Test Strips & Paper Size
I am preparing some photos for a local show and I will be using 11 X 14 paper for the first time. My question: can I use up my stock of 8 X 10 Ilford MG IV FB paper for test strips or do I need to use my 11 X 14 Ilford MG IV FB paper for test strips? I have more of 8 X 10 paper than the other, and I think I read in another post that the paper/emulsion for a particular brand is basically the same regardless of paper size, but I just want to double check with you.
Thanks for any and all help! As has been said many times here at this forum, I have learned so very much and am very grateful to all of you!
It will probaly get you in the ball park.
I test from the same box I am printing from. A different box of the same paper will be a different lot, age and may have been stored different. Why waste time with a flawed test just to be close.
DIGITAL IS FOR THOSE AFRAID OF THE DARK.
Different batches may differ, and different boxes may differ. But Ilford paper is famously consistent, so it should be about as close as you can get on a test strip. I would never try it with Bergger, even if they make six of my five most favorite papers.
-- Ole Tjugen, Luddite Elitist
I`ve never had much used for test strips, much less with VC Paper. It might sound like a waste of paper, but I usually make a full sheet test print (with 3-5 second strips) and a full sheet reference print for my best guess starting time. Those two sheets save more printing time later than what I could save cutting a sheet into strips. I can see how different areas relate tonally to each other at different printing times and can get an idea of the overall "feel" of the print. You can`t get that from a strip.
Photos are made four inches behind the camera
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Thank you for your quick and helpful replies!
It is good to know that Ilford is "famously consistent" and that I will at least be in the "ball park". And once I am in the ballpark I'll make those "full sheet test prints" and work prints to really help me nail the exposure/contrast. I am still very much a newbie at printing so things take me a loooong time. Plus I am also trying to economize. Lastly, the prints I am making are macro abstracts, so there is room for "interpretation" and happy accidents.
I am glad that you are all here and I am glad to have found this site!
I have been caught very much off guard by different batches of paper. If a print really meant a lot to me (as yours do - being for a show), I would eliminate any variables I have control over. This may just be a bad experience speaking - but it was Ilford paper, although admittedly, of quite a different age.
Of course - with a full size "final" test print on the same stock, this issue deminishes in importance, so this is more a case of "yes, it can happen" rather than "don't ever do that!"
Best of luck,
Sure, use up that 8 X 10. Make a best print with
each paper. You will then know what and how much,
if any, correction must be made.
The same method can be used for testing film
developers. Take note of a fresh developer's
performance on some always stocked paper
and test the developer now and then. Dan
JustK- If you are looking to save money on paper, and time spent in the darkroom you may want to look into getting an enlarger exsposure meter. It will help you get to a test print faster, and you will have less paper use. However you should not totally depend on it for the final fine print, because electronics have no heart or feelings of exspression. I am getting one one for my darkroom. I hope you do well at the show!
A negative, can always be turned into a positive.