Learning Event 3:
DESCRIBE PRINT FINISHING
1. Print Spotting. Spots may be caused by materials sticking to the
negative during printing, by abrasion of the emulsion, by emulsion defect,
by negative spotting, or by excessive density in small areas of the
negative. The removal of these marks is called print spotting. In prints,
defects range in tone from white to black and the technique for removing
them varies according to the tone of the spot, the surface of the paper, and
the medium used to darken the area. Any print surface from glossy to matte
can be spotted.
a. Spotting glossy prints. Most prints require some spotting even if
it is just to cover up minor dust spots. Spotting is sometimes used to
correct or tone down certain areas. Highlight areas which appear too bright
in the print may be difficult to remove from the negative with an etching
knife; but if they are small, these areas can be toned down by spotting.
Glossy paper surfaces, especially ferrotyped surfaces, cannot be spotted
with lead pencils without first applying retouching fluid to the surface, to
provide a rough surface for the lead to cling to. Apply the retouching
fluid to the spot using a cotton swab; and when the surface is dry, fill in
the spot with pencil until it can no longer be seen at the normal viewing
distance. The selection of the correct pencil is very important. The
lighter the spot and the darker the area surrounding it, the softer the lead
must be. For example, a white spot in a highlight area should cover easily
with a 3H pencil; however, a white spot in a gray area might require a 3B or
b. Spotting semimatte and matte prints. Prints that are not glossy
are usually either semimatte or matte. A semimatte print has a very
slight gloss, while a matte print is completely without gloss. The luster
surfaces, smooth luster, rough luster, silk, linen, crystal, etc., come
under the general classification of semimatte. Some of the semimatte
surfaces are so smooth that they very nearly approach the surface of
unferrotyped glossy paper. If there are white spots on a dark background on
prints of these surfaces, they may have to be spotted, using the same
retouching fluid and techniques as for glossy prints.
c. Spotting matte prints is comparatively simple. The surface of the
paper has a naturally rough surface, and crayon pencils take very well.
Never use lead pencils on a matte surface. They leave bright metallic marks
which are more prominent from certain angles than the spot. Black crayon
Liquid spotting colors are also excellent for this type of corrective work.