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tgtaylor
7-Apr-2011, 19:58
Ever thought of it? Is there anyone here tried it that can comment on techniques?

Mark Sampson
7-Apr-2011, 20:08
Technically it's no different than making contact proofs. Of course your color balance/density/cleanliness/ standards should be at the highest level you can achieve. Dodging and burning are no different than when enlarging.

vinny
7-Apr-2011, 20:43
There are/were some on display at panavision hollywood. 5x7's but they looked so good.

tgtaylor
7-Apr-2011, 21:24
Thanks. I'm going to try it. I'm thinking that by using a 180mm enlarging lens, raising the head and stopping down, I can raise the print time to allow for reasonable dodging and burning.

Nine bucks a sheet is expensive but at least the paper isn't (yet). For the right kind of image they would be little jewels.

Thomas

D. Bryant
8-Apr-2011, 06:00
Thanks. I'm going to try it. I'm thinking that by using a 180mm enlarging lens, raising the head and stopping down, I can raise the print time to allow for reasonable dodging and burning.

Nine bucks a sheet is expensive but at least the paper isn't (yet). For the right kind of image they would be little jewels.

Thomas

Your biggest problem will be controlling the print process. How are you going to process the prints?

Daniel Stone
8-Apr-2011, 08:31
I like to make proofs(contact prints) of my 4x5 and 8x10 color negatives after they've been processed. I don't have a hi-end scanner, and right now, send out for drum scans, so I need a cheap, and fast method of being able to see which shot is best.

because color work must be done in complete darkness, dodging and burning I've found usually isn't as repetitive and accurate as it is with b/w, which you can "see" the negative before/after printing.

controlling the processing of the print itself, you have almost no control. I use the roller-transport processor at the local photo center, so I'm not able to manipulate chemistry to lower, or raise contrast.

However, IF you have quality negatives from the get-go, then you can always contrast mask and all that fun stuff to raise/lower local contrast, IF you want to go that far :).

-Dan

tgtaylor
8-Apr-2011, 10:02
I use a Jobo CPA-2 with Kodak C-41 chemistry so processing the paper or tweaking the chemistry is a simple matter.

Dodging and burning is the same as with B&W only that color paper prints a lot faster than B&W - 9 or 10 seconds max - under the enlarger. In another thread Bob Carnie suggested inserting a ND gel in the mixing box to achieve a longer exposure time. That would certainly work but instead of inserting it in the mixing box I'm thinking of placing it under the lens in the enlargers filter holder since I won't have to worry about degrading the image.

In the past I have changed colors on the print (e.g., a dull grey sky to a nice blue sky) by using acetate masks on the paper and printing using different filter packs. I'm on the lookout for a better method.

Thomas

Drew Wiley
8-Apr-2011, 13:05
By contact printing, you apparently mean you're going to take a color negative processed in C41 then expose it under a light in a contact frame holding some kind of
conventional C-paper, then process it in RA4. Right? Just expose under a conventional
colorhead to adjust the color balance, and control the light intensity using the timer and lens f-stop. It takes a little practice but is otherwise quite easy to do. You can
process the prints in drums using one-shot RA4 chemisty. If you can accurately control
time and temp of the chemicals, you should be able to get superb prints. Dodging and
burning are no more difficult than with on black and white paper. You just have to get used to the look of a color negative, run a test strip then maybe a trial print.

aluncrockford
8-Apr-2011, 13:28
I shot a portrait project on 10x8 C41 then contacted them onto Fuji crystal archive and I have to say, first it was very easy to do and second, the quality was fantastic, I used a durst 705 with a colour head using the recommended filter pack as the starting point and processed them in a Nova slot processor . It was far easier to print than B&W and so much better than scanning and outputting to Ink jet. So if you have a 10x8 project and feel that 30x40 prints are a bit shouty then I would suggest that the contact print is something worth considering, and if I remember correctly both Stephen shore and Joel Meyerowitz both originally presented there work as contacts

Drew Wiley
8-Apr-2011, 13:40
Yes, both Shore and Meyerowitz contact printed until they could afford to enlarge their negatives. Both were suprisingly bad printers back in their starving artist era but
steadily improved. The other night I was looking at a book of Meyerowitz's Tuscany
images and was amazed at how much he mastered that particular category of film -
definitely the old-school low-contrast Vericolor look. By contrast, I'm printing right now
with the latest version of Crystal Archive and the newest Kodak films. Printing 8x10
these negs onto 20X24 is like shooting ducks in a barrel; and indeed, I hope to soon
be able to come up the quality which I could only expect of much more expensive
print media before.

