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View Full Version : Jay Dusard's Farmer Reducer (Potassium Ferricyanide) Technique



Fragomeni
12-Jan-2011, 15:14
Has anyone taken a workshop with Jay Dusard in which he demonstrated his bleaching technique? I've seen some video of him doing it and I know a few people who've seen him do it but I've been unable to get a solid account of his technique. I'm interested in how he approaches the print with the Potassium Ferricyanide in mind. Does he expose the print so that his deepest shadows are where he wants them and then bleaches everything else up from there as a dodging tool? In the video it looked like he printed by dodging and burning like normal and then applied bleach afterward to finish the print. Can anyone speak to his approach? Also his technique i.e. the solution of reducer he uses, his choice of brush, etc? Thank you.

D. Bryant
12-Jan-2011, 18:34
Has anyone taken a workshop with Jay Dusard in which he demonstrated his bleaching technique? I've seen some video of him doing it and I know a few people who've seen him do it but I've been unable to get a solid account of his technique. I'm interested in how he approaches the print with the Potassium Ferricyanide in mind. Does he expose the print so that his deepest shadows are where he wants them and then bleaches everything else up from there as a dodging tool? In the video it looked like he printed by dodging and burning like normal and then applied bleach afterward to finish the print. Can anyone speak to his approach? Also his technique i.e. the solution of reducer he uses, his choice of brush, etc? Thank you.

Bleaching with ferri isn't that hard though it can be tedious. Grab a handful of old prints and practice. Have a running stream of water handy. Barnbaum is also masterful with ferri.

Don Bryant

RPNugent
13-Jan-2011, 06:17
He uses calligraphy brushes of varying sizes. They don't have metal bands holding the bristles so they don't react with the ferricyanide. Brushes are sized to fit the area he is bleaching.

The print is made as a normal finished print with appropriate dodging and burning done. Then he uses the bleach to bring out highlights in small areas like the brim of a hat etc, he doesn't bleach large areas of the print, just small local areas to highlight them.

Prints are placed on a large sheet of plexiglass if I remember correctly (been 15 years and any surface would work) in a sink with running water, good lighting and a tray of fixer nearby. Water is run continuously over the print just under the area being bleached to prevent the bleach effects from spreading to unwanted areas. Bleach is brushed onto the area being treated and washed off fairly quickly to prevent overdoing it. The print is frequently moved into the fixer which completely stops the action of the bleach and then returned to the sheet for further work in the same area or a new spot.

Papers that work well for bleaching are the key. Most don't take well to it so he chooses ones that allow him to do it. Forte used to be his favorite and Ilford not liked for difficulties bleaching (remember this was 15 years ago so I have no idea what he uses now).

Overdoing it causes yellowing so be careful and practice, rinse often. It's not that hard and can add significantly to the life in a print.

Fragomeni
13-Jan-2011, 10:46
He uses calligraphy brushes of varying sizes. They don't have metal bands holding the bristles so they don't react with the ferricyanide. Brushes are sized to fit the area he is bleaching.

The print is made as a normal finished print with appropriate dodging and burning done. Then he uses the bleach to bring out highlights in small areas like the brim of a hat etc, he doesn't bleach large areas of the print, just small local areas to highlight them.

Prints are placed on a large sheet of plexiglass if I remember correctly (been 15 years and any surface would work) in a sink with running water, good lighting and a tray of fixer nearby. Water is run continuously over the print just under the area being bleached to prevent the bleach effects from spreading to unwanted areas. Bleach is brushed onto the area being treated and washed off fairly quickly to prevent overdoing it. The print is frequently moved into the fixer which completely stops the action of the bleach and then returned to the sheet for further work in the same area or a new spot.

Papers that work well for bleaching are the key. Most don't take well to it so he chooses ones that allow him to do it. Forte used to be his favorite and Ilford not liked for difficulties bleaching (remember this was 15 years ago so I have no idea what he uses now).

Overdoing it causes yellowing so be careful and practice, rinse often. It's not that hard and can add significantly to the life in a print.


Thanks so much for this information! It's exactly what I was looking for!

Can anyone speak to current Ilford Warmtone Glossy FB and it's ability to take Potassium Ferricyanide well?

Greg Y
13-Jan-2011, 11:13
Since the lamented demise of Forte, Jay D's paper of choice is Ilford Warmtone

andreios
13-Jan-2011, 12:19
It is not Jay Dussard, but I've first learned about ferricyanide bleaching from the presentation video of Nathalie Loparelli and her "Atelier FenÍtre sur Cour".
You can watch her way of bleaching here (http://www.laboratoire-tirages-argentiques.com/prestation.html).