We’ve been busy in the darkroom again today. The above test strips were produced to give us a side by side comparison of the effect of different processes.
These are all printed on Arista EDU Ultra VCFB and were developed in Ethol LPD at 1:3. The first of the three strips was then bleached back to knock down the highlights, sepia toned, then selenium toned. It was then bleached again and finally sepia toned. The print is washed between each chemical change to avoid cross contamination. We make a lot of notes when we’re doing this and the side by side comparison gives us a good idea what the result will be and/or what result we’re aiming for. We use the same image because the high key areas, mid tones and dark tones will all be same and will, therefore, react similarly when exposed to chemicals giving us a good side by side comparison.
The second of the images, the one in the middle, was something we were experimenting with. We hadn’t tried this before and the result is not exactly what we’re looking for. This strip was initially selenium toned, then bleached back finishing off with sepia. The results were disappointing as no real tonal change was noted. We abandoned the rest of the test as it became obvious that this was not the direction we wanted to go in.
The final image was bleached back, thereafter sepia toned and finished off with a fairly long time in the selenium.
We’re discovering that the split toning method works better on the darker prints with more contrast than on the lighter prints. It’s not going to give the same result each time but it gives us a good idea what processes work best to give us the unique look we’re aiming for.
Hope you enjoyed this little insight into our processes. Stay tuned we will be posting some of the images we were working on in the days to come.
We wish you a wonderful rest of the day from sunny Florida.