Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Monday, December 23, 2013

Belskie Museum

"Unusual" Art show
Dates: January 5 - 26, 2013

The Belskie Museum of Art and Science
280 High Street
Closter, NJ 07624

Opening January 5th, 1 - 5 pm.
Stop by and see the show!

Press Release

Friday, December 06, 2013

Winter Solstice Show at Griffin Museum

Dates: December 12 - 23
Reception: December 12, 6:00-8:00 pm

at The Griffin Museum of Photography
67 Shore Road
Winchester, MA 01890

Thursday, December 05, 2013

Los Angeles Center for Digital Art

Dec. 12, 2013 - Jan. 4, 2014
Reception: December 12, 7-9pm

Wednesday, December 04, 2013

Fort Worth Community Arts Center

9x12 Show

 Dates: December 6 - 27, 2013
Reception: Dec. 6th, 6pm - 9pm

Fort Worth Community Arts Center
1300 Gendy Street
Fort Worth, TX 76107

Tuesday, December 03, 2013

Ritual at 110 Church Gallery

in Philadelphia

It's a one-page book show in which many artist folded a single piece of paper into a booklet (usually 8 pages).  Mine started with a single pieces of 11" x 17" paper.

The animation below is shown in the order that the folded book reads.
It is titled, "Ritual Ballet Repetition Pattern".  Essentially, it was an excuse to draw motion, since I've been teaching two sections of life drawing all semester, with models that were holding still for twenty minutes at a time.  Drawing a dancing figure was an obvious opposite to the still figures.  Much of the photography I've been editing has dark vignetting bringing focus to the center.  Also, I had just watched the latest James Bond movie.

The images on the back of the paper are pretty interesting.  The marker bled through and made some varied marks, that ,with some slight enhancement, made for some lively little drawings.

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

"Exposure" at Open Shutter Gallery

December 6, 2013 - January 9, 2014

Reception on Friday, Dec. 6

This photogravure is one of many images in the show (juried by Cara Weston)

735 Main Avenue
Durango, CO
(970) 382-8355

Friday, November 22, 2013

Art In a Box

Art In A Box
2013 Benefit Holiday Art Exhibition
for Children at Risk
held at Cheryl Pelavin Gallery

preview link opens on Monday, Dec 2, 2013 at 7 am
and the sale starts online on December 6th at 12:01 AM

Holiday Party, Reception, and Last Chance to purchase art
Thursday, December 12th from 5 - 8 pm

Cheryl Pelavin Gallery
13 Jay Street
New York, NY 10013

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Making Photogravures With Polymer Plates (Book)

The book is ready!

photogravure instruction book

$11.99  Introductory price.

available through Amazon

ISBN-13: 978-0615919218

ISBN-10: 0615919219 

Learn photogravure with this step-by-step instruction book. It has over 250 images and 140 pages of explanations that reveal what is needed to use steel reinforced, photo sensitive polymer, to create stunning intaglio plates.  

Applicable for experts and beginners alike, individuals with small home-made darkrooms or large universities, the methods shown will open the possibilities of intaglio image making without the need for acids, high v.o.c. solvents, fine rosin dust, or petrochemical asphaltum. The aquatint and image are made with film positives and UV light. The plates are etched with water. Both traditional oil based inks and modern "safe" etching inks can be used to make the final print.   

Photogravure is a photo-mechanical process in which etching ink is pushed into the recesses of a fine matrix ("aquatint") of a printing plate. Excess ink is wiped from the surface by hand. Damp cotton paper is run through an etching press with the inked plate, where it picks up the image. The resulting print is one of the most archivally stable ways of photographic reproduction known.   

Included inside the book is a unique method for visually creating adjusted digital transparencies. The technique can easily be adopted for the creation of digital negatives for any of the "alternative" photographic processes that are seeing a resurgence in recent years.   

Practitioners of polymer photogravure are not limited to just photographs. The same plates make beautiful etchings and reproductions of hand drawn images. Many artists use hybrid drawing and photographic methods to create intricate and beautiful work with the polymer plates. 


Here us a link to a video that shows printing in real time...

