impression with out trying a contact print in the sun is MAYBE a 1% rosin mix is too thick, as the plate had some clear areas and some still frosty, it took a large amount of fumes to clear them almost completely
     
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  9. Akki14

    Akki14 Member

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    Yeah I should point out that I do get an image but the overall plate, if it is sitting on a table for example, is frosted even after the development I gave it. I didn't develop with meths though - i used white spirit. I also poured the plate (pour 2ml in the middle of the 4x6 plate and tilt it until it covers the plate, let excess drip off one corner and wipe off the underside); I never thought of brushing it on. I think last night was the first time in the last week that I wasn't pouring plates but only because I had clothes drying above the bathtub where I usually work. I might try to coat plates again and see if I can get this physautotype stuff working again. I'm wondering if I have to mix up fresh solution or something because I've really not had a plate work since that first one :confused:
     
  10. Christopher Nisperos

    Christopher Nisperos Member

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    Well said, Akki, and bravo for your efforts! Keep at it and I wish you alot of fun and success.

    Best,

    Christopher

    .. .. ..
     
  11. wildbillbugman

    wildbillbugman Member

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    Hi All,
    I will put in my two cents. After seeing Dr. Efners Pysautotype on glass,at A.P.I.S.'07 I became very exited. All of my own work is on glass, Pt/Pd/Au and Gum dichromate. I loved the delicate nature of the physautotype on glass.
    I began with 1% Graphic Rosin, heated as per Howards instructions, in denatured alcohol. Development over Oderless paint thinner. Although I had no troble(i'm leaving out my false starts and screw-ups here), I was never satisfied with the quality of my coating. Until I began adding WATER. Up to 30% water.70% ethyl alcohol. Gose on clear and smooth. Dries white and smooth, and develops cleanly,without over-developing. But use ODERLESS paint thinner. Avoid anything that has Stoddard Solvent.
    Bill
     
  12. Akki14

    Akki14 Member

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    Oh, um, Apparently white spirit, which is what i'm using, is stoddard solvent. What's your odorless paint thinner then? I've never heard of that. Over here the standard is white spirit mostly. It'd help if we used as specific of names as we can as far as chemicals we're using. I think there might be something along the lines of "better than white spirit" paint remover/thinner.
     
  13. wildbillbugman

    wildbillbugman Member

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    Heather,
    The brand of odorless paint thinner which I am using is Sunshine brand. The Material Safety Data Sheet (reqired fo just about everything in U.S.) simply states "synthetic hydrocarbon" I would be very surprised if you don't have something similar over there.. In general, things that have strong odors will tend to be more volatile and cause faster development.
    Bill
     
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  15. brucej

    brucej Member

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    What gave you the idea to add water ?
    how much longer does the mix take to dry ?
     
  16. wildbillbugman

    wildbillbugman Member

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    Heather,
    My apology! I meant to say Sunnyside Odorless Paint Thinner(not "Sunshine"). I was writing late last night. If you look up the (U.S.)MSDS
    You can probably find something similar in U.K.
    For rosin solvent, lately I have been using retail 70% Rubbing Alcohol.
    I takes about an houer to dry on glass.
    "What made me think of water?" I thought(correctly) that slower drying would cause better levaling of the rosin. I have been developing coatings for glass(industrialy) since 1974.
    Regards,
    Bill
     
  17. Akki14

    Akki14 Member

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    Oh but aren't you using a completely different alcohol to what Niepce & Daguerre were using then? Rubbing Alcohol is very different from the 95% denatured alcohol that is usually recommended. If you're using 70% rubbing alcohol that's already diluted with water. I might try adding a bit of water to my solution the next time i try. I coated two plates last night one right after the other; one had the opalescent/rainbow-y effect and the other one didn't and was just white & milky. I'm hoping the opalescent one is the one that is going to work. Just letting it expose under the UV tanning box right now.

    See, this process *is* simple but confusingly so because you can have so many variables and still get a result. We're getting so far away from the original concept, it'd be safer to call (some of) this Modern Physautotype, but what Bruce has been up to is more similar to Traditional Physautotype, using lavender oil resin etc.
     
  18. brucej

    brucej Member

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    Gee this "modern phsautotype" with rosin is fickle.

    today i got what looked like an fairly even coating on a glass plate.
    nice and frosty, not too much pooling.
    tried a contact print for 1hr, 45 mins in midday cloudy conditions
    amb temp 18'c, uv index about 9.
    I could see a very faint image, so into the d tank with kero

    RATS after only 15 mins the plate had completely cleared, not fair.
    Bill Is kero this Stoddard Solvent ?
     

