Switch to English Language Passer en langue française Omschakelen naar Nederlandse Taal Wechseln Sie zu deutschen Sprache Passa alla lingua italiana
Members: 69,896   Posts: 1,521,008   Online: 809
      
Page 1 of 3 123 LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 23
  1. #1
    jjprat's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    Barcelona (Spain)
    Shooter
    35mm
    Posts
    13

    Low/High Key Printing ...

    Hi everybody.

    I just want to know what is this (Low or High Key printing). How it works? How to do it? Requirements, ...

    Thanks in advance,

    jxprat

  2. #2

    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    Oakdale, CA
    Shooter
    Multi Format
    Posts
    261
    In a nutshell, high key is a print with a lot of highlights, some of them blown out (no detail). Mostly you will see these in female fashion headshots. Low key would be the opposite. Lots of dark in the print.

    Mike

  3. #3
    Athiril's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Melbourne, Vic, Australia
    Shooter
    Medium Format
    Posts
    2,494
    Images
    28
    High key refers to a high key light, low key refers to a low key light. They don't refer to prints, that is a bit of misinformation there. Key refers to the key light.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Key_light
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/High-key_lighting
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Low-key_lighting

  4. #4
    Ian Grant's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Location
    West Midlands, UK, and Turkey
    Shooter
    Multi Format
    Posts
    16,187
    Images
    148
    Quote Originally Posted by stillsilver View Post
    In a nutshell, high key is a print with a lot of highlights, some of them blown out (no detail). Mostly you will see these in female fashion headshots. Low key would be the opposite. Lots of dark in the print.

    Mike
    High key doesn't mean highlights should be blown out., and in low key there can be a lot of details in the blacks.

    Probably two of the true masters playing the extremes of the tonal range are John Blakemore and Thomas Joshua Cooper.

    This video is a good illustration of Thomas Joshua Cooper's work. Here's another John Blakemore link.

    Welcome to APUG BTW jxprat Great city Barcelona, was there last month & some great negs to print when I get back to the UK

    Ian
    Last edited by Ian Grant; 03-10-2011 at 04:29 AM. Click to view previous post history. Reason: add welcome

  5. #5
    Ian Grant's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Location
    West Midlands, UK, and Turkey
    Shooter
    Multi Format
    Posts
    16,187
    Images
    148
    Quote Originally Posted by Athiril View Post
    High key refers to a high key light, low key refers to a low key light. They don't refer to prints, that is a bit of misinformation there. Key refers to the key light.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Key_light
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/High-key_lighting
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Low-key_lighting
    While the terms originated with studio lighting they've been used for a long time (over 50 years) to describe other types of images made at the two extremes of the tonal scale for many years. It's work reading John Blakemores, Black & White Photography Workshop.

    Ian

  6. #6
    jjprat's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    Barcelona (Spain)
    Shooter
    35mm
    Posts
    13
    Quote Originally Posted by Ian Grant View Post
    High key doesn't mean highlights should be blown out., and in low key there can be a lot of details in the blacks.

    Probably two of the true masters playing the extremes of the tonal range are John Blakemore and Thomas Joshua Cooper.

    This video is a good illustration of Thomas Joshua Cooper's work. Here's another John Blakemore link.

    Welcome to APUG BTW jxprat Great city Barcelona, was there last month & some great negs to print when I get back to the UK

    Ian
    Ian (Mike and Athiril),

    thank you very much. With a "normal" negative (well exposed, normal contrast, ...), could it be possible to obtain a hight/low key printing copy? Is there any special developer to obtain a hight/low key printing copy? Any technique should be used (like use some hight/low filter or graded paper)?

    Thanks again,

    jxprat

    BTW, Barcelona it's a very, very nice city ;-)

  7. #7
    Ian Grant's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Location
    West Midlands, UK, and Turkey
    Shooter
    Multi Format
    Posts
    16,187
    Images
    148
    It's really a combination of exposure at the taking stage and adjusting the development of the negatives, plus a choice of subject matter.

    Yes it is possible to change the mood of an image quite substantially by shifting the values, printing lighter and dropping the contrast or darker and increasing the contrast.

    These are rather old, and poor quality scans, and the darker version has a bit more detail in the original but they should give you an idea.

    Ian
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails grey.jpg   dark.jpg  

  8. #8
    Nicholas Lindan's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    Cleveland, Ohio USA
    Shooter
    Multi Format
    Posts
    2,372
    Images
    4
    As Athiril stated, the difference is in the subject matter and how it is lit. Once the picture is taken there is no changing it [well, obviously you can, but it's just going to look like a very, very bad print].

    "High key" and "low key" usually refer to the look of a print, though the terms arose historically from the position of the main light.

    The two styles of pictures do need different printing techniques. Low key pictures have the shadows and midtones dictating the appropriate paper exposure and contrast, high key pictures use the midtones and highlights.
    DARKROOM AUTOMATION
    f-Stop Timers - Enlarging Meters
    http://www.darkroomautomation.com/da-main.htm

  9. #9
    MattKing's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Location
    Delta, British Columbia, Canada
    Shooter
    Multi Format
    Posts
    12,057
    Images
    60
    For low key lighting examples, I'd suggest some (most) of Yousuf Karsh's well known portrait work:

    http://www.karsh.org/#/the_work/portraits/

    By comparison, his Grace Kelly portrait is a lot closer to high key
    Matt

    “Photography is a complex and fluid medium, and its many factors are not applied in simple sequence. Rather, the process may be likened to the art of the juggler in keeping many balls in the air at one time!”

    Ansel Adams, from the introduction to The Negative - The New Ansel Adams Photography Series / Book 2

  10. #10
    holmburgers's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    Rochester NY (native KS)
    Shooter
    Multi Format
    Posts
    4,412
    Images
    2
    I disagree that it only refers to lighting. The same terminology has been used for prints for many years.

    William Mortensen in his book "Pictorial Lighting" says that not every picture is suitable for a high-key print, or a low-key print. The subject matter determines its suitability more than anything.

    However, this suggest that in many ways it is related to the original lighting. You could look at it this way; a high-key print will have on average a majority of tones above middle gray, whereas low-key prints will have on average a majority of tones below middle gray.
    If you are the big tree, we are the small axe

Page 1 of 3 123 LastLast


 

APUG PARTNERS EQUALLY FUNDING OUR COMMUNITY:



Contact Us  |  Support Us!  |  Advertise  |  Site Terms  |  Archive  —   Search  |  Mobile Device Access  |  RSS  |  Facebook  |  Linkedin