Sunday, October 27, 2013

6 year old design still going strong

I did this six or seven years ago.  Made a couple of screens to put it on a tshirt.  The screens are still good.  I also uploaded it to Cafepress so that people in other states can enjoy the design.  (here is the link)

Friday, October 25, 2013

"Place" at ARPNY, Long Island City, NY

Calling all NYC friends !!!

November 16 - 29, 2013

Fairleigh Dickinson University (Metropolitain Campus)
Art Department Faculty
Art Show

at Artist Residency Program New York
38 - 65 12th St.
Long Island City, NY

November 16
3 - 5 pm

Friday, October 11, 2013

Photogravures with KM73 (book update)

In late August, while preparing syllabi and accompanying course materials for my university teaching position, the hard drive on my computer, as well as some of the backup information, crashed.  I lost the book.  The first priority was to rebuild course information for the classes that were starting up.  It took a few sleepless nights, but I was able to get my teaching materials together fast enough so that the students taking the classes did not notice anything out of the ordinary.  The photogravure instruction book, however, has taken longer to put back together.

At this point, I have all of the images arranged in InDesign, and have been re-writing the content from what hand-written notes I have.  The process is slow because I'm now carefully making backup copies.  I'll make a big push this week to see how much I can get done.  After this week, I should be able to approximate the new publishing date.

I am considering some kind of feedback mechanism, in which owners of the book can comment and direct any later editions.  It will probably be something as simple as a dedicated email address.


Losing all of this digital data has reinforced my belief that images and text on paper are still better ways to archive historical information.  From an art perspective, no virtual image can replace the experience of viewing a physical artifact.  The physicality of a print (drawing, book, notes, etc) has a presence that engages not only the visual sense, but also the sense of touch.  The tactile quality exists, and can be felt, even if the viewer does not actually touch the object.  I believe that this presence is even felt on a small scale.  Think of the impression of quality difference between business cards that are printed with and inkjet printers vs. those that use an offset printing process.  The raised letters have a physical impression that might only be perceived on an unconscious level, but their added dimension stimulates another sensory experience.

Finished the Black and White version of the book.
Here is a link to the Amazon page.

and, since videos help, here is a link to a video showing the printing process in real time...

Monday, August 12, 2013

re: Drawing and Printmaking (at Prince George's Community College)

An invitation from John Anderson (curator of the show) read (in part):

"The general theme of the exhibit is to explore an overview of drawing techniques and applications, to include representational, abstract, narrative, illustration, cartoon, process, alternative processes, and automated.

I've invited you because I was initially interested in how the drawing process translates to the printing process, and would like to exhibit available prints from the Pathfinding series"

Show dates:  August 19 - September 25
Reception:  September 12
Location:  Marlboro Gallery (Marlboro Hall)
Prince George's Community College
301 Largo Road
Kettering, MD 20774

Sunday, August 11, 2013

Kawanhee Boathouse Chair (book)

This is a reproduction of a journal that documents a summer of contemplating the concept of "place" by engaging in work to define "place" through projects; a place in time, a place in location, a place in history.

It includes plans to the Kawanhee Boathouse chair, which became the main focus of this project. The chair is simple to make and very sturdy. It is intended to be compact and should weather the seasons well. Everything can be done with a chop saw and drill. All wood is standard 2x4 that can be cut at home or by the local lumber yard.

Make your own Kawanhee Boathouse Chair!

Make your own place!

Friday, August 02, 2013

Helianthus Annuus

photogravure diptych of the husk and bloom of a sunflower.  (by Scott Barnes)

Calyx (bud/husk), Corolla (petals)

There are still a few more things to write, but most of the book is being reviewed by select people that I trust to give me feedback while respecting the vision I have for the project.  I suspect, since it is now August, and people are on vacation, the publishing date will be delayed by a couple of weeks.  I still expect to have it ready for printing in September with a public release date that will immediately follow.  

The diptych above is shown in its first state.  The image on the left ("Calyx") is unchanged, so what you see here is the final version.  I decided to burn out some of the cloud background in the image on the right ("Corolla"), allowing the fully bloomed sunflower more prominence.

