Copy neg of silver print for pt/pd

Discussion in 'Alternative Processes' started by CraigK, Feb 4, 2007.

  1. CraigK

    CraigK Member

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    Hi All,

    I have an image that I would like to print in pt/pd. It is from a 6x7 neg. Normally I would make an interpositive and then an enlarged neg and go from there. In this case, the print took quite bit of darkroom gymnastics to produce...dodging, burning, flashing, unsharp mask. etc. I don't want to have to go through all of that in making the interpositive and then the neg.

    So for this one, I think I will set up my copy stand, photograph the best version of the print on my 8x10 camera and then develop the neg for a pt/pd print. My first thought is to go with HP5 and Pyrocat or TXP and D76. It has been a while since I shot a neg of a print but I seem to recall that contrast increases (a good thing in this case I assume).

    Any tips to share?

    Thanks!
     
  2. David A. Goldfarb

    David A. Goldfarb Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    HP5+ or TMY would probably best for this purpose, since they're fairly neutral films. Tri-X will add more character of its own.
     
  3. Shinnya

    Shinnya Advertiser Advertiser

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    David,

    What is the character of Tri-X? I have been using it for a long time, but never realize it... Would you point some to me?

    Thanks!

    Warmly,
    Tsuyoshi
     
  4. David A. Goldfarb

    David A. Goldfarb Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    I find that TXP conveys a stronger sense of line than the HP5+ or the T-max films, probably due to the longer toe. Sanders McNew's portraits here, for instance, have a real "Tri-X look" I think. I prefer that quality myself, but it doesn't necessarily make for a good duping film.
     
  5. bobherbst

    bobherbst Member

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    Craig,

    You may need to reduce development if using TMY, Tri-X, or HP5 to avoid blocking up highlights or losing separation in the highlights. I'll probably have a penalty flag thrown for the following comment, but I have done the exact same thing as you have for the exact same reason - an image that required an extreme amount of work in the enlarger to get a good silver print. I sometimes work on the edge of light and trying to make an enlarged negative using traditional methods would have been fraught with frustration for the reasons you describe. My solution in those cases was to do a high-resolution scan of the silver print and make a digital negative for printing in Pt/Pd. This approach avoids all of the pitfalls of losing shadows, blowing out highlights, or losing highlight separation in the copy neg. Forum moderators can banish me to the hybrid forum, but I look at digital as just another tool to get the final Pt/Pd print regardless of it's source. I still shoot film for most all of my own work, but the only thing that really matters is the final print. Whether it comes from a film or a digital negative is irrelevant in my opinion.

    Bob Herbst
     
  6. CraigK

    CraigK Member

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    Bob,

    Thanks for the suggestion. I regularly make digital negs for hybrid prints but will of course never admit to it on this forum....:wink:

    In this case, I intend to make the pt/pd print on fixed-out baryta paper that I hand coat. The resulting prints are as sharp and detailed as silver prints...ie: very unforgiving of digi-negs and any digi-artifacts present in them (micro-banding, dots etc.). Try as I might, I have not been able to get a good looking print on baryta paper from a digi neg. So I'd like to keep it as analogue as possible....despite the pitfalls.

    So, what about using Ilford Ortho film or similar stock from Bergger or Efke? Aren't these film made for this purpose?