Film and Darkroom User

Film and Darkroom User (
-   Photography in general (
-   -   Chieko Shiraishi - "Rag wipe retouching" (

Dave Hodson 29th December 2021 08:45 PM

Chieko Shiraishi - "Rag wipe retouching"
First of all - thanks to Svend for his post on Sabine Weiss. Loved her photos and the link led me to this photographer - Chieko Shiraishi

And down the internet rabbit hole I went. Seems she uses a technique called "zokin-gake" (apparently loosely translated as "rag wipe retouching" ) where she coats the print with a black carbon wash on oil then selectively wipes it away to achieve the effect she's looking for. Very interesting and I did manage to find a video of an image being worked on.

Hope you enjoy

Mike O'Pray 29th December 2021 09:26 PM

Interesting, Dave. Just a pity there was not enough subtitles to help explain what was being done and strangely not a single comment underneath.

I take it that the "wash/covering" was just petrol? and whatever poppy oil. Then the lamp black ( what's that - an oil based paint?) was applied with some dark green paint? It wasn't clear how long this application can be left after the wash but it looked like it needs to be immediately?

What was different about the pencil-like stick being rolled in a woolly cloth? from a cotton bud

Finally I take it that the finish eventually dries totally and is permanent?

It would be nice to know the answer to my questions just out of curiosity but frankly the finished print was not different or attractive enough in my view to make the effort worthwhile


alexmuir 29th December 2021 10:06 PM

I think you would have to see the original material, but like Mike, I’m struggling to see what all the work in the video achieved. I do like the initial series of landscapes with Deer.

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro

Dave Hodson 30th December 2021 01:59 AM

Not much information for sure and like you say, a lot of effort. Hard to tell from the video what the finished product is like.

alexmuir 30th December 2021 10:04 AM

I should have said in answer to Mike that Lamp Black is a pigment. It can be an oil paint, but occurs in other types of paint and elsewhere. In the video, it appears to be an artists paint of some sort, although not necessarily oil paint. I think the green is added in lesser quantity to produce the warm tone black of some photographic prints. I don’t think the ‘petrol’ can be the same as used to fuel cars. It would be too dangerous and unhealthy to use. I presume it’s a solvent used to thin the Poppy Oil.

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro

Dave Hodson 30th December 2021 04:34 PM

I just looked it up on the Holbein Artist Materials site and you're right. Spirit of Petroleum is a thinner.

I'm thinking I might give it a try if I can find the materials ok - not sure what paper to use but hey - what could go wrong?


JOReynolds 30th December 2021 06:02 PM

Pétrole is the French word for (crude) petroleum. The artists' pigment asphalt, sometimes derived from pétrole, is typically thinned with gasoline (petrol). It was formerly used as an alternative to rubber solution (Cow gum) to hold back water-based bleaches and dyes in retouching. It is/was sold by La Pébéo, a major French supplier of artists' materials.

Michael 31st December 2021 11:24 AM

I googled "zokin-gake" and found, among other useful information, this article. The process made me think of carbon printing in a way.

I do of course know that it's nothing like carbon printing as a process; but the result is reminiscent.

All times are GMT. The time now is 11:14 AM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.4
Copyright ©2000 - 2022, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.