First off, of you can get color filters for a black and white enlarger. Not as convenient as a color enlarger, but much cheaper.
Also, color printing requires patience. Your always inching your way closer and closer to the correct color balance, and it requires experiance to make a good guess at the correct direction to go in You will also need viewing filter.
I certainly agree that patience is required, particularly when starting. Concerning viewing filters, though, IMHO "need" is too strong a word. They can be useful at times, but personally I have a hard time using them; my brain just doesn't interpret the colors correctly under a viewing filter, so I find that I usually do better making adjustments by using other methods, such as printing a color ringaround and using the different prints to judge where to move in the color space.
Originally Posted by reub2000
For Uncle Bill's benefit, let me elaborate:
- The filters under discussion are for use in viewing prints after they've been made. They come in several colors and densities, and the idea is that if your print's color is off, you can view it using these filters until you find one that makes the print look right, then read the color adjustment value off the filter and make the equivalent correction to your enlarger's filter pack and get the color right. As I said above, though, I personally find this hard to do.
- A color ringaround, in this context, is a series of prints that vary the color settings. I do a series of eight mini-prints on a single sheet of paper using a multi-print easel: I vary exposure on two and then vary the cyan, magenta, and yellow filtration values up and down on the remaining six. If my initial settings are close to correct, this gives me a good idea of how to adjust them to get better results.
Starting out, all of the color casts you run into all seem strange. The color filters can help you find out what kind of color cast your dealing with. They're indispensable when printing color. They're like a preview of the changes that your going to make.
Not these days. Just finding the filters is a pain. Colour enlargers are almost free in todays market.
Originally Posted by reub2000
Jobo tubes and a unicolor or Beseler base will work very well. The advantage over open trays is volume.
I guess the Kodak color print viewing filter kit is discontinued. Quick tips on using it if you find and try using it.
Don't judge necessary adjustments from the darker or lighter portions of the print. Judge from the middle densities to slightly lighter than mid-densities. Darker portions of the print aren't affected as much as is needed and brighter areas are affected too much by the filtration, so they'll throw you off.
Also, hold the filter right in front of your eye, or at least don't let the light falling on the print pass through the filter on the way to the print and again on the way back to your eye. If you put the filter right down on the print to judge, you'll be adding double the filter's correction and double its density.
I find it easier to judge from a more neutral tone. Strong, saturated colors in the print are harder to judge corrections by.
These tips are in the instructions for the filters, but bear repeating, and will certainly make you more effective when using them.
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We'll have to agree to disagree, at least on the extreme words you're using ("need" and "indispensable"). I'll grant that some (perhaps even most) people find color viewing filters very useful, but this isn't true for everybody. As is common in photography, absolute statements on this issue go too far.
Originally Posted by reub2000
Viewing filters are really useful when learning to print colour. They will help you overcome such anguish as "Cyan or Green?" "Magenta or Red?" "5CC or 10CC?".
It's really worth your time to work with a limited number of films at the start, preferably fresh ones. The good news is that there are not that many to choose from in the first place, which is also the bad news on the artistic side.
Nailing down a proper filter pack takes effort and attention. But once you know that a given film require +10CC of Yellow and +5CC of Magenta, it will always be like that (as long as your processing is consistent).
I can't overemphasize the importance of proof sheets. We know that in B&W they're really useful, but with colour they will also save you from becoming nuts. A properly exposed proof will allow you to see slight variation in exposure, and potential colour corrections.
But once you have your proof sheet, the filter pack for a given film+paper combination, and your starting time/f-stop for a given enlargement size, I swear you'll be able to print an entire roll of film faster than the 1H machines.
Using film since before it was hip.
"One of the most singular characters of the hyposulphites, is the property their solutions possess of dissolving muriate of silver and retaining it in considerable quantity in permanent solution" — Sir John Frederick William Herschel, "On the Hyposulphurous Acid and its Compounds." The Edinburgh Philosophical Journal
, Vol. 1 (8 Jan. 1819): 8-29. p. 11
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Lee filters make a set of viewing filters. I still use them. Maybe it's because I only print about once a month, but I find them useful to get me to a starting point.
Bob. I am sure the keeping properties of Kodak may be every bit as good as Tetenal and given the smaller quantities it may be possible to buy Developer and Bleach/Fix(Blix) in N America the advice from PE to the OP who is in N America makes absolute sense.
Originally Posted by Bob F.
My worry in the U.K. is the quantities of Kodak materials you have to buy and its keeping qualities vis a vis the time it might take to use such quantities.
The only supplier in the U.K. seems to be MORCO who have thrown their hat largely in the Kodak ring and presumably offer good prices for Kodak material. Certainly they are very competitive on Kodak RA4 paper. On a chems cost per print basis I think that MORCO prices for Kodak probably cannot be beat. However the minimum quantities are very large.
Maybe I or somebody should quote the MORCO quantities on this thread and ask PE to comment.
If you go down the Kodak route let us all know your chosen source and how you get on.
I second the Lee viewing filters. B&H has them. I think they are the company that originally made them for Kodak.