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Thread: Wet vs. Dry

  1. #11
    Tony Egan's Avatar
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    Dry down varies by paper and is more obvious in the highlights. If you are new to printing and have the "perfect" wet print then make another with around 7% less time. e.g. 20 seconds less 1.4 seconds, make it 18.5 or even 18 rounding down to a whole second. More experienced printers take this into account in their assessments as they go. Also many ease off on the contrast a little knowing a final tone in selenium will beef up the blacks. Of the easily obtainable papers around at the moment I find Ilford WT has a wonderful sheen when dry and doesn't disappoint.
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  2. #12
    hpulley's Avatar
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    Gotta love Ilford WT for sure. Not sure why I bought IV as I just seem to be printing WT these days! Semi-matt for me.
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  3. #13
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    A teaspoon of Benzotriazol in the Developer. Shorten exposure time a bit... print will look a little light but once dry it should be on the money. You will learn with more experience.

  4. #14
    Ian Grant's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by vpwphoto View Post
    A teaspoon of Benzotriazol in the Developer. Shorten exposure time a bit... print will look a little light but once dry it should be on the money. You will learn with more experience.
    That's really not the answer, has zero effect on dry down and it's easier to just print a touch lighter.

    Ian

  5. #15
    Vaughn's Avatar
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    I warn our students about two types of dry-down. The first is what already has been described above -- as the print dries, its paper and emulsion shrinks...the prints gets slightly darker in the highlights as the exposed bits of silver move slightly closer together.

    Since the students work in a big darkroom, they have to come outside into the light to judge their test strips and prints. So the second source of "dry down" is actually caused by their initial reaction to their prints, seen with eyes fully dialated. Of course our eyes quickly adjust to the bright light, but that first impression can be mis-leading...sending them back into the darkroom to add a couple seconds to the exposure.
    At least with LF landscape, a bad day of photography can still be a good day of exercise.

  6. #16

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    Quote Originally Posted by Adrian Twiss View Post
    This is very true. I used to ferrotype on a large mirror back in the 70s. However its a fussy process that needs a lot of patience. The mirror, or ferrotype plate, has to be scrupulously clean and the print must be absolutely free of air pockets when its laid down.
    Yes, you can lose some due to technical problems. The surface needs to be absolutely clean and smooth, as anything on it will either get embedded in the emulsion or leave a depression there. I lay mine down with lots of water and use a printmaking brayer to smash the prints down slowly inch by inch. One used to be able to get chemicals for pre-ferrotyping baths at any pro photo store, and I still have a little left. I really don't think it does anything, though, based on my times using it.
    2F/2F

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  7. #17
    thefizz's Avatar
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    www.thephotoshop.ie
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  8. #18
    vpwphoto's Avatar
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    For me the Benzo... freshens and adds the snap I like.. It changed my life in the darkroom.... at least for the way I print.

  9. #19
    vpwphoto's Avatar
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    [QUOTE=Tony Egan;1150398]Dry down varies by paper and is more obvious in the highlights.

    This is why Benzotrizol helped me so much... it restrains the highlights. It changed my results dramatically. I still take into account dry down, but with Benzotiazol I get the results I am "planning" for.

  10. #20

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    Quote Originally Posted by Joe O'Brien View Post
    I really like the look of my prints when they are fresh out of the wash, they seem to have such a great depth to them. But, by the time I dry them they seem much more lack-lustre and flat. Does anyone know anything I can do to solve this?
    Increasing the contrast by half-a-grade or even one grade may help.

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