Roger Cole
9-Apr-2011, 00:17
Yes, both Shore and Meyerowitz contact printed until they could afford to enlarge their negatives. Both were suprisingly bad printers back in their starving artist era but
steadily improved. The other night I was looking at a book of Meyerowitz's Tuscany
images and was amazed at how much he mastered that particular category of film -
definitely the old-school low-contrast Vericolor look. By contrast, I'm printing right now
with the latest version of Crystal Archive and the newest Kodak films. Printing 8x10
these negs onto 20X24 is like shooting ducks in a barrel; and indeed, I hope to soon
be able to come up the quality which I could only expect of much more expensive
print media before.

By "latest version of Crystal Archive" do you mean type II? And you're printing it optically and processing int regular RA4 chemistry?

There's some discussion of this on APUG and I've been holding off getting back into RA4 because only Fuji Type II is available new in sheets, and many people are reporting awful results with it in optical printing. I'd like to know that they're just doing something wrong or such.

Darren Kruger
9-Apr-2011, 00:29
Ever thought of it? Is there anyone here tried it that can comment on techniques?

I found it the same as regular contact printing, but different. I think I used a 50mm lens the last time I did it. I had to deal with making sure the contact glass & film was dust free for every print. It was a bit of a pain but the prints I got look great.

Go for it.

-Darren

tgtaylor
9-Apr-2011, 12:06
I took the 8x10 Toyo G out for it's first light yesterday afternoon and exposed 3 sheets of Ilford Delta 100 with a 300mm Nikkor-M and 120mm Nikkor SW. Below is a pretty bad Epson 3200 scan thru the Print File sleeve. The negative is far better with the windows of the old RCA Radio building at the end of the road clearly discernible and the grass in the mediate foreground sharply focused along with the grooves on the bark of the trees. It was taken with the 120mm in landscape mode.

The negatives were developed, emulsion side up, one at a time last night in Xtol 1:1 for 10.5 minutes at 68F using trays in the bathroom. To time the development and agitation I set the timer for the enlarger under the cart with the trays - 3 Patterson 8x10 trays and a 16x20 tray with water for holding the processed negatives on the floor - and set it to 630 seconds. Agitation consisted of rocking the tray for the first 30 seconds in the developer and lifting the negative completely out of the developer and tilting left and right every 30 or 40 seconds - just like dip-n-dunk using a tank. I was very impressed with the results.

However I don't want to develop C-41 negatives in trays and I don't currently have a Jobo 3005 drum. I'm wondering if the 1520 and 1530 drum set-up that I use to process 8x10 color paper will work with a color negative? First chance I get I will see if a B&W negative can be developed using those two drums. I sure hope so because a 3005 nowadays goes for a few hundred dollars which I don't have.

Thomas

mcfactor
13-Apr-2011, 22:44
I regularly contact print my 8x10 color negs and it is extremely easy and the prints are fantastic! If done correctly, it gives you a look that you cannot get with any other medium.

ic-racer
14-Apr-2011, 02:45
I'm wondering if the 1520 and 1530 drum set-up that I use to process 8x10 color paper will work with a color negative? First chance I get I will see if a B&W negative can be developed using those two drums. I sure hope so because a 3005 nowadays goes for a few hundred dollars which I don't have.

Thomas

There was a ridge on the inside of my 1500 drums that scratched the back of my B&W negatives. I sanded it smooth and then it was fine. Still, one negative at a time was tedious. Look into the 2800 drums. Two stacked together will do four 8x10 negatives which is almost as good as the 5 you get with the expert 8x10 drum. (No problems with the back of the film with B&W, but I have not done color negatives in those drums).

Jim Michael
14-Apr-2011, 05:14
Nothing will teach you fine color control better than printing your own c-prints. It's been a few years and IIRC (Bob or someone currently doing their own might chime in and correct me) what we usually did for color control was to hold C constant on the filter pack and only make color changes using M and Y (M+Y changes C). Color change results in a density change of one half in the opposite direction of the change, e.g. adding .30 Y decreases density by .15 or half a stop, so you need to either open up a half stop or increase time by half. Once you get your filter pack dialed in use that as the starting point for other prints with this emulsion number. Color change isn't as linear as you would expect, e.g. .05 might require .07. I used a computer program I wrote that would calculate the correction with an adjustment factor. See if you can find a set of the Kodak viewing filters which help visualize the effect of a color correction.

