— Dane Creek

More Experiments with Aluminum

At David’s suggestion I called around and found that trophy supply shops can supply pre-cut sheets of aluminum, 12 x 24”, covered in a protective piece of plastic. I figured I’d give it a try and ordered three sheets: satin aluminum, shiny aluminum, and gold-coloured steel.

I finally had a chance to give them a try this weekend. I also decided to use the ICC profile from Booksmart Studio instead of my custom profile to see if that would resolve the issues I had printing in colour last time. Finally, I learned that I can configure any media type on the printer to use the front feed path, so following the instructions at Booksmart Studio I used Semi-Glossy Photo Paper instead of POP Board for these tests.

WOW. What a difference.


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Satin aluminum

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Shiny aluminum (and also a self-portrait!)

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Gold-coloured steel

Yay! As you can tell from the two iceberg images the colour problems are solved. The quick photographs don’t do these justice. The icebergs just leap off the page. The shiny aluminum is way too shiny but it was fun to test on. The gold steel is very interesting and works great with my B&W beach images.

At the moment the last remaining issue I have is figuring out how to get clean coatings on the aluminum. You can’t tell in the photo but the satin aluminum coating is awful. There’s dog fur in it and thumbprints everywhere. The shiny aluminum is much better but has streaks (which you can see in the top left of the image). That particular piece was also a test of just doing a single coating of InkAid instead of two.

I’ve tried spraying the InkAid, diluted 10% with distilled water, but it was a complete disaster. Runs everywhere and the stuff came out of my Wagner HPLV sprayer in gobs instead of a nice fine mist. I may try one of David’s really fancy brushes instead of the cheap foam brushes I’m using currently.