Dr Ware's review of Arentz's book

Discussion in 'Alternative Processes' started by Annie, Nov 24, 2005.

  1. Annie

    Annie Member

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  2. Jorge

    Jorge Inactive

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    Not exactly a glowing report.....but then Dr. Ware made a mistake too. Arentz does not work with the ZS, he uses the BTZS methodology.

    I was not clear what was his rant about people calling palladium prints platinum printing. I was not clear if he meant pure palladium prints, or prints made with a mix of pt and pd.

    Anyhow, since I decided the second edition did not have anything I needed I am not getting it.
     
  3. clay

    clay Subscriber

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    He also has a somewhat deceptive description of print color. The example he shows from Dick's book has been either been scanned very badly or PS'd to make it look like an orotone. In fact, as anyone who has seen Dick's work can attest, his palladium prints are much closer to the neutral historical example Ware shows in the article than the ostensible reproduction from the book.

    My question about Ware's method always boils down to this: With so many good platinum printers in the world, why do virtually none of them use the Ware method instead of the traditional DOP process? Something doesn't quite square up.
     
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  4. Annie

    Annie Member

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    The purported more predictable ammonium iron (iii) oxalate coupled with the print out process by inspection without calibration... appeared particularly alluring... especially the 'without calibration' aspect... but then I too wondered why most printers appear to be using variations of Arentz's methods. Has anyone done comparison prints by the two methods... is there something on the internet that shows comparative examples?
     
  5. Jorge

    Jorge Inactive

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    I have not seen any comparisons. Although I have tried making ziatypes. Given my succesful failure with ziatypes I was not about to try the Ware-Malde process which seems to be even more dependent on the paper humidity.

    IMO I think many of us doing pt/pd are a little bit more secure with a concrete methodology than with just trial an error. Not being able to control the paper's humidity would probably drive me crazy.
     
  6. clay

    clay Subscriber

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    FWIW, Ware's description on his web page tells how to make humidification chambers of various humidity levels by using different saturated salt solutions. If you have the darkroom space for this, it probably would provide you with the control you need.

    My own experience with Zia was that it was hard to get consistent results. It is so dependent on humidity that two prints made identically an hour apart would have different contrasts AND different image tonality. If I were going to do any of these ammonium POP processes seriously, I think a humidification chamber would be an absolute must.
     
  7. nze

    nze Member

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    Hi all

    I started platinum printing with ziatype and make great thing with this process but when I started to print for other I decide to switch to traditional as it is a real pain to make 10-30 similar ziatype. Really easier to do with traditional.
    I really appreciate the result of platinum-palladimm gold zia.

    By the way when I start to make few work for others , I also try Ware method and also adapt it to zia, by this I mean that I make An humidyfing box to get the similar RH before exposing my paper. This way give better result but I get some sticking problem with my vacuum printing frame. (and when you use zia and a vacuum printing frame the better is to put the sensitize humidify paper in a mylar sleeve ro avoid that it quickly loose humidity.

    The Ware method sound good but you still need to use a developer , so if I need to use one I prefer to use an easier method, traditional.

    I also make some pizzitype, which is the first printing out process. It is my favorite way to make pure platinum print.

    I now mostly use traditional, and I am investigating the use of different noble salt as iridium, osmium and so on
     
  8. Lukas Werth

    Lukas Werth Member

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    Pratip Malde would be an artist successfully using Mike Ware's method. I am certain there are others, notably Ware himself.
    I have done develop-out print-out pl/pd, a particular marketing name of the latter being the Ziatype (my very first alternative process, incidentally). I did never try out Ware's method, though I intended several times, for two reasons: 1) getting/cooking two particular substances, ammonium palladium chloride and ammonium platinum chloride
    2) humidification. I have extensively practiced Mike Ware's New Chrysotype process which also crucially depends on humidification *after* coating, and made several humidification chambers (cat litter trays with a board as lid on them). This is quite space-andtime-consuming, and I find it difficult to control in detail without elaborate technology. For instance, I like to do double prints (the same motive extending over two negatives), and it is quite difficult to get exactly the same colour in both prints in the Chrysotype process.

