Picture in a Frame

Pictures by Beckerman… mostly… Song by Tom Waits… and production by Lester G.
I asked Les if he’d do one with more of my popular images for my home page… Which he did. The idea is always to make the site as personal as possible. Of course I should’ve done some podcasts a long time ago, but frankly I never find the time for all the PR stuff.

Now a funny store. I’m sure you all remember all the problems I was having with the 7800 last week, or whenever it was – and that was a hellish week. So that got me into looking at WCI as a possible outsourcing lab. They did there usual wonderful work, and I got two prints (3 or each) from them yesterday in super packaging and re-used the packaging for the 15 x 19 print, and put the copies in a box to use as stock.

But I was so messed up – mentally that week – that I asked West Coast Imaging to print something that I already had sent out to the customer, and the one other print that I needed them to do – I didn’t upload. Brilliant. In fact, this morning I had the wrong print ready to go out when I realized I had sent it already. This has not happened before.

Anyway – so I hadn’t done any printing with the 7800 for the last week, and had left some paper towel under the print head. Not up against it – but there – under it.

So I did a test sheet, and there was a bit of smudging, but not much. And then I came up with the trick of all tricks. Thinking like the print head, and realizing that the smudge was always near where the print head lifted up after doing a pass (or if not lifting up, stopped spritzing) but was still touch the paper – I decided to take an 11 x 14 image and put an extra two inch border around it with an actual gray 10px line. In other words, two inches on all sides there’s a 10 pixel line.

And since I didn’t want to waste any more of the exhibition paper, I decided to use silver rag on a roll. And yes, you guessed it, there was a bit of spritzing near the borders – but nothing even close to the print image. I tried it again – and this time there was no smudging at all and the gray border printed perfectly.

In science – this is exactly what you don’t want to do: change two variables at once. Now you don’t know whether it was switching paper, or the margin gimmick that did the trick – or whether it will continue to work. But I still don’t have the time or patience to deal with it as I’d like to get cracking with the test prints at DSI; and I’ve got a bunch of images that are crying out to be combined; and there’s ordering from vendors; and tomorrow I’ll pick up the 5d… etc. etc.

But everything seems to be turning for the best… I even found the cutting blade from the 7800 which had popped out about a month ago and which I could never figure out where it had gone until I went through the printer with a flashlight and voila. Stuck it back in and it is cutting the roll paper as it used to.

And so – somewhere in the middle of the night – I sent the images to Lester for this video. I wanted him to do some quick cuts at some point, but he seems to be against that practice. Oh well – you know how artists are. They all have a mind of their own. But what a perfect song.


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My name is Dave Beckerman. I am a fine art photographer working in New York City.

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