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Re: [PPLetterpress] Re: Continous tone lithography

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  • Allen Stump
    Morning Elizabeth et List - But there is continous tone lithography it s called Collotype or photo-gelatine printing. There was an outfit in Chicago called
    Message 1 of 11 , Jul 9 11:58 AM
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      ' Morning Elizabeth et List -

      But there is continous tone "lithography" it's called Collotype or photo-gelatine printing. There was an outfit in Chicago called Black Box, I believe, that specialized in this manner of printing.

      I have a book at home regarding this process and can get further information, formulas, pictures of presses etc from this book, if any one has an interest. The presses used are akin to a hand stone lithographic press, using like a blade to force the paper against the plate as the bed travels under (like an etching press, using the blade instead of a steel roller.) The plates are made by using a whirled on coating of potassium bichromate (Or dichromate, forgot which) and regular granular gelatine. the plates themselves are a piece of tempered glass, about an inch thick.

      I'v always wanted to experiment with this process, it produces a nice soft effect and was used back in the day for printing jewelry,silverware and other "shiny" things.

      Regards,

      Allen

      Elizabeth Gross <eahalegross@...> wrote:
      Real continuous tone reproduction in print, still has to be invented.
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      .





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    • Gerald Lange
      Allen I am not sure that collotype can be called a true continuous tone process as the surface of the gelatin takes on a reticulated pattern. When heated in
      Message 2 of 11 , Jul 9 1:36 PM
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        Allen

        I am not sure that collotype can be called a "true" continuous tone
        process as the surface of the gelatin takes on a reticulated pattern.
        When heated in an oven the surface takes on the three-dimensional
        characteristics of the photograph by literally physically breaking
        into levels of gray. There is a slight relief to the surface that
        provides the proper tension between the levels of gray (as I recall,
        about .005").

        Collotypes have been successfully printed on Vandercooks and iron hand
        presses though a true collotype press would greatly ensure the
        endeavor. Jeffery Atherton and I produced an image for a fine press
        edition once with an Albion after unsuccessfully trying with a
        Vandercook cylinder. We did consult with Black Box and got several
        useful tips from them. One of the best was to use actual collotype
        ink, which, of course, is no longer made (Handschy dug up their old
        formula and for quite the pretty penny, made us about 5 pounds of the
        stuff, as well as a pound of a special additive.). In addition to
        temperature and humidity, the collotype gelatin also responds to
        atmospheric pressure—thus, the special ink. Several viscosities of the
        ink and several passes with rollers of different harnesses are
        required to successfully capture the tonal qualities.

        There is no one useful book though there were a few (from the earlier
        part of the century) that provided some insight. The Studio Collotype
        book, the best known, was quite useless and pointed more the wrong way
        than the right.

        It is a quite magical printing process and the results, when on the
        mark, are quite breathtaking. It took us about six months of research
        and experimentation to get the first image and another six months of
        presswork to get the 146 copies we needed for the edition. A tad
        difficult.

        Gerald
        http://BielerPress.blogspot.com

        >
        > But there is continous tone "lithography" it's called Collotype or
        photo-gelatine printing. There was an outfit in Chicago called Black
        Box, I believe, that specialized in this manner of printing.
        >
        > I have a book at home regarding this process and can get further
        information, formulas, pictures of presses etc from this book, if any
        one has an interest. The presses used are akin to a hand stone
        lithographic press, using like a blade to force the paper against the
        plate as the bed travels under (like an etching press, using the blade
        instead of a steel roller.) The plates are made by using a whirled on
        coating of potassium bichromate (Or dichromate, forgot which) and
        regular granular gelatine. the plates themselves are a piece of
        tempered glass, about an inch thick.
        >
        > I'v always wanted to experiment with this process, it produces a
        nice soft effect and was used back in the day for printing
        jewelry,silverware and other "shiny" things.
        >
        > Regards,
        >
        > Allen
      • John Cornelisse
        ... Hi Alan, Potassium-bichromate K2Cr2O7 (also named sometimes di-chromate Ammonium -bichromate (NH4)2Cr2O7 is far more sensitive. But beware, this substance
        Message 3 of 11 , Jul 9 1:39 PM
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          At 20:58 9-7-06, you wrote:

          >' Morning Elizabeth et List -
          >
          >But there is continous tone "lithography" it's called Collotype or
          >photo-gelatine printing. There was an outfit in Chicago called Black
          >Box, I believe, that specialized in this manner of printing.
          >
          >I have a book at home regarding this process and can get further
          >information, formulas, pictures of presses etc from this book, if
          >any one has an interest. The presses used are akin to a hand stone
          >lithographic press, using like a blade to force the paper against
          >the plate as the bed travels under (like an etching press, using the
          >blade instead of a steel roller.) The plates are made by using a whirled on
          >coating of potassium bichromate (Or dichromate, forgot which)

          Hi Alan,

          Potassium-bichromate K2Cr2O7 (also named sometimes di-chromate
          Ammonium -bichromate (NH4)2Cr2O7 is far more sensitive.

