Formulas for Dry Print Out Gold, Rhodium, Iridium, Platinum, and Palladium

FREE PDF DOWNLOAD: 21st Century Alchemy: Gold, Rhodium, Platinum, Palladium, and Iridium

This manual is the update to my 2013 The Old Made New, with revised Platinotype Supreme and Chrysotype Supreme formulas and entirely new processes: the Rhodiotype Supreme, Auridiotype Supreme, and Iridiotype Supreme. The obsolete practice of hydrating paper in hope of printing out an image on it is a 19th century idea, introduced by Giuseppe Pizzighelli for his platinum print out process of the 1880s.  No more pathetic hydrating paper, no more hunching over sensitized paper with a blow dryer throwing up dichromates and other toxins for you to lovingly inhale while trying to dry the coating of your Ziatype (or Pizzighelli Platinotype) without drying the paper. With the Supreme processes you coat the paper, let it dry and come back in 15 minutes, or a week or even longer, and print out a full image!


The short documentary, Magic Iron Rose, about Richard Eugene Puckett's relentless quest to work out a formula for printing out rhodium, won a Remi at the 2017 Houston WorldFest. Click on the image below to view the film.


Richard Eugene Puckett has developed simple formulas that fundamentally alter the light-sensitive compounds used to print photographs with the noble metals. The Chrysotype Supreme, which sets gold prints truly on a par with platinum and palladium, is the most widely recognized of Richard Eugene Puckett's processes: pure gold photographs with gray tonality, invisible grain, and a wide tonal range -- and that print out on completely dry paper. The Rhodiotype is the first, the only process in history, for printing photographs in rhodium. The Palladiotype Supreme and the Platinotype Supreme are the first and only processes for dry print out with those noble metals -- no hydration of paper, no learning curve, no wasted money time: prepare the sensitizer, apply it to the paper, let it dry, print it out. The Ultimatype resolves an impossible combination: gold and platinum printed together not for special effects but for continuous tone grayscale images that exploit the finest qualities of both metals. And the Auridiotype combines gold and iridium for astounding results. Finally, the Iridiotype Supreme, quite different from the old process used to make photographs for cemetery gravestones, reveals the nuanced subtleties of which that metal is capable.

Full List of Richard Eugene Puckett's Processes

Glass Coating Rod Circa 1890

Glass Coating Rod circa 1890 : William Willis, inventor of the platinum printing process, specified that the admixture of ferric oxalate and potassium platinum chloride should be applied to paper using a glass coating rod wrapped with flannel.

The following three formulas are suppressed. After the troll forum Photrio Analog shuts down, which is coming, I will publish them. Meanwhile, express your gratitude to the operators of Photrio for their encouragement of forum trolls.

* Pizzighelli's 1887 formula (redacted from The Dictionary of Photography for Amateur and Professional Photographers, London, 1902):
1. Prepare a 50% solution of gum arabic,
2. Prepare a 40% solution of Ammonium Ferric Oxalate )blue-gray tone) or of Sodium Ferric Oxalate (brown-gray tone)
3. Prepare a 16% solution (1:6 in water) of potassium platinum chloride -- Potassium Tetrachloroplatinate (II).
4. For an 8x10 print mix 12 drops of each solution thoroughly ( count all of the drops of each different solution into a shot glass and then swirl the liquid in the glass vigorously to form a single, combined, solution).  
5. Brush the truly mixed solution onto a sheet of paper such as Bergger Cot320, place it in a dark, damp location to "dry" enough that the sensiziter is no longer wet enough to damage your negative. Place in contact with a negative and expose to UV or sunlight. 

Richard Eugene Puckett's 2013 Platinotype Supreme formula:
1. Prepare a 20% solution of platinum chloride, from Potassium Tetrachloroplatinate (II). Store it in a properly labelled bottle, in a cool, dark locaiton, for at least 18 days before use.
2. Prepare 10ml of a 40% solution of Ammonium Ferric Oxalate )blue-gray tone) or of Sodium Ferric Oxalate (brown-gray tone).
3. Prepare a 2% solution of vitamin c, ascorbic acid (or sodium ascorbate), and count 8 drops of that 2% C solution into the 10ml bottle of ammonium ferric oxalate. Recap the ammonium ferric oxalate bottle and shake it vigorously for 30 seconds. 
4 For an 8x10 print mix 12 drops of each solution thoroughly ( count all of the drops of each different solution into a shot glass and then swirl the liquid in the glass vigorously to form a single, combined, solution).  If a given negative needs a contrast boost, prepare a simple solution of 26% ferric oxalate and use that without C added. A clearing bath in the standard 2% hydrochloric (muriatic) acid will suffice to dissolve the surfeit ferrous iron after print out is complete.
5. Add half as many drops of glycerin as of platinum chloride (such as, 6 drops of glycerin to 12 drops of platinum) and mix thoroughly.
6. Pour out and brush (or use a glass coating rod wrapped with flannel, as William Willis specified in 1878) evenly onto a sheet of paper. Appropriate papers include Legion Revere Platinum, Bergger Cot 320 (NOT 160), Hahnemuhle Platinum,etc. 
6. Allow the sensitized paper to dry in a dark place for usually 15 to 30 minutes. Do not stress if you forget about it for a few hours...
8.  Place the paper in contact with a negative and expose to UV or sunlight.

**These three processes involve partially printing out an image in the nobler metal, then fully developing it out with silver nitrate. They have all been validated by professional XRF spectrometric analysis.


Robert Hunt's Manual of Photography, 5th Edition, 1857

Robert Hunt's manual is an invaluable resource with which (along with Google Books) anyone interested in 19th century photographic printing processes should become familiar. Certain persons have counted (with tremendous success) on the ignorance of contemporary photographers and printers to claim to have "invented" many tools and processes that were known to their counterparts 100 and more  years ago. The internet has only accelerated the plagiarism and forums such as Flickr, Photrio-APUG, Pinterest, etc., widened the ignorance. 

Hunt, Manual of Photography in PDF format.

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