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  1. #1

    Join Date
    Sep 2002
    Location
    Austin, Texas
    Posts
    132
    This weekend I succeeded in making an oil pigment print, following Ernie Theisen's instructions at http://alt-photo.com/alt-photo/bromoil/ART...ints%20ern.html (A Method for Making Oil Pigment Prints). I had previously tried making bromoil prints, with very limited success. Despite making a test strip at 1X, 2X, and 3X normal exposures, and choosing the best one, I could not get any depth of black in the final print. But with the pigment process, wherein one does not bleach a print, but makes a matrix by coating fixed-out photographic paper with dichromate and exposing through a negative, it was relatively easy.

    Oil pigment printing requires a large negative, whereas one of the benefits of the bromoil process is that you can use an enlarger to make the print from which you obtain the matrix. I made my first oil pigment print from an original 8x10 negative, and it appears that a normal contrast negative (suitable for silver printing) works just fine. I'm anxious to test some of my enlarged negatives made for salt and VDB (though I fear they will be too contrasty).

    One thing I noticed is that my inks had hardened considerably since I last tried bromoil, which made it easy to get the right consistency. Perhaps they will work better for bromoil now.

  2. #2

    Join Date
    Sep 2002
    Location
    Nuernberg, Germany
    Posts
    214
    Well, despite the possible road-blocks involved in the Bromoil process, I've just finished reading David Lewis's book on the subject, and am looking forward to by first experience with an "alternative" process.

    I would be interested to hear from yopu Ed, as to which papers, inks and brushes you used while dabbling in the Bromoil world. As well as any other tidbits of information concerning the depth of your origional prints, wether or not you used an hca bath after your bleaching etc.

    Thanks!
    - William Levitt

  3. #3

    Join Date
    Sep 2002
    Location
    Austin, Texas
    Posts
    132
    I don't recall using an HCA bath after bleaching. Is that recommended? I just washed the print thoroughly after the bleach. My attempt was with Agfa Multicontrast Classic, using Gene Laughter's instructions in Bromoil 101. I watched Gene and Ernie Theisen both make bromoils at APIS in 2001, and it looked SO easy. I got an image, but it was very low-contrast and dim.

    For the oil pigment process I fixed out some old Brovira Grade 6 and some Insignia Grade 3 (now Record Rapid). The Brovira has a much whiter paper base, but they both made very nice prints. I rod coated with a saturated solution (25%) of ammonium dichromate mixed 1+1 with distilled water, using about 2.5 ml of solution for each print. I exposed each one to UV light for 7 minutes. Ernie Theisen had recommended exposure times from 7 to 12 minutes, and the negative I chose was not particularly dense, so I used the least time recommended. Maybe I just got lucky, but I couldn't believe it when I rolled the first coat of ink on and the image appeared immediately.

    So far I haven't had much success with brushes. For the oil pigment prints I used a brayer. You can use wadded up Saran wrap and/or a clean brayer to clear the high values. I have also used a brush to remove density in high values by "hopping".




  4. #4

    Join Date
    Sep 2002
    Location
    Nuernberg, Germany
    Posts
    214
    Ed, I hope I wasn't too confusing with my previous post. As I wrote HCA, I was attempting to use the abbreviation for hydrochloric acid. David Lewis reccomends a bath with a 2% solution to fully remove the shadow areas of the print (if I understood him correctly that is) it must then be again washed, dried, then "super dried".

    It is an interesting technique which appears to bring the photograhic image more into the realm of etching. I'm definatly looking forward to the extra creative control and freedom that might very well be found in this process.

    BTW Ed, did you happen to run across any particular information regarding the bromoil process that you would reccomend? I've of course run across the more popular Bromoil internet sites, and, as I've said, have the book by David Lewis, and did study the website of the Late Norman Gryspeerdt. But maybe you've stumbled across a source or book that you could reccomend?



    - William Levitt

  5. #5

    Join Date
    Sep 2002
    Location
    Austin, Texas
    Posts
    132
    I read every source I could get my hands on, but many were on the net. My primary sources were Richard Farber's book Historic Photographic Processes and Gene Laughter's Bromoil 101. I obviously need to buy David Lewis' book.




  6. #6

    Join Date
    Sep 2002
    Location
    Nuernberg, Germany
    Posts
    214
    Ed, did you use the same inks in both processes? According to David Lewis, there is a "hard ink" and a "soft ink" process for inking up the matrix. I must admit that I am too much of a beginner to give advice, or even pass on the process information correctly, but it appears that the suscess of Bromoil is dependent on several things, one of them being the proper ink. Also, the pre-soaking stage of the matrix prior to the inking up phase is, as I understand it critical as to achieving the proper tonality.

    It all remains theory until I can get my hands on the proper tools. But I am enjoying the research phase as well!
    - William Levitt

  7. #7

    Join Date
    Nov 2002
    Posts
    129
    Sounds like an interesting process, I'll have to try it one of these days.

    As for inks, I found this bromoil article that tells you how to make your own (scroll down to "Preparing the Ink"):
    http://www.psa-photo.org/bromoil.htm

    I don't know how this compares to inks you can buy, but this might be a way for better color control, based on the pigments you want to use.
    Nobody ever went broke underestimating the intelligence of the American public.

  8. #8

    Join Date
    Sep 2002
    Location
    Nuernberg, Germany
    Posts
    214
    Interesting link LFGuy, thanks! Now if I could only find a PSAmember from 1964 with a complete library of printed materials.

    Here is the link from David Lewis.

    http://www.bromoil.com/


    I bought my book from him directly and we have exchanged a few emails. He seems genuinly interested in helping people get started in the Bromoil process. He also offers the required supplies through his website.
    - William Levitt

  9. #9

    Join Date
    Sep 2002
    Location
    Austin, Texas
    Posts
    132
    Yes, I used the same ink with both processes. I bought the ink from Bostick & Sullivan, because it is what Gene Laughter recommended. The fact is, you can harden or soften your ink as necessary by use of various additives. But fresh out of a can most ink is too soft--it hardens as it ages.

  10. #10

    Join Date
    Nov 2002
    Posts
    129
    </span><table border='0' align='center' width='95%' cellpadding='3' cellspacing='1'><tr><td>QUOTE (edbuffaloe @ Dec 18 2002, 07:59 AM)</td></tr><tr><td id='QUOTE'>The fact is, you can harden or soften your ink as necessary by use of various additives.</td></tr></table><span id='postcolor'>
    What kind of additives? Oil of differing viscosities?
    Nobody ever went broke underestimating the intelligence of the American public.

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