First contact print

Discussion in 'Black And White' started by David Webb, Feb 24, 2017.

  1. David Webb

    David Webb New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 3, 2016
    Messages:
    11
    Likes Received:
    9
    Trophy Points:
    3
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Nottinghamshire
    This is a half plate contact print of a section of the River Leen near Papplewick. The film was 60-70 years old Kodak Super-xx, hence the uneven exposure. The sky was very overcast, so I had to print at grade 5 to get enough overall contrast. If I was to make another copy I would probably try burning in the top edge to match the other three.

    River Leen Papplewick.jpg

    Toyo half-plate field camera.
    Kodak Super-xx film (expired).
    ASA 16.
    3 secs @ f16.
    Paper: Fomabrom Variant 112 matt.
     
  2. Alan Clark

    Alan Clark New Member

    Joined:
    Aug 9, 2016
    Messages:
    26
    Likes Received:
    4
    Trophy Points:
    3
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Ryedale North Yorkshire
    I find it interesting how we react to photographs.
    As a fisherman my first thought was, it looks a bit small to fish but there could be something worrth catching in there.
    As a photographer my first thought was, what a shame about the fault on the film, but what nice tones are evident in this old film.
    As an artist my first thought was that long rectangular format works beautifully when horizontal, but it is hard to make it work when vertical, and the photographer has done well here.
    As a person, simply trying to look at and enjoy a picture without all the above subjective stuff getting in the way, I find it very evocative of a cold still Winter's day in the English countryside.

    Perhaps I should just have said "Very nice".....

    David, what are your thoughts about the fault on the film? I know some people like this sort of thing....

    Alan
     
  3. Diz

    Diz Member

    Joined:
    Aug 21, 2016
    Messages:
    59
    Likes Received:
    19
    Trophy Points:
    8
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Co.Roscommon, Ireland
    This scene is very reminiscent of the Cambridgeshire Fens where my wife comes from. Its also a very pleasing print, which I would be happy to display on the wall. If you were to reprint it, split grade printing might be of help to you.
    Cheers
    Diz
     
  4. Alan Clark

    Alan Clark New Member

    Joined:
    Aug 9, 2016
    Messages:
    26
    Likes Received:
    4
    Trophy Points:
    3
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Ryedale North Yorkshire
    Diz, I am not sure how split-grade printing would work here, since the print was done at grade 5...

    Alan
     
  5. David Webb

    David Webb New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 3, 2016
    Messages:
    11
    Likes Received:
    9
    Trophy Points:
    3
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Nottinghamshire
    I'm pleased you find the picture evocative of a "cold winter's day in England" Alan, because that's pretty much what it was. It was taken just a couple of weeks ago during the time of year I prefer to be out. This area is very green and overgrown during summer months, when the shapes of trees and banks of small rivers such as this can be mostly hidden.
    I suppose the faults on the film are to be expected from something this old, and would probably suit subjects that have a vintage appearance with maybe a light sepia tone to complement and "age" the picture (although my wife had better not read that if I ever use some for her portrait ;)).
    Split grade printing is something to think about Diz, although I've never tried it before. I'm still getting used to straight printing and its all fairly new to me, so advice is always welcome.
    Cheers,
    David.
     
  6. Alan Clark

    Alan Clark New Member

    Joined:
    Aug 9, 2016
    Messages:
    26
    Likes Received:
    4
    Trophy Points:
    3
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Ryedale North Yorkshire
    David, I know what you mean about leaves getting in the way of the light in Summer. Last Tuesday I was out with a friend photographing a small beck in the North York Moors. It is in a deep valley, lined with trees. We had looked at it last Summer, and decided to leave it until Winter when the light would get through to the waterside. Can't say I got anything very exciting, but at least the water and surrounding rocks were well lit.

    Alan
     
  7. Diz

    Diz Member

    Joined:
    Aug 21, 2016
    Messages:
    59
    Likes Received:
    19
    Trophy Points:
    8
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Co.Roscommon, Ireland
    Split grade printing is a useful tool David. In basic form, you are making a 'normal' print from grade 0 for the high lights and grade 5 for the shadows. Make a test strip using a middle grade(G2 or G2.5) to find the time you like. IE 20 seconds. Allocate 10 sec to G0 and 10 sec to G5. Make a print. You can then add more time to G0 to get more out of your highlight without effecting the shadows and G5 to get the best from your shadows without effecting the highlight. Have a look at this you tube link from Darkroom Dave, he explains it better than I.



    But as Alan has pointed out, your print has started at G5, so might not work. However, I would give it a Whirl to see if it works. If it does, successful experience, if it doesnt, experience.
    Another good tool for this kind of image is Pre Flashing. Basically your fogging the paper before you make an exposure.

    Cheers

    Diz
     
    Last edited: Feb 27, 2017
  8. mono

    mono Member

    Joined:
    Aug 14, 2016
    Messages:
    43
    Likes Received:
    5
    Trophy Points:
    8
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Germany
    Nice image and a fine presentation!
     

Share This Page