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

New Riders
2
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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.
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About the author

An inventor and innovator, Bonny Pierce Lhotka is a co-founder of the digital artist collaborative, Digital Atelier, whose members research and develop techniques to leverage digital imaging in fine art application. Lhotka organized “Digital Atelier: A printmaking studio for the 21st century” at the Smithsonian American Art Museum where she was an Artist-in-Residence for three weeks. She is a recipient of the Smithsonian/Computerworld Technology in the Arts Award and is the producer of educational DVDs from Digital Art Studio Seminars. Lhotka is the author of Digital Alchemy: Printmaking techniques for fine art, photography, and mixed media.

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Additional Information

Publisher
New Riders
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Published on
Apr 9, 2013
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Pages
320
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ISBN
9780133373004
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Language
English
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Genres
Computers / Desktop Applications / Desktop Publishing
Photography / Techniques / Digital
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Eligible for Family Library

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In Digital Alchemy, acclaimed printmaker Bonny Pierce Lhotka shows how to turn your standard inkjet printer into a seemingly magical instrument capable of transforming your printed images into true works of art. Using plenty of visuals and straightforward terms, Lhotka walks you step-by-step through over a dozen projects. Forget printing on boring old paper, in Digital Alchemy, you’ll learn how to transfer and print images to a variety of surfaces including metal, wood, fabric, stone, and plastic using the techniques Lhotka’s spent years developing.

If you’re a photographer looking for new ways to personalize your work or a digital artist who’s ready to take your work to the next level, you’ll find all of the tools, techniques, and inspiration you need in this book. Lhotka’s enthusiasm for experimenting with unusual printing materials and processes has led her to create new and amazing transfer techniques, including one that resembles a Polaroid™ transfer on steroids. She also shows you how to make prints using unexpected, everyday materials such as hand sanitizer and gelatin. You’ll even learn direct printing, the technique for sending your custom substrate through your printer almost as if it were paper.

In Digital Alchemy, you’ll learn how to:
Transfer images to metal, wood, plastic, and other materials that will not feed through an inkjet printer
Print directly on metal for a fraction of the cost of using a print service
Simulate a print from an expensive UV flatbed printer using an inexpensive desktop printer
Use carrier sheets and paintable precoats to print on almost any surface
Achieve near-lithographic quality digital prints with transfer processes to uncoated fine art paper
In addition to the tutorials in the book, you can watch Lhotka in action on the included DVD-ROM, which has over 60 minutes of video footage where you’ll learn how to perform an alcohol gel transfer, transfer an image to a wooden surface, use your inkjet printer to achieve remarkable prints, and more. Simply insert the DVD-ROM into your computer's DVD drive. Note, this DVD-ROM will not work in TV DVD players.
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Don’t bother reading this book unless you’re ready to get your hands dirty.

In Hacking the Digital Print, artist Bonny Lhotka redefines what it means to be a photographer. For one thing, you don't always need Photoshop to alter the reality you capture through your lens. In this book, you’ll learn how to create unique images using tools you make and modify yourself. Lhotka shows you how to use analog distortion filters, custom textures, and lens modifiers to create images that look like you made them, not an app. You’ll also learn how to re-create classic printmaking techniques using non-toxic digital alternatives, including a water-based transfer solution that’s safe to use anywhere, whether it’s the studio, classroom, or kitchen counter.

Anyone can push a button and create a nice print–there is little challenge in getting a high-quality image out of a desktop printer these days. Lhotka shows you how to take your work to the next level by printing on materials such as wood, glass, plastics, and metal. For the truly adventurous, Lhotka shares her custom techniques for taking photographs and applying them to 3D-printed objects created with popular consumer 3D printers.

Part artist/part mad scientist, Lhotka has spent many hours experimenting, hacking, and tearing things apart to discover new ways to take, make, and print images. She encourages you to take the techniques you’ll learn in this book, hack them, and make them your own. With some techniques you will fail. It will be messy. You will try and have to try again. But in the process, you will make your own exciting discoveries, find solutions to your own problems, and create a body of work that is uniquely yours.

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