The Coke Ovens Photogravure Project

Project Overview

Date: November 25, 2019

Artist: Dave Hanson

Working Title: The Coke Ovens

Source Image: High resolution digital landscape image photographed in Utah by Dave Hanson.

Objective: Edition photograph as a large-sized, 30×40″ limited edition photogravure of 50.

Notes: Also considering editioning a smaller sized print in sepia on washi.

Project Status:  We are currently proofing Dave’s large photogravure edition for release in early 2020.

Curing the Film Positive

Film Positive for Coke Ovens by Dave Hanson
Film Positive for Coke Ovens by Dave Hanson

Film positive is always darker than the print

Film Positive for Coke Ovens by Dave Hanson

Finished plate ready for inking.

Finished Plate Ready for Inking!
Finished Plate Ready for Inking!

Video: Pulling the First Proof

First Proof

First Proof - Coke Ovens by Dave Hanson
First Proof - Coke Ovens by Dave Hanson

The first round of proofing found this plate to be a little bit too light. We were able to achieve a wide range of grayscale tones, but with not enough blacks however.  Unfortunately, every image is different, and will often require more than one plate before getting it perfect.  Nothing can be done with a plate that’s too light, other than to repurpose it for duotone prints, or recycle it.

Our larger polymer photogravure plates are more challenging to work with and print due to the larger surface area.  They can also be quite fragile compared to coarser methods for making plates. In this case we will need to modify the file to increase density and reshoot the plate. Also considering releasing this image as a smaller print in sepia on heavy, Kita Kata gampi paper. To be continued…

Digital mockup using sepia ink:

The Coke Ovens - Photogravure by Dave Hanson