04-15-2012, 10:27 PM
Greetings all: A great bunch of prints , Thanks everyone. My comments , in no particular order :-
Tomalophicon: Great Color Image , well worth a small frame .
Munz... : An excellent print - Well done .
Hoffy : Very good result for 35mm.
Ged, : The 'Mood ' well caught, a very nice print .
Nige ; An excellent result from a 6 X 4.5 negative
Shane : A great ' Foggy ' image , well printed .
Enrico : Nice sharp image , well seen .
Steve R. : Interesting image; however my print is too dense .
Oxley road, : Good result for 35mm, better result from L/F camera with movements ?
Andrew K. : My last comment " Great to have an X Rated " sealed section ,well worth all the effort you put into your exchange .
As always , thanks to Andrew for running this exchange , AND for the prints submitted . ....... Cheers Barrie B.
Thanks everyone for your prints and especially Andy for putting this all together! My comments:
Tomalophicon - This makes me want to go for a swim. Lucky I live close to the beach!
SMBooth - Printing a misty scene can be pretty tricky and you've done well - I'm struggling with printing a scene with mist coming off a waterfall at the moment. One thing you might like to consider is burning in the the top of the print a little to bring down the highlights so your eyes are held within the frame.
munz6869 - I can almost feel the Spirit of Tasmania lurching. Nice capture!
BarrieB. - Nice scene! Is there any information on the neg in the sky that you could bring in? Might be tricky with the other highlights in the image though...
Nige - A famous scene indeed! You might like to try a higher filter grade so that the additional contrast brings out more separation between the mountains at different distances, and possibly a little extra exposure.
Hoffy - I'm not familiar with RA4 printing. The scene reminds me of the family holidays I went on as a kid!
Oxleyroad - Nice scene! I was interested to read you make your own brew and substituted NaOH for KOH. I like the pseudo-lith look you've got and tried this a few weeks back by adding NaOH to Ilford PQ but wasn't able to get the effect you've achieved. How much NaOH were you using per litre? I might not have added enough.
Andrew K - 3D. 'nuf said! Thanks!
SteveR - Great to have a fellow FB user! My print wasn't too dense like others have noted but was a well controlled and balanced print. Very nice! A shame your other prints didn't work out, a light bleach would have really allowed the trees to pop. What dilution do you use? Just wondering, did you try to split filter to control your whites? Regarding the dumped prints, any chance you didn't re-fix after bleaching?
Enrico Scotece - Oriental! I really like how you've controlled your process from taking the photo in bright sunlight right through to producing such a balanced print. Very nice! I'd be interested to see this printed using Andy's brew to get some rusty tones in the metal.
04-18-2012, 09:48 AM
Hi all, and thanks for replies so far...
Here is my 2 cents worth.
Thanks for putting in the effort. I have never bee a fan of the 3d way of looking at things, although I have recently purchased a pinhole stereo camera. That's about as close as it gets for me. I did like your little pentax adventure. Those little things came with a bunch of lenses too, in a purpose built case? Another strange object from the 80's. The two portraits are quite good at this size too.
I use the same lens quite often and appreciates its ability to 'flatten' the image with not much effort. Your photo makes me want to take a week off work.
I like this photograph, good effort. It doesn't look like your typical Tuscan image yet still retains much character. I think it is mainly due to the sense of depth you get from the diverse range of tones. Well balanced. I have some other bleach variations that I'm working on, happy to share... (and confuse). Note on the Ilford Selenium - I was trying a bunch of papers (all developed in PQ) and was surprised to find a notable colour shift after only 1 min at 1+9 dilution. And - none of the papers were Oriental. I like it though, will persist. So, side by side it is very different to KRST. On that note, anyone ever use the Adox selenium toner? It's a little like cornflakes, people constantly say they are different brands all made in the one factory. It's a lie.
Nice to see you're using PQ. It's a stable developer and one of my faves. I like the graphic nature of this image.
I'm not a guru on the technicalities of colour printing so can say much here. It is a pleasant minimalist approach.
I'm with Ged on this one - bump it 1/3rd or 1/2 a grade up. I can see though, since it's on Foma RC the blacks will probably 'dump'.