Drew Wiley
14-Apr-2011, 09:38
Roger - I just noticed your question. Sorry for the delay. Yes, I'm printing on the Type
II Crystal Archive. There's plenty of Super C still around, but I wanted to recalibrate on
the latest material and learn its specific characteristics. I too have read some negative
reviews on the web about the new paper, but can only conclude that these came from
folks with very little printing experience who were making gross errors or handling it
carelessly. I does have a little less contrast than Super C and is a tiny bit thinner. It
certainly isn't flimsy to anyone who has worked with polyester bases, for example. The
base is a little whiter and cleaner, as Fuji claims, and the improvements in the emulsion are subtle but significant. The color balance difference with the previous
paper is very minor - it took me just two test strips to recalibrate. I'm printing right now from both Portra 160VC and Ektar 8X10's. In comparison with the previous paper,
this new one does have a noticable improvement in gamut; in fact, it's hard to believe
chromogenic media have come so far along in just a few years. If you fine-tune the
color balance carefully, the colors do come out cleaner and with better distinction of
subtle shades of green and blue, just as Fuji claims. Yellows and oranges are improved
too, and not too far behind chrome results. I looking forward to trying a range of
different subjects just to test the parameters, before later moving into 30X40 prints.
But I'm extremely sensitive to the chemicals, so am proceeding slowly. No matter how
careful I am, even the slightest trace of RA4 irritates my respiratory system enough to
make me susceptible to viruses etc - and there's a nasty virus going aroung the office
at the moment. So I've skipped printing this week. But overall, this is a damn nice paper for large format work. I'm getting spectacular prints, and hope to proceed to
some advanced masking tweaks once 30X40's come to play, or perhaps 4X5 to 20X24,
which has similar contrast issues.

Drew Wiley
14-Apr-2011, 09:42
Oh ... missed the other half of your question, Roger. Yes, I print optically (additive),
and currently use Kodak RA-RT chem one-shot in drums. Very easy.

Roger Cole
14-Apr-2011, 15:47
Thanks Drew! I think that just convinced me to go back to printing color.

I'm arguing with myself about getting some Ilfochrome too. The stuff is horrendously expensive, but I shot lots and lots of Kodachrome slides during 2010 that I'd like to be able to print, and it reminded me how nice projected transparencies can be so I find I'm shooting 35mm slides frequently now. It would be nice to be able to print them conventionally again, but the stuff is just SO expensive. :eek: I saw a 100 sheet box of 8x10 listed on a forum for a good price, but even that is 3x the price of RA4 paper and then there's the chemicals.

Good news about the RA4 though!

Drew Wiley
14-Apr-2011, 16:33
Well, optical C-printing is much cheaper and faster than even inkjet, and with large-format originals at least, much more seamless in terms of both tonality and detail. For
smaller formats it sure would be nice to have a higher contrast paper, but that doesn't
appear to be happening in today's economy. As Crystal Archive has become more finely
tuned (as in the Type II version), and as negs themselves have more and more
precise spectral responses (as in Ektar and Portra VC) it's a little like power steering - very minor color balance changes can have a significant effect which is hard to control
if people are expecting the same latitude as the older materials. But the tradeoff is
better color. Ciba has gotten just plain mean in terms of expense, and the paper has to be used up in a few months once it thaws, but has its own look. Nothing makes
Kodachrome look better, except perhaps dye transfer. I have a number of 8x10's to
dye transfer print, so will probably never get to the old Kodachromes. Ciba has a very
noxious bleach, but once it hits a little baking soda it's neutralized, so is actually less noxious in one-shot use than RA4. I like all these respective print media, but for
different effects.

Roger Cole
14-Apr-2011, 16:57
I hear you. I printed Ciba when it was Ciba and later after the name change. I just find I like shooting transparencies in 35mm and wish there were a less expensive way to print them (optically/chemically, not scan and squirt.)

Not afraid of the bleach either. I just wore gloves and used the neutralizer aka baking soda.

But for color it'll mainly be RA4 I reckon. I still have some frozen C41 4x5 from the late 90s, frozen solid the entire time so it should be fine. Today's prices are a bit much but I can shoot some of it, and lots more with a rollfilm back.

To think back then I switched to mainly printing RA4 because a Ciba 8x10 cost north of a buck each paper and chemicals (this was the RC version not the polyester - it was cheaper!) while a type R print which I also printed was about $0.60 and an RA4 half of that! Of course I was comparatively broke in those days, too.

tgtaylor
14-Apr-2011, 17:15
Thanks everyone for the replies!

Tonight I'm going to print the Point Reyes negative that I posted above. If sucessful, I'm thinking about split sepia and selenium toning it tomorrow.

Thomas

Jim Michael
14-Apr-2011, 18:10
Ciba chemistry made my eyelids peel.

Roger Cole
14-Apr-2011, 18:27
Ciba chemistry made my eyelids peel.

