solarization in darkroom
i want to try some pseudo solarization in my darkroom.
are there any 'rules' for the time to light the print with white light and after how long in the developer?
also, is there a specific type of negative more suited than others (contrast, lots of black, lots of white)?
thanks for your help
Rik, I found I needed a timer attached to the light, which was a desk lamp above the developing tray. That way I could be sure of repeating any success I had.
I have found that darkish clouds against a clear light coloured sky, produce a beautiful line around the clouds.
I have used a special developer available from Vanbar in Melbourne, I'll look it up and post some details tonight.
I am going to try this technique myself this weekend. My research so far suggests flashing the print with light "three quarters of the way through the developing", or "as the print starts to appear" so I will use these two as starting points for experimentation.
I've also read that this technique works best with a Metol only developer so I'm not sure whether my standard Ilford Multigrade developer will produce the desired effect.
As with all experimentation record what you do and only change one variable each time.
Hopefully some of the knowledgeable people will tell us all the above is nonesense and/or point us in the right direction
This article explains it all, from unblinkingeye.com
The effect, done in the darkroom in the developer, is called the Sabattier Effect and is totally different from solarization that is done in-camera with long exposures.
Sabattier is particularly effective in color prints.
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Try this link for the article: http://unblinkingeye.com/Articles/So...arization.html. Solarol developer simplifies the process. It seems expensive, but keeps very well, perhaps for a few years. After mixing, I store it in small bottles filled to the top. I haven't tried it with photo paper for many years. Back then Brovira grade 5 was the paper of choice. Since then I've only solarized negatives. Litho film works, but sometimes has pinholes. It can be monitoried under a red safelight. The late and much lamented Kodak Tech Pan in sheet film gave great results. The results of solarizing film yields high key prints, not low key as when solarizing paper. A solarized negative for printing gives additional control over the results. After a presoak I agitate film in Solarol for about 30 seconds, stop agitating for about 15 seconds, flash, and finish developing without agitation for about 45 seconds. A cut-down film hanger keeps the film from floating to the top of the developer. The film to be Solarized is backed with a fully exposed and developed sheet of film to eliminate reflections from the film hanger. The reversal exposure should be no more than a few seconds for best results. A small electronic flash provides consistant exposure. Opal glass held just above the tray diffuses the Solarizing light to eliminate the shadow of anything floating on the developer surface.
This is a link to Dr. William Jolly's on-line book on solarization:
Well, I repeat that anything done in the developer is technically the Sabattier effect and looks quite different than Solarization. Look it up. People often confuse the two effects.
Believe it or not PE is correct when he says Sabattier effect and it is different from Solarisation.
I heard that solarisation took about 1,000 times extra exposure over normal, to produce. I decided to test that statement, it's correct according to me. I used Panatomic-X and exposed it almost directly to the sun. I forget the times but Solarisation happened, The sun turned into a positive on the neg and the building was negative.
Back to the question at hand. I have successfully done Sabattier prints, using Ilford MGIV RC simply in the darkroom.
My standard set-up is a desk lamp with a 15W safelight globe inserted sitting approximately 1.2 metres above the developing tray. This was actuated with an enlarging timer to have precise repeatable results.
First standardise a time for print development, I used 1'30" @ 20C. Check out when the image first appears fully, from that time you can flash the paper with white light, not before. My own white light flashing, is usually between 1/2 a second to about 2 seconds. Depending on where in the developing cycle you flash the paper, is what usually makes or breaks the final outcome. So watch the clock and note when you flash!
You then continue development until 1'30" is up, pull the print smartly, then drop it into a fresh stop bath.
Fix, review the results after the paper is dry.
In a nutshell, that's it.
There are variations, different special developers, myriads of methods, but that is for you to work out.
I also tried this special developer from the Australian company Vanbar
Photochem PC R77 Sabattier Kit pdr
Sells for $9.60 USD (export price)
I wouldn't say it was bad, in fact I got good results from it, but I was and am happy with normal developer and MGIV RC, it's what I have, is cheap and doesn't use much water, (we are in a severe drought)
thanks for all the very informative replies. i'll give it a try this weekend using my standard stuff first as described by Mike.