Wish list: production of a grainy film

Discussion in 'B&W: Film, Paper, Chemistry' started by MarkL, Nov 29, 2012.

  1. MarkL

    MarkL Subscriber

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    I’m sure the economics of film production are complex and sales are down, but if a manufacturer were able to offer an old school really grainy film, I suspect it would be very popular. Film grain has mostly evolved to be smoother and smoother over the years, but many of us would absolutely love availability of just the opposite. I know it’s possible to get somewhat more visible grain by using high speed films, enlarging small negatives, using condensers, etc… But I’m talking about very apparent obscenely coarse large grain without jumping through hoops to get it (especially with sheet film).

    I’m just a dummy who points cameras at things and am sure Ilford has already thought of this. I’m just surprised no one has done it. I’ve heard more than once that film grain is unique and not well duplicated digitally, and that’s why some people use film, and why more people might start buying it!

    Just part of my naïve wish list. I know I’d buy a boat load of it!
     
  2. Athiril

    Athiril Subscriber

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    Ah, I'll find and upload that image of Tri-X in Aculux 1+9 I did a little while back in 6x7, its quite grainy, but tightly packed grain.
     
  3. MartinP

    MartinP Member

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    You could try something like 35mm Foma400, developed quickly in strong print developer. The EI would be extremely trial and error of course. When you have that pinned down, put your subject far away, with a wide lens, and enlarge like mad? You could then lith the result?
     
  4. horacekenneth

    horacekenneth Member

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    yes me too
     
  5. polyglot

    polyglot Member

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    Fomapan 400 or Delta 3200 in Rodinal. As much as you could possibly want, even more if you run the Rodinal hotter (25C).

    If you want even more than that, shoot a low-contrast scene and bump the contrast up through overdevelopment and/or printing at a higher grade; both will increase grain magnitude.
     
  6. Athiril

    Athiril Subscriber

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    This is 6x7cm, so imagine 35mm instead, I think this would look much better than many examples, as the grain is tight, not sparse with empty space between them.



    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]


    Also, Tri-X @ 1600 in Rodinal 1+50 has a lot of grain
     
  7. Klainmeister

    Klainmeister Member

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    Ohhhhh that is some lovely stuff. Why I still love Neopan 400 35mm in Pyrocat....get similar results when enlarged to about 11x14
     
  8. steven_e007

    steven_e007 Member

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    A local supermarket I visit is built on the site of an old livestock Market. They have picutures taken of this market - I guess fro the 1950s or 60s - blown up really huge and hung on the walls. The blow ups are maybe 5 feet by 3 feet- and the originals were probably 35mm or medium format. The grain is huge - but sharp as broken glass and just as irregular. So I know what MakL means, I think. Really old fashioned gritty grain... but rather than wish for a film that will probably never be made - best to search for a way of getting what you want from what we have. I would have said ADOX films were the best starting point, but now they are on the way out :-(
    Maybe a Chinese film steeped in hot print developer?
     
  9. Chris Lange

    Chris Lange Member

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    Delta 3200 developed warm goes nuts, and I love it.

    This is full strength D76 for 18 minutes at 24C

    8230895612_d51c31d743_b.jpg
     
  10. Athiril

    Athiril Subscriber

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    Not hot print developer, but Rodinal 1+100, 90 minute semi stand iirc, Shanghai GP3 @ 800 (6x7cm)

    Not quite that grainy (nor particularly fine)
    [​IMG]

    Grain crop
    [​IMG]
     
  11. steven_e007

    steven_e007 Member

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    yup, I like it.

    Back in the 90s I shot a lot of rock bands with Kodak Recording film pushed to something silly in DK50... they had a similar 'gritty' feel.
     
  12. Chris Lange

    Chris Lange Member

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    The nice thing is that D3200 is also extremely sharp when you want it to be. I shoot a lot of it, and even through the grain, the prints are extraordinarily detailed. I've been able to resolve the thread pattern in dress shirts under the grain of D3200, processed this same way. That example was shot at a lower speed on a moving subway though, so shake destroyed a lot of the subtle detail.
     
