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  1. #1

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    Bleaching prints for white eyes

    Haven't ever tried this before and was wondering if anyone has some advice/process they follow. Seems difficult to find info about it anywhere on the net. Any advice would be appreciated. Rgds, Kal

  2. #2
    david b's Avatar
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    Maybe you can contact Hiroshi Watanabe who seems to be a master of it.

  3. #3
    David A. Goldfarb's Avatar
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    Try a search on "local bleaching." I know we've had a few threads on this topic.
    flickr--http://www.flickr.com/photos/davidagoldfarb/
    Photography (not as up to date as the flickr site)--http://www.davidagoldfarb.com/photo
    Academic (Slavic and Comparative Literature)--http://www.davidagoldfarb.com

  4. #4

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    Tim Rudman covers it well in his book The Photographer's Master Printing Course" including what he calls dry bleaching for delicate areas. Well worth buying. I have the book but haven't tried bleaching. I suspect that while Tim covers bleaching comprehensively, practice is the essential ingredient. He has actually lightened sections of hair, making it look perfectly natural which must be as difficult as eyes but I'll bet it took a lot of practice.

    If you read the book many times you'll still learn something each time. Now that's value for money in any book

    pentaxuser.

  5. #5

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    This is what I do if I decide to bleach the eyes:
    I mix up a very small amount of farmers reducer in a plastic film canister by dissolving the ferri crystals in water and then I add some working strength hypo. I test the strength of it on some scrap print. If it works too fast then add more water/hypo, if too slow add more ferri crystals. The print you want to treat should be wet. When you're ready to start you should be close to a source of water to be able to quickly wash the bleach off the print. A hose is ideal, but not necessary. Depending on the size of the area you want to bleach you can use a big swab of cotton all the way down to a very fine brush. For eyes, a cotton bud or fine brush is usually the way to go. Dip the cotton into the bleach, squeeze some of it off so that it's not dripping wet, give the area of the print you want to bleach a good blow of air so that the water disperses and it's now just damp, then dab the white of the eyes quickly with the cotton bud and let some clean water flow over it immediately. Repeat this until you are satisfied. It's very helpful to have a second print at hand for comparison. From here onwards it's trial and error, really. You'll inevitably go too far with some prints, where you'll get ghost eyes But that's part of the learning process. Also, I always wear gloves during this procedure.

  6. #6

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    I would use ooze's technique for giving the whites of the eyes some sparkle. Don't be too worried about getting the bleach just on the whites of the eyes, even though ferri is a subtractive reducer (acts on all tones at the same rate), a slight bleaching that will render the whites of the eyes white, will have little apparent effect on the pupils of the eyes.

    For example, in this photograph

    The River

    The white water in the left foreground was dull, due to being in the shade. I washed this whole area with Farmer's reducer, using a cotton bud to apply it, and washing off between applications. Six or seven applications of the reducer added a sparkle to the water, but had little noticeable effect, even on the lighter water flowing over the rocks in that area.
    Steve

    "You don't need eyes to see, you need vision" - Maxi Jazz

    Website

  7. #7

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    Thanks guys this is useful stuff. Will also check out the book pentxuser. I love this site

  8. #8

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    I don't bleach eyes, but often dodge them with a piece of wire with a couple of bits of plasticine attached.
    - although I like oozes description - just might have to give it a try....

  9. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mark_S View Post
    I don't bleach eyes, but often dodge them with a piece of wire with a couple of bits of plasticine attached.
    - although I like oozes description - just might have to give it a try....
    Dodging is also my first choice. I bleach only as a last resort (e.g. if the eyes are too small).

  10. #10

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    What do you do if you have several pairs of eyes...I guess that gets seriously complicated in timing!..I thought of dodging, but I fear the eyes may be too small and possibly too many. Will expriment. Thanks. K

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