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  1. #1
    stradibarrius's Avatar
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    spotting print help

    I have never spotted a print before so I have a few questions.
    Do most prints need to be spotted?
    what do I need to get started?
    "Generalizations are made because they are generally true"
    Flicker http://www.flickr.com/photos/stradibarrius
    website: http://www.dudleyviolins.com
    Barry
    Monroe, GA

  2. #2

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    Spotone inks and ooooo high quality artist's brushes. A small porcelain or glass dish. Place a few drops of each ink on the dish and let them dry. They can be mixed to make different tones. Have a processed photographic paper as the print to be spotted to work out the matching tone to be spotted on. Dip the brush in distilled water and pick up the ink that is closest to the area to be spotted and on the practice paper lightly dot until there is a match then apply to the print. Take your time and practice on reject prints. It's better to be additive than to do too much. Carefully remove dust on negatives before printing so spotting can be kept at a minimum. Practice, practice,practice -- don't ruin a print you have spent a lot of time on to begin with. Spotting is not difficult if you take your time.

    http://www.jeffreyglasser.com/

  3. #3
    Bill Burk's Avatar
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    I would say all prints need to be spotted.

    You need a fine brush and spotting dye similar to Spotone.

    I like to work with a small palette that has 6 dimples, and I mix the Spotone in different concentrations from dark to light. I make hundreds of little droplets on the palette and allow them to dry out. Then each droplet becomes a "charge" for the brush. I dampen the brush, draw it across a dry droplet, then draw the charged brush onto a test strip to see what tone it is.

    Then I hunt the print for a spot that needs to be that tone and dot it. Sometimes a brush charge is good for several spots. Sometimes it only works for one. Sometimes its a dud and nothing happens.

    Most of my prints have a spot that is futile, the best I can do is to make the spot "less apparent" from a distance, which ultimately is the goal (to reduce distracting the viewer). Sometimes though, the spot disappears so well that you cannot see it when you go back to it later.

  4. #4
    stradibarrius's Avatar
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    Thanks Jeff! Do most prints have to be spotted to some degree?
    "Generalizations are made because they are generally true"
    Flicker http://www.flickr.com/photos/stradibarrius
    website: http://www.dudleyviolins.com
    Barry
    Monroe, GA

  5. #5
    vpwphoto's Avatar
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    +1 for above. (Jefrayg).. but I am sorry to admit that I use "spit" it works well.

    The other RULE... put the bottle of spot-tone way the hell on the other side of the room!! (This is the most important thing I learned in college)

    I used a piece of 5x7" glossy paper as my pallet.
    Foam core works well to. When I needed more spot tone, I inverted the closed bottle and too it with the 000 brush from the cap.

    It is easier to add spot-tone than take away!!! Start with a clean print... sometimes if you get that "down" you may not need to spot.

  6. #6
    stradibarrius's Avatar
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    Thanks Bill your post came in after I asked the second question.
    "Generalizations are made because they are generally true"
    Flicker http://www.flickr.com/photos/stradibarrius
    website: http://www.dudleyviolins.com
    Barry
    Monroe, GA

  7. #7
    Jim Jones's Avatar
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    In my experience, almost all prints benefit from some spotting. Keeping film holders, equipment, and darkrooms very clean minimize this. You'll need a very fine tipped watercolor brush and a dye of the appropriate color. Spotone was the standard dye, but may be unavailable now. I've also used Dr. P. H. Martin's inks. Good light and powerful reading glasses help. There should be plenty of online information on technique.

    (edit) Wow! Everybody types faster than me! I agree with above information, except distilled water may work better than spit or some water.

  8. #8

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    I should have included using magnifying loupes also help.

  9. #9
    vpwphoto's Avatar
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    I have found that you need not go nuts... spot the print to look right at arms length. Getting out a loupe is overkill.
    I took in Ansel Adams "Fiat Lux" exhibit when it came through Indianapolis, I was surprised that he was plagued with dust issues in a few prints (near black skies he liked to render). And spotting one of his extra large prints the evidence was clearly visible to me.

  10. #10

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    I always try to to make my spotting invisible to close inspection and find that using an Optivisor (loupes) very useful especially if the area to be spotted has obvious film grain.

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