Seems you have enough in the neg to play with.
Nice camera! Do you use the LF much? Forget your yellow filter, pump some more time into it.
Nice balance, but you mentioned you cropped. I do wonder if the uncropped version retained more depth?
I would love to see this on Fibre base. These trees and leaves would appear so much more delicate.
I got two prints of yours. One matt, other gloss. Great to see another Fibre print.
Not too fond of the matt. It is not a true matt. I think only Ilford make a true matt. I much prefer the gloss. Anything that is gloss is easier to see and retains clarity. Nice photograph. I would probably add time, reduce filter, and then bleach.
05-04-2012, 11:17 PM
Well, having sat on the prints for a good few weeks since first looking at them, I've pulled them out again for a fresh look and to give my thoughts. I have to say, this is always my favourite part of the exchange, not just getting feedback on my prints, but seeing what others thought of all the prints in general, and seeing where these agree or disagree with my own thoughts. Always a great learning process, I just wish more of us had the time to sit and write a meaningful critique!
Andy, no offense taken, of course. Having sat on the prints for a while now, they do seem a touch dark, the light bleaching of the main trees definitely lifts the tone of the whole picture, I'm really disappointed you all couldn't see that batch though! I have a version up on the wall that I sepia toned, which of course slightly lifts the shadows, and it looks just about perfect to me, I'll have another crack at this one, because I really like the picture.
Ged & Enrico, thanks for the constructive replies. I was wondering who got the package with the two prints in it, thanks for your comparative thoughts on the two Enrico, you encouraged me to pull out a print made on Ilford Matt. To my eye, I didn't notice too much of a sheen to the Foma, but the Ilford did seem to have much more 'depth' to it, and almost a velvety (ie, soft & tangible) quality to the blacks. I'm still coming to terms with the Foma, so time will tell if I can get more substance out of it. I'll keep your printing suggestions in mind when I revisit this one. Thanks for the positive comments Ged, you must have scored a good one ;) Bleach dilution is by eye, to a deep yellow. I'll admit, I didn't try split grading this one, in the past I split grade printed EVERYTHING, I'm trying to get out of that habit and concentrate on getting as much from a print with a single grade as I can, but maybe you're right, this could be a good candidate, another approach I'll consider when revisiting this one. Regarding the fix after bleach, yes, twice, the only thing I can is that maybe, somehow, some bleach had found its way to the fix tray and was floating on top...???
I really like the soft, pastel tones. Most of my colour work is done with Velvia, so seeing landscapes in Portra is always a very nice surprise, very soft and sympathetic to the gentle morning light.
I like the angle & cropping you've used, when trees are involved I almost always find myself either including the whole tree, at least one end of it (top or tail) or going very close up, the way you've shot this makes it a very interesting picture, leaves my eye curious about what's above and below the framing! Well exposed & printed to capture the misty morning.
Great angle! SMBooth & I sat in his kitchen trying to work out just how you'd gotten this point of view before we read your description, good job composing and capturing the shot as you zoomed past, had you anticipated this shot, or was it just quick reflexes? The range of tones you've got are fantastic, the ship is well exposed and not blown out (except a couple small areas of the balconies at the front?), yet we can still see most of the way INSIDE the pier! Very well controlled print, good one.
As was said above, what a shame about the yellow filter! That yellow, or possibly even orange (??) filter would really add another dimension by bringing the sky in. Now I can't tell if it's my eyes, or perhaps I'm just looking too close, but is the whole print just slightly soft? Using the same (taking) lens you have here, and even the same film I've been finding a lot of my prints just not quite as sharp as I'd like. I had thought it might be my enlarging lens, so it's very interesting to see another print using mostly similar equipment.
