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Photo Engineer
12-06-2006, 06:13 PM
I am now able to make an Azo like emulsion in up to 7 contrast grades. This paper is about 1 stop faster than traditional Azo, and has a spectral sensitivity tilted more to the UV than visible region (less blue, more UV).

Some of the grades are designed to give a softer toe so that there is a longer tone scale with better highlight detail.

The range is obtained by use of one emulsion formula, but the use of variations in the final coating formulation, so that there is a minimum of lab work involved. In fact, with practice, you can make up one batch of melted emulsion and make 3 grades from it by adding addenda as you coat to vary the end result. So, make the melted emulsion, coat 10 sheets, add an ingredient, coat 10 more and add another ingredient and coat 10 more and you have 30 sheets of increasing contrast. Of course, by varying levels of these ingredients you can obtain custom results of intermediate contrast.

I have coated it on 4 types of paper. Strathmore Smooth, Vellum, Watercolor and Glossy Baryta. Difficulty increases in the order given, but sharpness is in the order Watercolor, Vellum, Smooth, Baryta in increasing order.

A coating defect appears on the left (soft grade) print which is not untypical of coating on Watercolor or Baryta.

I am posting two samples of a soft and hard grade on Watercolor. This particular paper has a rich surface similar to canvas, so the pattern you see is not a defect, but rather an artifact of the scanning process.

They were both exposed for 10" and developed in Dektol 1:3 for 1', followed by stop and fix. The fix was an acid hardening fix. I have used a variety of developer for processing this emulsion including the M&P Amidol developer. All work quite well.

PE

Sean
12-06-2006, 08:32 PM
very cool Ron. I've enjoyed following your progress :)

JBrunner
12-06-2006, 08:33 PM
Very cool.

Photo Engineer
12-06-2006, 08:42 PM
Thanks, more coming.

PE

doughowk
12-06-2006, 08:43 PM
I'm still holding my breath for Lodima; but this may be an attractive alternative. Looking forward to seeing more results.

John Bartley
12-06-2006, 08:55 PM
This is very interesting news. I've been following your posts on emulsions and will follow them even more closely now.

cheers

JBrunner
12-06-2006, 09:01 PM
This is very interesting news. I've been following your posts on emulsions and will follow them even more closely now.

cheers

Yup, this one got my full attention.

Kobin
12-06-2006, 09:37 PM
The progess you've made in the past year is very encouraging. I might be coating my own papers with custom emulsions some day.

K.

MattKing
12-06-2006, 09:44 PM
P.E.

1) this is fascinating; and
2) where did you get the picture of my Dad in his late 20s;) (maybe it's the "Kodak look").

Matt

Curt
12-06-2006, 10:04 PM
Well there you go. PE has done it in a method traditional of early scientists. A very high praise to you, and the best of luck and success in your progress.

Regards,

Curt

Photo Engineer
12-06-2006, 11:00 PM
P.E.

1) this is fascinating; and
2) where did you get the picture of my Dad in his late 20s;) (maybe it's the "Kodak look").

Matt

Matt;

It is my uncle who went to Brooks and who got me into photography.

PE

Photo Engineer
12-06-2006, 11:03 PM
Guys;

It can be done. The emulsion takes about 1 hour to make with 4 ingredients including distilled water. The final melted emulsion adds up to 2 more ingredients depending on contrast, plus hardener and surfactant. The emulsion keeps for 6 months in the refrigerator if you add Thymol as a preservative. The coatings have kept for weeks.

This is doable by anyone. It uses methods from the 40s.

PE

juan
12-07-2006, 08:04 AM
Does your emulsion have the 3-D look that I was able to get from Azo? I have an Azo print hanging in my office. I bring in prints I've made on other papers to look at them in average room light, but the Azo print hangs on the wall and mocks the other papers' lack of 3-D.

Thanks for all your hard work.
juan

avandesande
12-07-2006, 09:33 AM
Nice work PE. I would interested in seeing how the baryarta prints look...

Jim Noel
12-07-2006, 11:29 AM
:D WONDERFUL!

I wish I could get to Montana to take your workshop this summer, but I am already scheduled somewhere else that week. Do yu plan to publish your work in some form? I believe many of us would willingly purchase the information.

Jim

Photo Engineer
12-07-2006, 11:39 AM
Does your emulsion have the 3-D look that I was able to get from Azo? I have an Azo print hanging in my office. I bring in prints I've made on other papers to look at them in average room light, but the Azo print hangs on the wall and mocks the other papers' lack of 3-D.

Thanks for all your hard work.
juan

Juan, you would have to get the opinion of some experts in Azo. I doubt it though as I cannot get the Azo paper support.

PE

Photo Engineer
12-07-2006, 11:46 AM
I plan on publishing all of the work. I have some problems facing me.

1. I need one more grade of enlarging paper. I can only get grades from 0 - 2. I cannot get a grade 3.

2. I cannot get a repeatable film emulsion. It varies in fog and contrast and that is probably due to the ammonia digest. There are ways around this, but so far my attempts have failed. I also need more speed. I'm working on a high iodide emulsion at the present time which does not use ammonia.

3. I'm tweaking the Azo formula to improve results.

4. I'm tweaking surfactant to reduce coating defects. So far, it can run as high as 50% on baryta and watercolor, but I want less than 10% which is what I get on the Strathmore Smooth. My average on baryta with a custom formula is about 90% good stuff, and the same with watercolor, but I don't want to have a formula for every paper support.

Thats about it.

PE

Photo Engineer
12-07-2006, 08:25 PM
Nice work PE. I would interested in seeing how the baryarta prints look...

I have one ready now.

If you look closely, you will see the minute dots and imperfections typical of quite a few baryta coatings. I have a very good enlarging paper example, but this one is good because it is the soft grade emulsion, but on baryta.

This paper will require a slight modification to the coating formula to optimize the result.

The benefit is greater sharpness and a bit more percieved contrast due to the whiter support.

PE

Photo Engineer
12-07-2006, 08:28 PM
Thanks to all for the kind comments.

Please, I am not looking for kudos, but rather I'm trying to prove that analog photography is not dead and you can do it yourself.

PE

Petzi
12-07-2006, 08:28 PM
I have coated it on 4 types of paper. Strathmore Smooth, Vellum, Watercolor and Glossy Baryta. Difficulty increases in the order given, but sharpness is in the order Watercolor, Vellum, Smooth, Baryta in increasing order.

With your "blade" coating method, how do you achieve even coating of the textured surface?