I am experimenting with 2 and 3 color versions of each image, inking a-la-squeegee.  "Calyx" has seen some success, while "Corolla" needs some more tinkering to achieve the full richness of the black & white versions.   I am looking forward to playing with this image some more at the end of August.

(update:  August 1, 2013)

I had a little bit of success with "Corolla" at the last minute.  It makes getting back to this place in September even more encouraging.  Below is a quickly-photographed print to show the direction the print is headed.

I think that I just need to find a different yellow and the image will be complete.

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Dam Stairs (updated)

This is the first version of this photogravure (km73 polymer).  It's a little flat for my taste so I have reworked the digital version.  I like how dark it is, and think that the problem is that I applied the normal adjustment curve to an image that doesn't have many subtle gradients.  I think that the new transparency will have very little adjustment curve (just a bit to keep a separation between 80 & 90%).  High contrast and scratchy is the aesthetic of this industrial image so the characteristics of the sensitive KM73 plate will be perfect for it.
Update August 1, 2013
Different transparency, different UV exposure unit with different times, different (new) plate makes lots of difference....  ; )

This is good because the original capture (and what pulled me to take the photo) showed the linear highlights that danced around a dingy environment.  It was like an low-key HDR image right in front of me, in real life, without a bunch of digital tweaking.  I suppose that industrial settings can do that.

Sunday, July 28, 2013

Daisies or Black Eyed Susans?

The fun with monochrome is that you really have to know the difference between the two while not relying on color differences.  

Rudbeckia Hirta

Friday, July 26, 2013


photogravure looking northwest from the summit towards the notch in the cliff face where the Loop Trail emerges.  

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Inking a la squeegee

Multi-color intaglio prints that use only one plate require extra care to prepare, wipe, and print.  Normally this is associated with inking "a la poupee" ("with the doll"), in which each color is applied with small hand-made "dolls" of tarlatan; one for each color.  I prefer to use squeegee cutoffs; whether they are cardboard or plastic.  So, since this water lilly was not prepared with little tarlatan dolls, but with little pieces of squeegee, then I consider it inked "a la squeegee".  

White Water Lily
(nymphaea odorata, nymphaea tuberosa)

Friday, July 05, 2013

The HAND (magazine)

The first edition of The HAND Magazine includes some of my work.  It is printed and shipping to subscribers now.  Click through to the website to see what they are all about.  I'm excited to be a part of the start of an exciting new venture of "printmakers and photographers whose work emphasizes the hand made"  (from The HAND Magazine's manifesto)

a better picture for you to appreciate the included image...

Wednesday, July 03, 2013

Did You Hear?

or some such reference to a tree falling in the woods.......   (not quite sure what to name this intaglio polymer photogravure print)

A tree falling in the woods makes me think of the internet (bear with me a moment here).  A solitary tree, when it falls (or is felled), will make a noise.  The philosophical question is about whether or not anyone notices the noise, thus has their attention drawn to the event of the tree falling.  Imagine a deep forest, with many trees, and very few distractions.  Surely you'd hear a tree falling.  Now imagine the internet.  Millions of people are "heard" everyday, but do they really exist?  Or, is the white noise loud enough to deafen everyone else to the sound of a single tree falling?  I suppose if one were to pay close attention, then the tree would be noticed.

So, the book.  I'm waiting for some supplies to arrive this week.  While I wait, I'm going into the woods for a few days.  I might as well listen to the trees for a while, before I am called back to the cacophony of "civilization" that houses my studio space.  A step away from documenting and writing about this (polymer) photogravure process will give me the time to remember some things that I may find the need to include.  It will also allow me the space to figure out which steps are superfluous and which are important to think about and have while learning this process.  When I think about it now, this will be a good thing.

Monday, July 01, 2013

photomechanical printing book update

Working hard to keep this first edition affordable, I think that I can keep the price to $20 (or less, depending on the final edit size).

