paper negs, reducing contrast

Discussion in 'Pinhole Photography' started by Ray Heath, Sep 7, 2006.

  1. Ray Heath

    Ray Heath Member

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    g'day all'
    i've been experimenting to determine a means of reducing contrast when using rc vc paper for negs in sunlight

    what is the most successful method?

    pre-flash?

    post-flash?

    '0' vc printing filter on lens?

    a combination?
     
  2. Nige

    Nige Subscriber

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    I use a 00 filter on my pinhole camera and it seems to work a bit. I've read about flashing the paper but never tried it. I have learnt that you can't judge a paper neg by looking at it, you need to print it to see just how it has come out.
     
  3. micek

    micek Member

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    Like Nige, I started with a 00 filter behind the pinhole, but pre-flashing is a much more effective solution. I haven't tried post-flashing.
     
  4. Jim Noel

    Jim Noel Member

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    A third method is to use a softer working developer. Selectol Soft or its equivalent comes to mind.
     
  5. jnanian

    jnanian Advertiser Advertiser

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    you also might give a semi-exhausted developer and a water bath a try ...
     
  6. Tom Miller

    Tom Miller Member

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    Ray, there isn't a good, reliable answer to your question; it depends so much on the spectral sensitivity of the paper. Many pinhole photographers use graded paper, usually Grade 2, which is not nearly as contrasty as variable contrast paper. In tests with Ilford's fibre matte paper, I found using a deep yellow, like Wrattan 12, reduces the contrast to a good tonal range. Here is link to a discussion of this topic on the f295 forum. It includes photos of the test I did with the yellow filters.
    http://www.f295.org/Pinholeforum/forum/Blah.pl?m-1155943597/s-0/
     
  7. Jersey Vic

    Jersey Vic Member

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    Hi Ray;

    Either the 00 filter (tape mine in the front but will tape it inside next time) or the Hc-110 dil B has worked well by me. The weak developer and water bath method allow me to develop the highlights by inspection which I found to be really useful. I found all the RC VC papers work well enough this way
     
  8. kevin klein

    kevin klein Member

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    Softer paper neg. contrast

    You can get a lesser contrast in a paper negative by simply over exposing it. Even though it will look overly dark the negative will actualy print quite well. I have been using agfa RC VC or grade 2. Contrast filters help too.