Is MultiTone OrthoLitho film usable for photography purposes?

Discussion in 'B&W: Film, Paper, Chemistry' started by StoneNYC, Jul 22, 2013.

  1. StoneNYC

    StoneNYC Subscriber

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    This is a strange question, I've seen talk about Ortho or Litho films before and I have sort of a huge knowledge gap here, I know that some kinds of Orthochromatic film could be developed with a safety light in a darkroom so you could precisely watch when the film was at the exact exposure you wanted, this was before Panchromatic film came out right?

    Does this have any relation to Ortho Litho film?

    I just got into 4x5 and researching my very limited (from "tiny format" perspective) and a film that stood out on price was this...

    http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/910365-REG/multitone_mol4550_multiortho_4_x_5.html

    at 50 sheets for $10 it's way under the other's price, but it's some kind of "copy" film right? but can it be used to take a photograph and developed as B&W negative? Kind of how others use x-ray film as of late for it's cheapness?

    Thanks guys!
     
  2. David Grenet

    David Grenet Member

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    The 4x5 multitone film will need trimming to fit standard 4x5 holders as it's actually 4" x 5".
     
  3. Jim Noel

    Jim Noel Member

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    The film can be used for copying negatives, or in camera but it is necessary to use soft working developers in order to obtain a longer scaled negative than that for which it is designed.
     
  4. artonpaper

    artonpaper Subscriber

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    As for inspecting the film as it develops, first, it's density you observing not exposure since that happens in the camera or under the enlarger. Deep red safelight filters can be used with ortho film. Regardless of what developer type you're using it takes a bit of experience to recognize when you've reached the desired density. I spent a number of years working with graphic arts films, and nothing beats time and temperature.
     
  5. Gerald C Koch

    Gerald C Koch Member

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    When developing by inspection it is important to evaluate development by looking at the back (the base side) of the film NOT the emulsion side.
     
  6. cliveh

    cliveh Subscriber

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    This can be developed by inspection, but be aware that if used in camera it has a different spectral response to panchromatic film. It is more usually used as an after camera process.
     
  7. jnanian

    jnanian Advertiser Advertiser

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    hi stone

    if you are planning to scan it ... not sure how well that works because of density issues ...
     
  8. StoneNYC

    StoneNYC Subscriber

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    Ok, thanks

    I wasn't aware "normal"4x5 wasn't 4" by 5"... So what is it then?


    ~Stone | Sent w/ iPhone using Tapatalk
     
  9. Bill Burk

    Bill Burk Subscriber

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    3.918 x 4.925

    But... The most significant issue is that this is Ortho Litho film, it is not Ortho Pictorial film.

    The film is meant for very high contrast results, so it would be difficult to tame for picture taking purposes. You are welcome to try, many have done it and enjoy the challenge...
     
  10. StoneNYC

    StoneNYC Subscriber

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    For ten bucks I might... Plus if its an ASA speed film, maybe I can shoot it at .75 ASA and pull it to tame the contrast or something :smile:

    For 50 sheets for $10 I wouldn't mind figuring it out... Lol


    ~Stone | Sent w/ iPhone using Tapatalk
     
  11. Bill Burk

    Bill Burk Subscriber

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    You'll get "graphic" effects for sure. Like Artonpaper's avatar.

    Expose with a step wedge, develop for solid step 3...

    A lot of my enthusiasm for the darkroom is nostalgia for the days when I would work hard to avoid pinholes or avoid pinching the serifs on the Bodoni... The days before imagesetters and rapid-access processors, when I really did have to slosh that film craftily under a red safelight.

    Litho film has its uses in masking (silhouette type masks) and other cool line effects. So it's not a waste of $10.

    But wait until you have to buy something else so you can combine shipping....
     
  12. StoneNYC

    StoneNYC Subscriber

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    Thanks Bill,

    However I don't know what a step wedge is :/ I feel like I've heard it in reference to scanning film and figuring out curves, all of which I know nothing about save the scanning part.

    What's a serif and a Bodoni?

    :smile:

    Я ничего не знаю (spelling?)


    ~Stone | Sent w/ iPhone using Tapatalk
     
  13. Rick A

    Rick A Subscriber

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    I have some very fond memories of working in a print shop and putting out a weekly shoppers news. I operated a linotype and other letterpress machines as well as offset. My darkroom skills became sharply honed there, working with a couple of hot s--t staff photographers, I was 17 at the time.
     
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  15. DREW WILEY

    DREW WILEY Member

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    Some versions are also thinner than conventional sheet film, so might sag in the filmholder or require a minor focus adjustment. And most of
    these will be ortho more in the sense of being mostly blue sensitive, with less green sensitivity, and of course blind to red. People have done this, but it's more suitable for some kind of creative fun than as a substitute for general photographic film.
     
