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  1. #11
    TheFlyingCamera's Avatar
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    Do be aware that when getting in to alt processes, each process has its own unique response curve, so what makes a good cyanotype negative makes a lousy platinum/palladium negative, and a good pt/pd neg is marginal for albumen/salt printing. This is one of the strengths of digital negatives - you can develop a curve for each process and then apply it to create a negative that fits each process. If you want more information about that, please spend some time on DPUG, our sister site. The upside is that it frees you from having to shoot large format to make platinum/palladium (or any other alt process) prints. The downside is that you still have that 35mm/medium format look to your images, which is somewhat at odds with the look you expect from a platinum/palladium print.

    But yes, as a general rule, alt process prints are very straightforward to make at home without a special dedicated facility (but it always helps - I like to keep my chemistry away from food processing, clothing and bathing areas).

  2. #12
    Jim Noel's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pstake View Post
    My experience with alt processes is limited to lith prints and once watching a guy do daggueros ...

    My question is:

    Is platinum printing feasible in a home darkroom?
    Absolutely!
    [FONT=Comic Sans MS]Films NOT Dead - Just getting fixed![/FONT]

  3. #13
    Vaughn's Avatar
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    Don't have a large format camera? Try a pinhole camera using litho film! Fun with cyanotypes!

    PS...avoid using a blow drier for pt prints, especially with kids in the house. Prolonged exposure to the pt salts kicked up by the hair drier can (depending on the individual) cause asthma. I air-dry mine now (after getting asthma from blow-drying pt prints for 5 years).
    At least with LF landscape, a bad day of photography can still be a good day of exercise.

  4. #14

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    Quote Originally Posted by JBrunner View Post
    I would recommend playing with bleached/toned cyanotype as a less expensive precursor to PT/PD. It is a somewhat similar procedure and can yield quite surprising results with practice.
    How do you get those great tones on your cyanotypes? I have tried using tannic acid and tea. I have let my prints dry and rest for a couple of days but all I get is a general stain to the paper and not the image. Too, I have tried everything that I have read on APUG. Any papers that are especially good with cyanotype toning? Or some to avoid?

    Alan

  5. #15
    jp498's Avatar
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    You can use sodium carbonate to remove a portion or all of the blue, and the tea toning will replace what was blue. Cyanotypes should dry and rest before toning. I prefer arches platine for paper.

  6. #16

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    For pt/pd printing, space requirements are very minimal:
    UV light source - mine is homemade fixture comprised of several BLB bulbs, and located on shelf under counter. Its connected to a Gralab.
    Sensitizing/coating space - mine is just a cast-off thick sheet of glass placed on a counter.
    Paper drying - I use the relatively light tight clamshell boxes from office supply, and place them on shelf above counter.
    Bottles for chemicals - I have 7 one liter amber bottles for Dichro method and 3 plastic bottles for the clearing agents. Shelf above utility sink.
    Space for use of 2 processing trays - one for developer and other for clearing baths.
    Rinsing area - I use hose tray in utility sink for smaller prints and a larger hose tray on stand in garden area for larger prints.

    As far as light, one of the nice features of alt processes is the minimal level of control of light needed for the processing area. Its not like whats needed for enlarging papers. My space is in garage, and the translucent panes in door are covered with dark-out cloth. A couple of 25W yellow bug bulbs make navigation in the space very easy.
    van Huyck Photo
    "Progress is only a direction, and it's often the wrong direction"

  7. #17
    George Papantoniou's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JBrunner View Post
    I would recommend playing with bleached/toned cyanotype as a less expensive precursor to PT/PD. It is a somewhat similar procedure and can yield quite surprising results with practice.
    Nice pics, Jason !

  8. #18
    Mainecoonmaniac's Avatar
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    Salt printing is also very cheap and a good way to get your feet wet with alt processes.
    "Photography, like surfing, is an infinite process, a constantly evolving exploration of life."
    Aaron Chang

  9. #19

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    Quote Originally Posted by jp498 View Post
    You can use sodium carbonate to remove a portion or all of the blue, and the tea toning will replace what was blue. Cyanotypes should dry and rest before toning. I prefer arches platine for paper.
    Thanks. I have Arches Platine. I'll give it a try.

    Alan

  10. #20
    JBrunner's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Alan Davenport View Post
    How do you get those great tones on your cyanotypes? I have tried using tannic acid and tea. I have let my prints dry and rest for a couple of days but all I get is a general stain to the paper and not the image. Too, I have tried everything that I have read on APUG. Any papers that are especially good with cyanotype toning? Or some to avoid?

    Alan
    Alan, I find my best results with Platine. I'm bleaching with sodium carbonate (commonly available here as washing soda) before toning. A little bleaching tends towards the split tone effect of the third pic, more bleaching tends towards the warm tones of the first two. You can also bleach with dilute ammonia, but it is hard on some papers and not that all that much fun as a darkroom chemical.

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