Platinum & Palladium Printmaking By Tim Layton
Platinum prints are the most sought-after type of fine art print.
Only a very small percentage of photographers in the world have the knowledge and skill to create a body of work via the platinum printmaking process, making them rare and valuable.
Handmade platinum prints are the most archival piece of art that you can purchase, they can last indefinitely because the noble metals never deteriorate.
I have a detailed step-by-step quick start guide and videos that walk you through everything you need to know so you can make platinum and palladium handmade prints.
No other art medium, including paintings, can compete with the archival qualities of platinum and palladium.
Tim Layton, an artistic innovator invented the Platinum HistographTM, inviting you to use your senses to take a step back in time. This visceral experience of holding history in your hands delights history buffs, art collectors, photographers and art enthusiasts with craftsmanship, artistry, and history through a curated collection of fine platinum prints that opens up the joy of collecting fine art in the 21st century.
"In a busy world where photography has become a commodity, I have chosen to stay the course and create traditional handcrafted platinum prints." -Tim Layton
The matte finish is characteristic of a platinum print. The platinum sensitizer, a mixture of ferric oxalate and metal salts of platinum and palladium, are coated onto and absorbed into the fibers of the 100% cotton rag archival paper.
The fact that the emulsion is in the fibers of the paper as well as on top of the paper, the fine art platinum print a unique feeling and sense of tactility that doesn't exist with modern-day computer-generated inkjet prints. It’s as though you can reach out and touch the subjects in a handmade platinum print.
Due to the impervious properties of platinum and palladium noble metals and the absorption of the sensitizing layer into the fiber of the paper, platinum prints have a matte finish ensuring there is no glare or hot spots from any angle.
The matte finish and visible grain in the paper lend itself to crisp, well-defined edges, soft gradient mid-tones, and luminescent highlights.
The highlights of a platinum print offer themselves to a depth of image some people describe to have a three-dimensionality.
Platinum prints can range from cool to warm blacks to reddish or sandy browns based on the choices and skill of the photographer.
I don't outsource any part of my fine art platinum printmaking process. If you are a collector, this is important because you know that I am in complete control of the entire platinum printmaking process from beginning to end as opposed to some photographers that send out their printmaking to master printmakers like me.
When you purchase a fine art platinum print from me, you know you are getting a handcrafted piece of original art that is directly connected to my soul.
Developing Wild Horses of Missouri - The Nomads Platinum Print by Tim Layton
WHY PLATINUM PRINTS ARE SO VALUABLE TO COLLECTORS
The tonal range of platinum is unmistaken once you have seen the difference in person. The gradation between tonal values is unparalleled by any other kind of fine art print, especially in the shadow values. Platinum and palladium prints don't look like contemporary computer-generated prints, and I think that is a good thing.
Platinum prints are collectible pieces of art that can be passed down many generations because of the archival qualities, classic ethereal beauty, and proven track record as a solid investment.
Unlike the traditional darkroom silver printing method, platinum and palladium metals lie on the paper surface, compared to the darkroom prints where silver is down in the gelatin layer.
The absence of a binder layer in the paper allows very fine crystals of platinum and palladium to be embedded into the paper giving it a three-dimensional appearance that must be experienced in person to fully understand and appreciate. This unique quality is not visible from digital images on a computer screen.
Because platinum is suspended on matte paper, it is much more diffuse than glossy silver gelatin prints which are prone to specular reflections that allow you to enjoy the fine print from any angle of view.
Platinum, like gold, is a stable metal, with platinum being the most stable of all metals.
Wild Horses of Missouri Platinum Print "Heavy Burden" by Tim Layton
ABOUT PLATINUM PRINTMAKING
Platinum printing is one of the oldest photographic processes, dating back to the 1870’s. Platinum prints are noted for their subtlety in rendering the tonalities of the middle grays especially. Many people have described their viewing experience as very rich and three-dimensional.
Platinum is the most archival of all photographs, and it is impervious to light fading and acid damage. A platinum print is capable of lasting thousands of years without change. In fact, the platinum never changes, only the paper that it is suspended on can change and that is why the choice of paper is critical to the archival properties of the artwork.
No other type of print, analog or digital, has the emotional impact and elegance of a platinum print.
I certify and disclose the exact platinum materials for every limited edition print that I sell. A test with an XRF X-Ray fluoroscopy scope can validate that my prints are accurately disclosed.
"Of all the modern printing processes at the command of the photographer, whether amateur or professional, none deserves to be more popular than the platinum." -Alfred Stieglitz
Some of the most notable photographers in history used the platinum process: Imogen Cunningham, F. Holland Day, Frederick H. Evans, Irving Penn, Edward Steichen, Alfred Stieglitz, Paul Strand, and Edward Weston. I have personally viewed platinum prints from Irving Penn, Edward Steichen, Alfred Stieglitz, and Paul Strand. Emotion overtook me when I experienced the beauty and elegance of their platinum prints. This experience continues to motivate me today.
Wild Horses of Missouri Platinum Print "The Nomads" by Tim Layton