Great to hear that you like Saltprints an extremely underated process, that is unmatched in subtleties of tones imho. I'd use
Sodium thiosulfate rapid fixer bleaches to much. If you keep your prints mostly in the dark you can indeed use the salt method. Both salt and Hypo will change the color. When using rapid fixer it is even more important to tone the print before fixing either with Gold or Platinum toner
Hey Dominik. Thanks for the tips! Yes it is under rated. It's a gorgeous print. I think the popularity waned due to photogs in the days of old going for what's faster and convenient. It's what's happening now with ink jet printers.
Definitely try some FP4 souped in a Pyro developer (Pyrocat for instance...) - I mean instead of fiddling with dichromate. I'm not particularty familiar with salt-prints but dichromate doesn't actually boost constrast with iron-silver processes I use; it just decreases the speed considerably, giving an impression of high contrast, with the inherent price of lowering the dmax...
Definitely try gold toning too!
Fix in alkaline sodium thiosulfate fixer. (Dilute the formula 1+4...)
Good luck & regards,
Thanks for the tip. I have used PMK pyro and haven't used it in a while. The negative I was printing was from my files. If I shoot an image meant for salt prints, I'll use PMK pyro. It's a bit temperamental stuff. I've used FP4 with PMK Pyro and it seems to work well. However, I've heard on some APUG threads that I don't have to dunk the developed negs back into the developer for the stain. Still trying to figure that one out.
aka Maine Coon Maniac
I have been making successful salt prints for well over 15 years. If this negative prints well on Grade 3 paper, it definitely has far too low a density range to print well with salt. The closest you can get it to an appropriate range is to sepia tone the negative. It still will not quite be there, but it will be close. You would be better off to start over with an appropriate negative. FP4+ developed to totality is the best answer with modern materials. Too few people today have even heard of total development, and far less know how to achieve it. It is a simple process which needs to be learned. My first job in photography in the late 1930's was developing film, all of which was developed to totality. I still use the process today if iflm is to be printed with salt or albumen.
Originally Posted by Mainecoonmaniac
As for using concentrate NaCl as a fixer, Talbot never used this for prints from his calotypes. He did attempt it with photogenic drawings as well as his other early experiments. My conversations with Michael Gray, long time curator of Laycock Abbey, informed me that although unhappy with the difference in color, Talbot knew that he had to make concessions if his process was to endure. The use of rapid fixers will definitely change not only the density of the salt print, but also the color.
Jim, thanks for confirming my original statement, as I was trying to give the best advice.
Originally Posted by Jim Noel