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  1. #31

    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Greenville, SC
    Large Format
    Art Chakalis knows more about the Fresson process than any person other than the Fressons. Art has done some excellent research on the process and has had some slices of real Fresson paper looked at with electron microscope so he has a very good idea of how the different layers of the coating were done and what they consist of. He does hold some patents based on his research.

    Anyone who wants to contact Art should try to do so through the alt-photo-process list serve, which he visits from time to time.

    All of the other stuff about Fresson that you read in various sources, including some mentioned here, is most BS IMO.

    Sandy King

    Quote Originally Posted by clay View Post
    I heard Art's lecture at APIS, and he is getting close on his recreation of a Fresson-like direct carbon process. It sounds daunting. He described an emulsion composed of both gelatin and gum along with the pigment. And apparently the whole coating process is very sensitive to temperature - it sounded like his version had an ideal band of temperature that was about 2-3 degrees wide. He had some examples with him, and they were comparable to the Fresson examples, with just slight differences in texture and tonal smoothness. Art has apparently either applied for, or gotten patents on his process.
    Last edited by sanking; 08-09-2008 at 01:35 AM. Click to view previous post history.

  2. #32

    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Los Alamos, NM
    Multi Format
    The Focal Encyclopedia of Photography has a short but highly explanatory section on Fresson. At the time of my Third edition (1993), not only was Fresson still doing prints but also, under license, Luis Nadeau in Canada. It also mentions work done by Shiela Metzner and Bernard Faucon and cites the book: Nadeau, Luis, "History and Practice of Carbon Processes," Fredericton, New Brunswick, Atelier Luis Nadeau.

    The process does seem to be related to gum bichromate. The explanation in the Focal Encyclopedia says that the unexposed pigment is removed by gentle abrasion, which probably means the sawdust mentioned above. One of the posts above mentions that the gum is sensitized by floating it face up on the dichromate solution. That, if carefully controlled, could be a key to the success of the process. The dichromate penetrates from the bottom up. With careful timing, the top contains less sensitizer than the bottom and is less sensitive to light. That will make less exposed parts of the top wash off first.

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