Photographic Silk Aquatint Test 1 B – Application of Emulsion

What is the best method for applying the emulsion to the plate, and how many layers of emulsion are ideal?

Date: 9/19/17

Room Temperature: 72 Degrees Fahrenheit

Humidity: Low

Researchers: Mady Lacaprucia and McKenzie Stuetzel

Test 1 B. For the second plate, we decided to try a new method of applying the emulsion, as the foam roller produced too much streaking. For this test we used a photograph of a bridge at Letchworth State Park as our image. In this experiment, we followed the same procedure as the previous one for producing the plate and the positive, but we used a plastic card to apply the emulsion. It was clear from the start that this method was going to work better than the previous one, as the emulsion applied evenly.

The photo positive and the exposed plate.

We inked the plate using Gamblin Bone Black, mixed with burnt plate oil. We printed the plate on the Praga press set to medium pressure with a pusher and a catcher. This is the resulting print:

Using a card to apply the emulsion instead of a foam roller resulted in a much clearer and cleaner image. There were no streaks due to an uneven application of emulsion. This is the method that we have chosen to use for future tests. As far as the actual image goes, a lot of the tonal range was lost, and the whitest areas of the image are quite dark. This is something that we hope to improve upon in future experiments.

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