Instruction photos that are finished:
*  Photoshop and printing a transparency with an inkjet printer
*  Exposing the KM73 plate to a stochastic screen, image transparency, washout and heat setting.
*  Preparing plate, paper, and ink for printing.
*  Printing
*  Cleanup

I need to re-shoot some processes at the end of this week:
*  Finding a base exposure time for the stochastic screen and transparency.
*  Home made step wedge to make workflow-specific adjustment curves.
*  Some problem plates for a troubleshooting section.

One decision that I have to make soon:
*  What is the title of the book?

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Intaglio photography book (photogravure with KM73 plates)

as I mentioned here, I'm writing a book about the intaglio/photographic process that I've been using for the past couple of years.  The digital image documentation for the first workflow is finished.  My goal was to make it comprehensive enough to be useful without overkill.  I think that the best way to achieve this will be to make the two version of the instruction book more different than just color or black & white (as I originally planned).

Here is the new idea:

The first edition will be all black & white printing that will demonstrate the workflow I use for most of my own art.  It will show how the above image was made, with the preliminary steps needed to set up the studio.  I hope to keep this edition under 120 pages.  It should be affordable for most people, and will hopefully inspire them to explore this process.

The next edition will be Full Color with expanded workflows, using a variety of exposure units and printing techniques.  There are some secrets that are not often discussed who's time has come to be revealed.  This edition will be much larger than the black & white edition, and is aimed at those who need a text book for the process, or who just like to know as much as they can about a process.

I think this new plan will change the publishing timetable I mentioned before.  I suspect that the black & white version will be finished in time for publishing in early August.  The Full Color edition will take until the middle of this Fall or early Winter (I want to get it right, and not rush to publish).
Finished the Black and White version of the book.
Here is a link to the Amazon page.

and, since videos help, here is a link to a video showing the printing process in real time...

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

"Honorable Mention" by Fotographic Initiatives in Education and Research (FIER)

My photogravure, titled "Campsite Quanta" has received an honorable mention, is currently displayed in the online gallery, and will be included in the book from The World Landscape by FIER.

It was part of a competition called "The Romantic Landscape".  I believe that they are doing a second edition of the competition, and will publish the winners of both in a book some time this winter (2013/2014). 

(update Nov. 26, 2013):  use promo code DOUBLEPLAY to get a discount on the book

Monday, June 03, 2013

the excitement, frustration, and hard work of AltProcess is making me write a book

(polymer) Photogravure Book

The Internet is full of wonderful ideas, accurate descriptions, and helpful advice.  It is also full of repeated inaccuracies, incomplete descriptions, and answers that don’t address the question asked.  Searching through all of the information, to determine which is useful and which is not, can be a lengthy and frustrating process.  I have been through the process for the past three years while becoming increasingly proficient at making photogravures with KM73 polymer plates.  I have been asked about my workflow enough that I have finally decided to write a book about it.

I have seven goals with this instruction book:

1. Assemble information that is more comprehensive than anything I have yet to discover in my years of research into this process.

2. Reveal my entire refined workflow, sharing all tricks that I have learned, adding comments on some (good) techniques that I do not use.  I acknowledge that each artist’s workflow is unique, and that approaches other than my own can achieve similarly excellent results.

3. Photograph as many steps as possible.  My intent will be to have the photography be so comprehensive that some people may not need to read the text of the book.  As a teacher, I want to engage more than one learning style.  My aim is to make the photography as comprehensive as the text.

4. The first page of each chapter will act as a workflow summary that is both a good introduction to that stage of the workflow as well as a quick reference for artists after they have read the book.

5. I hope this book will inspire more artists to share their unique workflows with more detail.  Some good information exists on the Internet, but from far too few people.  My goal is to expand knowledge sharing within the artistic community and encourage other artist to either write their own book or be involved with an expanded second edition of this book.

6. Keep the purchase price of the book reasonable.  I believe this can be done by publishing 2 editions: one black & white and one in full color.

7. As a way to encourage more colleges and universities to experiment with this medium, this book will contain an example syllabus based on a 15-week semester.  It will also have an outline for two-day weekend workshops.