    It might be worth to try NaPt as a contrast agent in Mike Ware's chemistry, but as I said, I never tried.
    As far as his critique of FO goes, I find it easy and convenient to make my own FO from Iron(II) Oxalate.
    Btw, a *very* good wesite of Pt/Pd peinting is the one of Jeffrey Mathias
    http://home.att.net/~jeffrey.d.mathias/guide/title_page.htm
    He lists up the different approaches of print-out and develop-out.
    Sullivan and Weese also give a good overview.
    I do have a much older instruction of Arentz here, and I think Ware's critique of him describing just one method is basically quite valid, as are at least some of Ware's reservations against LiPd (used in the "Ziatype").
     
  9. doughowk

    doughowk Subscriber

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    If the goal is a platinum or palladium print, any opinions on Kallitypes toned in pt or pl? Sandy King has a good article at UnBlinkingEye on Kallitypes, and has asserted elsewhere that a platinum toned Kallitype is indistinguishable from a traditional platinum print.
     
  10. sanking

    sanking Member

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    I don't entirely agree. The objective of Dick Arentz was to provide a detailed and comprehensive description of the methods that he has chosen to make Pt./Pd. prints, not an account of all historical and contempoary methods that has been used to make prints of palladium and platinum metal . Many of us have experimentd with other methods, such as Malde-Ware and Ziatype POP, but eventually settled on the DOP method using ferric oxalate because overall it gives the most consistent results with the minimum of complications.

    One of the great strengths of Arentz's book is that it is based on a mastery of his own preferred working methods, and for the most part it does not make concessions to include procedures which he himself does not use. There would have been far more to criticize, in my opinion, if he had included sections on methods such as Malde-Ware or Zia when he himself does not advocate, teach or normally work with these methods.

    Also, with reference to Mike Ware's comparison of the tone of Dick Arentz' prints with historical examples, the reproduction in his review is really way off. As Clay mentioned, the real tone of Arentz' work is much more neutral in tone, very much like the historical sample shown by Ware.

    Sandy
     
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  11. Lukas Werth

    Lukas Werth Member

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    Also, with reference to Mike Ware's comparison of the tone of Dick Arentz' prints with historical examples, the reproduction in his review is really way off. As Clay mentioned, the real tone of Arentz' work is much more neutral in tone, very much like the historical sample shown by Ware.

    Sandy[/QUOTE]

    Yes, I forgot to mention the print colour. And yes, I do think that Dick Arentz's pictures are quite excellent. Perhaps my remarks sound more critical than I intended: after all, it was a reproduction of a picture of Arentz in "Using the view camera" which once turned me on to pt/pd and other processes.
    And looking back, I have also used the Lipd/Ziatype process with consistent and successful results.
    I have not seen Arentz new book, however, it does sound limiting in relation to claiming to give an overall introduction if he bases his initial instructions on a starter kit and to only one method. Again, this remark should not devalue other merits of his book.
     
  12. Jon Davies

    Jon Davies Member

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    One note of caution in this discussion is not to put off the newcomer to POP Pt. Ziatype is imensely flexible and will reward almost immeditly. DOP is a much steeper curve in some respects, if not all.

    If you can get a darkroom running at >65% RH then you can relatively easily produce consistent Ziatypes if your careful and consistent with your drying. Soaking in an RH chamber is also a good way to buffer papers during a printing session to get consistency.

    DOP is undoubtedly more consistent but I do enjoy Ziatypes .........
     
  13. sanking

    sanking Member

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    The tonal range of a palladium or platinum toned kallitypes, with no contrast controls, is almost identical to that of straight palladium, i.e. an exposure scale of around 1.85. And you can use the same contrast controls that work with palladium, including dichromate and Na2. The color of toned kallitypes is almost neutral, ranging from warm black when toning with platinum to just slightly warmer when toning with palladium. The very warm colors that you can get by developing regular palladiums in warm potassium oxalate are not as easily obtained with toned kallitypes.

    Sandy


     
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  15. Annie

    Annie Member

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    Last night in a conversation with a weaver friend I learned a little bit about metallic and tannic mordents and their associated tonal interaction with various natural dyes.... particularly earth oxides... (we are actually going to Iron Mine Bay this afternoon to a ‘secret’ place to collect a ‘special’ red dirt that I may find ‘interesting’). This got me to wondering about the variations in color tone of Platinum and Palladium prints that are achieved through the classical and modern methods and the unusual serendipitous color tones that appear in my prints when using unconventional developers and emulsion additives.

