I think color paper is even cheaper than the BW paper, at least for me
I do both BW and color. And I'd like to spend more time with photography, less time with all the mechanics. To me, I do not have time to experiment with all the BW chemicals and processes. I tried a couple and stick with one that I'm very happy with. Then for the printing, I know how to control the density and contrast and get the effect I want. Then it is time to move on. It is never ending to try new stuff.
The other thing comes to mind is that, BW photography is considered ART and color photography is mainstream and less of an ART. This has nothing to do with photography, but just with the concept of their popularity.
If today I shoot with a TLR, others would think I'm an artist since I use an old and strange camera. But TLR cameras were so popular in the old days and they are hardly considered artists' tools.
Actually by now almost all film photography should be considered ART since the mainstream has already moved on to digital....
Nope. As others said, you may WANT a processor, but you don't NEED one. I used to print color in the late 90s and even though I had a Jobo I used trays. I hate the time consumption of drying and changing drums. It really slows things down.
Originally Posted by RedSun
Color enlargers may be cheap - the bigger obstacle is finding one since no one wants to ship enlargers. But you don't need one even more so than you don't need a processor. I made a lot of color prints in the 80s and again when I took it back up in the 90s. I never owned a color enlarger. Filters work fine. As far as hardware outlay the only thing you really need that you won't already have for black and white is a set of color printing filters.
Originally Posted by Bob-D659
It is NOT a pain. Changing filtration with a colorhead takes a couple of seconds, with filters maybe 15-30 seconds. Far from a pain. Color heads are nice but more for the diffusion (I'll scarf up the first one ready to go I find locally for my D2 to use for black and white for that reason) than the filter changes.
Originally Posted by RedSun
This is, I think, a fiction promoted in the photo press of the 70s when color printing started to take off. It's just not true.
Same for the processor as I said.
And this I think hits closer to the truth. You have some variables - you can dodge and burn as in black and white but the dynamic range of C41 makes this less needed. You can even burn with a different filter pack (and in that case the colorhead will become a lot handier than swapping filters, though I've done it with filters - but then I have an RA4 safe safelight which helps that a lot) but doing that is often tricky to get right and easy to overdo. In my experience it's more of an emergency measure to rescue very mixed lighting than a routine process.
Originally Posted by Ian Grant
You used to have some contrast control, perhaps equal to about a half grade of B&W paper numbers, with different papers with Kodak's Portra/Supra/Ultra triad, but that's long gone. You an reportedly manipulate contrast a bit with developer additives (search site for details, I've not tried it) but at the reported expense of developer life and again, it's said to be not much range.
It is, when it comes down to it, just not as much fun for many of us, nor do the results vary so much from a hybrid product squirted out of an ink jet as a beautiful silver print varies from that in black and white. I shoot color but I currently project it, scan it, or get commercial prints made. I may venture back into color in the darkroom, but considering my lack of time I'd rather devote what little darkroom time I have to black and white which I find more fun.
Last edited by Roger Cole; 11-07-2012 at 12:41 PM. Click to view previous post history.
Stereotypes are senseless. You can spend a lifetime learning to print either color or black and white,
or learn the basics of either in half an hour. But for some reason the average high school tuba player
is not welcome in a coat n' tails symphony orchestra, regardless of whether the performace is broadcast in color TV or black and white. Maybe if some of you were exposed to really high quality
serious color prints more often instead of moth-on-windshield web smudges you'd understand the
difference. But this does not mean color printing needs to be intimidating to a beginner. You can do
basic RA4 in an inexpensive drum, and regular RA4 paper is more economical than those blank pieces
of paper that get sold to the inkjet users. Just remember to be cautious with the chemicals, have
good ventilation, and know how to properly control temperature. Printing from chromes (slides) is
getting tougher in the darkroom, and has always been more complicated if you wanted good results.
So it's easier to learn color printing by shooting color negative film.
Originally Posted by RedSun
what a-r-e y-o-u talking about?
Cant anything mainstream be art? and in any case what does this have to do with anything? Gombrich dident think photography was art, but luckily for us steichen did.
Perhaps you are confusing the word art with craft. Is there anything that is not art?
The other thing that makes BW somehow popular is that, all the intro photography classes teach BW photography with some go some depth. Often time color photography is not really taught. For example, my local high school recently closed down its color darkroom and sold all the equipment, including the darkroom furniture. But they kept the BW darkroom since they still teach BW photography as part of the class. I just do not know how long they are going to keep up the BW darkroom.
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Suzanne is right isn't she? Most who shoot colour scan and we don't talk about that. I wonder how many colour printers there are here. 50?
I have enough trouble trying to get a black & white image correct and have a problem with coloured images. A black & white image can often convey a greater strength and meaning, as it draws more attention to tonal emphasis, contrast and composition. However, you have to have that black & white mind set to such an extent that even when I use colour I don’t bother to try and adjust to this medium, as I find this too difficult. Colour is just too complicated.
“The contemplation of things as they are, without error or confusion, without substitution or imposture, is in itself a nobler thing than a whole harvest of invention”
Color is now nearly 100% digital. Try DPUG.
Not here (my darkroom and apug) it isn't.
Originally Posted by 37th Exposure