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Thread: Aardenburg Adhesive-Free Picture Framing

  1. #1
    Tin Can's Avatar
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    Aardenburg Adhesive-Free Picture Framing

    image

  2. #2
    Drew Wiley
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    Re: Aardenburg Adhesive-Free Picture Framing

    That's old old kindergarten methodology, and outright looks like hell unless the print is matte and relatively small. It's fine for DIY instructional purposes; but I can't imagine any pro frame shop charging for something that half-baked. Our own shop volume-cut entire pallet loads at a time of backer board for a particular art venue that did TEMPORARY exhibitions that way year after year, then removed the prints themselves afterwards. Waves and wrinkles just don't go with the aesthetic territory of bigger glossier prints, or with serious art sales.

    Then there are so many myths involved in terms of what constitutes "archival" and what does not. A layer of neutral acrylic adhesive foil is an effective barrier itself; and if the print happens to be on polyester medium (Ciba, Fujiflex), the base itself is an even better barrier than something slipped behind. And appropriate mounting boards are themselves inert - Gatorboard has paper liners, but these are solution impregnated to make them permanently pH inert; Dibond is aluminum; Ultramount is inert ultra-smooth plastic. I've done all kinds of experiments and long-term observations. Tested yet another acrylic sheet adhesive method just a few days ago; eighty bucks down the drain, but now I know the truth about it. It worked, but was visually so-so. It was a scrap print anyway; I always save a few of em for such purposes.

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    Re: Aardenburg Adhesive-Free Picture Framing

    Quote Originally Posted by Drew Wiley View Post
    That's old old kindergarten methodology, and outright looks like hell unless the print is matte and relatively small. It's fine for DIY instructional purposes; but I can't imagine any pro frame shop charging for something that half-baked.
    Wow. I've been schooled and taken to the woodshed. Thanks for that Drew. To be clear, larger sized traditional wet process fiber based silver gelatin prints will probably never be made flat enough without dry mounting to work well with what I proposed in this article. And RC photo materials will be quite limited in size as well with an adhesive-free method. I guess I should have put a whole lot of caveats up front in the article. But you learned nothing of value in this 40 page article? Then shame on me.

    kind regards,
    Mark
    http://www.aardenburg-imaging.com
    Last edited by Oren Grad; 23-Apr-2021 at 19:59. Reason: fixed the close-quote tag

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    Re: Aardenburg Adhesive-Free Picture Framing

    Much appreciated here. Virtually all of my darkroom printing is RC at this point. On the rare occasions when something gets framed, I've been corner-mounting. But I'm happy to see other adhesive-free approaches spelled out in detail.

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    Re: Aardenburg Adhesive-Free Picture Framing

    Well, I'm impressed. I learned something. Better than what I was doing. I will give it a try.

  6. #6
    Drew Wiley
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    Re: Aardenburg Adhesive-Free Picture Framing

    RC and poly print mounting has been done up to forty feet wide using permanent adhesive foils. My own capacity is just up to four feet. It's routine for some pro framing shops. Not easy without proper machines unless you're talking rather small, especially for full gloss presentation. But there are quite a number of alternative methods for medium-sized work. I don't have time to get into detail of tips now - getting ready to go out and shoot before another storm arrives. Didn't mean to be rude, though I admit I often am a bit ornery. I've had more than my own share of bellyflops along the way due to endless testing of options - never sold anything I wasn't certain about, but did keep "seconds" on hand as gifts and so forth. I worked in Ciba for a long time which was the litmus test of smooth mounting.

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    Re: Aardenburg Adhesive-Free Picture Framing

    Quote Originally Posted by Drew Wiley View Post
    That's old old kindergarten methodology...
    Let's see, to whom ought one pay attention on the subject of framing inkjet prints. Drew (who knows everything about everything and regularly denigrates inkjet prints on forums) or Mark McCormick-Goodhart, who spent ten years as a Senior Research Photographic Scientist at the Smithsonian Institution and has dedicated the last 23 years to digital imaging, printmaking and color management, photographic conservation, museum display and storage environments. Decisions, decisions.

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    Re: Aardenburg Adhesive-Free Picture Framing

    I learned something from the article. Thanks for sharing!

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    Re: Aardenburg Adhesive-Free Picture Framing

    MHMG thank you for sharing! Great step by step instructions. I look forward to trying your methods.

  10. #10
    Drew Wiley
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    Re: Aardenburg Adhesive-Free Picture Framing

    There's an entire small industry that keeps atop this kind of subject, with their own workshops, trade journals, tutorials. Lots of manufacturer tech info out there, numerous suppliers with their own tip sheets. There are way more options than 75 years ago. That linked method still sorta works (I've done hundreds of small prints in that vein of framing), but there are all kinds of tweaks to even that which can significantly improve the outcome. I apologize for spending thousands of dollars and decades of my own sorting out the pros and cons of various options that some of you obviously never heard of. Conservators often have different opinions due to what their main priority is; passive archiving vs attractive display, for example.

    Aardenburg is an excellent resource because he homed in on some of the specific idiosyncrasies of inkjet which Wilhelm didn't. But it's still a very adolescent medium with a short track record; and most dicey of all, it represents all kinds of potential ingredients and is steadily evolving, which is precisely the reason why making blanket generic ink lifespan predictions is unrealistic. It's also deceptive to call them pigment prints, like many galleries do.Those inks are complex blends of tiny pigments, lakes, and dyes. Different hues have potentially differing levels of permanence. There is also an inherent outgassing issue of glycols for awhile, which can get trapped be behind the glazing. Again, a known category of problem in analogous colorants long before inkjet became commonplace.

    As far as this particular method of mounting is concerned, it's been known about for decades, but generally in a somewhat more sophisticated form. And there are certain do's and don'ts,
    as well as size limitations related to the expansion/contraction coefficients of both the substrate and print medium itself. I see even big inkjets done this way all the time at local printing labs. The look is so-so; but top-end display framing is not the forte of remaining labs these days. The posted article is attractively presented but not well researched. Like I already suggested, any competent local frame shop had that in its bag of tricks during the middle Paleolithic. If I have time, I might add some specifics that make a real difference. Or I might not if people are not appreciative. I've got better things to do, like mounting my own prints.

    The problem in this case is the suggestion it's a new idea from a specific provider. It might indeed have been thought up independently and sincerely. I'm not questioning the ethics. But a bit of background research into common trade practices would show it's old hat known by many, including for inkjet applications. "Archival" has been a hot topic for over four decades now, and is a frequently abused term without due consideration for the many many variables involved. What works in one instance or climate or storage plan or display scenario might not be ideal in another. Any potential display idea has to be farmed out to a number of real-world scenarios for time testing to learn the full truth. What works well in dry Arizona might backfire terribly in humid Florida or Hawaii. No one shoe fits all.
    Last edited by Drew Wiley; 24-Apr-2021 at 19:05.

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