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  19. wildbillbugman

    wildbillbugman Member

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    Hi,
    Bruce- "Stoddard Solvent" is an old timey industrial refference to a particular petrolium distilate. It is realy a mixture of aliphatics and aromatics. It is smelly,with a low vapor pressure. But it is cheep. That is why it is used in cheap,smelly paint thinners.
    Heather- Original denatured alcohol,and the type that Howard uses,is mostly ethanol,with methanol added so that one cannot drink it. (Unless,that is, one aspires to be blinde or dead.)
    I started using rubbing alcohol (70% ethanol/30% water) only after I found that the adition of water to denatured alcohol improved coating chracteristics. Often,denatured alcohol absorbs water from the air, if its been opened and siting around awhile.
    I have also used 70% isopropyl alcohol,with results virtualy identical to ethyl alcohol.
    Cheers,
    Bill
     
  20. Akki14

    Akki14 Member

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    Bruce, Stoddard Solvent is known as White Spirit here in the UK; it might be called that in Australia too. I agree about the modern physautotype being fickle. I've only just got another (partial) image after a whole week of coating plates every night and doing exposures under my UV light every day and just getting nothing every time.

    Bill, I've not had a problem with using Stoddard Solvent to develop my plates, though. I finally got a tiny bit of an image on a plate today. Maybe it's
    just my method of developing. I use a large tupperware-type box with lid and just a glass ashtray with a little bit of white spirit in it. I use cut-up pieces of cardboard tube (from a used up roll of plastic wrap) around the ashtray to put the glass on it (face down) and then put the lid on the box and leave it for however long I think is necessary. Doesn't stink up the bathroom I work in then and creates a little fume box.

    I always thought rubbing alcohol was isopropanol alcohol but apparently not (after reading wikipedia again). I don't think we can get rubbing alcohol over here, it's usually only isopropanol alcohol which is available if you ask the chemist nicely and tell them you're using it for a valid reason.

    I might try the adding water method, though my plates do take a few minutes to dry anyway.
     
  21. brucej

    brucej Member

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    Thanks bill, looks like kero is ok then for rosin, i can buy white spirit here in Oz, we used to use lots of it back in 1980's cleaning banks and wipers in the step by step telephone exchange i used to work in, untill technology replaced it

    Heather i use about 100ml of kero in my d tank, in a flat plastic bowl, the kero is spread out across the bottom of the bowl. covered with aluminium foil, plate sits on 4 bits of pvc, you can test your development process by simply coating a glass plate and let dry (dont worry about getting a perfect coating) and put straight into the d tank, with enough time it should go clear. for me today it took less than 15 mintutes @18'c for the plate to go completely clear (not my desired result)
     
  22. Akki14

    Akki14 Member

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    I left my plate(that I exposed yesterday_ over my ashtray of white spirit in its box for several hours and got much better development. Oh well, so what, it takes longer, like the whole exposure for 5 hours under the UV light doesn't take long:rolleyes:

    I just added in 30% of water to my rosin+meths mix and coated some plates and they don't seem to be drying much more slowly than without the water but the coating is really really uneven looking to me! I took a comparison photo of a plate I coated before adding water to the solution. I think I might have to just start again with fresh rosin and meths now.
     

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  23. wildbillbugman

    wildbillbugman Member

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    Hi,
    I have never asked: What are you guys printing on ? I print exclusivly on glass. Last night I coated 5 5x7 pieces of glass with all of them drying to a smooth,opalescent and glossy finish. I just use a foam brush. Much less messy than pour coating. My yield is close to 100%.
    Regards,
    Bill
     
  24. Akki14

    Akki14 Member

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    I print on glass. I'm considering looking into getting some metal sheets/plates but haven't gotten around to it. I use the glass from clipframes, as long as it's the kind with nicely milled edges so it's not sharp at all.
    I think I'd still prefer to pour, it's not very messy at all and no brush to clean out afterwards. I just measure out about 3ml of the liquid for each 4x6 piece of glass and pour it mostly in the centre then tilt the plate to get the rest coated, then pour off the excess, wiping the underside corner which tends to get a little messy but it's not awful.

    I'll get around to photographing the new physautotype properly sometime. It's hard to get a good photo of these things.
     
  25. brucej

    brucej Member

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    Lavender Oil verses Rosin

    wed 12/12/07
    Conditions Amb temp 21'c, full summer midday sun, UV factor 11.

    Today I made two experiments, and discovered several things about the phsautotype using traditional lavender oil verses modern rosin.

    Firstly they are two different beasts.

    Rosin develops LIGHTNING fast in Kerosene vapour, Lavender oil is much slower.

    My first experiment today was to coat one half of a plate with lavender oil the other half with rosin.

    I placed a 20mm wide stick across the plate and left it in direct midday sun for 1 hr and 10 minutes.
    I left it in the D tank for 60 seconds and the rosin mix had already cleared and was disappearing, the lavender oil coating was showing signs of starting to clear

    The second experiment was to try another rosin contact print, the rosin coating was not all that even, but I exposed it for 1 hr and 10 minutes.
    It was in the D tank for "two minutes" and the coating had almost completely cleared, you can just see a faint image of the two lady's in a wedding dress, its hard to photograph.
    I have written up the experiments with more pictures on my website

    http://www.kellycountry2000.com/phs1/LVR1.htm
     

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  26. wildbillbugman

    wildbillbugman Member

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    Hi Bruce,
    Given "optimal" conditions for each, is there much difference between an image made with lavender oil and rosin?
    Bill