Strange I should come across this thread this morning!
I had a visitor to my studio last night (digi wedding pro) and we were discussing the "world size" prints. This discourse then moved to thinking about having a print 2.40m tall (floor to ceiling) made, wide-sweep flood lip to replace two present prints on the gallery wall. The tranny would come from 6x7, drum-scanned and printed per usual digi work by my pro lab has done very large mural sizes for Government and wedding clients. Next week a discussion will be held about the cost, but he assures me it is not prohibitive. We'll see!
“The photographer must determine how he wants the finished print to look before he exposes the negative.
Before releasing the shutter, he must seek 'the flame of recognition,' a sense that the picture would reveal
the greater mystery of things...more clearly than the eyes see." ~Edward Weston, 1922.
Someone will still have to mount of install a print that size, and that can cost as much or substantially more than the cost of printing it. Right now there's a "fine art" fad going on about super large prints, with high prices being sometimes paid for what are otherwise utter abominations
esthetically, or for basically color redux work of the 70's, just way bigger. Most of this is largely Fauxtography, with all the usual esthetically adolescent digitial fooling around, and no doubt in a
few years will burn out, and all the museums will want to start showing Minox contact prints. I like
large prints when they reveal detail and nuances you cannot see otherwise. Otherwise, you're just
talking about the price of decor - fancy wallpaper. But when someone comes nose to nose with a
big print, and not only sees the whole field of grass, but the individual blades, and then notices a
ladybug out there and can count the legs on it ...
there was a Richard Mosse print that came close to this. that one received the blue ribbon from me that day. (the one on top)
Originally Posted by DREW WILEY
Anybody can make a billboard. What I like to create is a very compelling real-world compostion that
holds its own at a distance, yet draws the viewer into the story of the detail, where they can spend
years discovering new things. Totally different from the objective of advertising or most of the neo
decor print market, which is to instantly grab your attention but only hold it briefly. If I can stand
looking at one of my own prints for six week, I figure it's a success, because I'm my own worst critic.
What I have zero respect for are those folks who use Fauxtoshop either because they're too lazy
to learn how to actually paint, or too insensitive to study the real light in nature.
Drew, I'm with you on the decoration vs art idea. Many people can't seem to distinguish the two. Although that is a subject far from the OPs question.
Not with you on the fauxtoshop though, we must accept digital painting as a medium (I have done quite a few illustrations in gouache, ink and aquarelle, and also all digital, all of them have their charm and curses), as we must accept digital photography.
To kind of answer the original question, PE has many time mentioned doing RA4 printing in room temp, you could build a basin from waterproof barrier material (textile or plastic) and framing timber, use as a huge tray.. There are electrical blankets (used in beds) that could be used underneath for heating, maybe use them as a thermal element connected to a PID thermostat? Jeezus, I'm full of ideas.
I have done b&w roll developing, took ages, and was boring. Got bigger trays in the end.
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Not as big and in BW
It is still possible to make prints to 40 x 50" inches in a moderately big darkroom on 42" wide paper processed in "roll troughs" - I am setting this up at the moment in my darkroom in Quinninup for my 2014 exhibition
The enlarger is a DeVere 5108E with a turret in the ceiling, 42" wide Foma paper and a set of coated plywood "roll troughs" - I have done this before using Ilford paper in the WA Museum darkroom and later with Agfa MCC in a 42" wide roll
Before the real printing is done I have tried a 2005 infra red neg' to 30 x 45", but I did not like the result, in theory all that grain should have made the image into a totally different thing when viewed very close up, but to me it just looks ugly, so I will sit at 14x21" for this image
A good account of the roll-roll processing technique is in St Ansels's Print
More on this later and in the Large Print Group - I have had a break while replacing our ancient Volvo wagon with a you-beaut-ute (better for camping and moving manure, seaweed and firewood) and during this too hot summer
The question centers around RA4. Doing anything like that with exposed trays is just plain stupid if
you value your health at all. Yeah, yeah... someone will start telling me thay they've already been
doing it for ten years and it doesn't smell that bad at all. Then suddenly they'll hit a sensitivity
threshold and they won't even be able to touch a C print without breaking out in hives and taking an ambulence ride. I've seen specific cases. As far as "art" goes, I've got nothing against PS as a tool, but placed in the hands of a fool, PS can make a mess faster than anything before. But this is
APUG, and here at least would be a good place to preach the genuine merits of doing things optically. I really don't care either way. But I for one can debunk the whole idea of optical color
printing being obsolete just by personal results.
Originally Posted by DREW WILEY
RA4 is colour, yes? If so, I agree. I remember in my study years ago, my main tutor was telling us we could develop colour prints in exposed trays etc. I didn't get a chance to try, for I didn't have access to a colour enabled darkroom. However I crossed paths with another tutor at that photography college who warned me NOT to try and just use the closed machines they have available. He proceeded to tell me that one of the other students went and did it and consequently burned out her sinuses and that my tutor shouldn't be suggesting it. Putting two and two together I'd suggest its doable but go and buy the best gas mask you can get and make damn well sure the place has state of the art ventilation!
On the subject of huge prints, I still aim to try that one day when I find something which is applicable to do that big. Cut my own rolls and somehow find trays big enough (for B&W). So Im quite intrigued about this type of topic.
All that really matters in the end is the image, not what your using to create it.
Dunno what you guys are on about but I enjoy the sweet aroma of RA4 chemicals.
My cousin is works at jack shainman gallery that represents richard moss and he just uses 8x10 camera with it being scanned and then directly printed no post production. His other camera was a mamiya 7