Huh? Just the fumes or did you get it in your eyes?

Like Drew, it never bothered me as much as RA4. Just don't get the bleach on your skin as it is caustic.

Jim Michael
14-Apr-2011, 19:25
Just the fumes. Off a large processor (something like 50" IIRC), daily exposure for a few months.

Roger Cole
14-Apr-2011, 19:39
Just the fumes. Off a large processor (something like 50" IIRC), daily exposure for a few months.

Humm, ok. I used drums for a while (which I find a PITA) and later a Nova Print Pod which is like their vertical processors only without temperature control. I mainly got it for RA4 (at ambient temperature - using Tetenal back then but I hear regular Kodak RT works fine) to minimize the fumes I got from regular trays (less exposed surface area) but used it for Ilfochrome as well. This was P30. The professional P3 stuff may be nastier; I've no experience with it. I also printed a few times a month, not every day.

Drew Wiley
14-Apr-2011, 21:02
Whole different ballgame. Ciba bleach is basically conc. sufuric acid with a few added nasties. Large industrial processors with replenishment tanks need very serious hazmat considerations and heavy-duty ventilation and disposal facilities.
I have a friend who had a bleach vat containing 200 gallons at a time for a 60 inch
roll processor. When he sold the building he had over 600 grand in plumbing repairs, and ten years of medical complications afterwards. P-3 vs p-30 really
isn't the problem. The problem is simple exposure to concentrated acid fumes. What
I do is load the exposed Ciba paper in a drum, then process it on a drum processor
outdoors. A 30X40 only needs 12 to 14 oz of dev and bleach (I use greater water
rinse volumes). The bleach gets dumped into a little plastic pail with some baking
soda, then its safe for the drain. When I used a smaller drum processor in the dkrm,
I'd swing a ventilation hose directly over the unit, as well as the mixing station,
with a booster fan up into the main fume hood.

tgtaylor
15-Apr-2011, 09:23
I do my RA4 printing using a Jobo CPA-2 processor which, except for mixing the stop with glacial acetic acid, results in zero fumes. I mix the stop 2 liters at a time and hold my breath while pouring the acid.

Thomas

Vaughn
15-Apr-2011, 10:04
Hello. I have some students who are interested in using our color processor (a Ilfordchrome machine set up for RA4). Basically it is a roller-transport three-bath machine -- dev, bleach/fix, and water. We have not used it for a year and a half, as we have started to offer digital classes in color printing and the demand for the machine stopped.

I have used it with the Kodak one-gallon RA4 Kits (tanks are two-liters each), but I believe these kits are no longer available. Am I wrong on this? What (and where to get them) should I get for the machine now?

Thank you.

Vaughn

tgtaylor
15-Apr-2011, 10:34
I've been purchasing the 10L Kodak developer product from Calumet in San Francisco for $22.95 and the 10L Kodak Blix for about the same price. I ordered the developer starter from Adorama sometime back for...$10(?).

Foothill College in Los Altos uses a roller transport with 5 liter Jobo bottles so I imagine they buy their chemistry in greater quantity than I do. You might want to call them. B&H has the Kodak chemistry in stock on their website but won't ship. Adorama, I believe will. If out of stock at the local Calumet store but in stock in another store or in their main warehouse in Chicago, they will ship it to the store for you to pick-up at the regular retail price.

Thomas

Drew Wiley
15-Apr-2011, 11:19
Freestyle has direct replacement kits for Kodak RA-4, and there are a number of internet providers other than the usual camera-store suspects who cater more to commercial labs, and who have a serious selection of Kodak chemistry on hand.
The Kodak "gallon" kits have been discontinued, but what I found out is that Ektacolor
RT replenisher kits are exactly the same thing, except in liter sizing, and without the
optional stabilizer for roller machines, so you can use them one-shot in drums quite
easily (properly mixed and diluted, of course). Kodak's own tech sheets are a little
behind, so it took me a little more research to discover this fact. I mix fresh for each session, or even for each large print, and prefer not to keep anything mixed on hand more than a few hours. That way the color comes out vibrant and predictable. Given
my sensitivity to RA4, I might or might not set up my 20" roller processor - tempted to
sell it and stick to drum operation outdoors, even though this is a much slower method.

gth
11-May-2013, 16:50
Man this was an informative thread, thanks all.

We're lucky to have Google, or this kind of gem would be buried for ever.

/gth

spacegoose
19-May-2013, 22:53
What are the steps for contact printing c41 negatives?

I have an enlarger with a color head and print drum / roller base.

What chemistry / part numbers do I need?

What about paper, any recommendations?

Thanks,
Bill