As, I dare say, would most of us humans. I recall AA's spotter, whose name escapes me, announcing on this forum a few years back, that she was available for projects again. I posted at that time that I would love to take a workshop from her (just about the only workshop I would consider taking). I think most of us classical printing non-machines would love to learn and/or hone our skills beyond catch–as–catch–can results.
Ah, you probably remember Katherine Gillis' introduction:
Ah, I was thinking of Phyllis Donohue, but, indeed, I meant Katherine Gillis—she spots the Ansel Adams Special Editions, which Alan continues to print. That's quite a feat, considering two fine canines, dusty desert, and a kitty.
Bob, I'm weighing in a bit late but I often used the scalpel method with great success. The trick is to "shave" away the offending area gradually, then go back in and spot with a stippling effect. You must practice on a scrap print first. I used to make exhibition prints for a professional railroad photographer, and his prints looked like the negs had been run over by a locomotive. I hated doing editions for him. By the time I was done working a print, I'd be cross-eyed but at least he could not find where I worked the prints over, only if you held the print at a glare angle. Eventually he allowed me to spot the backside of his negatives, but passed away suddenly. I prefer this over scraping the print surface.
Ok a bit of an update... bleach retouching on the print is a real pain in the ass if you are doing murals.
25 30 x40 inch murals printed washed and dryed properly,
then hand bleached by Rose Scheler of Toronto.
then Re fixed , selenium toned , hypo clear and wash to normal standards...
This is basically double the physical work and IMO too much handling , I am investigating a machine to use Old School that vibrates the negative and then density is applied to the negative to print white so that I do not have to go through this every time.
I brought Brad Pitt into the lab to pose with Paulette as she does the hard work.