  16. StoneNYC

    StoneNYC Subscriber

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    Thanks Drew.


    ~Stone | Sent w/ iPhone using Tapatalk
     
  17. Bill Burk

    Bill Burk Subscriber

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    The step wedge is used for figuring out curves, right...

    http://www.stouffer.net/TransPage.htm

    When you use a step wedge with litho film, instead of having 10 or more smooth steps like with pictorial film, you go from clear to black in just one or two steps. So knowing which step number is solid, tells you whether you underexposed or overexposed - and by how much.

    Without a step wedge, figuring out litho exposures is very difficult. That's why various authority figures of my past (print shop teacher or pre-press manager) would either call you a pinhead, or refuse to help if you left the step wedge out. I don't use the same name-calling techniques, but strongly encourage the use of step wedges...

    Bodoni is a typeface, and it has delicate serifs. Serifs are the tapers and curves at the ends of typeface strokes, they happen naturally in writing on paper by lifting a calligraphy pen or when carving in stone by the finishing stroke of a chisel.

    But when you have a paste-up of a proof taken from Bodoni type, you have to get the camera exposure right, or those fine serifs will "pinch"
     
  18. StoneNYC

    StoneNYC Subscriber

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    Thanks Bill, interesting, I'm only vaguely aware of step wedges but I didn't get what they had to do with this film, but now I do, so basically, it's harder to expose correctly than say Kodachrome because it's either exposed right, or over or under severely with no real in betweens... ok so I'll just not bother, thanks Bill, you saved me from being penny wise, pound foolish :smile:
     
  19. jnanian

    jnanian Advertiser Advertiser

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    stone -

    you can process paper negatives in your MOD45 just like film
    if you don't have a DR ... paper negatives are cheap as dirt to make
    and can be made in less time than film ( development takes 2 mins, not 6 )
    fix+ dry very little time too ... craigs list prob lists buckets of photo paper FREE<?>
    just trim it and expose it ... use sunny 16 for about asa 12 or so, no meter needed ..

    you can contact print them by turning your room lights on + off too or in a printing frame / under glass in the sun
    and either develop them in your mod 45 or sk---n the sunprint image. no darkroom needed ...
    while i have a full darkroom these days i opt for least effort with the sun ...
     
  20. StoneNYC

    StoneNYC Subscriber

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    You crack me up John

    Let me figure out how to use the Camera then I'll experiment :smile:


    ~Stone | Sent w/ iPhone using Tapatalk
     
  21. winger

    winger Subscriber

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    This - http://www.freestylephoto.biz/51812-Arista-Ortho-Litho-Film-2.0-8x10-25-Sheets - isn't quite as cheap, but isn't bad for learning sorta. I've used it in my 4x5 with a pinhole because it's the only thing that would be slow enough I could use my hand for a shutter. I didn't want to do paper negs. I took an exposed piece of 4x5 film and made marks on my cutter so I could cut it down to fit in the film holders.
    It does go contrasty fast, but it's still fun to play with if you want to make cyanotypes with the result or just want to play a little for less than regular sheet film. Not every shot has to be totally serious!
     
  22. StoneNYC

    StoneNYC Subscriber

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    Thanks Bethe, but that looks like too much work cutting down, plus I would never need that many sheets, 50 for $10 is fine for playing with, having to cut 25 sheets into 100 sheets for $20 isn't as much fun... haha :smile: but good to know.
     
  23. jnanian

    jnanian Advertiser Advertiser

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    LOL

    you crack me up too ...

    if you don't have a library nearby that has THE BOOK
    this might be helpful

    http://www.toyoview.com/LargeFrmtTech/lgformat.html
     
  24. StoneNYC

    StoneNYC Subscriber

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    The Book?

    or THE Book? haha which is that?

    And thanks, yea we'll see... just waiting for the mail man to bring my lens board... hurry up mail man!
     
  25. jnanian

    jnanian Advertiser Advertiser

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    THE BOOK = " the view camera book "
    its a steve simmons production ( as in view camera magazine )

    i think the ansel adams "the camera" also deals with a view camera if you can find that
    its part of " the trifecta " ( camera print negative )

    a library might have both or either or or all 3 or 4
     
  26. jcoldslabs

    jcoldslabs Member

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    As someone who has done this, I agree. Below is a shot from earlier this year on Kodalith Ortho Type 3 that expired in 1994. The film base is indeed much thinner than with normal film, but it slides right into my 4x5 holders without trimming. It took some experimenting with very dilute developer and shortened processing times to find a method that pulls some tonality out of this very contrasty film. If you can get it cheap, I say go for it.


    [​IMG]

    Jonathan