          But beware, this substance can be unstable & explosive.

          The technique of mixing a chomate-salt with a colloid (albumine,
          gelatine or arabic gum ) & an unsoluble
          pigment was used in the early days of photography, to produce prints,
          that would last ages.
          Under a negative, light was applied and after exposure the chromate
          will render the
          colloid unsolvable in water, the pigment will stay on these places permanently.

          In lithography, the places with arabic gum will not print. Here the exposure
          should go with a positive (!?)

          best wishes

          John Cornelisse


          Letter-press & Typefounding, Monotype-composition

          Vaartstraat 23
          4553 AN Philippine
          (Zeeuws Vlaanderen)
          The Netherlands

          + 31 - (0) 115 - 491184
          email: enkidu@...

          So she spoke to him and her word found favour,
          he knew by instinct, he should seek a friend.


          [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
        • Peter Fraterdeus
          ... Black Box Collotype under Michael Intrator did some incredible continuous tone printing in the 80s & 90s. Not sure if they re still around today. (see
          Message 4 of 11 , Jul 9 2:09 PM
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            At 11:58 AM -0700 9 07 06, Allen Stump wrote:
            >' Morning Elizabeth et List -
            >
            > But there is continous tone "lithography" it's called Collotype or photo-gelatine printing. There was an outfit in Chicago called Black Box, I believe, that specialized in this manner of printing.

            Black Box Collotype under Michael Intrator did some incredible continuous tone printing in the 80s & 90s. Not sure if they're still around today. (see http://www.herbergercollege.asu.edu/news/newsreleases/2001/soa_gift_061401.html )

            Intrator developed the stochastic screening process to allow BBC to print extremely fine images with no effective screen. http://www.archiveimages.com/Publishing/Prints/Process/AdvContinuousTone.html

            Intrator printed a few issues of my "MiceType : Journal of Microcomputer Typography" at BlackBox in the 1980's.

            Ciao
            PF



            >

            --
            AzByCx DwEvFu GtHsIr JqKpLo MnNmOl PkQjRi ShTgUf VeWdXc YbZa&@
            ARTQ: Help stop in-box bloat! Always Remember to Trim the Quote!

            Semiotx Inc. http://typeandmeaning.com
            Web Strategy Consulting Communication Design Typography

            Peter Fraterdeus http://www.fraterdeus.com http://www.galenaphotos.com
            Galena, Illinois http://www.alphabets.com
            Photography Irish Fiddle Political Observation
            Philosophy Fonts Lettering
          • Ludwig M. Solzen
            Continuous tone processes were discussed in a thread on this list, in August last year. In January there was an exhibition and conference at St Bride s
            Message 5 of 11 , Jul 9 5:37 PM
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              Continuous tone processes were discussed in a thread on this list, in August
              last year.

              In January there was an exhibition and conference at St Bride's Printing
              Library, London, on the collotype process and its practice to-day:
              http://stbride.org/events_education/events/collotypepastandpresent

              As with intaglio heliogravure, the reticulation in the collotype gelatine
              coat merely helps to keep the ink at its place, but isn't strictly needed
              for building the image. Both processes bear on the fact that the form is a
              three-dimensional account of the two-dimensional image that is to be
              reproduced, and for that reason, they are per se capable of reproducing
              continuous tone images. They would do so as well in reality, if only the ink
              wouldn't creep. Woodbury Type is the sole process that, in making advantage
              of its 3D form, succeeds to produce continuous tone images, only by changing
              the qualities of the ink. But by doing so, it can hardly be called a
              printing process stricto sensu: ink for Woodbury Type is a gelatine based
              substance, whereas letterpress, intaglio, lithography and collotype printing
              all use the same oil based printing ink, albeit slightly optimised for the
              respective processes.

              Conventional offset lithography, using stochastic screening with raster
              elements of <10 µm and up to fourteen colour separations, gives awesome
              images, but still isn't "real" continuous tone.

