Ilford MGIV & Warmtone (MGWT), a discussion...
I'm very curious as to others opinions and experiences with these two FB papers. After using pretty much every VC paper available I'm ready to settle down with these two papers for all my printing needs.
What are your experiences? Which one do you use more than the other? Or which one do you use exclusively? Which subject matter do you print on which paper? What developers are you using with which paper? How are you toning them?
These are the kinds of things I'd like to discuss, as well as similarities and differences between these papers. I'm only looking to discuss the FB versions of these papers, and this isn't an MGIV vs. MGWT debate, just simple discussion.
I'll start; I use both papers. I find MGIV in 130 1:1 then selenium toned just lovely. I haven't figured out a great developer for MGWT yet but I like what I get from LPD, and I think 130 1:1 may be a bit better. I'm still tinkering with that though. MGWT tones so wonderfully in sepia and selenium. I like the MGWT surface better than MGIV. MGIV is a bit dull, but still ok. Overall I think MGWT is just a lovely paper, maybe the best out there. But I still have a weakness for cold cold charcoally blacks and bright white highlights.
What's your opinions, experiences??
I find ilford warmtone to be the best paper available on the market.
When not toning for colour I use Dectol 1 1/2 an a 45 second tone in selinum. The look is nuetral and rich.
I use MG4 when I want to split tone and tri tone, as the blacks stay quite dramatic but the highlights and midtones can be warmed up considerably for a very nice split print
Bob, what dilution of selenium are you using for your 45 sec dip of MGWT?
Also, can you elaborate on split toning MGIV?
Thanks so much!
Outside of lith printing, these two papers are the only ones that I use. I reach for the MGIV when I want a neutral or cool toned picture, such as a night scene and others that need deep rich blacks, or fog or snow scenes where I want a hint of blue. Like you, Brian, I really like the bright white paper on which MGIV is coated, and the deep blacks that it can give. I use MGWT when, obviously, the picture needs a little warmth, such as portraits.
I use the same developer for both papers: the ID78 formula that Ian Grant posted here. I use it neat for neutral tones, add some benzotriazole for cool tones, or KBr for warm tones. Only having to keep one stock developer solution is a blessing for me, and I am thankful to Ian for posting it here.
I typically selenium tone all of my finished prints, both to accentuate the tone and give archival permanence.
I think MGWT is the best all round paper on the market, pipping Adox MCC. I find MGIV OK but it can lack the magic of MGWT.
As for devs, just about anything is great with MGWT. PQ Universal or Ilford multigrade give a warm hue but Dektol or Eukobrom give a very rich neutral tone that I personally feel to be far superior to anything MG IV can muster in terms of depth. I cottoned onto the cooler devs with this paper after seeing that my printer achieved cooler tones than me and that the result was not what you could call warmtone at all. Only next to MGIV can you tell it is not a neutral paper in such devs.
For a brighter base, or when lots of speed is used, I will be settling on the MCC. Right now everything I print goes on MGWT!
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I have always used selenium 1:5
Usually I am using 32g to about 12 liters at 70d
I will immerse the print for approx 45sec to 1 1/2 minute depending on how warm I want the highlights.
then a Gold toner for one minute or until I see a peach tone in the upper midtones
then it is either or Iron Blue or Selenium
lately I have moved back to Selenium 1:5 for about one minute then wash
or Iron Blue for about two minutes and wash until the yellow comes out of the white borders.
I love the look of Iron Blue but I feel it is non archival, very messy and hard to control
What I am going to do now that I believe is really crazy is make a enlarged Negative for the shadows . I will measure the print that is mounted on aluminum after all the above steps are done to the silver print
then in registration I plan to lay down a pigment of dark blue to reach the shadows and creep into the lower midtones.
This will be with carbon tissue or Gum, I have to try both and see what works best for me.
Originally Posted by brian steinberger
The reason I like blue for shadows and sepia for the highlights is the natural complimentary colour combination of this and if I am driving the eye to upper midtones and highlights it works really well.
Tom, thats very interesting about the coldtone developers with MGWT. I would like to try Eukobrom but I don't know of anyplace in the US selling it. You have any idea? Are you selenium toning your MGWT prints in Eukobrom? If so, how and what are the results?
Bob, are you sepia toning in thiorea toners? If so, how much sodium hydroxide are you adding for color? Very interesting processes you're doing there!
I've used Ilford's Warmtone papers for years...there's very few images it doesn't make look great (but that might just be my subjects and personal style). It tones really nicely too - I mostly use selenium (although at either 1:10 or 1:19) or a very mild sepia.
Their regular Multigrade FB is nice for neutral tones or subjects that don't need a slightly warmer look. I've normally used Ilford's Warmtone developer but am using Dektol more and more.
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