  13. steven_e007

    steven_e007 Member

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    Yes, I get the impression it is faster and much finer grained than Kodak Recording film - but then that is what you expect comparing a delta grain emulsion to an old 'conventional' film.

    The trick is getting these really good ultra modern films to to behave like older emulsions when we want them to. I'm sure there is a lot moe scope for experimentation, here...
     
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  15. ic-racer

    ic-racer Member

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    Are you familiar with Lith printing? There is grain in the paper, you just need to bring it out (clump it together) during development.
    This is a print from a Delta 100 4x5 negative. The grain you see is from the paper:
    [​IMG]
     
  16. jnanian

    jnanian Advertiser Advertiser

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    hi markl

    you can get grain out of nearly any film, even tab-grain films like 2oocreativ, tmax and delta films
    just buy using a different development strategy. i am not sure what developer you use, but
    if you use a more active developer ( maybe ) than what you are using, change your development temperature,
    maybe change how you shoot your film, you can get beautiful grain.

    i use pretty much the same developer and development strategy for most of the film i expose.
    usually i over develop by a stop or a few, and i stand develop in a strong brew of caffenol and a few cc's of print developer

    of course this sort of thing isn't meant for everyone or ... but it works flawlessly in getting grain and stain on nearly everything i shoot, even 4x5 and 5x7 film ...

    your actual mileage may vary from factory specifications of course ..
    john
     
  17. bdial

    bdial Subscriber

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    Ilford SFX is another good choice for grain, especially in 35. Not as much as the Delta 3200, but much more than the usual from fp4/hp5/Tri-X
     
  18. semi-ambivalent

    semi-ambivalent Subscriber

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    I like this. Do you follow a normalish agitation pattern?
     
  19. Michael W

    Michael W Member

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    Foma 400 in 35mm is the grainiest current film that I know of.
     
  20. MarkL

    MarkL Subscriber

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    Wow great info as usual on APUG. And nice grainy images posted. Chris Lange: full strength D76 for 18 minutes at 24C? That must've been about like printing through an asphalt shingle? Looks great though!

    Regarding lith, I'm familiar with it but realize that most of the grain will be in the lower tones, with the upper tones being smaller grained (with exeptions of course). This is great in its own right, but pretty paper dependent.

    I wish Delta 3200 were available in sheet film. It used to be right? In my magic little world Ilford would do annual special order runs :smile:

    With Ilford putting out the new Art 300 paper I was hoping they might put out a companion Art FILM (in sheets)!

    Thanks everybody,
    Mark
     
  21. Gerald C Koch

    Gerald C Koch Member

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    Two other possibilities are the use of a grain mask and reticulation.
     
  22. MarkL

    MarkL Subscriber

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    Hey Gerald,

    The grain masks I've seen, and I've seen them in 35mm, 5x7 and 16x20, range from pretty good to some weird artifical worm-like pattern. But you're right, they can help.

    Now reticulation is something I need to try.
     
  23. Harry Lime

    Harry Lime Member

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    Tri-X in Rodinal comes to mind. I believe this is what Salgado used and his pictures look like they were shot on sandpaper.
     
  24. jnanian

    jnanian Advertiser Advertiser

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    mark

    this was taken with tmax 100 ( 4x5 film )
    about a year ago with a box camera ...

    the developer is a mixture of coffee, washing soda, vit c and a small amount of ansco130 print developer
    i didn't agitate it for 30 mins ...
    if it was enlarged it would be as grainy as a 35mm frame
    but it is not large or magnified ...
     
  25. Gerald C Koch

    Gerald C Koch Member

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    If you don't like commercial grain masks then there is always the possibility of making your own.
     
  26. MarkL

    MarkL Subscriber

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    Wow John! I better look into the film development cookbook I've heard about. I imagine there are formulae there for maximizing grain. Thanks to you and others for generously posting scans and info.