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Thread: Robert Adams

  1. #1

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    Robert Adams

    Do you know what film and paper are used by Robert Adams ?
    His prints are really gorgeous.

    Christian

  2. #2
    Drew Wiley
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    Re: Robert Adams

    Like most of us he probably has used different papers due to availability changes over the decades. The prints I have seen looked like they were printed on Kodak
    Polymax, but that's a guess based on certain characteristics visually.

  3. #3

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    Re: Robert Adams

    Thank you Drew.

    Christian

  4. #4

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    Re: Robert Adams

    I read an interview somewhere where he described a process of taping his roll film into a loop and then tray processing it in order to ensure he had those smooth sky tones.

    that said, I'd say most of the new west photographs were made with materials that aren't around today.

  5. #5

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    Re: Robert Adams

    Take a look at the book "Landscape: Theory" where he talks some shop.

  6. #6
    Abuser of God's Sunlight
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    Re: Robert Adams

    Quote Originally Posted by Mark Sampson View Post
    Take a look at the book "Landscape: Theory" where he talks some shop.
    Great tip, I'm not familiar with that one.

  7. #7

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    Re: Robert Adams

    Thank you Mark. I'll get this book.

  8. #8
    Drew Wiley
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    Re: Robert Adams

    I dug up an old copy of that exact book last nite. A fair amount of chatter about film, nothing on his print paper. But it would all be academic information at this
    point. As much as I personally like and use the vastly improved VC papers on the market today, there is a kinda gap in how they handle those distinctly high key
    overall nuances like Adams presented so eloquently (and which never seem to reproduce well in books etc). If you don't bring the print to completion with respect to development time, it's hard to get the same tone neutrality and optimized microtonality. I have my personal tricks like unsharp masking which work well with new papers like MG Cooltone. But in terms of papers and developers alone, I sure miss the way some of the classic good ole graded papers behaved for these kinds of "all silvery - no deep black" challenges. I have a stash of 20x24 graded EMaks that is excellent for this kind of thing; but it's a discontinued paper. And I've got a brand new box of Ilfobrom Galerie graded, but won't open it till later in the year. This is my appropriate season for numerous remodeling chores while we're on water rationing anyway. RA could have used Ilfobrom himself for some of these prints, along with common developers like Dektol or Selectol Soft. But Polymax also gave analogous tones in certain developers and was popular at the time. Someone who has an analogous printing style is Mark
    Citret; but I haven't bumped into him for quite awhile. Last I heard, he had stockpiled a lot of Polymax before it went down.

  9. #9

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    Re: Robert Adams

    Thank you again Drew.


    Christian

  10. #10
    Kirk Gittings's Avatar
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    Re: Robert Adams

    I spent some time with him at his house and darkroom on a few occasions in the early 80's. He wasn't really interested in talking shop-just ideas about art. So I know nothing about his technique. He is probably the brightest mind I ever met in photography and down to earth and humble at the same time.
    Thanks,
    Kirk

    at age 68
    "The woods are lovely, dark and deep,
    But I have promises to keep,
    And miles to go before I sleep,
    And miles to go before I sleep"

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