Thanks Sandy for your input. I have gone through your book on Carbon Printing and through the three of the most popular books on alternative processes.
Even though I am very new in monochrome photography I already feel desire to explore other printing processes. So far I have printed all of my negatives on Azo. It took me quite a bit to get beautiful prints on it but that was just because I was so new to it. I feel that I will continue to make contact prints on Azo for a long time, or at least for as long as the paper is available, but I don't want to limit myself to just that as I feel many of my photographs could look better if printed on watercolor paper. That alone for me is a big aesthetic improvement over the shiny stuff of traditional B&W papers. Also like you said the fact that you can make tissue with any imaginable color is something you just can not have with other processes.
Since I will continue to use Azo, the fact of productivity is not an issue for me. What I want to do is print those special negatives that mean a lot to me in carbon hoping that they will look absolutly gorgeous in tonal scale, that they will be sharp (I mean sharp enough) and the will look somewhat organic or earthy. I hope I am correct in assuming I can achieve all of that with Carbon.
I still would love to see a carbon print in my hands so if anyone feels generous enough to send me a print that has some kind of damage or blemish or whatever for me to see I would greatly appreciate it. Of course I will pay shipping both ways.
I may be make a mistake . But if you live in France and closed to Paris the better is to visit the SFP they have some Demachy and puyo Haefstangel ( 140 years old print)carbon print And more. You will see what kind of result you could obtain. Another way is to contact Pierre Stringa (member of Helios) who made is own carbon tissue and quite stunning "clair-obscur" printlink to his technical page
Nze, I wished I lived in Paris but I live in Hawaii which is extremely far from France.
I appreciate that you shared the link of Pierre Stringa. I have not seen his website before. Even though I can not read French the pictures are very clear and the process quite evident. I looks simple but I know that dealing with soft gelatine is no easy task.
I am very shortly going to get some tissue from Bostick and Sullivan and give carbon printing a try. I will use 4x5 negatives to practice. When I get confident I will print the 8x10 ones.
Wish me luck!
Sorry , your name sounds so french that I think htat you live in France.
I use the B&S , the Stringa and my own tissue to make some carbon print. It is a really easy process but need a lot of care even if you have all the good thing ( paper and so on).
Increasing Contrast for Carbon Print
If you need more contrast, decrease the sensitizer concentration, not increase it. J Vee
The second problem in with this negative is I need a more contrasty tissue. So when I sensitise the next batch I'll go from 2 to 4% concentration. The print looks muddy.
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Originally Posted by J Vee
Yes you are correct I had my contrast concepts with dichromate backwards. I'll probably drop down to a .5% concentration. Also I'll give the transfer paper a much longer soak in cool water.
If I had a lot of tissue I would be printing step wedges instead of images but since I'm doing this by the seat of my pants I wanted to have a bit of fun. With the next batch I'll get serious.
I do think it's a bit ironic that we may have difficulty finding silver gelatin paper now that carbon tissue has been once again produced commercially. Sullivan has an up hill climb though now that SG paper may become scarce(r).
Originally Posted by donbga
If you go to the subscriber's section of View Camera magazine you will find some additional information about how to match dichromate strength to negative density range specific for the Sullivan tissue. I plotted some curves for my article on carbon printing that was published in the Jan/Feb issue but they were omitted from the print publication. There was some difference in contrast between the various B&S tissues that I tested but the generic information should be useful.
Of course, to obtain the same results you will have to follow my conditions not only in terms of sensitizer strength but also as regards length of sensitizing, method of agitation, type of squeegeeing used after sensitizing, method of drying, and length of time between drying and exposing of the tissue. For good results you really need to be consistent with technique.
It would probably be better to wait until Don has made 10-20 really high quality carbon prints for him to explain that statement. But by then I suspect he will have changed his mind.
Originally Posted by jdef
But I will offer a couple of thoughts. Carbon printing is easy in the sense that you do not need to understand quantum physics. And it is easy in the sense that no extraordinary feats of endurance are required. I once ran a marathon in 2:32 and used to run 10k races regularly in around 32 minutes. But doing those things was not easy, in fact they were gut wrenching hard, even though I had trained well to do them By comparison to understanding quantum physics and running marathons, learning to make carbon prints requires a lot less intelligence, training and endurance, and the actual making of a print is not nearly as hard. So I guess making carbon prints is easy in the sense that you don't need to be either exceptionally brilliant or exceptionally fit, and when everything comes to together and you make a nice print one might say, wow, that was really easy?
The physical part of the process is pretty straight forward, the most difficult it seems for me is getting the tissue to transfer cleanly and getting the tissue substrate to release cleanly. Apparently I need to give the receiver paper much longer soaks to better swell the gelatin. As soon as I get a chance I'll get the dry mount press out, flatten the prints and post them in the Technical gallery. They aren't pretty, but the next set should be better. Hopefully I'll print another round this weekend. I learned a lot from my first pass as one normally does when learning a new process.
Of course if I were making my own tissue things would be much more complicated. Learning to do carbon with pre-made tissue eliminates a lot of head aches, however now that I've had a taste of carbon printing I'm inspired to make my own tissue.
Thanks Sandy, I'll check that information out now.
Originally Posted by sanking