John Blalock


Gum Bichromate on Clay Board

It was a great idea, doing prints on gessoed board or clayboard.

And it worked (for the most part)

This was my first day making Gum Bichromate prints.  Getting my hands wet in chemistry was the best part of the experience.

I forgot my camera unfortunatly so I don’t have any shots of me printing (sorry).  But it was a blast.  I had to mix the gum arabic with pigment (using my handy scale), then I mixed the potassium dichromate with boiling distiled water.  These I mixed together in a plastic cup and (under a safe light) brushed it on the board and paper.

My first image was on paper (its drying right now so I’ll post it tomorrow).  I got nothing!  Frustrated I tried a bunch more prints and soon discovered the problem–it was taking about 30mins for the image to develop!!  Haha!  I think I need to warm my water bath next time.

Once I discovered that I decided to try out the two pieces of clayboard that sean gave me from his studio.  It took the gum arabic well and dried fast, it even developed quickly.  But it seems to have trouble in the fine detail:

I may have to give up and go completely to water color paper but I am holding out.  I am going to try a more diluted mixture next time.

More to follow.


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