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  1. #21

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    Hi Katie,

    I have done a lot of testing in my time as a photographer but learnt that standardisation is the best way to go. This way you know exactly how the prints will look when you make the image.

    What suits my work is:

    Mamiya 7 with 65mm lens.
    Ancient shoulder brace to allow shooting as slower speeds (1/60, 1/15 and rarely 1/8).
    Always f16 or f 22.
    Delta 400 rated at iso200 with exposure calculated to ensure adequate information in shadows falling on Zone III.
    Processed in a simple two-bath developer followed by rapid fixer for two minutes, wash for 4 minutes (to remove the dye), fix for a further two minutes followed by washing as per the Ilford system..
    Prints made on Adox Fine Print Vario Classic fibre paper with first exposure at a hard grade for enough time to achieve good black and dark shadow separation and (when necessary) followed by localised burning-in of any overly bright highlights at grade 2.
    Developed in Dokumol at 1 + 6 for 3.5 minutes.
    Water Stop-Bath
    Archival two fixer baths method.
    Selenium toner mixed with Hypo Clear for 3 minutes (discarded after thirty 16" x 12" prints).
    Test print dried in a microwave to ensure that dry-down is compensated for.
    Final print(s) developed as above and then washed for one hour in a Silverprint archival washer running at 7 litres per minute and using the total dump facility every 15 minutes.
    Dry face down on Zone VI drying screens.
    Dry mounted on to archival museum board and then window matted ready for framing for exhibitions or sales.

    This has ben my practice for the past 15 years and works well for me. It doesn't matter how long a break I have had from making images or processing film and printing. All is 'fixed' in my head and easily repeatable.

    This doesn't mean all prints are easy to make of course! All my negatives yield an OK print but achieving a print that is exactly what I want based on my original idea can take a lot of time (the world is not perfect!). However, I would rather spend the time achieving my original idea than testing loads of different papers, chemicals and toners. I have found that (with the exception of some truly awful materials - mainly RC paper in my case) most combinations of film, development, paper, toner, etc can yield excellent results so long as you have learnt what they can deliver and balance your technique to match.

    In conclusion to this rather long and winding response, I would sum up as follows:

    Concentrating on achieving consistent and repeatable results makes your photography more productive and enjoyable.

    Best,

    David.
    www.dsallen.de
    D.S. Allen, fotograf.

    Neue 3D Ausstellung/New 3D exhibition: www.german-fine-arts.com/berlin.html
    Neue Fotos/New Photos: http://shop.german-fine-arts.com/d-s-allen.html
    Vita/CV: www.german-fine-arts.com/allen.php

  2. #22
    winger's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Thomas Bertilsson View Post
    Hi Katie,

    I tone most of my prints, and use a variety of toners for different results.

    For example, all my portraits are now printed using Ilford MGWT semimatte, and those are selenium toned to get rid of a fairly ugly green cast to the paper.

    .........
    My two cents.
    Thomas, I use this paper and I don't think I see a green cast. Is it developer dependent?

  3. #23
    Thomas Bertilsson's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by winger View Post
    Thomas, I use this paper and I don't think I see a green cast. Is it developer dependent?
    Bethe,

    Out of the developers I have tried, Ilford MGWT (and most other chlorobromide papers) gives a green cast to the mid-tones. I've used 130, Dektol, Ilford Multigrade, 120, Ethol LPD (replenished), Edwal Ultra Black.
    It may be that other developers don't give this cast, but I certainly haven't tried them all, and nowadays I only use replenished LPD anyway.

    Two prints attached to show it. The 'Maid' is MGWT, and the portrait of my second cousin is on Forte Polywarmton.

    Hope that helps.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails 2007_-_snelling_laundry_1.jpg   Johanna 2012-01_02.jpg  
    "Often moments come looking for us". - Robert Frank

    "Make good art!" - Neil Gaiman

    "...the heart and mind are the true lens of the camera". - Yousuf Karsh

  4. #24
    clayne's Avatar
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    It's not only developer dependent but also development time/exposure dependent.

