Tip

Discussion in 'B&W: Film, Paper, Chemistry' started by fred, Jan 4, 2005.

  1. fred

    fred Member

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    Some days ago I received a tip (regarding split grade printing)...

    "Oh and use S curved films like Tri-X with Agfa paper and straight "curve" like TMY with Ilford or Kodak".

    For a 'simple mind' like mine that's rather a complex thing to understand.
    So...
    What is your comment/point of view on the statement/tip?

    Many thanks.
    Fred
     
  2. BWGirl

    BWGirl Member

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    confuses the heck out of me! But that's not too tough! :D
     
  3. Deckled Edge

    Deckled Edge Member

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    A few years ago I read a long scientific article explaining the brain chemistry of being in love. Now, I have been in love for the last ten years, and I must admit that I did not receive as much satisfaction from that article as I have from my passionate feelings for my wife.
    Your "tip" is just that sort of situation--where the distillation of hard science does nothing to clarify your satisfaction with a dried-down print.

    The essence of your tip, was to match the length of the straight-line segment of the H&D curve of the film with the length of the straight line segment of the paper. We all know that we like certain papers, and many have found that we like other papers with certain negatives. This may apply to split printing and to graded papers.

    As we compress-expand/expand-compress many zones of light through the lens, to the film and back to the paper, results will vary depending upon properties of light, air, glass, emulsion, chemistry and presentation. Your tip mentions two of these many properties, but could never be a hard and fast rule, as there are so many other variables--not the least of which is personal preference, which brings me back to my wife.

    Use the paper(s) you like best, and take all tips with a grain of sodium sulfite.
     
  4. fhovie

    fhovie Subscriber

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    I don't think it is all as simple as the "tip." I threw a step wedge on a piece of AZO paper yesterday and developed it in Amidol to test my exposure time. I counted 12 zones on the paper. Most papers are luckly to capture 8 and most films are lucky to capture 7 without some adjustment in development. That 12 zones on the paper printed the entire range of the negative and did so sharply with lots of contrast. I had proofed the same negative on some Ilford MGIV the a few days earlier. It was very muddy - no sparkle. The contact print did not even look all that sharp. But on AZO it was tack sharp and sparkled. The negative was developed in PyrocatHD with the intent of matching it to what AZO can do. - The long and short of it is to figure out what you hope to acheive and chose materials that will get you there. I wanted the best grain, sharpness and sparkle on the planet. My camera kit weighs 47 lbs and each sheet of film is $3. Each click is 30 minutes of darkroom time to make a negative and endless fussing over how to print it to bring out the best in it. - To create what I wanted, meant - no more store bought chemistries - trying endless combinations and taking all the good advise I could find - mostly from the board. Anything short of that would have left me dissapointed.

    Films and papers have characteristic curves but they are all flexible with chemistries. One developer will show a lot of toe and shoulder and the same film with another developer will be almost a straight line. If you buy all your chemicals mixed - your ability to change their response will be limited. There are a lot of good recipies here and in common books and chemicals are not all that expensive or difficult to get. The trick is to figure out what your final print should look like and then use the right camera, lens, developer, paper and paper developer to make the image you wish to wind up with.
     
  5. Will S

    Will S Member

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    I have also read somewhere else to use Kodak papers with TMY and other Kodak films as the curves are designed to fit together well. I can't recall where, but it had something to do with using tmax400 effectively.

    Will
     
  6. Lee Shively

    Lee Shively Member

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    I really don't know what you guys are talking about. :confused:
     
  7. fhovie

    fhovie Subscriber

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    In a nutshell - Photographers often plot on a graph the relationship between density of image and the brightness of light that created it - both for papers and for film. A very tiny amount of light may not expose film at all. There is a delayed response to how film darkens up when it is exposed - this is called "toe" and will show how the film/developer combination will record shadows and also speaks to how "fast" the film is. Most films are fairly straight in the mid tones but then when they get into the highlights, many film/developer combinations will get less dense with increasing brightness - this is call shoulder and will show how the film/developer combination deals with highlights. - This TOE and SHOULDER nature of a film may perform better or worse with a paper that also has certain TOE and SHOULDER characteristics. These graphs are the "curves" being discussed here. The idea is that putting the right paper with the right film will exploit the best of both. Of course there are so many variables that a flat declatative would need to also define more than just paper and film choices but also chemistry and development technique as well.