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  1. #1
    holmburgers's Avatar
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    Creating Enlarged Separation Negatives - How best to do it?

    As I go forward making dye-transfer prints via DCG-matrices I'm not going to be content with 4x5" prints for very long.

    I need to consider my options for making enlarged separation negatives at affordable prices. What makes this trickier than negs for monochromatic prints is the need for a pan-sensitive separation material. But buying 11x14"+ panchro sheet film is not a sustainable option. ($)

    A less expensive emulsion on a clear substrate is what I'm looking for. This will undoubtedly entail ortho, so I'll need to transfer the original color image 1:1 to a panchromatic b&w film. Then this can be enlarged. Depending on whether I'm coming from an E6 slide or a C41 neg, this will require a different procedure.

    Broadly, what is there that's inexpensive, available in large sizes and on a clear substrate?

    What is the current state of lith film? I'm not easily finding it for sale. Maco Genius Print Film is such a material, but I don't think it's available in the US. I found Efke Print Film but that is quite expensive.

    Working out the procedures is one thing, but at the moment I'm not sure if there's an available material that's ideal.

    Help!

    I'm curious about x-ray film which I understand can be had for cheap. Another crazy option would be to pour liquid emulsion on Photoformulary melinex.

    Depending on what film I find, matching the contrast and gamma characteristics of potentially 5-6 generations is going to be a feat... gulp.

    But where little is ventured, little is gained!

    Furthermore, I'm not interested in digital negatives at the moment as any means I have to produce them would be completely inferior to analog methods. Though, I admit that its convenience is enviable.
    If you are the big tree, we are the small axe

  2. #2
    michaelbsc's Avatar
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    I have been thinking about this too.




    Recently I bought an old slide duplicator, which is essentially a 35mm camera body with a bellows in front of the lens set up like a copy stand.




    My thought is to change the light source to get the RGB separation.





    I think this could be scaled up larger with a little work.





    Pan film in the camera can then be enlarged onto other mediums.
    Last edited by michaelbsc; 03-20-2011 at 07:56 PM. Click to view previous post history.
    Michael Batchelor
    Industrial Informatics, Inc.
    www.industrialinformatics.com

    The camera catches light. The photographer catches life.

  3. #3
    holmburgers's Avatar
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    I think that's what I'd do too and the recommendation of changing the light source is a good one.

    But what to enlarge to?? That's what's got me stumped.

    If anyone can find a link to lith film to purchase, please show me! I can't tell if I'm going crazy or this stuff has dropped off the earth... that, or I'm stuck in an internet blackhole.

    Any plans for your separation negs? Triple projection tri-color or something??
    If you are the big tree, we are the small axe

  4. #4
    michaelbsc's Avatar
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    I haven't paid attention lately. Too many things in life going on.

    I know Freestyle carried lithograph film, and Ultrafineonline used to have it too.

    I'll be very disappointed if it's gone forever.
    Michael Batchelor
    Industrial Informatics, Inc.
    www.industrialinformatics.com

    The camera catches light. The photographer catches life.

  5. #5
    holmburgers's Avatar
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    If you are the big tree, we are the small axe

  6. #6
    holmburgers's Avatar
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    And this... can it be tamed for continuous tone?

    http://www.ultrafineonline.com/ulhicoorlifi.html
    If you are the big tree, we are the small axe

  7. #7
    Michel Hardy-Vallée's Avatar
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    It's just my reading, and pardon me if I am skipping over an important detail of DT printing, but if you follow Michael's procedure and use a slide duplicator, then your 35mm copy film should be panchro, not lith or ortho.

    If that's the case, then you can go with TMX 100 which can be processed to either a very low or a very high contrast depending on your needs.
    Using film since before it was hip.


    "One of the most singular characters of the hyposulphites, is the property their solutions possess of dissolving muriate of silver and retaining it in considerable quantity in permanent solution" — Sir John Frederick William Herschel, "On the Hyposulphurous Acid and its Compounds." The Edinburgh Philosophical Journal, Vol. 1 (8 Jan. 1819): 8-29. p. 11

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  8. #8
    holmburgers's Avatar
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    Hi Michel,

    Yes, that's of course part of the plan, to copy to panchro and then ideally enlarge to ortho from a monochrome. I just don't know what the best material for enlarging is. I'm looking for something that's relatively affordable in large sizes and has suitable characteristics for dichromated-gelatin.
    If you are the big tree, we are the small axe

  9. #9
    greybeard's Avatar
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    holmburgers,

    If I understand correctly, you will do your tricolor separation at the first duplication (slide copier or whatever), and then enlarge the three monochromes. For image quality, you should probably enlarge as much as practical in the color separation step (i.e,, 35mm or 6x6 color to 4x5 tricolors), then contact print the positives to get the negatives which you will enlarge to final size. This will allow you to work out the various transfer functions on relatively small film, and only require panchromatic stock for the first step. Either ortho or blue-sensitive film would work for the last two steps; the choice would be driven by both cost and tractability of the H&D curves. (Doing this from a C41 original sounds like a nightmare to me....)

    Or am I missing something here?

  10. #10
    holmburgers's Avatar
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    Thanks Greybeard,

    That's the basic idea, but part of the problem is the cost of larger panchromatic materials, therefore I'd like to go 1:1 in the separation phase, with a high resolution film. Ideally contact printing, but especially with 35mm that sounds like a pain in the arse. Then, enlarge to a large cheap film.

    To be honest, I'm exploring the digital route, as much as it pains me to say it. But I'm not giving up ultimately, I just think that for testing it might be easier.

    We'll see, I'm stil not convinced that there's a suitable material (that's "cheap")
    If you are the big tree, we are the small axe

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