    One thing I like about 130 is it's similarity to Dektol but it's tempering of the green cast. Doesn't really matter much to me though as it just goes through the KRST 1+20 anyways.
    Stop worrying about grain, resolution, sharpness, and everything else that doesn't have a damn thing to do with substance.

    http://www.flickr.com/kediwah

  5. #25
    winger's Avatar
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    Hmm, I'll be double-checking mine in few minutes, I guess. I use Ilford multigrade developer. I do see it in your scans, but really can't say I noticed it in my prints before.

  6. #26
    Roger Cole's Avatar
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    Thomas can you post an example of the results you get with MGWT in selenium? I've been using highly dilute (1/8th the strength it says on the bottle) brown toner (the Legacy Pro clone of Kodak Brown Toner) and really like the results I get. I can remove the green and leave a slight hint of warm brown that I often find very attractive, or I can go longer, or move up to 1/4 strength and get a rich lighter brown if I want a more toned look. I'm curious what it looks like in Se though. Wouldn't have a chance to try it before the weekend at the earliest.

    If I want neutral or cool I generally go to a more neutral paper. Currently that's MCC 110 for neutral, still looking for a real cool/cold tone for some shots.

  7. #27
    Thomas Bertilsson's Avatar
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    Here you go, Roger. The scan probably doesn't 100% represent what the print looks like, but I tried my best.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Jeanah A.jpg  
    "Often moments come looking for us". - Robert Frank

    "Make good art!" - Neil Gaiman

    "...the heart and mind are the true lens of the camera". - Yousuf Karsh

  8. #28
    Roger Cole's Avatar
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    Thanks Thomas. I'll experiment with that. It looks similar to but a bit cooler brown than what I get with brown toner.

  9. #29

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    There are experts here that know much more about toning than I do. However, several points might be raised:

    1. Some papers do not respond to toning very well if at all. For example, Lodima ( Azo type of paper ) does not change DMax very much, nor does Iford FA MG paper...at least as carefully tested and read on my Heiland.

    2. A question that was asked earlier on this thread: Of importance is the question of how much toning, and at what dilution of toner, is necessary to obtain "permanence"? Indeed, is it necessary to obain a color change in order to believe that the image is toned for permanence? Sistain might be an alternative to Selenium in that Sistain, I believe, causes no change in color or Dmax.

    3. Some have referenced Herr Moersch who certainly supplies a variety of wonderfully made developers and toners. I have used his Sepia developer with which Herr Moersch advocates a very "light" toning for a very short period of time in very dilute selenium. One might suspect that some here would consider such toning recommendation to be inadequate for permanence, but I suspect that Herr Moersch might feel otherwise.

    To my mind, with reference to Selenium toning, the question of "how long and at what dilution" is necessary for permance is still a question. When in doubt....use Gold!!!

    Ed

  10. #30
    Thomas Bertilsson's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mahler_one View Post
    There are experts here that know much more about toning than I do. However, several points might be raised:

    1. Some papers do not respond to toning very well if at all. For example, Lodima ( Azo type of paper ) does not change DMax very much, nor does Iford FA MG paper...at least as carefully tested and read on my Heiland.

    2. A question that was asked earlier on this thread: Of importance is the question of how much toning, and at what dilution of toner, is necessary to obtain "permanence"? Indeed, is it necessary to obain a color change in order to believe that the image is toned for permanence? Sistain might be an alternative to Selenium in that Sistain, I believe, causes no change in color or Dmax.

    3. Some have referenced Herr Moersch who certainly supplies a variety of wonderfully made developers and toners. I have used his Sepia developer with which Herr Moersch advocates a very "light" toning for a very short period of time in very dilute selenium. One might suspect that some here would consider such toning recommendation to be inadequate for permanence, but I suspect that Herr Moersch might feel otherwise.

    To my mind, with reference to Selenium toning, the question of "how long and at what dilution" is necessary for permance is still a question. When in doubt....use Gold!!!

    Ed
    Big difference between regular Ilford Multigrade IV and Ilford Multigrade IV Warmtone. Regular MGIV doesn't tone much or increase Dmax, as you've noted, but the MGWT paper is a different story all together.
    Just thought I'd point that out as it isn't obvious.

    Good points otherwise!
    "Often moments come looking for us". - Robert Frank

    "Make good art!" - Neil Gaiman

    "...the heart and mind are the true lens of the camera". - Yousuf Karsh

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