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Re: [BKARTS] inkjet printing (again)!



Hello Stephanie et al

In practice  you want a rag paper coated without optical, hence the need for
printer profiles whose primary purpose is not simply to control the amount
of ink applied. Red River is pulp paper, useful for ephemera and short lived
marketing pieces. What is more, it is nearly as expensive as a good rag.

Rolls can be cut and flattened if you have the patience to put them under
light weight for several weeks. For books, you are far better off with
sheets.Try Entrada or Illuminatta from
http://www.inkjetart.com/index.html
or
http://redrockinnovations.com/Merchant2/merchant.mvc?Screen=SFNT&Store_Code=
IJG
or other papers from http://www.hawkmtnartpapers.com/
or http://www.mediastreet.com/
Hahnemühle is fine paper, but way overpriced.
Red River papers tend to contain wood pulp.

Everyone on this list should be familiar with
http://www.wilhelm-research.com/
for results of actual archival testing, even though they are not
comprehensive and tend to pay attention to the larger vendors.

Spray over your inkjet prints, which are, after all, nothing more than spray
paint laid over paper. The surface is rightly called tender.
As for sprays, yes, they stink. Specially Krylon since they changed their
formulations. The stink does not fade with time and is probably toxic too
boot. Get Print Guard or Print Shield. It costs more but you need less and
it has a very slight odor which does fade away.

To answer your questions:
    > I know that many messages have been tossed around on this subject, but
I'm
    > considering getting an Epson 2200 to create small editions by scanning
    > images from my one-of-a-kind books.  I have a couple of questions, and
    > forgive me if they've been asked before, but I didn't see the answers
in the
    > archives.  (I'm assuming, from what I've read, that the Epson 2200 is
the
    > best option - the most versatile, and the most archival, if also the
most
    > pricey to use.)
Choice of printers depend on usage and cash.
The Epsons tend to be the printer of choice, because they are reliable, do
excellent work, are inkjet which allows the use of archival pigment inks and
will print on a wide variety of substrates.
The desktops; 1200, 1280, 2200 etc are built lighter and do not hold up as
long as the more industrial type wide format Epsons.
The desktops do not have a straight paper path as the wide format printers
do, and so do not allow printing on rigid substrates such as board,
Plexiglas, metal etc.
The desktops are much cheaper to buy, but they do cost more to run because
the price of ink is higher in small cartridge form unless you invest in some
type of continuous bulk ink system (see Media Street etc).


    > 1) The first (perhaps naive) question is - for those who HAVE used
this
    > technology to create book editions - how widely accepted are editions
that
    > are printed this way?  Are they considered less valuable or harder to
sell
    > than editions created using other printing techniques?  I'm not too
    > knowledgeable about the technology (I used to be vaguely prejudiced
against
    > the idea of using it to create books - but I do one-of-a-kinds,
mostly, and
    > this seems like a fantastic way to reproduce them) and I'm curious as
to
    > what the buying public's response is.  It seems to me like more folks
are
    > open to it as it becomes more common.
I have been creating editions, both print and book, for the past 5 years
using inkjet alone. I doubt if you could say it was widely accepted, but you
can say that there seems to be no wide or deep objection to inkjet either.
As for value the entire economics changes. It costs more per copy to use
inkjet. This raises the selling price. But, because it is print on demand,
your initial costs to arrive at the the first copy are tremendously reduced.
In fact, you only need to print a copy or two and then print further copies
as you sell them. This in turn commits you to binding onesy-twosy with an
associated increase in binding costs per copy.
For one-of-a-kinds, it is by far the most economical choice.
I am told there only 3000 buyers world wide for artist books in general.
More realistically a few hundred, so the competition is related less to
printing technologies, but more to marketing presence, content, and etc.



