“We don’t make mistakes, we just have happy little accidents.”
It’s hard to knock the late Bob Ross – he got complete joy from what he was doing, and it showed in his work and personality. When things did not go as planned, he found a way to make the misstep work for him. I’d like to think that I do the same.
In the last post I offered a photogram that had been created by placing items on a piece of photographic paper and allowing it to be exposed by sunlight. I liked what had been created and scanned the result, as I knew that the colors would fade over time. It was the favorite of the group I had made and I decided that it would be the first to print large.
I felt that this would be an image that would print nicely on canvass so I loaded the printer with paper and set the printer driver for matt paper. This would throw the maximum amount of ink on the canvass. However, I had a happy little accident. I had previously been working with digital negatives and had told the driver to use only the black cartridge. Oops. Not only did the printer print without color, but also there was not enough ink in the cartridge to print it completely, so it ran out during the printing process. I actually liked this.
Okay, let’s change the driver to tell the printer to use the color cartridge and try again. This time, another happy little accident. I should have replaced the black ink cartridge because it is used along with the color cartridge to make the proper colors, but I forgot. This time, the printer created a print with no black ink mixed in. I loved the results and printed a second copy, and realizing that I would not be able to replicate this, I made a print on glossy paper so that I could scan that at a later time (oddly enough, the right side of the print shows a very different color than the canvass version). It was after that print that the printer decided to force me to replace the black cartridge before it would continue working.
So the failure of technology resulted in something rather interesting, and I am happy for this happy little accident.