              Ludwig
            • Peter Fraterdeus
              ... Hallo, Ludwig Thank you for the excellent review! ... The essential question being whether the eye can perceive a difference. After all, quantum principles
              Message 6 of 11 , Jul 9 7:24 PM
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                At 2:37 AM +0200 10 07 06, Ludwig M. Solzen wrote:
                >Continuous tone processes were discussed in a thread on this list, in August
                >last year.
                >...
                >
                >Ludwig

                Hallo, Ludwig

                Thank you for the excellent review!

                >Conventional offset lithography, using stochastic screening with raster
                >elements of <10 µm and up to fourteen colour separations, gives awesome
                >images, but still isn't "real" continuous tone.

                The essential question being whether the eye can perceive a difference.
                After all, quantum principles forbid the achievement of "continuous tone", if that's taken to mean infinitesimal fineness of gradation ;-)

                P

                --
                AzByCx DwEvFu GtHsIr JqKpLo MnNmOl PkQjRi ShTgUf VeWdXc YbZa&@
                ARTQ: Help stop in-box bloat! Always Remember to Trim the Quote!

                Semiotx Inc. http://typeandmeaning.com
                Web Strategy Consulting Communication Design Typography

                Peter Fraterdeus http://www.fraterdeus.com http://www.galenaphotos.com
                Galena, Illinois http://www.alphabets.com
                Photography Irish Fiddle Political Observation
                Philosophy Fonts Lettering
              • Gerald Lange
                Peter I would think that quantum principles (observor based theory) would completely indicate other than what you have said here. (?) Though I suppose that
                Message 7 of 11 , Jul 9 9:15 PM
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                  Peter

                  I would think that quantum principles (observor based theory) would
                  completely indicate other than what you have said here. (?) Though I suppose that would depend upon the who, or especially the what, that is observing.

                  Gerald
                  http://BielerPress.blogspot.com


                  >
                  > The essential question being whether the eye can perceive a difference.
                  > After all, quantum principles forbid the achievement of "continuous
                  tone", if that's taken to mean infinitesimal fineness of gradation ;-)
                  >
                  > P
                • Austin Jones
                  Several years ago I was privileged to know a man at Ohio University - Arnold Gassen. Arnold was in charge of the Non Traditional Photography Department. Arnold
                  Message 8 of 11 , Jul 9 9:34 PM
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                    Several years ago I was privileged to know a man at Ohio University -
                    Arnold Gassen. Arnold
                    was in charge of the Non Traditional Photography Department. Arnold
                    printed photographs in
                    every way imaginable.

                    The idea of non-silver printing has been around since Fox Talbot. It is
                    a very interesting
                    subject. I have worked with this concept for many years and still play
                    with it a bit. This discussion
                    caused me to go look for a couple worn books on the subject.

                    To look further into this issue I suggest:
                    The Keepers of Light by William Crawford
                    Alternative Photographic Processes by Kent Wade
                    Photographic Printing by Ralph Hattersley
                    The Color Print Book by Arnold Gassen

                    In my playing, I did the traditional Silver printing as well as Silk
                    Screen and Intaglio. Always enjoyed
                    playing in the darkroom.

                    tks

                    Austin Jones

                    Ludwig M. Solzen wrote:

                    > Continuous tone processes were discussed in a thread on this list, in
                    > August
                    > last year.
                    >
                    > In January there was an exhibition and conference at St Bride's Printing
                    > Library, London, on the collotype process and its practice to-day:
                    > http://stbride.org/events_education/events/collotypepastandpresent
                    > <http://stbride.org/events_education/events/collotypepastandpresent>
                    >
                    > As with intaglio heliogravure, the reticulation in the collotype gelatine
                    > coat merely helps to keep the ink at its place, but isn't strictly needed
                    > for building the image. Both processes bear on the fact that the form is a
                    > three-dimensional account of the two-dimensional image that is to be
                    > reproduced, and for that reason, they are per se capable of reproducing
                    > continuous tone images. They would do so as well in reality, if only
                    > the ink
                    > wouldn't creep. Woodbury Type is the sole process that, in making
                    > advantage
                    > of its 3D form, succeeds to produce continuous tone images, only by
                    > changing
                    > the qualities of the ink. But by doing so, it can hardly be called a
                    > printing process stricto sensu: ink for Woodbury Type is a gelatine based
                    > substance, whereas letterpress, intaglio, lithography and collotype
                    > printing
                    > all use the same oil based printing ink, albeit slightly optimised for the
                    > respective processes.
                    >
                    > Conventional offset lithography, using stochastic screening with raster
                    > elements of <10 µm and up to fourteen colour separations, gives awesome
                    > images, but still isn't "real" continuous tone.
                    >
                    > Ludwig
                    >
                    >



                    [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                  • Peter Fraterdeus
                    Gerald I m not thinking of the observer based phenomenon, rather that there is a grain to everything, thus, nothing is truly continuous. Cheers P ... --
                    Message 9 of 11 , Jul 10 7:00 AM
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                      Gerald

                      I'm not thinking of the 'observer based' phenomenon, rather that there is a 'grain' to everything, thus, nothing is truly continuous.

