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  1. #41
    polyglot's Avatar
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    Hi guys,

    thanks for all the responses. The camera's shutter speed and aperture are fine as I have plenty of good (exposure and tonal range exactly as expected) results from both HP5 and TMY2. I'm using my DSLR as a spotmeter and I've checked it against my 35mm SLR's meter (they're the same brand, use the same matrix/spot meter hardware and they agree). Likewise the new paper is fine as long as it's used within the normal range of grades - I've got good prints from it from both 35mm and 6x7, just not on Pan-F.

    The problem is just that the scene has loads and loads of dynamic range and I probably shouldn't have used Pan-F for it is all... I was assuming that if there was information in the negative that I could print it just by lowering the grade, I just had no idea there were flatspots in the paper's response at low grades. I used Pan-F instead of HP5 because I want to print quite large and picked the film before I left the house, not anticipating the dynamic range. The local stores only have MGIV papers (and very few of those at that!) so trying some Kentmere or something isn't really an option.

    Reshooting is certainly an option in this case (waterfall is 30 minutes away) and I'll be taking TMY2, HP5 and Pan-F there again this weekend to see if I can do any better. While I should be able to get a better neg by reshooting in better light and probably developing less if the contrast is similar, I still want to make the high-contrast negs work via split-grade printing because there will no doubt come a time when I can't reshoot. The darkroom I use is shared and 20km away, so it will be a few days before I can post results - probably early next week.

  2. #42
    polyglot's Avatar
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    Reshot one roll on PanF on the weekend (clouds came in and it wasn't worth using the other rolls), developed 11:00 in D-76 1+3 and it came out a lot better - still plenty of contrast in the shadows but a lot less density in the flowing water. Printing session tomorrow night to see how it goes.

  3. #43
    polyglot's Avatar
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    Printed three of the new negs last night and they're beautiful - came out right at #2 to #2.5. Spent so much time on that that I didn't get around to the split-grade printing, but pulling the development to avoid low grades definitely solved the problem.

  4. #44
    Marco B's Avatar
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    Normally, you would "push" the film instead of pull to avoid the low grades. But I understand what you mean, you attempted to print a negative on a low grade that simply wasn't suitable for printing on that grade, without significant burning or dodging. Curbing contrast with more dilution and / or shorter development times, does help as you experienced. Just make sure of having plenty of exposure.

    Good to hear you got some nice prints now.
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    "The nineteenth century began by believing that what was reasonable was true, and it wound up by believing that what it saw a photograph of, was true." - William M. Ivins Jr.

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  5. #45
    polyglot's Avatar
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    Marco: I pulled it because the contrast was too high with normal development, hence the attempt (with the first set of negs) to use low grades... which didn't really work for me.

  6. #46
    Marco B's Avatar
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    Eh, sorry, I see I was writing nonsense! Push to avoid low grades during printing is of course nonsense, you were right it needs to be a pull...
    My website

    "The nineteenth century began by believing that what was reasonable was true, and it wound up by believing that what it saw a photograph of, was true." - William M. Ivins Jr.

    "I don't know, maybe we should disinvent color, and we could just shoot Black & White." - David Burnett in 1978

    "Analog is chemistry + physics, digital is physics + math, which ones did you like most?"

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