Iím hoping Joe Van Cleave, the prophet of preflashing, will stop by, but anyone who has an opinion or some experience on the matter, Iíll be happy to hear from.
Iím working with a cylindrical pinhole camera (think Quaker Oats), f/226, using Ilford grade 2 RC paper (satin) and developing in Ilford chemicals (PQ 1 min, water/vinegar 20 sec, rapid fix 1 min). I get mostly good results, except my shadows are often a little (or a lot) lacking in details.
Iíve read that preflashing the paper is one solution, but Iíve also read of some pretty elaborate schemes. I really donít want to build anything in terms of a special light or some other contraption Ė at least not right away. Is there some quick and dirty, MacGyver-style approach to preflashing that I can try just to get a taste of it? If I see that it works for me, then I might look into something more elaborate.
Photographic paper is not made for daylight exposures and reacts to the 'blue' light with high-contrast. The best way to make paper negatives (I'm a fan) is to use a yellow filter during the exposure and use half-strength paper developer. It will lengthen the exposure and processing time but does wonders to paper-negative shadow detail and make them a breeze to print. attached are some before and after negatives.