Erik and Hedy

by jorj posted July 15, 2012 category Uncategorized

Erik and Hedy

From this year’s Kensington Kinetic Sculpture Derby: Erik and Hedy of Frank’s Kitchens. Gold-toned kallitype on Arches 140# HP.

Another aspect of my experimentation during PrintFest was control over the toning characteristics of reused gold toner. Straight gold toner (gold chloride and citric acid) form a good, but not great, toner that can tone prints purple if used in sufficient concentration. Lower concentrations tend toward a cold black. But the toner has a short shelf life once mixed, and really only functions as one-shot; I hate doing that with a $50 bottle of gold chloride that will only tone about 20 prints – $2.50 per print – palladium, which tones substantially nicer, is only $7.50 a print. Denser blacks with palladium. Very pleasant. Well worth the expense.

But gold toner #2 uses thiourea and tartaric acid instead of citric. Its blacks are almost as nice as platinum. And, best of all, this formulation has a long shelf life and reuses well. I’ve stretched up to 9 prints out of 500mL of toner. I’d like to continue doing this, but needed to better understand the color that comes out of this toner over its lifespan.

This print is toned using fresh gold toner #2. Some more coming up will show off a little bit of how that changes over its life.

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