Platinum Brushes / by greg brophy

Recently I have been working on platinum printing with Japanese Kozo paper. I really love the way it looks with the "Where the Ocean Meets the Shore" series. The delicate look it adds, the feeling that it has survived a flood. I was doing some research on paper and came across the photographer Francis Schanberger who prints on a special Japanese paper developed just for platinum printing. The paper is called Tosa Platinum Paper. I emailed Francis and he was kind enough to forward me the info as to where to buy it. The paper is sold by Photo Gallery International located in Tokyo. If you would like to buy the paper, you have to contact Masayuki Nishimaru to place an order. He will send you an invoice through PayPal. I placed an order and received them very quickly (about a week).  I also ordered the two beautiful brushes below made specifically for Platinum printing. They are so beautiful I almost don't want to use them.

3 inch and 6 inch Platinum brushes

From Masayuki: Traditional Japanese Style Synthetic Hair Brushes
These brushes are made by traditional Japanese Craftsmen. The synthetic hair is hand bound with cherry wood and silk thread. The handle contain no metal so you don't have to worry about contamination or rust ruining your images. The 3 inch brush is 8,800JPY and the 6 inch brush is 18,000JPY.

I will be trying them out soon and write about how they compare to the Richenson brushes.

Close up of the 3 inch

Details from the 6 inch brush

Here are the details on the Tosa Platinum Paper:
Specialized as a Platinum Printing Paper, it is mainly made from Tosa Kozo. It has a smooth surface for coating and does not get too fluffy (fluffy being Masayuki's description, but if you used this type of paper in the past, you know it can be easily over brushed and damaged).

They have two types. Tosa Platinum #1: Made of 70% of Tosa-Kozo from Gohoku in Ino Town and 30% of Gampi fibre.

Tosa Platinum Paper #2 is made of 80% of Tosa-Kozo from Gohoku in Ino Town and 20% Gampi fibre.

Weight:     26-30g/m2
pH:     6.5-7.5
Paper size:     approximately 60x90cm ( 23.5x35.5 inches)
Price:     Platinum Paper #1 - 1,700JPY and Platinum Paper #2 - 1,600JPY


I will be testing the paper and will post the results here soon. Here is a video of Masayuki making a print using these papers and brushes. For an 8x10 he suggested a drop count of 25 Ferric Oxalate and 25 Metal.