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  1. #21

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    As I discovered recently, I've been complicating things too much when I print. I can achieve the same results more simple methods. It's time to simplify.

  2. #22
    Ed Sukach's Avatar
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    Yes.
    Carpe erratum!!

    Ed Sukach, FFP.

  3. #23

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    There is no need to complicate things to mess them up. I do my prints as simple as possible, still mess them up and it dosn't help when I fix them
    Regards Søren

  4. #24
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    I've learned more from "difficult" negatives about printing than from easy ones. The simplicity of printing comes, as Francesco said, from a good negative. All of the contortions are worthwhile, but nothing beats a well exposed, well developed piece of film. I strive for a good grade 2 print from a good negative.

  5. #25
    eagleowl's Avatar
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    very simple

    All I do is a test strip to determine exposure and contrast grade(mostly,I just go for grade 2),and that's it.

  6. #26

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    As already said, complexity must be put on negative in order to avoid troubles during printing. It means knowledge about exposure and negative development. Although not always possible it is a good goal to be maintained as standard procedure.
    sergio caetano

  7. #27

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    I know what I say doesn’t have much weight as I am reentering the darkroom after about 15 years being away from it but here is what I do for what it is worth.

    I first try to nail down the negative during exposure and development to make thing easier in the darkroom. Then I go to print.

    First run a test strip and get the time down. Then I after I get the time I will run a full sheet at about grade 3. Once I study the print a bit I will then decide if I want to increase the contrast or flatten it out.

    Then I make the minor changes in time and grade if need be and print a full sheet with no modification and let the print dry if the first print above it not what I am looking for. Once dry I look over the print and see what needs modified if any ( dodge/burn ). One more test on a full sheet with the appropriate modifications and then the final print with about 8-10% less time to cover dry down.

    So I may go through 2-4 sheets depending…

    Again I have been out of the darkroom for a very long time and I am sure I will modify my print making technique but for now this is what I am doing. As far as tools I use either my hands or cardboard cut to shape.

    That is about it for whatever it is worth....

    Kev

  8. #28
    FrankB's Avatar
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    I try and keep it simple when I can, because I'm generally too cack-handed to do anything too clever!

    I do split-grade quite a bit, but only because it is actually easier to place the tones precisely that way than by playing hit and miss with the Magenta dial. I dodge and burn when I have to, but try and keep it to a minimum.

  9. #29
    James Bleifus's Avatar
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    As I reflected more I realized that my approach is a little more complicated than I initially said. I make the best print I can and then live with it for a few days. That extra time living with it helps me to see all the things that I missed during the initial printing. Then I go back and make additional prints.

    Quote Originally Posted by djklmnop
    Personally, I think people do what they are capable of. Ansel Adams did more simply because he understood his materials and how they interacted like the back of his hands.
    Andy
    I agree and disagree. It depends on what look you're seeking. Yes, we should have the tools in our arsenal to make good prints but that doesn't mean that we should, or need to, use them. We use the tools that we need to get the look we desire. I'm certainly capable of extreme dodging and burning, as are most, but that's not what I want my prints to look like. Although I like Ansel Adams' work I'd take a Edward Weston print over his (or Brett Weston's) any day of the week. Just personal preference. There's also a wonderful photographer whose vision I love but his use of bleach ruins his prints for me. Again, personal preference (who am I to tell a master photographer how to work!) but it's better to get it right in the negative than to wrestle with it in the darkroom or post-darkroom. And knowing your materials well yields good negatives that are easier to print.

    Cheers,

    James

  10. #30
    Flotsam's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by James M. Bleifus
    I make the best print I can and then live with it for a few days. That extra time living with it helps me to see all the things that I missed during the initial printing. Then I go back and make additional prints
    I think that this "Living with it for a while" step is very important and under emphasized. When we print we are working so close to the print and concentrating on individual details and elements that it becomes difficult to see the print as a whole rather than as a group of separate areas that pose their own printing challenges.
    After putting it on the wall and living with it for a while, viewing it as a whole from normal distances, you start to separate the image itself from the printing process and judge how well it fulfills your original vision and whether it has the visual and emotional impact that you saw in the original scene. It is also extremely helpful to get the first impressions of peers who have the photographic vocabulary and experience to offer suggestions for improvement by asking for feedback in the Critique section of the Gallery.
    That is called grain. It is supposed to be there.
    =Neal W.=

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