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Thread: Darkroom vs Scanning

  1. #91
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    Re: Darkroom vs Scanning

    Quote Originally Posted by Michael R View Post
    Who cares. Photographers worry way too much about it.

    "Beauty is transitory"
    I couldn't agree with you more.

  2. #92
    wclark5179's Avatar
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    Re: Darkroom vs Scanning

    I’ve got prints I made over 50 years ago and they still look fine. Some I made when I was in the military, I believe it was 1971 as one of the schools I attended (San Diego) had a darkroom on base free to use. I only made black and white prints. After that it was Vietnam. Made photos, mostly color slides. I need to scan a few of them. Haven’t showed them to anyone, even my wife.

  3. #93
    Drew Wiley
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    Re: Darkroom vs Scanning

    Depends on the painter. If you were Michelangelo instead of Michael, your patron would be Leo X, looting most of Germany and deeply in debt himself - a second mortgage on the Vatican, so to speak - but that's how those remarkable pigments can be afforded. Just find yourself another notable art patron who also happens to be the Pope. Easy enough if you're patient. But folks like Rothko, even the cardboard collages of Matisse and Picasso - it often takes highly-equipped experts to figure out what exact colors were originally involved; and that's all 20th C stuff!

    There was a local PBS segment on TV recently based on an archaeological dig of an Indian encampment at the southern end of the Bay, and flutes made of hollow bones were turning up decorated with a deep rich red quite distinct from ordinary red oxide. And the logical guess was cinnabar; and in fact, the cinnabar mine for the "quicksilver"mercury used by the gold miners of the famous 1849 Calif Gold Rush was just 15 miles away from the Indian village site itself. A mass spectrophotometer confirmed it. But that means mercury in the mouth of the flute player. Not such a good idea after all. Nor was that healthy to Michelangelo's assistants grinding the same kind of powder, along with toxic mineral blues and greens. And so it seems, the more permanent you want your paintings to be, the less permanent you'll be yourself !

  4. #94
    Pieter's Avatar
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    Re: Darkroom vs Scanning

    Quote Originally Posted by Drew Wiley View Post
    Depends on the painter. If you were Michelangelo instead of Michael, your patron would be Leo X, looting most of Germany and deeply in debt himself - a second mortgage on the Vatican, so to speak - but that's how those remarkable pigments can be afforded. Just find yourself another notable art patron who also happens to be the Pope. Easy enough if you're patient. But folks like Rothko, even the cardboard collages of Matisse and Picasso - it often takes highly-equipped experts to figure out what exact colors were originally involved; and that's all 20th C stuff!

    There was a local PBS segment on TV recently based on an archaeological dig of an Indian encampment at the southern end of the Bay, and flutes made of hollow bones were turning up decorated with a deep rich red quite distinct from ordinary red oxide. And the logical guess was cinnabar; and in fact, the cinnabar mine for the "quicksilver"mercury used by the gold miners of the famous 1849 Calif Gold Rush was just 15 miles away from the Indian village site itself. A mass spectrophotometer confirmed it. But that means mercury in the mouth of the flute player. Not such a good idea after all. Nor was that healthy to Michelangelo's assistants grinding the same kind of powder, along with toxic mineral blues and greens. And so it seems, the more permanent you want your paintings to be, the less permanent you'll be yourself !
    Now that we're sifficiently away from the original topic, most of the varnishes usedby the Old Masters have yellowed greatly, totally altering the paintings appearance. They can be cleaned and restored, a painstakingly tedious process. Especially since there is no certainty of what the original really looked like. And if further restoration is needed, water-based gouache paints are used so the work can be reversable if neded.

  5. #95

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    Re: Darkroom vs Scanning

    For me a lot of it comes down to the paper. For color Iíll take an inkjet print over any of the current RA4 papers. Thatís due to a plastic surface and too much contrast in RA4. For black and white I do both. There are some nice inkjet papers that have a lot of what I like about air dried glossy fiber. Even if I make a darkroom print I will probably scan the negative and work on it digitally first. That lets me experiment without going through a lot of paper. I make more black and white inkjet prints these days. I think I can get equally good results in either medium from good negatives, but for anything tricky the scan and print process is easier. If I could only pick one Iíd go scan and inkjet print.

  6. #96
    Drew Wiley
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    Re: Darkroom vs Scanning

    Too much contrast in RA4 ??????? Heck, I often apply contrast increase masks to it, even with the most contrasty of all their papers - Fujiflex. But you are Larry, and I have heard this kind of thing from you before. Don't worry - I have all kinds of very delicately nuance high-key color prints myself, even in Ciba medium. But you've probably already reported me to the Anti-plastic Inquisition for just mentioning both Fujiflex and Ciba on the same post. That's just part of my inventory, however. Plenty of the kind you probably would gravitate toward as well. There's just that opacity thing about inks, stuck on the paper surface - not the transparent depth of actual dyes. I'll probably still be sayin' that till I dye.

  7. #97
    Alan Klein's Avatar
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    Re: Darkroom vs Scanning

    Quote Originally Posted by Larry Gebhardt View Post
    For me a lot of it comes down to the paper. For color Iíll take an inkjet print over any of the current RA4 papers. Thatís due to a plastic surface and too much contrast in RA4. For black and white I do both. There are some nice inkjet papers that have a lot of what I like about air dried glossy fiber. Even if I make a darkroom print I will probably scan the negative and work on it digitally first. That lets me experiment without going through a lot of paper. I make more black and white inkjet prints these days. I think I can get equally good results in either medium from good negatives, but for anything tricky the scan and print process is easier. If I could only pick one Iíd go scan and inkjet print.
    What printer and paper?

  8. #98

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    Re: Darkroom vs Scanning

    Quote Originally Posted by Drew Wiley View Post
    ...the transparent depth of actual dyes...
    Yeah, that's why my favorite contemporary printing method is non-pigmented dye ink (Canon PRO-100 or PRO-200) on Hahnemuhle FineArt Baryta Satin.

  9. #99

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    Re: Darkroom vs Scanning

    Drew, you do you. If you love a paper or look I have no reason to tell you that you're wrong. I even like some plastic papers like Ciba and Fujiflex for some images. RC papers don't excite me, but behind glass they look ok. My contrast issue is the lack of different grades, and usually I feel the pain when I'm trying to decrease contrast. Maybe that's a skill deficiency as well. All that combines to make me not like printing color in the darkroom.

    Alan, I have a few Epson printers, a 3880 with Cone piezography inks, and a 7880 and P800 with Epson inks. My papers of choice are what seem to marketed as baryta. I've had good luck with a few like Epson and Red River over the years and I suspect they probably come from the same mill. For a while Ilford offered a warm tone base baryta which is my all time favorite inkjet paper for black and white.

  10. #100

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    Re: Darkroom vs Scanning

    I suppose if I shot color I would do the hybrid method, Ben Horne comes to mind. Since most of my photography is black and white and my scanner really doesn't scan 4x5, I like the darkroom. There's something special about watching the print come to life in the tray.

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