Does this count as alternative process?

David M

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Joanna,
We seem to have have smaller pinheads and angels with tinier feet to dance on them. We also have silver pins and silicon pins to worry about. You raise an important but parallel point about retouching. AA was showing the majesty of the natural world and the graffito disturbed that view. We can imagine (eg) Martin Parr taking care to include it. He is concerned with the peculiarities of human behaviour. Mr Parr is not a large format photographer of course.
You will also have read AA's account of waiting for the horse to turn into the last available sunbeam. Was he really blessed by extraordinary luck or was he so prolific that he was bound to have serendipity's hand on his shoulder from time to time? If he declares it then there's no deception.

A small point of curiosity here. The offending letters must have been darker on the neg, so do did he ferri them out? Risky process on film. Lemon-squeezy on screen.*

I submit that we are not arguing, in the sense of aggresive disagreement, but rather that we are exploring a subject that interests us. This kindly forum is providing a rare opportunity to get away from Exif data and zoom ratios. To me is seems worthwhile to lift our eyes from the minutiae of (ahem...) miracle developers** and look at a bigger picture.

*Today, perhaps: drum scan neg; retouch letters; dodge and burn; output new neg; print perfect print in darkroom? Append note to back of subsequent prints?

**No reason to avoid discussing developers, but there is more to photography.
 

KenS

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Now and again, we have to stop-think... then (perhaps) change a 'something in our approach to producing an image that in some way 'shows' that which NEEDS to be seen. When I was a 'working' photographer, I had to take into consideration that the 'end result' was regarded as "proof" of something that could be observed by the hominid eye.

My most difficult 'challenge' (ever) was to produce a print that indicated the result on an UNSTAINED polyacrylamide 'gel'.

it required some 'thinking outside the box' using a different approach than the traditional 'stained' polyacrylamide gel. I 'played around with transmitted polarized light cross polarized (after its transmission) to the lens/film. The printed result had the scientist tell me he NEVER thought it could be 'done'... I 'Presented' the technique at a BPA meeting... and, to be honest' I was stunned by the positive reception of the attendees.. on a means of 'solving' a problem' that others had not yet overcome ...and was subsequently 'pressed' into submitting a paper (regarding the technique) to be 'published' in the Journal of Biological Photography.

Ken
 

David M

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Tell us more, please. It sounds like photographing the invisible.
New thread, perhaps?
 

KenS

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Since my retirement, I no longer 'get' the journal... I had to let my membership lapse... and I'm not sure of it being 'available' on line... But should you have the time to do some 'searching'. May I invite to you do so at https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed?term="Journal+of+the+Biological+Photographic+Association"[Journal]

I threw out the last few of my 'free' copies of that article about two years ago.. after a much needed 'clean out' of some of my overloaded BPA info.file cabinet drawer. The Association changed it 'name' a few years ago (I believe) to Bio-comunications Org. They might be able to provide a photo-copy for your perusal. I believe there are UK members (working in Hospitals and perhaps "institutes of higher learning" ie Universities) who may be willing (and able) to provide a photo-copy of the required pages.

When I have some 'free' time (i.e. when She Who Must be Obeyed has run out of chores for me to accomplish 'before day is done') I see if all my journals are still 'complete' and I can find the 'right' journal to scan my 'paper' and forward it to you.
Remember that sunlight is 'polarised' by earth's atmosphere and by 'wearing polarizing lenses we are actually 'cross-polarising' re-polarising the light reflected from 'objects' observed.

Ken
 
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KenS

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We seem to be discussing words now.
A process is a series of actions or operations, no matter what they might be. When we couple it with the word "alternative" we now understand something different – that it describes various ways of making images, by various methods. (An example: York denotes one thing, but adding the word New denotes something else.)
We have specific names for particular methods – cyanotype, platinum and so on. There is no such thing as an alternative print as such. No moral value attaches to any of these and nobody owns any particular word.

The word "craft" has connotations of manual dexterity, which are not appropriate for darkroom work. The dexterity required in the darkroom is trivial. You press a button and a machine does the rest. You might have to hold out your hand or a piece of card, but in essence, if you can make a cup of tea and a sandwich, you have all the manual skills that you need.
The skill lies not in doing it, but knowing what to do. There's a parallel with chess.

