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Thread: Ilford semi-matte and matte

  1. #1

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    Ilford semi-matte and matte

    Ilford's semi-matte surface on the Warmtone Fiber paper is ideal for my purposes. I use Strand's varnish (as previously posted) to restore the range. For toning purposes, it would be nice to have an alternative fiber paper. Can anyone here who has used both Ilford's semi-matte and matte surfaces tell me how close they are, before I order some of the matte?
    Philip U.

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  2. #2
    bob carnie's Avatar
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    Re: Ilford semi-matte and matte

    I prefer the matt surface, the semi matt has a texture I do not like, they both are great though but if picking one over the other it would be the matte... In fact I prefer matte paper these days over glossy for all my work.

    this paper tones really nicely with a slight bleach sepia then followed by a slightly aggressive selenium tone.. I do not think there is a better combination , also these papers lith really well contrary to public opinion.

    I do not like these papers untoned btw.

  3. #3
    Drew Wiley
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    Re: Ilford semi-matte and matte

    I use either the matte or far more often, the glossy version. They tone analogously, but obviously render any given image with different personalities. If it weren't for the subtle toning options and higher detail, the matte paper could be confused with inkjet.

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    Corran's Avatar
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    Re: Ilford semi-matte and matte

    Quote Originally Posted by bob carnie View Post
    this paper tones really nicely with a slight bleach sepia then followed by a slightly aggressive selenium tone..
    Would it be possible for you to post a before-and-after example of this?
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  5. #5
    bob carnie's Avatar
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    Re: Ilford semi-matte and matte

    Quote Originally Posted by Corran View Post
    Would it be possible for you to post a before-and-after example of this?

    Bryan
    I have after but not before as I never keep an untoned matt silver print...A good example of what I try to do would be someone like Bill Schwabs work , I can take some Iphone snaps of a current show that has this paper up but not really sure it will give you what you want.

  6. #6
    Corran's Avatar
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    Re: Ilford semi-matte and matte

    It's hard to judge color/toning without a comparative untoned print. Perhaps I should just give it a little try. I've never done bleaching, then selenium. What do you mean by "aggressive?" Higher concentration of selenium?
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  7. #7
    bob carnie's Avatar
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    Re: Ilford semi-matte and matte

    Hi Bryan

    Its very easy and cheap to split tone, as the selenium is reused all the time and the chem's to make the bleach are dirt cheap and easy to obtain

    I use 12 litres of water to 32grams each Pot ferri and pot bromide for the bleach stage, i wet the prints and then dip into this bleach for 30 seconds and watch the highlights, its a delicate dance, I wash the bleach off with a hose and then dump into a tray of 15 litres of water to 32grams of sodium sulphide (stinky) and let it tone for about 1 minute, under good light I determine if I got enough brown into my prints. A trick I watched Bill Schwab do is put the print back into the bleach for a time and wash and then back into the toner, He builds up the tone to desired... I like his method over mine where I just go for it and do not build up tone but rather rely on a fixed time I selected from past experience.
    By varying the dilution of bleach and time you can come up with a time dilution that works best for you. As far as the strong selenium , it smells, your teeth will hurt if you put your head too close to the selenium as it is trying to attach to the metal in your teeth. But over time it is easy peasy.

    The toner I use Selenium is a 1:5 mixture which is much stronger than most here would use.. I now put the print into this higher concentration mixture and watch the low shadows , at the hint of change of colour I put into flowing wash immediately which stops the action.. if you go to youtube and type in my name there are about thirty rank amateur videos I have had the pleasure (drinking beer while shooting ) to produce. There is a video on my toning methods there.

    Bob

  8. #8
    Corran's Avatar
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    Re: Ilford semi-matte and matte

    Thanks. Yes, 1:5 is way higher dilution, I usually use 1:15. Is there any real difference to using a higher dilution and longer times, compared to lower dilution and shorter times?
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  9. #9
    bob carnie's Avatar
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    Re: Ilford semi-matte and matte

    Quote Originally Posted by Corran View Post
    Thanks. Yes, 1:5 is way higher dilution, I usually use 1:15. Is there any real difference to using a higher dilution and longer times, compared to lower dilution and shorter times?
    I have never seen the difference. just faster to get where you want to go.

  10. #10
    Corran's Avatar
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    Re: Ilford semi-matte and matte

    Cool. Easier for me to use what I have for testing.
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