    Specifically what I am wondering about is what is actually causing the variation of color shifts in the process. My perhaps mistaken assumption has always been that the actual image forming compound that remains at the end of the process is pure pt/pd metal and that the tonal continuum was dependent on the proportions of the metals used in the sensitizer... pt/warm-pd/cool and that the tonality that I was seeing was an inherent property of the pure metals.

    However, in Dr. Ware’s process variations in tonality are occurring through changes in the RH and I believe other printers are achieving tonal shifts through variations in developer temperatures and changes in paper sizing. How do these factors actually effect the visual tonality of a noble metal? Is what remains after the process something other than what I had assumed? Is there actually some iron or other complex compounds left in the image that are effecting a tonal shift?

    I ask this because I have tried using organic sources for tannic/pyro developers with the process and have been getting some unusual colors and I am now wondering if the color shifts may be a result of the formation of iron tannate or some such substance and that the chemistry that is resulting in the color shifts may in fact be a partial dying interaction between the paper/emulsion/developer combination and not something articulated by the nobel metals in the final image.
     
  16. clay

    clay Subscriber

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    Annie,
    I've not seen any rigorous discussion about the exact mechanism behind tone differences in platinum palladium printing. But it is a fact that a warm temperature potassium oxalate developed pure palladium print will be warmer toned than a cold temperature ammonium citrate developed platinum print.

    As far as the color differences go, I wonder if it has to do with the size of the platinum and palladium particles that are created during the redox reaction? The tones of silver gelatin prints have to do mostly with the size of the silver particles. Small silver particles have different optical properties than large ones. Warm toned developers (and lith printing) in silver gelatin processes create the warm tones by allowing the particles to remain very small. As the particles get larger and accrete to one another, they become more neutral black. Perhaps the palladium metal particles remain smaller and thus look warmer toned than the larger particle platinums. I don't know, and this is just a sheer speculation. SWAG (scientific-wild-ass-guess).

    That said, I think some worker's 'warm toned' prints are warm because of inadequate clearing of the ferric oxalate. This is particularly prone to happen with printers who do not use border masks and allow the brush stroked areas outside of the image area to receive maximum exposure and go black. Adequate clearing is the big un-discussed achilles heel of the process, and the more work I see, the less convinced I am that it is being done consistently.
     
  17. Annie

    Annie Member

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    Clay,

    I think you are correct about the particle size... I Googled the key words from your answer and came up with this... although not specifically about pt printing it provides some insight (and some interesting information about Ag/Pt toning)

    http://aic.stanford.edu/jaic/articles/jaic38-02-002.html

    Section 4 states that the tone of the image depends on size, distribution & morphology of the particles... although the discussion relates primarily to gold and silver particles I am sure the same applies to platinum.

    I particularly liked the illustration with the disembodied hands coating the paper...

    Cheers & Thanks Annie
     
  18. photomc

    photomc Member

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    Thanks for starting this discusion Annie. This has been a very good discussion of the DOP vs POP IMO. Have not done a traditional plt/pld print but have had my ups and downs with the Ziatypes over the last year and half. Found the comment about the inability to make two Ziatypes the same hours or days apart most comforting - since I have battled with this quite a bit. The work has been most consistant recently, with a RH between 40-60% which is a bit lower than recommended. Also, have left the paper out to breath, which seems to make a big difference.

    While I have made what I considered good Ziatypes, have not seen any others so could not say they are good or not. On the other hand I do have some DOP plt/pld prints that I can say are very nice.

    Should note that in an email from Kevin Sullivan, he advised that when the paper drys out too much that you can give the exposure a little more time and develop out the print using traditional methods, such as Amonium Citrate. Have not tried this yet, but hope to in the future, because of the different tones available with Ziatypes.

    Thanks to everyone for the most usefull input.
    Yes, the Zia POP can be furstarting - though I suspect is less so than the Ware method - it is possilbe to produce some very nice prints. That said, still intend to give the traditional DOP pld a try if for no other reason than this thread.
     
  19. Annie

    Annie Member

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    I am sure most of you have read Adam Gottlieb’s article with the results of his investigation of the Platinum process but I’ll put the link here in case someone has not...

    http://aic.stanford.edu/jaic/articles/jaic34-01-002_indx.html

    It is unfortunate that many of the old formulas have been lost but much remains to be discovered. I found it interesting that Mr. Gottlieb cites that ‘the printing-out platinum process introduced by Pizzighelli in 1887 was short-lived, owing to its inconsistency’... so now it is indeed certain that I shall try printing-out platinum as consistency is not an issue for me... all of my images are one-offs and I enjoy a little bit of chaos.

