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  1. #21
    KenM's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Les McLean
    Earlier in this thread I said I would post Bruce Barbaum's wet up method and despite having very generous help and advice from John Hannon I still cannot figure out how to get the text into my post. Incidentally John emailed Bruce to ask permission to post the piece and he did agree, I also had to speak to Bruce yesterday on another matter and thanked him for allowing us to post the article.
    Cool. Glad you guys got permission.

    The general idea of Bruce's method is that you inspect the squeegee'd print under a dimmer than normal inspection light. You want to print your highlights until you can just barely see detail in the highlights. Then, when the print dries and you inspect it again under normal lighting (whatever that may be), the highlights should look the same. If the highlights are too dark, then you must decrease the intensity of your inspection light - either use a dimmer bulb, or move the light further away from the print. Likewise, if the highlights are too light, increase the intensity of the inspection light.

    This technique is a bit tricky to master, since it relies on your subjective interpretation of the print in the darkroom. However, once mastered, it works quite well.

    Near as I can tell, Bruce's 'wet up' is the same as 'dry down' - the difference is in the perspective. Either way, care must be taken with fibre prints since the highlights do darken when the print dries. This is illustrated with Bruce's technique since you are planning on viewing the final print under much brighter lights than the inspection lights. Likewise with Les' compensating timer - you may view the print in the darkroom under bright lights, but the timer forces you to print the highlights lighter. Different routes to the same solution, I say.

    I had originally thought about purchasing a compensating timer to help out with this, but then thought that it would be difficult to use with dodging and burning. For example, when burning in an area, there's no guarentee that the burning tool is positioned exactly over the area I want to burn, so I can't be assured of getting an accurate burn using the exact time set in the timer. Instead, I set the timer for a longer time, block the entire print, turn on the timer, positoin the tool using the projected image, and while listening to the audible beeps, uncover the tool and burn for the allotted time.

    If my understanding of how the compensating timer works is correct, then this technique would not work. Or would it? Les, care to comment?

    Just curious.
    Cheers!

    -klm.

  2. #22
    KenM's Avatar
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    Heh, guess I should have waited a few more minutes for the article to be posted......
    Cheers!

    -klm.

  3. #23
    Joe Lipka's Avatar
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    No dry down for RC material makes sense. The base for the emulsion (plastic) does not absorb water and swell up as much as a fiber base.
    Two New Projects! Light on China - 07/13/2014

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  4. #24
    Les McLean's Avatar
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    I have John to thank for getting the Barnbaum method of dealing with drydown posted, these modern computer things baffle me!?@*
    Ken, surely you did not think that I would post without speaking to Bruce, we had a long chat before I decided to post and he was quite happy to help as we both know.

    My method of dealing with drydown involves testing the papers by making a print with the wet higjlights as I want them to be and then making a series of prints with reduced exposures from 8% to 12% in 1% steps and then comparing those prints dried with the original wet print. The dry print that matches the wet print is the % drydown that I use thereafter. The main difference in our respective methods is that I view my wet prints under a 150watt lamp at 4 feet. I don't necessarily think that everyone should do that, it's just the way that I have done it for over 25 years but I do believe that we have to be consistent. If you are happier with less illumination that's fine. No matter whether it's called drydown or wet up it's a known fact that fibre prints do get darker as they dry. Neither Bruce or I am wrong we just do what works for us.

    Ken, your comments re burning in using a compensating timer, I think you are geting hung up and being too precise. I use the program mode to carry out the amount of burning in that is required and as I'm keeping the card moving at all times during the process to protect those areas that I don't wish to darken it's clear that the degree of precision you allude to is unlikely to be achieved. You have seen my prints and also the amount of burning in I do and I think you will agree that the tonality is good with highlights that sing. I think that the Stop Clock Pro compensating fStop timer complete with drydown facilities as well, is the best piece of equipment in my darkroom, but I would say that because some of the features were included at my request.

  5. #25
    KenM's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Les McLean
    Ken, surely you did not think that I would post without speaking to Bruce, we had a long chat before I decided to post and he was quite happy to help as we both know.
    Well, no, not really. I was wondering a bit since no mention was made, at least iniitally. But, I should have known better :oops:

    Quote Originally Posted by Les McLean
    Ken, your comments re burning in using a compensating timer, I think you are geting hung up and being too precise. I use the program mode to carry out the amount of burning in that is required and as I'm keeping the card moving at all times during the process to protect those areas that I don't wish to darken it's clear that the degree of precision you allude to is unlikely to be achieved. You have seen my prints and also the amount of burning in I do and I think you will agree that the tonality is good with highlights that sing. I think that the Stop Clock Pro compensating fStop timer complete with drydown facilities as well, is the best piece of equipment in my darkroom, but I would say that because some of the features were included at my request.
    You are of course correct. I did think about that but as usual, only after my message was submitted. :-) I'll stick with my current timer for now - I use percentages for determining burn-in times, so I'm already using f/stop printing, in a manner of speaking.
    Cheers!

    -klm.

  6. #26

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    I don't know what to call it, and Bruces explanation is good enough for me, but RC paper definitely looks different half wet (ie just pulled out of wash to examine) compared to dry. I use Agfa Semi-Matt usually.

    Having been following this thread, I printed something last night that initally I thought I'd under printed (but had started packing up so didn't reprint). This morning I had a look and gee.. it's spot on!

  7. #27
    Les McLean's Avatar
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    Nige Wrote
    Having been following this thread, I printed something last night that initally I thought I'd under printed (but had started packing up so didn't reprint). This morning I had a look and gee.. it's spot on!


    That's called drydown Nige. Your highlights shouldn't be visable on a wet fibre paper, in the morning they will be just on the paper where they should be.[/b]

  8. #28

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    Les, this was on RC (Agfa). I've got the feeling that both aspects (wet look and dry down) can come into play. After reading your article on dry down I had been deducting approx 10% off exposure times (both RC and FB but I haven't actually tested the correct anount... I just went with something simple and near your estimations) and I had been very happy. Based on whats written here about RC paper it must just be working with my print viewing lighting setup. I recently got a Colorstar analyser which I've been playing with but it doesn't compensate (that I'm aware of.. I don't have a manual) for dry down and have been using the exposure that it indicate without modification.

  9. #29
    Ed Sukach's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nige
    I recently got a Colorstar analyser which I've been playing with but it doesn't compensate (that I'm aware of.. I don't have a manual)...
    Did I neglect to send you a copy of the ColorStar 3000 Manual?

    If so, send me an address by PM and I'll correct that AT ONCE!!!
    Carpe erratum!!

    Ed Sukach, FFP.

  10. #30
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    This has been a very interesting and informative thread.

    I agree with Bruce Barnbaum about "wet up". It is imperative to judge exposures while printing with the print out of solution and blotted free of any surface liquid. But I also am certain that a print darkens further as it actually dries. I am not talking about a subjective judgement of the overall look of a print, I am referring to a clear, objective, comparative difference in a light tone adjacent to a paper white border. I don't believe that this tonal difference can be explained fully by the intensity of the darkroom inspection light vs. the light that the displayed print will eventually be viewed under so I would have to put myself in the Drydown due to shrinkage camp with Les and others here.

    Huge thanks to Les for his generous contribution to this topic, to Bruce Barnbaum for allowing his writing to be added to the discussion and John for the technical help. Likewise to everyone else that added their thoughts and expriences on the topic. This is what makes APUG such a valuable and unique resource.
    That is called grain. It is supposed to be there.
    =Neal W.=

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