Thread deservedly made sticky.
That's just, like, my opinion, man...
Total newbie, but this seems like a good place to learn. The picture is well out of focus, but I really wanted to make a nice print of it because she's a good friend of mine.
Here's a straight scan of the negative:
And here's my print on Ilford MG IV, developed in Dektol. Take note, half of the dust is actually from my terrible bedscanner, not the negative.
In other worlds he has
darker days, blacker swells.
Strokes that mix noir revenge
on waves of grey.
Enjoyed looking at the work here. I think this is a valuable resource for those of us who have just about aligned our enlargers
Probably the best referencing point on APUG actually. Just a shame more aren't willing to contribute...
I've been making what I call proto post-visualisations in PS with negatives before making straight prints. Glad to see such an accomplished printer (and photographer) like dlin does the same thing as part of his creative process. Agree that it shouldn't be a means of working towards a fully processed digital version, but more conceptually, as a way of getting a feeling for appropriate contrast, crops and even dodging and burning before entering the darkroom. It gives you a great confidence having a better idea of what you are working towards. If your concern is making great images this is what matters, having as fluid a creative process as possible. It's stubborn to ignore the tools at our disposal, which can only further and refine our craft. I'm sure Ansel would be doing the same thing if he was around.
Skunk Run Falls #1
This is possibly my favorite thread on APUG, which unfortunately doesn't get enough action... Thought I'd try and get the ball rolling again.
Skunk Run Falls #1
I exposed this negative at about 7:30am July 4th, 2012. After hiking up the creek bed I came to this falls which is not listed on the map. I first found it on Flickr while researching some new to me areas of McConnells Mill. The water, which has been low this year, was up after a thunderstorm the night before. It was sunny and foggy at the same time but the dappled light had not yet made it into the ravine, which is probably 75 feet deep at this point in the run. The light was low but fairly even, I had to hold my breath under the dark cloth in order to keep the ground glass and my loupe from fogging.
I used a Toyo 45AII, Nikkor 90mm SW f4.5 and TMY2 (Tmax 400) rated at ISO 250. I metered the white water at the base of the falls, the water in the pool, the wet rock faces without flow at the bottom right and left of the falls and several of the black areas with my Pentax 1 degree spot meter to come up with my exposure. Indicated exposure was 8 seconds at f22, I added two seconds of reciprocity compensation per Lee L's list (which he compiled from Howard Bond's data). I suppose 2 seconds is negligible in this situation but I always error on the side of more exposure and thought an extra couple seconds might help lengthen the white stripes in the wading pool a bit. I exposed two sheets of film as is my usual practice.
I have been experimenting with developing my 4x5 film in home made BTZS style tubes but instead of rolling them in water I use them upright as one would a 120 or 35mm stainless tank. I agitate for the first minute and then at the top of each minute thereafter. Agitation is by inversion. The tubes, when screwed together, hold double the amount of solution required to cover the film so each inversion causes all of the developer to leave the film and be replaced in a new position. Thus far development has been completely even, including the edges of the film.
I developed the first sheet for 15 minutes at 1:100. The shadows and midtones looked good but the white water was a little hotter than I wanted. For my second sheet I decided to increase the dilution to 1:140 to help tame the highlights and extend the development time 2 minutes to help keep the shadows up where I wanted them (all was done at 70degrees F). This negative looked great, the shadows had the same density as the first but the highlights had come down a nice amount. It was this second negative that I printed.
The print was made via contact on AGFA MCC 111 fiber paper using Ilford filters (grades 4, 5 and 1) over my old Nikkor diffusion enlarger with a 100mm lens projecting the light circle which just covers my 9x11 contact printing frame. I developed in PF130 at 1:1 for two minutes. The print was selenium toned with KRST at 1:100 for 2 minutes which seemed to give the blacks just a bit more density. I scanned my printing notes and attached them to this post along with a picture of my developing tube, my camera in shooting position and a scan of the final print which is also posted to the APUG gallery HERE.
I hope you find this half as interesting as I find the other examples in this thread.
The shot and interpretation is beautiful! Thanks for the notes.
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Thank you, Bill! Glad to contribute to this thread. I didn't write much about printing because I thought what I indicated in my attached note sheet was fairly straight forward. If you can read my writing... =)
Originally Posted by Bill Burk
Originally Posted by EKDobbs
the slight-out of focus picture no.4 (on your Flickr stream) actually looks very good as it is. The out of focus thing makes us (me at least!) believe she just looked at the camera for a brief moment and you snapped the picture. I also believe the picture is well sized on the screen and with good proportions.
The scanned print called Summer is.... not so good. 1) The crop does nothing for the print. 2) the contrast is also a bit high.
I think the original scan can look great on a 5x7 inch print (maybe crop the lower bottom?) the same soft tones and same light or slightly darker.
Enjoyed you photo.
just revisited this thread and id have to say i agree with your comments completely. i liked the original but on the print, as mentioned, the crop is too much IMO. the out of focus face is highlighted in the print giving no other distractions, whereas in the negative, the lapels (which all show leading lines towards the face ) are in more focus and give your eyes a place to rest after searching out the face. the double breast buttons give the image a timeless look, and the delicate thin figure in the jacket speaks of youthfulness. she has a pretty face looking at the other photos in that set so i can see how you could be seduced into making that the focus of the print but with this negative i think it might not be the best way to go.
Originally Posted by jsimoespedro
thanks for sharing, it was a nice browse through that album, i really like number 6!
Working up a recent image made me think of this thread.
I went for a walk last week at one of my favorite places close to home, Eagle Creek, which is a relatively insignificant waterway that feeds a city reservoir. The light was very harsh and the sky essentially featureless, so I did not expect to find much to shoot, but brought my gear along, if nothing to get some exercise. A stand of trees along a bank where the creek flows into the reservoir caught my eye, and I made some exposures thinking I might be able to work something in the printing stage.
The 4x5 negative on Tmax 100, developed in Pyrocat HD, was sharp with details held in the shadows and highlights.
The "straight" image (unmanipulated neg scan) is flat and doesn't convey the impression I had of a procession of trees marching along the shore.
The print on Ilford MGIV was made with a relatively high contrast filter through frosted paper laid over the enlarging paper for the entire exposure. This has the effect of softening the fine details and emphasizing the coarser figures of the trees. Additional burning of the sky and water, feathering out from the middle of the image, was done with a low contrast filter. Finally, the print was toned in thiocarbamide, with a pre-soak in toner prior to the bleach step to maintain density in the shadows.
All the best,
The print and the effect you added to the print, makes good use of the original negative. Great look and I bet the print looks better in real life.