May – Outline for book
June – Principle photography while I create new gravures for the book
July – writing, re-writing, peer review and feedback, more re-writing
August – final editing
September - publishing

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Printing a Photogravure

This plate is very cooperative, with a good aquatint and an image that had a lot of texture, so the processing time was quick.  Some plates take 3 to 4 times as long to ink and wipe.

***Update  (Dec 2013)***
I wrote a book about this process, from plate-making to printing.
It is available on Amazon through this link.

Monday, April 08, 2013

Kentler International Drawing Space

is where you can see one of my small cyanotypes this month

The gallery is in Red Hook, where many people lost homes, studio space, and workshops during Hurricane Sandy.  The gallery survived the storm (though they lost things in the flooded basement), and has been reaching out to artists in the area who lost more than they did.  If you can come by to support Kentler International Drawing space, then please do.  Or, they have links on their website that will help you find ways to directly help people in the neighborhood who are still trying to piece their studios, homes, and lives back together.

here is a link to photos from the event

Tuesday, April 02, 2013

F-Stop Magazine

has included one of my images in their April exhibit

Saturday, March 30, 2013

"safety" of bottled water

"Even though the FDA standards for bottled water are similar to EPA standards for tap water, the FDA is years behind in their inspections.
In addition, FDA guidelines are not up to par with the EPA guidelines. For example:
  1. City water must be tested by government-certified labs. Bottled water companies have no such requirements.
  2. Municipal tap water must be tested for coliform bacteria 100 or more times per month compared to once a week for bottlers!
  3. Tap water is not permitted to contain E.coli or fecal coliform bacteria. This same requirement is not included in the FDA guidelines for bottled water."

Monday, March 11, 2013

Brass & Bellows

Two of my photogravures will hang in the inaugural show of a new gallery in MN

The show hangs through the month of April.

If you are in the area, stop by.
If you are far away you can click the link to see the website.
Brass & Bellows
Marine on St. Croix, MN

***updated April 8, 2013***
here is a link to installation photos of the show

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Learning, Teaching, and Beginner's Mind

"It is impossible to study ourselves without some teaching.  If you want to know what water is you need science, and the scientist needs a laboratory.  In the laboratory there are various ways in which to study what water is.  Thus it is possible to know what kind of elements water has, the various forms it takes, and its nature.  But it is impossible thereby to know water in itself.  It is the same thing with us.  We need some teaching, but just by studying the teaching alone, it is impossible to know what "I" am myself am. Through the teaching we may understand our human nature.  But the teaching is not we ourselves; it is some explanation of ourselves.  So if you are attached to the teaching, or to the teacher, that is a big mistake.  The moment you meet a teacher, you should leave the teacher, and you should be independent.  You need a teacher so that you can become independent.  If you are not attached to him, the teacher will show you the way to yourself.  You have a  teacher for yourself, not for the teacher.

Rinzai, and early Chinese Zen master, analyzed how to teach his disciples in four ways.  Sometimes he talked about the disciple himself; sometimes he talked about the teaching itself; sometimes he gave an interpretation of the disciple or the teaching; and finally, sometimes he did not give any instruction at all to his disciples.  He knew that even without being given any instruction, a student is a student.  Strictly speaking, there is no need to teach the student, because the student himself is Buddha, even though he may not be aware of it.  And even though he is aware of his true nature, if he is attached to this awareness, that is already wrong.  When he is not aware of it, he has everything, but when he becomes aware of it he thinks that he is aware of himself, which is a big mistake.

When you do not hear anything from a teacher, but just sit, this is called teaching without teaching.  But sometimes this is not sufficient, so we listen to lectures and have discussions.  But we should remember that the purpose of practice in a particular place is to study ourselves.  To be independent, we study.  Like the scientist, we have to have some means by which to study.  We need a teacher because it is impossible to study ourselves by ourselves.  But you should not make a mistake.  You should not take what you have learned with a teacher for you yourself.  The study you make with your teacher is a part of your everyday life, a part of your incessant activity.  In this sense there is no difference between the practice and the activity you have in everyday life.  So to find the meaning of your life in the zendo is to find the meaning of your everyday activity.  To be aware of the meaning of your life, you practice zazen."

pp. 85-87
"Zen Mind, Beginner's Mind"
by Shunryu Suzuki
ISBN 13: 978-1-59030-267-5

Thursday, January 24, 2013

back with more photos from the Grand Canyon

The trip was a success.  We had (relatively) warm weather, and even with the fast-pace that averaged a bit more than 20 miles on each of the short winter days, I was able to capture some new images that will supplement the on-going photogravure project.  I'm in the process of editing, but all of the fun travel/friends/vacation type of snap shots are up on the web already, at this site along with photos from several other people who were on the trip.

