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  1. #1

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    Other Printing Methods??

    This is probably a mistake to ask such a broad question but here goes:

    I use a (the) printing method in which I test strip a highlight area (0 filter) and test strip the shadow areas (5 filter) with VC paper... Once I pick which times, I print both "0" time and "5" time... I learned this from my instructor (and friend) who I respect and I really have received good results from this method.

    Is this a standard method? Does anyone think there is any drawbacks from this method? Can I gain anything from printing with other methods?

    Got any links to discussions about other methods?

    I ask only because after cruising this sight for a month now, I have come to the conclusion that I should never get comfortable with what I am doing...

    If it matters, I use Ilford VC FB normal tone... I use beseler Condenser enlargers (23cIII's at school, CII at home)... I can't imagine buying graded paper but I am open for advise..

  2. #2

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    What you're doing is called spilt filtering. Do a search and I bet a few discussions pop up.

    Downsides? It doesn't work with graded paper-). Some people think it's slower but personally I find it quicker.

  3. #3
    rogueish's Avatar
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    I've used the split filtering meathod for a little while now, (thanks to a certain APUGger's book). Not all pictures require this method. Some prints can do with a single filter, say a 2 1/2 or a 3.

    But, "if it works..."

  4. #4
    Bruce Osgood's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bighead
    ................snip
    I use a (the) printing method in which I test strip a highlight area (0 filter) and test strip the shadow areas (5 filter) with VC paper... Once I pick which times, I print both "0" time and "5" time... I learned this from my instructor (and friend) who I respect and I really have received good results from this method.
    end snip......
    I believe the book rogueish refers to is Les McLeans "Creative Black and White Photography" which is a wonderful addition to anyones library.

    I have found the procedure works best for me when once I've established the "0" filter to determine the "5" time ON TOP OF the "0", not separately from it. This saves me time and materials. When evaluating the second test strip you are looking at what will become a work print, having used just two test strips.

    Your first work print may tell you your original assumptions were all wrong. But time and experience will get you through that.

  5. #5
    Bob F.'s Avatar
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    Also known as split grade printing...

    As suggested, one slightly different method is to make the grade 5 test strip exposures on top of the grade 0 exposure that you already decided on from the highlight test strip.

    Bob.

  6. #6

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    Okay, for the people in the back with the cheap seats.... All things being equal: I lay two test strips down, do my multiple exposures on the '0' filter.... Remove one, then do the same multiple exposures using '5' filter, on the remaining test strip...

    Why is that? The added '0' time on an actual print will change the '5' time, which is not represented on a normal (normal, as in the standard process) '5' test strip??

    interesting, I have been doing that already, sorta... I only use one test strip for both the 0 and 5 filter... I have marks on my easels, to make sure that my graduations are in the same place (roughly) and I compensate by reducing the 0 time about 10-15%... Its guesswork, of course, and as stated above, its for a working print... I've had good results with it..

  7. #7
    Bruce Osgood's Avatar
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    From the back row in the cheap seats, I can assure you all thing are not equal.

    Good luck.

  8. #8
    MurrayMinchin's Avatar
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    Hi Mr/Mrs/Ms Bighead,

    Different printing methods? I use what I call "Base Reference Point" printing, to find the best overall contrast for work prints. It may exist by another name for all I know...its just what has evolved in my darkroom.

    I did test strips at various contrast settings to find the time it took to have the negatives clear edge (or an unexposed frame) to print as "black", or the last step where there was a noticable darkening. Then I took 10% off that time to allow for selenium toning. (Exposing for a true max-black would seriously over expose the print).

    In a perfect world, at normal contrast settings, at the base reference point print exposure, with your standard print processing, the shadows and high tones should be where you wanted them. If you use the Zone System, Zones I through to IX should print as expected.

    If the print is off in either direction (too flat or too contrasty), you can try again at a different contrast setting with its base reference point exposure. Once the print has the "right" overall contrast, then begins the fine tuning towards a fine print.

    This works for me because my light source indicates when it is stabilized, and I time development using an emergence area multiplied by a factor (this compensates for temperature differences and the early stages of developer fatigue). Because everything hinges from a known reference point, I can use this method to compare different papers and developers in a fast, efficiant way.

    Murray

  9. #9

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    Split Grade printing...

    A technique I invented 13+ years ago. I lectured throughout the UK on this technique and prepared several articles for IlfordUK, Amateur and Pro Photographer magazines. My Digital Darkroom book has a chapter on traditional print where I highlight split grade printing.

    If enough people are interested I will post a PDF om my website for download..

    Max Ferguson

    check my site www.maxferguson.biz

  10. #10

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    [QUOTE=Bighead]

    Is this a standard method? Does anyone think there is any drawbacks from this method? Can I gain anything from printing with other methods?

    Got any links to discussions about other methods?

    QUOTE]

    In response to your first question, no not necessarily

    In response to your second question...Yes there are drawbacks...especially with a low contrast negative. If you're negative has normal or higher then normal contrast, this method can work fairly well.

    In response to your third question, Depends on your camera negative.

    In response to your fourth question, I don't know of links...but check out any of the assorted photo procedure books at your library, Barnes and Nobel, or Borders book stores.

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