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  1. #141
    Guillaume Zuili's Avatar
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    Thank you Mark :-)

  2. #142

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    Quote Originally Posted by clayne View Post
    Okay so contact your 35mm prints so no one can possibly perceive any grain regardless of how close they go.

    Or realize that it's up to the viewer ultimately and if they want to diminish the experience by staring at any grain then that's they're problem. It does not obviate printing at some nebulous "no visible grain" enlargement size.
    Not enlarging 35mm slides to 40 inches by 60 inches=contacting printing.

    Are you sure there is no middle ground in there?

    I would like to see which quote you are referring to that was demanding "no visible grain" or is there a fire sale on strawmen this week?

    There are some really thin skinned people around here. I have seen people post on the internet that they would not enlarge a medium format negative beyond 11"x14". If you think this conversation is extreme my advice is to rip your ethernet cable out of the wall because you don't want to see what else is out there.

    Quote Originally Posted by markbarendt View Post
    So what if the viewer can walk up to the print, doesn't mean I "need" to give them a reason to.
    I never said you needed to. I was responding to the false statement that people don't move around and approach art. They quite obviously do. It is up to you whether you give them more to look at. I choose to most of the time just because of my workflow and my final print size preferences.

    Quote Originally Posted by markbarendt View Post
    I have a few paintings my mom did way back when, beatiful, simple, low detail. The only thing gained by getting real close is the ability to see the brush strokes. Only a brush stroke style snob/geek would care.
    That's probably why I was talking about Renaissance murals I've seen in museums and not your mom's paintings. You could cut an 11"x14" rectangle out of those murals, frame them, and hang them as a pieces of art in their own right. You could stand four feet away from the 11"x14" section and admire it without having to look at "brush strokes."

    Why do people make these statements on the internet? I was going to museums and looking at various kinds of art long before this website existed. I had to come here to learn a) no one approaches art b) if you are standing four feet away from a detailed Renaissance mural you are a "brush stroke snob."

    Sorry guys I had to do a bit of clean up. What I said was mischaracterized and some flat out false quotes were attributed to me. This business of contacting printing 35mm negatives and "brush stroke snobs" is just way too hyperbolic.

  3. #143
    markbarendt's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Noble View Post
    Why do people make these statements on the internet? I was going to museums and looking at various kinds of art long before this website existed. I had to come here to learn a) no one approaches art b) if you are standing four feet away from a detailed Renaissance mural you are a "brush stroke snob."

    Sorry guys I had to do a bit of clean up. What I said was mischaracterized and some flat out false quotes were attributed to me. This business of contacting printing 35mm negatives and "brush stroke snobs" is just way too hyperbolic.
    Who's spouting hyperbole now?

    Quote Originally Posted by Noble View Post
    But that doesn't mean a large format negative won't produce a discernibly better print that people will appreciate a bit more. It may only be a 10% gain for a lot more effort. That may not be worth it to you. But it doesn't mean there is no perceivable and appreciated gain.
    The basic assumption of the argument you make here is that the characteristics of a step up in format size, more detail, less grain in relation to the subject, better tonality, whatever... is better and that people will appreciate prints from larger formats a bit more.

    As far as I'm concerned, that assumption is nonsense.

    Would Guilliaume Zuili's work be "improved" by availing himself of the characteristics of a larger format film?

    IMO, absolutely not. In fact I think a step up in format might just ruin it.

    The choices we make as artists using photography; of lens, film, format, lighting, filters ... simply imparts certain characteristics on the prints we are trying to get to.

    None of the characteristics that our tools or materials impart on a print are intrinsically better or worse than their alternatives.
    Mark Barendt, Ignacio, CO

    "We do not see things the way they are. We see things the way we are." Anaïs Nin

  4. #144

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    Quote Originally Posted by markbarendt View Post
    Would Guilliaume Zuili's work be "improved" by availing himself of the characteristics of a larger format film?

    IMO, absolutely not. In fact I think a step up in format might just ruin it.
    You obviously feel very strongly about this. So there is no point in discussing it because I don't really see you changing your mind. I will say though I would not apply or deny any technique to an entire body of work either mine or somebody else's. I look at each scene and decide individually what they do or do not need. And even after I make a print I second guess myself and ask other people their opinions. There are a dizzying number of possibilities even in the shrunken film world. There is simply no way I could allow myself to navigate this field as an absolutist. Even if I end up leaning heavily on a condensed repertoire of techniques for financial and work flow reasons that does not mean I don't think my work could benefit from other styles or materials.

