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Thread: What fibre-base paper has the highest black density?

  1. #11
    Peter De Smidt's Avatar
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    Re: What fibre-base paper has the highest black density?

    Why would you expose and develop Acros to that high of density? Grade 2 papers are intended for use with max density of about 1.35, including film base plus fog.
    May tomorrow be a better day.

  2. #12
    8x10, 5x7, 4x5, et al Leigh's Avatar
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    Re: What fibre-base paper has the highest black density?

    Quote Originally Posted by Peter De Smidt View Post
    Why would you expose and develop Acros to that high of density?
    Grade 2 papers are intended for use with max density of about 1.35, including film base plus fog.
    I develop to that range to resolve subject detail over a range of luminance values.

    Shooting often in woods, there can be a huge difference between highlights and shadows, all of which
    have detail that should be captured and resolved.

    Acros is an amazing film. Its density curve does not flattop. It just keeps going.
    I have no idea what its true Dmax would be if developed to terminus.

    I develop in either Rodinal (1:50 or 1:100) or Diafine with minimal agitation.
    Both are compensating developers, so the highlight detail is excellent.

    A 1.35 Dmax is a yellow highlighter on a bread wrapper.

    - Leigh
    If you believe you can, or you believe you can't... you're right.

  3. #13
    Peter De Smidt's Avatar
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    Re: What fibre-base paper has the highest black density?

    Yeah, why would anyone try to produce negatives that are generally matched to the printing process, while leaving some room to both increase and decrease contrast using standard methods in the printing stage?
    May tomorrow be a better day.

  4. #14

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    Re: What fibre-base paper has the highest black density?

    Quote Originally Posted by Leigh View Post
    Hi Bill,

    The 4.0 is transmission density of the Acros negative.

    The goal is to compress that into a paper with a max tonal range so I can hold both shadow and highlight detail.

    Thanks.

    - Leigh
    I'm so sorry.... I totally misread your original post.

    Talking about film that can reach a DMax of 4.0

    No, even though the film can reach DMax of 4.0, you never really want to have negatives that use that 4.0 density. Maybe once in a rare while in a few spectral highlights that you want paper white (or for graphic arts, line-art and other lithographic purposes). But most of the time you want your important white to match the contrast grade of the paper.

    This is where the idea of controlling your development so that the density of your important part of the picture falls within a reasonable range...

    You want to make really flat negatives so that the difference in shadow to highlight falls roughly around...

    Grade 4 ~ 0.73
    Grade 3 ~ 0.88
    Grade 2 ~ 1.05
    Grade 1 ~ 1.28

    So if you are careful and your shadows are falling around 0.20, then you would want your important highlight to fall around 1.25 if you are aiming for Grade 2.

    Artistic sensibility tells you what grade of paper to really use for a particular negative, I wouldn't want to tell you to print that example negative on Grade 2... it might look better at Grade 1 or Grade 3... You will find almost every write-up weasels out of trying to nail down the paper grade for a negative... I'll weasel out the same.

    But the main thing is - don't go for the 4.0 on your negative...

  5. #15

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    Re: What fibre-base paper has the highest black density?

    Quote Originally Posted by Peter De Smidt View Post
    Yeah, why would anyone try to produce negatives that are generally matched to the printing process, while leaving some room to both increase and decrease contrast using standard methods in the printing stage?
    I think you're being cynical here?

    Look, even the greats mess up here. The thought of matching subject to density of negative and then to scale of paper which is then black to white... gets everyone a little looped. Even when they are pointing out that the topic is often confusing.

    Here. I'll quote from Ansel Adams, Making a Photograph. 1935 (1948 edition):

    "Contrast in development is often confused with contrast in exposure. Relative densities are produced by exposure, and are revealed by development as relative opacities. The opacity ratio of the image should be in relation to intensities of the subject as the opacities are translated into the brilliancies of the print."

    I really think his phrase should be "Relative intensities are produced by exposure," I don't know why nobody ever caught that. Unless someone can explain to me how Ansel Adams could be correct saying that exposure produces densities....

  6. #16

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    Re: What fibre-base paper has the highest black density?

    Now, if you really have a stockpile of negatives with density ranges so great that the prints you make enlarged using grade 0 or 1 filter seem too contrasty and you can't reduce the contrast enough to make the print look good.

    Then you could look into alternative processes for those negatives. For example platinum/palladium. Those will make fine prints from negatives that have impossible density ranges for enlarging.

  7. #17
    8x10, 5x7, 4x5, et al Leigh's Avatar
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    Re: What fibre-base paper has the highest black density?

    Quote Originally Posted by Bill Burk View Post
    Then you could look into alternative processes for those negatives. For example platinum/palladium.
    Those will make fine prints from negatives that have impossible density ranges for enlarging.
    I had been considering that for a while.

    Perhaps I should pursue it. Thanks.

    - Leigh
    If you believe you can, or you believe you can't... you're right.

  8. #18
    8x10, 5x7, 4x5, et al Leigh's Avatar
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    Re: What fibre-base paper has the highest black density?

    Perhaps I misstated my original question.

    I want to use a paper that will give me the widest achievable range of densities.
    This will provide the most vibrant visual presentation when properly lit (tungsten).

    This is totally divorced from the negative being used for the print.

    - Leigh
    If you believe you can, or you believe you can't... you're right.

  9. #19

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    Re: What fibre-base paper has the highest black density?

    Maybe Lodima with contact printing? Azo had an excellent tonal range.

    "Shooting often in woods, there can be a huge difference between highlights and shadows, all of which
    have detail that should be captured and resolved."

    Why "should" all if it be captured and resolved? Brett Weston had no problem with blacks and lack of detail in some areas of his images. So do others. Your idea is similar to thinking all 88 keys on the piano should be used for each piece of music. It just isn't so with either one.

  10. #20
    8x10, 5x7, 4x5, et al Leigh's Avatar
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    Re: What fibre-base paper has the highest black density?

    Quote Originally Posted by Willie View Post
    Why "should" all if it be captured and resolved? Brett Weston had no problem with blacks and lack of detail in some areas of his images. So do others. Your idea is similar to thinking all 88 keys on the piano should be used for each piece of music. It just isn't so with either one.
    Willie,

    You're mistaking your personal aesthetic opinion for a universal truth.

    It just isn't so.

    While it might be of significance to you, it's of no interest to me.

    - Leigh
    If you believe you can, or you believe you can't... you're right.

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