Inkjet on Gold Leaf printing…almost perfect


The mat board is ready for printing with its coats of acrylic paint, adhesive size, gold leaf, and finally a coat of InkAid on it.Here it is coming out of the front port of the Epson R2400 printer – looking good. And here it is, looking perfect. No ‘pizza’ wheel tracks, and no smudging or smearing. All that is lacking is the final coat of protective varnish. I am going to let it dry overnight before I apply that. I was not so lucky with a second print. It had a smudge shadow on its left side, although I had run a couple of clean pieces of board through the printer before printing the image. On top of that, I inadvertently touched part of the print smearing it with my finger. However, I am delighted with the first print & will call the session a success.
Again, I am not really able to scan or photograph these prints so they look the way they appear ‘in the flesh.’ The metal leaf is just too shiny – this snapshot is about as close as I can come to show a representation of the print. Oh, the size of the print is about 4×4 inches.

About christian harkness

Photographer and printmaker; living and working in north Florida.
This entry was posted in art, digital, Florida, photography, Southern Photography and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

5 Responses to Inkjet on Gold Leaf printing…almost perfect

  1. joslin11 says:

    I don’t hold out much chance of being able to do this as wordpress does my head in already. I thought I had posted that this is very inspirational but it seems not.

  2. Hey Joslin, many thanks. I sure appreciate the encouragement!

  3. John Atchley says:

    Wonderful work Christian. I am in the process of trying some work with gold leaf. I though I would print on transparency film and then gold leaf on top of that. First thing I find is that the sizing smeared the pigment ink, so that’s not the way. Next thing is how the heck to handle the gold leaf as it jumped out of the paper and onto my fingers! this is definitely going to be a learning experience. So maybe the way you are doing it is the way to go. I am curious as to where you get those larger sheets of leaf. I ended up with little 1×1 sheets. Can you actually run a sheet of mat board through your Epson? Wow.

    • John – on the mat board – that’s no problem if you have an Epson that has a front loading feature. I think all the 13 inch printers have this. I also think you can at least run a 2 ply sheet through the regular sheet feed on most printers.

  4. Many thanks for your comment John.Here are a couple of thoughts/comments on what you wrote.
    On the transparency film, how about if you printed on one side and then gold-leafed the other, would that work?
    Ya, gold leaf is very tricky to handle, you can’t have any air movement or static around. Now, you need to know that most of my ‘gold leaf’ work was/is actually done with Speedball Metal Leaf, The leaves are bigger than actual gold leaf and of course, way cheaper, and so handling them does not cause me the same kind of anxiety real gold leaf does. You may want to try working with them first. I must say the real gold leaf I have used, especially the more ‘white’ gold, really looks fantastic.
    Now if you really get into this, I believe one can actually buy rolls of real gold leaf, but of course, that would require a bit of an investment, and you realize that it is easy to make a large piece of gold leaf covered substrata, the leaves go together pretty seamlessly as long as you overlap them a bit and brush off the extra gold leaf with a stiff brush.
    I have not worked with gold leaf in a while, but don’t hesitate to write if I can answer any questions. Best wishes – christian

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