  5. #145
    clayne's Avatar
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    What we're saying is that rationale like "35mm is only enlargeable up to x size" is absolutist!
    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

  6. #146
    markbarendt's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Noble View Post
    Y I don't really see you changing your mind.
    Why would I?

    I already shoot 35mm, MF, & 4x5. I pick the tool to suit the expected result and the shooting situation. Sometimes I like grainy, sometimes smooth as a babe's butt.

    You are right that there are lots of ways to do things. None are artistically better or worse than another, they are simply choices.
    Mark Barendt, Ignacio, CO

    "We do not see things the way they are. We see things the way we are." Anaïs Nin

  7. #147

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    Quote Originally Posted by clayne View Post
    What we're saying is that rationale like "35mm is only enlargeable up to x size" is absolutist!
    Please quote for us where I said that.

    Quote Originally Posted by markbarendt View Post
    I already shoot 35mm, MF, & 4x5.
    And yet you declared in no uncertain terms that every piece in one artist's entire body of work might be ruined if it were shot with a large format camera. I personally have never heard anyone make such a declaration let alone so emphatically. After something like that is said what more is there to discuss?

  8. #148
    markbarendt's Avatar
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    Ahh, more hyperbole.
    Mark Barendt, Ignacio, CO

    "We do not see things the way they are. We see things the way we are." Anaïs Nin

  9. #149
    Chris Lange's Avatar
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    Speak for yourselves but I personally strive to get the same grain one would see in a 30x40" print from 35mm in my smaller format prints...one of my favorite photographs I've ever seen on display was by a photographer whose name I don't even know, in Finland (god knows if he was even Finnish or not), and it was a very simple portrait of a woman, maybe in her early 30s...very attractive...

    Anyway, it was a 16x20" or so, maybe a 20x24 but grain was what I can only describe as sandpapery. It was articulated so well and it almost seemed like a layer of sand had been lightly spread over the entire image...I've never seen grain quite like it since. It was a very low contrast print, but the tones were beautifully distributed...just an incredible photograph...the woman's face seemed to melt into the background, much more gently than blowing out the tones on the face to match a paper white background...this was via careful dodging I suspect. Without the grain, the photograph would have seemed artificial and manufactured, the grain reminded you as a viewer that this was a real human being you were looking at.

    That said, people who print no larger than 11x14 from medium format confused the heck out of me...my 30x30" prints from 6x6cm negs are enjoyable up close, and far away, that goes for both recent traditional gelatin silver prints, and the Lambda prints I had done from some color negs a couple years ago. Very sharp, very good contrast...

    The harder parts of making a large print from 35mm are having a critically aligned enlarger, a good neg carrier, and holding the paper flat. As Bob Carnie can attest, keeping the paper flat is a cinch if you use a simple, yet effective magnet/brace setup, or as the more fortunate of the community, a vacuum easel. Substitute "glass" for "good" on the carrier, and that problem is easily solved if you are meticulous about keeping things clean, and if you don't have the tools to align your enlarger critically, find the nearest rental darkroom capable of making large photographic prints, and use that...the good ones will have flawlessly maintained equipment (CRC and Printspace NYC both come to mind).

    The hardest thing about making large prints is handling a piece of paper inundated with chemicals in trays that are just barely big enough for it, and avoiding crinkles.

    If you can avoid crinkles, go for it.
    See my work at my website CHRISTOPHER LANGE PHOTOGRAPHY

    or my snaps at my blog MINIMUM DENSITY
    --
    If you don't have it, then you don't have it.

  10. #150

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    I actually use different strategies, depending upon the subject. With Nikon work, I tend to choose high-speed films for spontaneity and maybe
    to create a poetic description deliberatety divested of fine detail. I tend to print these quite small. At the other extreme, yesterday I was
    printing a 30x40 (inch) from an 8x10 color neg where the whole point of the composition is to lead the eye into the extreme detail. The overall
    composition would have certainly "worked" if it had been shot with 35mm, but it wouldn't have had that wealth or wow effect that the extreme
    detail gives it. Nobody is going to view this thing just from the "normal viewing distance" unless they have vision problems. And it has nothing
    to do with "pixel peeping" or attempting to sleuth technique. I print optically anyway. But in such instances, it wouldn't make much of a difference if the original was 35mm or 6x7. It would be a ball of mush at 30x40, so the grain or something else has to make the print interesting in some other respect - which can be done - but it's a whole different printing strategy. Frankly, every time someone tells me
    how sharp their big print was from one of these smaller formats, I have good reason to doubt they ever have seen a sharp print in their life.
    I hear this kind of nonsense all the time, esp from the digital kids.



 

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