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Last Layer, The: New methods in digital printing for photography, fine art, and mixed media

By Bonny Pierce Lhotka

Published by New Riders

Published Date: Apr 13, 2013

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In The Last Layer–the follow-up to Digital Alchemy, her successful book on alternative printmaking techniques–Bonny Lhotka teaches how to make prints that take their inspiration from early printmaking processes. In this book, Lhotka shows readers step-by-step how to create modern-day versions of anthotypes, cyanotypes, tintypes, and daguerreotypes as well as platinum and carbon prints. She also reinvents the photogravure and Polaroid transfer processes and explores and explains groundbreaking techniques for combining digital images with traditional monotype, collograph, and etching press prints. By applying these classic techniques to modern images, readers will be able to recreate the look of historical printmaking techniques and explore the limits of their creative voice. Best of all, the only equipment required is a desktop inkjet printer that uses pigment inks, and a handful of readily available materials and supplies–not the toxic chemicals once required to perform these very same processes.
Leveraging her training as a traditional painter and printmaker, Bonny Lhotka brings new innovations and inventions that combine the best of centuries of printmaking technique with modern technology to create unique works of art and photography. After years of experimentation and development, these new processes allow alternative photographers, traditional printer makers, and 21st century digital artists to express their creative voice in ways never before possible. 

Table of Contents



Section I: Basics

Chapter 1: Introduction

Chapter 2: Materials

Chapter 3: Equipment

Chapter 4: Finding a Voice


Section II: Aged Aluminum Plates

Chapter 5: Introduction to Aged Plates

Chapter 6: new Vintage Tintypes transfer

Chapter 7: Direct Imaging to Aged Plates 

Chapter 8: Gallery of Work                       


Section III: Transformed by Light

Chapter 9: Introduction to Photosensitive Processes

Chapter 10: Photopolymer Plate Process

Chapter 11: Chlorophyll Emulsion Process

Chapter 12: Flow Blue Fabrics

Chapter 13: Gallery of Work


Section IV: Creative Substrates

Chapter 14: Introduction to Creative Substrates

Chapter 15: Transfer to Flexible Substrates

Chapter 16: Mixed Media / Layered Transfers

Chapter 17: Stone Paper Monoprints

Chapter 18: Pearloid Transfer to Glass

Chapter 19: Gallery of Work


Section V: Finishing up and New Work

Chapter 20: Postcoats and Finishing

Chapter 21: Gallery of Work