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Author Topic: Silver gelatin from digital via contact printed negative  (Read 1659 times)
JerryReed
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« on: January 05, 2013, 02:28:59 PM »
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During portfolio reviews, reviewers frequently ask if my B&W prints are printed digitally. They are. Unsaid is the sense that they wish that they were. For the moment let's set aside that they have to ask, meaning to me that they are indistinguishable from silver gelatin prints made in a wet darkroom. And the cotton based papers feel great in the hand.

With an eye toward removing the "digital taint" impediment to getting my work shown more widely, does anyone here know someone who is converting their digital files to physical negatives, then contact printing them on photo paper?

The files from the Aptus II 12 are large enough to make acceptably large contact prints, and I would like to explore the possibility of working in this direction to remove this gallerist's reason for hesitation.

Jerry Reed
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DanielStone
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« Reply #1 on: January 05, 2013, 03:14:19 PM »
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I know of two people personally who are doing this. They aren't forum people, so they don't use the web to display photos and such.

Both are using DSLR's, adjusting levels/contrast,etc.. in photoshop, then printing out the inverted negative(after making a "profile" for themselves and their materials).

One contact prints onto silver gelatin Ilford fiber paper(up to 16x20 paper), the other makes platinum prints up to 11x14.

Both like the flexibility that it provides, and still getting a "wet print" that ISN'T inkjet is what they're most happy about.

-Dan
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bcooter
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« Reply #2 on: January 05, 2013, 03:25:42 PM »
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If you really want to do this http://www.iconla.com/main/ makes lvt negs and transparencies in almost any format.

You'll have to test, set your own screen profiles to get it correct, but as long as you don't clump your original file, it will print like any wet print.

I personally think it's a little silly as with inkjet technology being so good and so many fine art papers if you look around and test and I doubt if 99.99999% any "expert" could tell the difference, but if that's what you want, Icon LA can do it.

I use to do lvt transparencies for clients that were just dead set on having a "film image" to scan from but those days are past and nobody asks anymore in the commercial world.





IMO

BC
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FredBGG
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« Reply #3 on: January 05, 2013, 04:18:20 PM »
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Making a contact negative with a very good digital printed and then printing onto
fiber Ilford Multigrade comes out very nicely for black and white.
Not as nice as 4x5 or 8x10 film.
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elliot_n
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« Reply #4 on: January 05, 2013, 04:39:18 PM »
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An alternative is to find a Lightjet/Lambda adapted to print on Ilford Fibre paper. Here in the UK, Metro do it - http://www.metroimaging.co.uk/professional-printing/black-and-white-prints
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EricWHiss
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« Reply #5 on: January 05, 2013, 06:06:42 PM »
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There is some discussion on the Large Format Photography Forum about this right now.
This shop has been recommended in the US for getting your files printed in silver gelatin....  $39.99 for 20"x30"    
 http://www.digitalsilverimaging.com/directtoprint

I haven't tried it so can't say first hand.
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Kirk Gittings
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« Reply #6 on: January 05, 2013, 06:22:46 PM »
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The other possibility is printing tradition silver b&w directly from the digital file. Bob Carnie at Elevator in Toronto does it for a number of my friends who are fine artists.
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Richard Man
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« Reply #7 on: January 06, 2013, 01:17:58 AM »
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I have gone to a number of portfolio reviews and talked to many gallery owners, publishers, etc. etc.

and none, zip, nada, has said, they preferred silver prints. Everyone understands that the world has gone digital.

Having said that, I personally have played with making silver prints out of digital negatives. The major problem for me was that my printer (HP Z3100) cannot make the right density digital negative reliably. If I were to try again, I will wait until I get an Epson printer, which has a lot more support for doing digital negatives from different people.
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JerryReed
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« Reply #8 on: January 06, 2013, 04:44:05 AM »
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Cooter,

Thank you for your reply.  I do not know what an "lvt" transparency is.  Could you please take a minute to let me know?

I agree with you as to the irrationality of this pursuit.

Jerry
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JerryReed
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« Reply #9 on: January 06, 2013, 04:47:22 AM »
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I had Digital Silver make two prints for me at $125 each for 12 by 12 inches.  There were very well done.  At he price point where my prints are offered, I cannot afford this addition expense.

Jerry
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Richard Man
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« Reply #10 on: January 06, 2013, 07:22:36 AM »
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I should add that I have a print done by one of those labs in New England that makes real silver prints from digital files, and the result is actually not as good as printed on my HP Z3100 on the Harman Baryta paper. It's quite decent, just not as good.
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ErikKaffehr
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« Reply #11 on: January 06, 2013, 11:09:47 AM »
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Hi,

I did compare "Lambda" prints with my inkjet prints. I felt the prints were ver different, with the inkjet prints it is very obvious that the image lies on the surface, while with traditionally developed "Lambda" prints the image sits under the surface.

When I discussed the prints at our photo club, most members preferred the inkjet prints, probably because they may have had a bit more snap.

Best regards
Erik

If you really want to do this http://www.iconla.com/main/ makes lvt negs and transparencies in almost any format.

You'll have to test, set your own screen profiles to get it correct, but as long as you don't clump your original file, it will print like any wet print.

I personally think it's a little silly as with inkjet technology being so good and so many fine art papers if you look around and test and I doubt if 99.99999% any "expert" could tell the difference, but if that's what you want, Icon LA can do it.

I use to do lvt transparencies for clients that were just dead set on having a "film image" to scan from but those days are past and nobody asks anymore in the commercial world.





IMO

BC
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