It's not that materials have gotten more contrasty, afte rall we control the contrast, it's that as we get older our eyes require more contrast. I recall a period of time having spent many consequtive days and nights printing for a show. My eyes were tired from all the critical close viewing and the constant change from darkroom lighting to gallery viewing lighting. I took a day off from printing and did not even view the work that had been printed last and still sat on the drying racks. When I did finally view those prints, with rested eyes, I realized that I had turned the contrast way up and that these prints were unuseable. Now I will rarely print two days in a row and will not print 3 days in a row at all. Our eyes are an instrument of our work and ultimately are the most critical.