Stepwedge: True or False ?

Discussion in 'Exposure Discussion' started by Marc Leest, Aug 29, 2005.

  1. Marc Leest

    Marc Leest Member

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    I want to make a (contact) testprint with a (Stouffer) transmission stepwedge.
    So, with a given exposure, the strip with a transmission density of 0.72 prints a strip with a reflection density of 0.75 (Zone V).
    Is the conclusion now that my exposure is correct ? True or False?

    M.
     
  2. df cardwell

    df cardwell Subscriber

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    Correct exposure has to do with the highlights of a print, not midtones.

    The midtones come from balancing the exposure and the development.

    The stepwedge can be used to give a snapshot of the print; a clear look at the range of tones and their relationship.


    There is no magic in landing a given density at a given zone. Depending on your own taste, and therefore paper and developer, and viewing conditions, you may want your Zone V at .6 or .9 or 1.2 density.
     
  3. noseoil

    noseoil Member

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    Marc, your exposure is probably correct, but look at the edge of the unexposed film in the zone 5 print. When you get your zone 5 print, is the unexposed edge nice and black (do you see a tonal separation between the film base and the paper's edge)? If not, there isn't enough exposure. As you approach true black on the unexposed film's edge, does zone 5 come in at the same time? If true black is there prior to zone 5 showing up properly, you may have overexposed the film. tim
     
  4. Donald Miller

    Donald Miller Member

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    You appear to be interchanging transmission density with reflection density. Those are totally different measurements.
     
  5. mmcclellan

    mmcclellan Subscriber

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    Marc,

    I think it's always best to "eyeball" these things. What works sensitometrically, may not work visually or "artistically." Best to judge density according to your own visual judgment of what gives the best highlights (right density for that particular image -- may vary with another image) and then adjust the contrast to give the "right" blacks.

    I use a densitometer to determine film density only in doing a film speed test and eyeball everything else, as the only thing that really matters in the end is the print and how it looks to the viewer.

    If you're running a lab and doing other people's prints on a high-volume basis, then it's a different story . . . .
     
  6. dancqu

    dancqu Member

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    A good glossy paper will have a R. density of 2.2 +/- a bit.
    I'd think 1.1 +/- a bit where Z5 should be. Dan