I'm waiting for a commercial albumen paper...
www.circleofthesunproductions.com site. You can download them for free. Bruce also wrote an article that was never published by View Camera concerning Azo. This too is available on Bruce's site.
To sum it up, if the guy who actually DID THE WORK to see the differences among so many papers is going to purchase a bunch of Lodima, that just speaks volumes about the quality of this paper. I know my shelves will be well stocked once MAS makes delivery!
My 5x7s on Lodima just glow - a word I often use to describe what I want in a print - I want it to glow. Lodima does, almost on the first try. And I made comparison prints on the house brand, and there was no comparison.
But this is what blows me away - I use far less paper to get a fabulous result with Lodima than my other paper ("House Brand" is my frozen stock of Forte Elegance Polygrade V). Even at what Turner feels is a high cost, I think my net cost with Lodima is less because there are fewer prints made to get to the finish line.
Maybe it's just that I'm learning how to work with silver chloride paper. In truth, I don't have nearly as much experience printing Azo as Mr. Bowen, and certainly M&P.
Is what I'm experiencing typical, you experienced folks? I feel like a kid in a candy shop.
author of "Finely Focused" and "More Finely Focused."
I think your experience is fairly typical. I use much less Azo/Lodima paper to get to a final print. Peter Schrager sums it up nicely....he refers to it as "cheating."
Someone more qualified than I can explain the science behind it, but it has to do with the curve of the paper. You have more "headroom" (to use an audio term). This allows you to hold your delicate high values AND still get good shadow separation. You can do this with other papers, but it takes MUCH more burning and dodging to see the same results. That's what makes Silver Chloride papers so easy to work with. Edward Weston used Silver Chloride papers and he wrote in his Daybooks how easy it was to get a good print.
The ability to use Amidol and a waterbath to help control contrast doesn't hurt either...
Edward Weston used only one sheet of paper sometimes.
Paula and I have never thought of the fact that fewer sheets of paper are needed to get a good print on silver chloride paper and as a result the paper ends up being less expensive than other papers. We will have to get that into our promotional literature--if we ever develop promotional literature.
Thanks Bruce and John. Thanks very much.
Michael A. Smith
And don't forget the keeping properties of Silver Chloride paper. I've used some pretty old Azo and with the exception of some Grade 4 which exhibited just a hint of fog and had lost enough contrast to be a Grade 3, I've never had a problem with it keeping. Wish I could say the same for modern VC papers that seem to go bad, VERY BAD within 3 years.
If you are going to stockpile a photo paper the smartest choices are Azo and Lodima.
Just a reminder that tomorrow, August 7th is the last day to order Lodima prior to the price increase.
Let's support MAS and at the same time safe ourselves a few $$.