If Joanna had said "another way" instead of "alternative", we might not be indulging ourselves in this discussion.
As one who 'enjoys' making prints from both 4x5 and 8x10 'silver-gelatin' negatives.... There is a certain amount of
'pleasure' in making paper-based prints using the "ARCHAIC" print processes using sunlight or electrically produced in the visible and the short 'invisible' ultra-violet wavelengths... which can (and is) often mis-regarded as an 'alternative' print process. That being said, I am not adverse to admitting that I have scanned and printed out the resulting scanned file 'negative' onto Pictorico 'film' after I decided that an 4x5 inch print from the silver-gelatin negative was not quite 'large' enough to make a home made VDB or Cyanotype print on a quality 'water-colour' paper. That being said some of the 'archaic print process 'emulsions' do have a given amount of silver nitrate in the "mix"

While I have never done so.. I believe a colour (C41 negative can be printed (in the traditional manner) as a B/W print as long as you use the 'proper' paper

Ken
 
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Stephen Batey

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I haven't made a black and white print from a colour negative for years - I can't even recall why I would have wanted to, given the amount of colour negative film I used in those days. It was always said that because the colour negative contained colours, and the black and white papers weren't colour sensitive (at least, not in the way that would reproduce colours as tones correctly) this should be done using Panalure paper (Kodak) which was designed specifically for this purpose.
 

Ian Grant

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While I have never done so.. I believe a colour negative can be printed (in the traditional manner) as a B/W print.

Ken
Usually with some difficulty these days, Kodak used to make Panlure paper specifically for making B&W darkroom prints, it was one of the first products to go because a minilab could make a B&W print on Colour paper or better still the special RA-4 process B&W paper.

Ian
 

David M

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I've tried, but only once, to make a B+W print from a colour neg. I can't remember why, but it was not really satisfactory. I guess, but I don't know, that multigrade paper would present challenges with a colour negative
Ilford's XP-1 and -2 were colour negative films adapted for B&W printing and they seemed to work well. At the time, I was afraid of colour processing and much more impatient, so waiting for the processing to be done made me stop using them.
Scanning, correcting on screen and digital output might be the way to go now. Digital output could mean either direct to print or to a digital neg, of course.
 

Keith Haithwaite

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Back in the 1970/80's, when I was a busy wedding photographer, couples expected a suitable photograph of themselves in the local newspaper the following week. The deadline for submissions in my area was Tuesday and, as they did not accept colour prints, Panalure was my only viable option. It was a nice paper to use and reproduced well in newsprint. A few years ago I found a few sheets left in a packet but sadly they were totally useless and exhibited a wonderful array of pastel coloured stains. Perhaps I should have framed them as 'Abstracts that change over Time'. :D
 

Ian Grant

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The other approach was to make a B&W copy negative off a colour print. I have a box of Panlure that my local pro lab owner (now closed) gave me maybe 15 years ago. It was a few years old then, all the other B&W papers are fine but I've not tested it.

Unlike David I began colour work in about 1969/70 making prints by Curt Jacobson's Pavelle process, and a couple of years later Ferrania's colour reversal process. E3 was a piece of cake in comparison and C41/RA4 and E6 were so much easier still.

At one time I was processing XP1/XP2 and E6 films most weekends, mostly because I was push processing as I was shooting bands live and this gave me more control.

Ian
 

Keith Haithwaite

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I forgot to add that the packet of Panalure that I mentioned had been in a box that was subject to flood water in the early 00's so that probably explains the origin of the coloured stains - and it's 40+ years age of course. Hmm, parts of me changed colour over that period too - to monochrome! :confused::oops::D
 

KenS

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"Bubble thinks"...

What if you were to open that 'colour negative' with Photoshop 'invert/change it' to a colour 'positive'... change to B/W and invert again.

Since I no longer use color negative film I could be 'talking out of a hat'... but... why not give it a try... you really have nothing to lose by just 'trying'.

If it works 'great' If it does not ???? Sorry I have no other suggestion....

Ken
 

David M

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Ian,
This is a deviation from the thread, but if you go to http://re-photo.co.uk, one of Peter Marshall's sites and scroll down to "Digital wins with hands tied behind back" you'll find a reference to photographing bands, when you click on the link that he gives.
If you haven't come across Peter before, I think you'll find him an interesting photographer, although he is most definitely not a Large Format one.
 

Ian Grant

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David, I switched to digital to shoot bands live around 16 years ago. There were two reasons, first the specialist Kodak and Fuji push process E6 films disappeared - these were the first to be discontinued, secondly and perhaps more important images were required in electronic format and finally sensors were far better in lower light levels.

Ian
 

David M

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Yes, that's the substance of the article. I do wonder about the digital purple cast, which I've hitherto associated with a particular Fuji film when used for long exposures.
 

Ian Grant

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Yes, that's the substance of the article. I do wonder about the digital purple cast, which I've hitherto associated with a particular Fuji film when used for long exposures.
I wondered about both sets of images :D Nothing like what I've ever shot.

Ian
 
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