One of the guys on the trip made a fun edit from his wide-angle helmet camera.
It can be found with this link.

Saturday, January 12, 2013

"Pumpkin Spring"
Graphic Chemical Sepia on Rives BFK

Friday, January 11, 2013


"Cactus West"
Graphic Chemical Sepia on Rives BFK

Thursday, January 10, 2013


"Cactus East"
Graphic Chemical Sepia on Rives BFK

Wednesday, January 09, 2013

social scene in the harbor

Havasu is one of the most popular stops.  Last time, we met a couple of crews tied up to the entrance of the side canyon.  It reminded me that travelers are travelers, no matter the craft, and the harbor is always a meeting place to share stories.

"Havasu Harbor"
Graphic Chemical Sepia on Rives BFK

Tuesday, January 08, 2013

"Matkatamiba 3"  (working title)
Graphic Chemical Sepia on Rives BFK

Monday, January 07, 2013

"Matkatamiba 2"  (working title)
Graphic Chemical Sepia on Rives BFK

Sunday, January 06, 2013

Canyon REO (River Equipment Outfitters)

had outfitted us with three rafts (two years ago), named "John", "Paul", and "Ringo".  They packaged some excellent meals and provided super-friendly shuttle service. 

"Paul & Ringo"
Graphic Chemical Sepia on Rives BFK

Saturday, January 05, 2013

Moon risen, Sun setting, Stars emerging

on this night, where we found a terraced campsite in which almost everyone slept without setting up shelter.  I spent the night drifting in and out, as I was lulled to sleep by radiant stars in a clear night sky, soon to be awake with excitement to look over the high horizon of the canyon's edge again and gaze out into the universe.  It had to be the most restful restless night I have ever had.

"Upper Ledges"
Graphic Chemical Sepia on Rives BFK

Friday, January 04, 2013

Grand Canyon

That is simply the name of this photogravure.  The image shows the beautiful range of high-contrast and subtle tonality that keeps shifting on a trip like this.  I cannot describe or portray the complexity of light that is pervasive in the Grand Canyon.  I try, but I cannot fully explain it to anyone who has not been there.  Those who have experienced a similar trip are only agreeing that they have seen it too, but must admit that words fail to describe the experience, and pictures only capture a small part of it. 

Thursday, January 03, 2013

Low Winter Sun

It's a warm desert trip when the sun is shining, but being in a mile-deep canyon one encounters many miles without direct sunlight. 

"Cool In The Shade"
Graphic Chemical Sepia on Rives BFK

Wednesday, January 02, 2013

In the heart of Marble Canyon

with Vassey's Paradise in the background, K decided to get some water from the spring trickling in from the canyon wall. She did the entire thing on the fly, while the raft was drifting with the current of the Colorado River.

"Three Graces Below Vassey's"
Graphic Chemical Sepia on Rives BFK

Tuesday, January 01, 2013

Happy New Year

Today, the LiquidLogic Kayaks crew (and guests) launch from Lee's Ferry, AZ at mile 0 on the Colorado River to make a self-supported trip through the Grand Canyon with all the needed gear stuffed inside Remix XP10.

At some point today, we should pass this same spot show in the photogravure.

"Ten Mile"
Graphic Chemical Sepia on Rives BFK

(I know this is an image of a raft, and not the LiquidLogic Remix XP10, but that was then, this is now, and I cannot show you the photos I am taking while in the canyon.  AND, I hope the place will remain enough of a wilderness that travelers can continue to be "out of touch" while in the canyon.)