I think we're on the right road at last. We've made several changes to get to this point. Using the Epson Stylus Pro 3800 helped. It's the first printer that didn't fight us every step of the way with software issues, density problems, refusal to feed transparency material and clogged jets.
Having a printer we could trust let us get our adjustment curves closer to right than they've ever been.
We also made a few changes to our procedure. We gave up on coating with a rod. We just couldn't get the dark blue we wanted. Now we use a sponge brush. We coat, dry a while and coat again. It may use more chemistry, but it seems to be working.
We had a mental breakthrough on drying coated paper as well. We'd been letting it sit, but today we hung it on a line. It dried with less puddling, and a lot more quickly as well.
We'd been using a small contact frame. It worked, but it meant we could only expose one sheet at a time. We liberated a flat board, found some foam in a iMac shipping box and repurposed a 16x20 sheet of picture frame glass to make our own contact frame.
We've grown so accustomed to failure that we were almost surprised that our efforts yielded exactly what we were after. Though we think we should have been at this point about a year ago, at least we are here now. We have a few photos to print to create a series, then, because we are apparently experts now we'll take on toning cyanotypes.
|Board, foam from an iMac box and taped picture frame glass. It works.|