    > 2) I do ink drawings, and my art has a lot of fine line detail, not
too much
    > color - so I want to find a hot-press kind of paper that will work
well for
    > that.  I'm most concerned with getting the fine line detail.  (Maybe
    > everything will - I'm rather clueless.)  I was thinking of using
Arches hot
    > press 90lb (as I do in my books, often).  Has anyone out there had
success
    > with that, or something similar?
There are essentially two kinds of inkjet printing on paper; photographic
printing with a high reliance on image detail and resolution, color
accuracy, etc. This includes the printing of text or type; the fonts need to
be crisp, and often this means using a RIP to more accurately print post
script fonts.
Art type printing where the detail (acuity, hue, saturation, contrast,
complexity) are of less importance is another matter.
Photographic printing needs a coated paper.
Art printing does not, since absorbtion and spread of ink is often a
benefit.
Coated papers come two ways: single sided and double sided. Unless you have
a special or odd format, books need double sided papers. Also double sided
paper lays flatter. Finally, assuming that every page has type or image or
both, a book needs a double sided, coated paper.
Coated inkjet papers also come either with optical brighteners or without
(natural). The bright white papers with optical brighteners are easier to
use to achieve spectacular prints. But the brighteners will fade in time
leaving you with just a natural paper for which the print was not balanced
for and will then look worse than a print that was balanced for and printed
on a natural paper in the first place. You are better off beginning with a
natual surface and doing the hard work of getting the image you want. That
is assuming you have any ethical consideration for you market and respect
for your product.
Inkjet papers also come as rag or pulp. Obviously all rag is preferred for
archival reasons.
For art printing uncoated papers are often better. Choice, then, becomes a
matter of expense. Arches is expensive and there are other paper makers with
the same quality, look and feel for far less money. A tsome point the name
Arches is useful as a marketing ploy.
Finally, there are the other, non-paper substrates, largely used in binding
but sometimes for prints or text; fabric, sandpaper, metal, glass, board,
wood veneer, lucite, etc.
These often require coating. In the case of fabric you have to adhere the
cloth to something stiffer like paper using tape, glue or ironing to freezer
paper.


    > 3)  Has anyone tried Arches Infinity paper?  I just read about it -
Arches
    > with a special purportedly archival coating specially designed
specifically
    > for inkjet printing - it's Arches, but coated on one side to improve
print
    > quality.  If so, what was your experience?  Is it much better than
plain old
    > Arches (It's wildly expensive...so I'd hope there's a big difference)?
See above. One sided paper tends to be too limiting for books. I tend to use
Moab Entrada, a natural, double sided rag from Inkjetgoodies. InkJetArts
makes Illuminata which is very similar. Hawk Mountain papers makes some
double sided papers as doe Hahnamhule.



    > 4) Do you think using this type of technology is a good idea for
accordion
    > books, in which the prints will therefore be FACING each other, and
possibly
    > rubbing against each other a bit?
I always spray everything. It improves archival longevity. It prevents
damage by abrassion or water.
Spray over your inkjet prints, which are, after all, nothing more than spray
paint layed over paper. The surface is rightly called tender.
As for sprays, many do smell. Specially Krylon since they changed their
formulations. The stink does not fade with time and is probably toxic too
boot. Get Print Guard or Print Shield. It costs more but you need less and
it has a very slight odor which does fade away.
The spray are perfectly invisible except when spraying a gloss image, for
which there is probalbly some gloss version. Krylon does have one, but the
toxic smell is truly powerful and never goes away.
Also, most glossy papers contain wood pulp and are, therefore, suspect.
Accordian books do allow for a format with a blank backside and so one sided
paper is usable. The only downside being the tendency for ond sided paper to
curl slightly.


        > 5) It seems like folks have had success (from what I've read)
hand-coloring
        > these inkjet prints - any experiences to the contrary, warnings,
hints?
I have painted over inkjet images using water based materials such as
acrylic and even gold or silver for illminating. You could use other
materials, such as lacquer based paints. The over sprays are lacquer based.
If you are concerned about smear, then use the acrylic or lacquer over
sprays first.
This is simply a matter of experimentation, so there is no real limitation.
Another nice benefit to two sided papers is that bad prints can simply be
flipped over and you can print again, or use the backside for test prints
and experimentation. A bad print on a single sided paper is just trash.

Michael Andrews

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