                      Cheers
                      P

                      >Peter
                      >
                      >I would think that quantum principles (observor based theory) would
                      >completely indicate other than what you have said here. (?) Though I suppose that would depend upon the who, or especially the what, that is observing.
                      >
                      >Gerald
                      >http://BielerPress.blogspot.com
                      >

                      --
                      AzByCx DwEvFu GtHsIr JqKpLo MnNmOl PkQjRi ShTgUf VeWdXc YbZa&@
                      ARTQ: Help stop in-box bloat! Always Remember to Trim the Quote!

                      Semiotx Inc. http://typeandmeaning.com
                      Web Strategy Consulting Communication Design Typography

                      Peter Fraterdeus http://www.fraterdeus.com http://www.galenaphotos.com
                      Galena, Illinois http://www.alphabets.com
                      Photography Irish Fiddle Political Observation
                      Philosophy Fonts Lettering
                    • Robert Tauber
                      Allen - Get Kent Kirby s book, Studio Colotype. It will tell you all you need to know about making Collotypes. Bob Tauber ... From: Allen Stump To:
                      Message 10 of 11 , Jul 10 2:04 PM
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                        Allen -

                        Get Kent Kirby's book, Studio Colotype. It will tell you all you need to know about making Collotypes.

                        Bob Tauber
                        ----- Original Message -----
                        From: Allen Stump
                        To: PPLetterpress@yahoogroups.com
                        Sent: Sunday, July 09, 2006 2:58 PM
                        Subject: Re: [PPLetterpress] Re: Continous tone lithography


                        ' Morning Elizabeth et List -

                        But there is continous tone "lithography" it's called Collotype or photo-gelatine printing. There was an outfit in Chicago called Black Box, I believe, that specialized in this manner of printing.

                        I have a book at home regarding this process and can get further information, formulas, pictures of presses etc from this book, if any one has an interest. The presses used are akin to a hand stone lithographic press, using like a blade to force the paper against the plate as the bed travels under (like an etching press, using the blade instead of a steel roller.) The plates are made by using a whirled on coating of potassium bichromate (Or dichromate, forgot which) and regular granular gelatine. the plates themselves are a piece of tempered glass, about an inch thick.

                        I'v always wanted to experiment with this process, it produces a nice soft effect and was used back in the day for printing jewelry,silverware and other "shiny" things.

                        Regards,

                        Allen

                        Elizabeth Gross <eahalegross@...> wrote:
                        Real continuous tone reproduction in print, still has to be invented.
                        ! Groups Terms of Use | Unsubscribe

                        .

                        [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]





                        [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                      • Ludwig M. Solzen
                        Hi Peter, Absolute fineness of gradation probably isn t available in our immanent existence. It can be thought, however, as a Kantian regulative Idea, thus
                        Message 11 of 11 , Jul 11 5:28 AM
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                          Hi Peter,

                          Absolute fineness of gradation probably isn't available in our immanent
                          existence. It can be thought, however, as a Kantian regulative Idea, thus
                          directing the eye what to look for ;)

                          But I agree that we shouldn't be too philosophical on this: we just want
                          real smooth pictures. Take a water colour and magnify upto 20 times, till
                          you see the isolated pigment particles; the same goes for marble papers. The
                          question is not whether these original artefacts offer continuous tone, but
                          how far we can get to their likeness in printed reproductions. Reproductive
                          image printing strives by its very nature towards the perfect facsimile.

                          If you take the eye of the beholder as the mere criterion, where will you
                          stop with the attempt? Some people need spectacles even to look at type of
                          16 pts...

                          A few months ago I did this experiment: I scanned a marble paper and had it
                          reproduced by offset lithography in four different screenings: 133 lpi, 150
                          lpi, 200 lpi and stochastic FM20. This little piece proves utmost convenient
                          when trying to convince people of the importance of refined screening.
                          Although most people are satisfied with the AM 220, the infinitesimal
                          fineness of the marble pattern, is faithfully reproduced by the FM 20 only.
                          I'm always pleased to prove this by subsequently scanning the
                          reproduction...

                          Ludwig


                          > The essential question being whether the eye can perceive a difference.
                          > After all, quantum principles forbid the achievement of "continuous tone",
                          > if that's taken to mean infinitesimal fineness of gradation ;-)
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