Photographic Papers: Personal Preferences
CLICK HERE TO VIEW ARTICLE AS BLACK TEXT ON A WHITE PAGE

Lloyd Erlick.
July 2, 1998

All darkroom people could benefit by paraphrasing Ansel Adams when he describes his personal preferences in photographic papers. We should all make a similar statement about our own preferences.

Ansel says, page 46, 'The Print',

"To sum up my personal preferences in the physical qualities of papers: I use double-weight papers of neutral or cool emulsion color on a cold white stock, in the glossy (but unferrotyped) finish.  I work for a cool purple-black image by using a cold-toned developer and a slight toning in selenium.  With this combination I feel that I can achieve an image of maximum strength and beauty of print color - an image that is logically related to the clean crisp sharpness of the image formed by the lens."

Here's Lloyd's:

My personal preferences in the physical properties of papers: I like double weight papers of neutral to warm image color on a slightly warm to cold white stock, in glossy (but unferrotyped) finish. I work for a warm-black, perhaps even brown-black or dark-sepia black, maybe describable as warm-purple-black, image tone. My preference has sometimes been described by people with accurate color perception as 'puce' or 'burgundy' in color. I prefer a warm-tone developer that is soft-working to avoid too-quick buildup of contrast so I can have a long tonal scale. I like to tone deeply with selenium to bring out the full richness of the material, and to deepen the deepest blacks as much as possible. With this combination I feel I can achieve an image of maximum strength and beauty of print color - an image that is logically related to the warmth, color and characteristics of the humans who are my subjects.

What's Yours?

I'm curious to hear about how other people like to make their prints. Please send me your version of Ansel's statement and I'll post it here. Post your response to portrait@interlog.com

Tan Kah Heng - [kahheng@pacific.net.sg]

My personal preferences in the physical properties of papers: I like double weight papers of slightly warm image color on a slightly warmwhite stock, in glossy (but unferrotyped) finish. I work for a warm-black, undescribable as warm-purple-black, image tone. My preference has sometimes been described by people with accurate color perception as 'off-white' in color. I prefer a warm-tone developer that is soft-working to avoid too-quick buildup of contrast so I can have a long tonal scale. I try not to tone deeply with selenium to bring out the full richness of the material since the materials used offer such natural beauty, and to deepen the deepest blacks as much as possible. With this combination I feel I can achieve an image of maximum strength and beauty of print color - an image that is not necessarily logically related to the warmth, color and characteristics of the humans/thingimies who are my subjects.

Copyright Lloyd Erlick. All rights reserved.