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  1. #1

    Join Date
    Sep 2003
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    Reduce scarring when spotting prints

    Being a competent spotter is very handy. I was rubbish and am now reasonable (certainly not great) having had to work on some serious 'damage' to a print - Spanish Olive. It has some flare issues (while the second frame shot a few moments later does not...but it was developed in HC110 (rather than Exactol Lux)and has not the same edge or tonality, nor has the sun starbursted in the same way, the angle being different to the branches). I therefore had to make it work with this neg. I actually have a faint hexagon to disappear on one branch and a bright segment of hexagon on the other As the print is split in selenium,, it has olive green blacks and plums - Nightmare. After many attempts (washing the dye out when mistakes were made) I got it completely indistinguishble apart from some minor emulsion scarring. If you have ever had this problem of scarring, I have found a good fix for glossy papers! Once the spotting is good (apart from scarring visible when light is at certain angle to print, dry mount it to board. This is essential. Next spray the finest mist possible onto aflicted area using a gardening spray bottle and allow the emulsion to absorb. As you have dry mounted it you will get no bobbly raised or depressed bits if a bigger drop of water lands on the dry print (I found this a big problem until I drymounted it. I also found that by holding the print vertically and spraying lightly from a distance, blobs fell short of teh print (drizzing out of the nozze) but the mist hit the mark) Spray very very lightly until the affected area has absorbed a tiny amount of water - there will be some swelling of the emulsion, which should subside a few moments later as the water is taken into the emulsion in general. Reintroduce into dry mounting press in a mount board sandwich, using silicone release paper over the print and press DO NOT DO THIS IS The EMULSION IS TOO TACKY AS IT MAY PARTIALLY GLAZE THAT AREA MAKING IT VERY SHINY.... After doing this the scarring was all but gone resulting in the spotting only being visible if pointed out and then with difficulty. I think the scarring was as a result of having to apply so many washes of dilute ink, of varied colour, to get the match right. A real pain, but prevented one of my favourite images hitting the bin! Hope it helps.

  2. #2
    Les McLean's Avatar
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    Oct 2002
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    I've used a similar method for years to eliminate surface marks such as spotting and including slight scuffing that can happen accidentaly when removing loose dust from the surface of some glossy emulsions. The difference is that I hold the mounted print about 12 inches from a jet of steam coming from a kettle as it boils. The print is moved around continuously so as not to allow heat to build up in one area and to make sure that the whole of the surface area is treated in the same way. The print surface should not be touched until it drys, it takes only a couple of minutes, and the end result is that all surface marks disappear and the print takes on slightly higher gloss. I accept that this method can be described as risky but with a little practice on reject prints you will soon get the hang of it. I melted the emmulsion on the first print that I ever tried this on, unfortunately it was not a reject so I had to go back to the darkroom and start again, since then I've had 100% success.

  3. #3

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    Sep 2003
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    Seeing as I now have five copies of the same print to do, I may try the steam method. I have a few rejects to practice on thankfully! I like the steam idea....

  4. #4
    rogueish's Avatar
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    What a great idea! I have a print that needs just that! It's a reject but this may change it's status!
    Thanks Les!

  5. #5

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    Apr 2004
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    Tom and Les - thanks very much for the generous post. Invaluable!



 

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