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  1. #1
    smieglitz's Avatar
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    ??? Selenium-toned Van Dyke Brownprints ???

    Every once in a while I come across a post here or elsewhere stating it is possible to selenium-tone Van Dyke Brownprints, but I have never seen an example image posted. I have been unable to successfully selenium-tone a VDB even when I dilute the toner 1+200 or more. The print always suffers from bleaching and ends up with a foul color and weak dmax. I have successfully gold-toned VDBs and believe I would have no problem doing so with Pt/Pd should I care to, but based on my previous experience, I really find it hard to believe I could get a decent VDB print with good density if selenium-toned.

    Can someone please upload a side-by-side example of a successfully selenium-toned VDB and untoned VDB pair, or point me to images on the web that compare them?

    Thanks,

    Joe

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    smieglitz.... this is the best I can do... its an older print but I had scans on my computer of both the straight VDB and a selenium toned VDB. I toned it at 1:500 Berg Selenium toner for ten mins. both prints done on cranes platinotype (90# cover)

    straight VDB


    selenium toned

  3. #3
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    Thanks for posting this comparison.

    These examples mirror my results: the selenium-toned prints have bleached, lost maximum density, and have what I would consider a foul color (more yellow-brown). I'm not sure I would consider this effect to even be "toning". It appears more like simple bleaching of the image to me.

    Am I correct in assuming the selenium-treated print was also more heavily printed initially in order to retain the density I see here?

    Does anyone have an example where the maximum density remains high and the prints retain an excellent tonal range and rich color?

    Joe

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    I never tried with van Dykes, but I tried to tone salt prints and kallitypes in selenium: while I wouldn't call it a foul color, the images all turned out bleached and flat, all my trials even more so than the one posted by Scooterm, and went into the bin.

  5. #5
    roy
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lukas Werth
    I never tried with van Dykes, but I tried to tone salt prints and kallitypes in selenium:
    Susan Huber has a number of toned prints made on POP on her wehsite.
    Roy Groombridge.

    Cogito, ergo sum.
    (Descartes)

  6. #6
    smieglitz's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by roy
    Susan Huber has a number of toned prints made on POP on her wehsite.
    It appears Huber's prints are all gold-toned printing-out-paper which has absolutely no relation to the question I've asked about selenium-toning Van Dyke Brownprints.

  7. #7
    smieglitz's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lukas Werth
    I never tried with van Dykes, but I tried to tone salt prints and kallitypes in selenium: while I wouldn't call it a foul color, the images all turned out bleached and flat, all my trials even more so than the one posted by Scooterm, and went into the bin.
    Yes. That also has been my experience with selenium and POP.

    It would appear that what others are calling "toning" with selenium and a variety of alternative printing processes is really "bleaching" of the fine silver image.

    As an aside, I've also found the practice of adding a bit of dichromate to the wash water as a contrast agent in alternative silver processes simply another method of bleaching details from the print without what I would consider an improvement in quality.

    Joe

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    Quote Originally Posted by smieglitz
    It would appear that what others are calling "toning" with selenium and a variety of alternative printing processes is really "bleaching" of the fine silver image.

    Joe
    Joe, that is not my understanding of the toning with selenium and VanDykes..but what you describe does occur if unless you use a very dilute toner. On the VDB's I have done and toned with KRST (do more in LiPd now) the toner was dil. 2+1000. A stronger dilution will cause some bleach back because of the thiosulfate in the toner - which is much like the hypo used in the first place. If left in the hypo to long, the print will bleach back as well (which you probably know - sorry if this seems redundent).
    Mike C

    Rambles

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    Quote Originally Posted by smieglitz
    Yes. That also has been my experience with selenium and POP.

    It would appear that what others are calling "toning" with selenium and a variety of alternative printing processes is really "bleaching" of the fine silver image.

    As an aside, I've also found the practice of adding a bit of dichromate to the wash water as a contrast agent in alternative silver processes simply another method of bleaching details from the print without what I would consider an improvement in quality.

    Joe

    I have not had much success with selenium toning either kallitype or vandyke, but I did see some selenium ttoned kallitype prints once that were very nice. The maker toned with a 1:500 solution of Kodak Rapid Selenium, and it was done aftter the final wash and dry. The toning was done from several hours to several days after the prints dried. Time in the toner was fairly short, less than two minutes as I recall.

    The prints had a very nice deep chocolate color. However, given the short time in the toner and the very weak bath I have some concerns about how effective the treatmenet was.

    Sandy

  10. #10
    smieglitz's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by photomc
    Joe, that is not my understanding of the toning with selenium and VanDykes..but what you describe does occur if unless you use a very dilute toner. On the VDB's I have done and toned with KRST (do more in LiPd now) the toner was dil. 2+1000. A stronger dilution will cause some bleach back because of the thiosulfate in the toner - which is much like the hypo used in the first place. If left in the hypo to long, the print will bleach back as well (which you probably know - sorry if this seems redundent).
    Mike,

    I have attempted selenium toning of VDBs at dilutions similar to yours (1+100 up to 1+500) and I always have experienced the bleaching effect but not any toning effect that is apparent. I'm also sure I am not leaving my prints in the solution too long as I tone by inspection. The prints always bleach too far before they achieve any color shift that would not be present by bleaching alone, IME. Any apparent color change I've see with VDB (& POP, Salted) and selenium toner could be replicated by bleaching in a too strong fixer or a weaker one carried on too long. Those changes should not be termed "toning" IMO.

    Can you please post some of your successful selenium-toned VDB examples along with untoned prints for comparison?

    Sorry to be such a "doubting Thomas" but I'm really skeptical of these written claims based on my previous experiences. "Seeing is believing."

    What I'm hoping to see in any posted example is a color shift caused by the toner that is not accompanied by a loss in image density caused by bleaching.

    Thanks,

    Joe

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