    I’ll also tag this question to this thread as it relates to my post above...

    Does anyone have any information on the Ferro-tannic/Ferro-gallic papers that were the invention of A. Poitevin in the mid 1800’s.... I can only find one very lean reference on the web. It involves the reduction of ferric salts resulting in deep purple tones.... I think I may have some cross-pollination going on with my platinum and it’s organic tannin developer as these are the tones I am getting... I am trying to figure out if I have two processes manifesting themselves in the same image. Any sliver of insight on this would be sincerely appreciated.
     
  20. Jorge

    Jorge Inactive

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    Thanks for the article Annie, it is very interesting.
     
  21. donbga

    donbga Member

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    Pratip Malde *WAS* an artist successfully using Mike Ware's method, he now prints digitally.

    Don Bryant
     
  22. clay

    clay Subscriber

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    Well, this thread stimulated me to try out the Ware/Malde method this weekend. It turns out I have all the raw materials necessary to mix up the solutions for making palladium prints using their method. To top it all off, the weather here in Houston was that just-before-the-front-blows-through mugginess that keeps the ambient humidity at a nice 55% or so.

    So I mixed up the chemicals and made my first print with a negative I have printed before. I coated, allowed it to completely air dry to an RH of 47%. Wow! Very nice deep brown tones. So I'm feeling pretty smart after one print. I make another. Whoa! This one is neutral and weak. What gives? Same on print #3. I chalk it up to Saturday exhaustion, and some slightly lower contrast negatives on the second two prints.

    Sunday comes and I make a print with a negative that I have deliberately made with a higher DR. (you don't want to know how, at least on this forum). The ambient humidity is 55% - perfect warm brown color - almost a walnut color. Again, first print - WOW! This process really seems to like some beefy, high DR negatives. Now I see if I can duplicate it with a second print. The RH has crept up to 58%. I allow it to completely dry to ambient humidity (again, now 58%). Neutral black, but tonally very nice.

    Lessons learned - (big man here, with 7 prints under his belt!!)

    1) This process is incredibly sensitive to humidity. I was stunned that a 3% change in RH would change the print tonality that much. If you value consistency, then a controllable humidification chamber would be a must.
    2) Exposure is easy, since it is a printing out process. Just cook and look.
    3) Single coating gives very nice Dmax prints. Mine measure 1.4 with no effort at all.
    4) No developer to futz around with. This was nice for me, as I had just done an absolute Gumbie thing the night before and poured my 2 liters of Potassium Oxalate back into a hypo-clear jug. (Dumb way to waste some $$)

    Summary: For the casual user who can get a humid workspace, and does not care too much about repeatable print color, this is a nice easy way to go. All you need are a very few chemicals and a printing frame and some sunshine. For serious workers who need repeatable print color and contrast, this process is a little wild.
     
  23. photomc

    photomc Member

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    Interesting results, not surprised though...Thanks for posting your results Clay.

    (I did not know the humidity in Houston was ever below 50% - :smile: )
     
  24. Annie

    Annie Member

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    Clay... thank you so much for this. From your experience with the process it can obviously be concluded that with the Ware/Malde method the first print always works!! As I do mostly one-offs this is perfect for me!!

    Cheers, Annie
     
  25. jimgalli

    jimgalli Subscriber

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    I started 6 years ago with a ziatype kit. Try to picture if you will, our normal humidity in Tonopah Nevada of 4-8%. I'm constantly re-soaking towels in warm water and blowing air through them to try to arrive at some humidity, poorly controlled, never the same. Best thing I ever did was give up on that fiasco. Now I'm using the so-called traditional pt/pd method. Drying my coated paper to potatoe chip crispness with a hair dryer set on cool, and getting a rather nice d-max if I do say so. I think success is invariably linked with place and perhaps there is no right or wrong way to do these set in stone. The best case might be for different workers to give some thought to their inherent environment and proceed in a direction that suits it more than less. Be flexible. Experiment. To fuss over whether a pt/pd print should be misnomered as a "Platinum" borders on pure snobbery in my vocabulary.
     
  26. Annie

    Annie Member

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    just a thought.... I believe it is possible that someone can be a 'serious worker' without multiple cloning of their images being a requirement of the process.