Don't you love it when the old 'sunny 16' comes together and gives you a well exposed neg?! You've obviously captured plenty of detail in all areas of the print, I'd love to see what you could do with some dodging and burning tricks, I'm picturing Wyno's print of Simpsons Gap from a few exchanges ago (perhaps just because the 'shape' of the scene is similar), I think this could become more than just "another holiday photo". I'll admit, when I first looked at your print I went into 'critical observation mode', ie, "Look at those trees, I wouldn't call that sharp, up close they're just a hazy mess!" (I know, it's a bad habit, comes from a selfish obsession with sharpness in my own prints), however, pull the print back from my nose and I realised the whole print, ESPECIALLY the foreground trees, is just FULL of texture. Held out at arms-length, that forrest almost looks soft and fury, I want to rech into the picture and run my fingers through it, very well done!
The simplicity of this is great, I like how you've composed it with the two major focuses on the far edges, leaving the space in the middle. A nice Stephen Shore tribute, in that, at first glance, it's a technically good picture of 'nothing', but as you look, there's the basis for a story starting to emerge... The broken swing? The childs swing facing away from the view?
What a great angle, and good depth of field for creating a 'feeling' print. I can understand why you'd want to go back and re-shoot it, but, I think this is fantastic, print it big and embrace that grain, dust and all round grittiness! I can see it as a very 'arty' picture, where from across the room it looks good, but up close it almost becomes an abstract.
What a fantastic picture, from capture to production, well done! I really like the old-timey feel of this one (maybe due partly to the subject, as well as your technique), it looks like a picture you'd find in a 'History of Rural Italy' book. I'd be very interested to see/hear your process of bleaching the entire print, other than bleaching for sepia, I've only used selective bleaching on certain areas, so dipping the whole print is something I'd like to hear more about. Does that (relatively) quick dip in the high dilution just help to bring those highlights out a bit more?
A nice composition of some neat old 'junk'! I really like the tones in the wood and the lifting tin. As was said above, going by your description, this would look amazing in muted colour.
The dark horse again, great job mate! You've inspired me to have a play with stereo images, I remember coming across a stereo camera in an antique shop last year and thought it could be fun to play with, but not at the price they were asking. I never really thought about it again until now, fantastic idea blending the prints the way you have to do away with the old bulky viewers. Of the bunch, I think the one of the girl on the bench works the best, it is simpler with a definite foreground and background, next would be one of her posing by the rock, followed by the shot of the photographers shooting the train. The others are good pictures, but I find the many different 'depths' make then harder to view, and not quite as clear. Still well executed, they just don't have that crisp definition of depths that the others do, I never have been good at viewing 3D pictures though. Just don't send us one you have to stare off into the distance to see next time, I can never get those to work!
The 110 portraits, similar to Oxleyroad's print, I could imagine them bigger, maybe even just an 11x14. Between the two of you, you're inspiring me to leave the 4x5 FP4 at home for a day and make some grainy 35mm pictures!
All in all, a great exchange guys, good job to everyone, and huge thanks to Andy for putting it all together again, I think we need a meetup just to all buy him a beer.
05-05-2012, 05:23 PM
Thanks for your comments. In answer to ged's question
"I like the pseudo-lith look you've got and tried this a few weeks back by adding NaOH to Ilford PQ but wasn't able to get the effect you've achieved. How much NaOH were you using per litre? I might not have added enough."
I used PQ to develop my film only, then I used my own brew of Ilford ID-13. The formulation I had the ID-13 used 50g KOH, and as I don't have that on the shelf I used the same mass of NaOH. This developer is also a high contrast film developer, but I read somewhere it could be used to develop prints and this is what I did.
05-06-2012, 03:45 AM
With the station pier print - I had another look at the negative, and I think the crop just eliminates the extra sky/sea detail of the square format - pretty happy with it! As for sharp reflexes - I was rattling off exposures with this sort of shot in mind, trying to keep the camera level whilst the ship was moving and wind blowing a gale - and this was the only sharp one of 5 which fortunately had the nicest composition too. I think the nice range of tone comes from the early morning (8AM) light, orange filter (brings the sky tone in), and of course my awesome printing skill ;-)
05-27-2012, 02:36 AM
This was one of the best rounds that I have been lucky enought to have been able to both organise and participate in. Things got the slight better of me and I got a little out of synch with where I should be for the year of picture exchanges, but round #7 can be found at the link below.
Thanks to everyone that was able to share their prints in this exchange and I look forward to the next with just as much enthusiasm.