Wood, the Other Paper

If you have the right emulsions, you can print on just about anything. When applied to wood, metal, fibers, masonry, and other materials, a liquid emulsion like Liquid Light can transform your material into a light-sensitive surface similar to silver gelatin photographic paper. Following proper application, you must handle the material as you would light-sensitive black & white paper. After the emulsion dries, you can use an enlarger to print on it from a negative or or use it to create a lumen print, which is how I use it most often.

Developing a print on a surface that has had Liquid Light applied requires care. Liquid Light is similar to paint in that too much water can cause the paint to bubble or peel. Darkroom printing is a very wet process, and the surface with the emulsion becomes very fragile. Because several washing steps are involved, it’s annoyingly easy to chip off the paint, which chips off part of the image. To preserve the image after it dries, I apply a thin coat of resin, which enhances the image.

I have printed on maple boards and birch cradled boards that range from 5” x 5” to 10” x 10” in size.

Published by mellowdee55

I'm an alternative and traditional photographer living in Houston, Texas. Before stretching my creative wings, I was a content strategist for a software company. During the later part of my tenure there, I learned a lot about the U.S. medical industry when I acted as a patient advocate for my father.

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