View Full Version : Any C-printers among us?
It seems I'm diving right in and going to start proofing my own color stuff- not proofsheets, but 810 proof prints of likely cantidates for final prints. Seeing that the last time I printed color was on Fiber paper, anyone have advice for me as I return to the three filter way?
I'm looking at Kodak paper to start as my lab does proofsheets on this, but will also try the Fuji. I like glossy paper. Going to be using the Fotospeed Mono RA-4 chemistry as it has a lower working temperature.
Really looking forward to doing this again. I last printed color in college and loved it, but after that the temperature control and hazardousness of the chemistry in trays kept me away.
jobo is your friend.
I haven't done color printing in years... for my own workflow, digital printing from scans serves my color needs.
But i admire your dedication to it. I almost miss my old correction viewing filters.
... for my own workflow, digital printing from scans serves my color needs...
Yes, I probably should go this route, but I'm in front of this screen so much already and I really love the darkroom.
I shall dig out my JOBO info and look up current. Thanks.
I've had a tremendously good experience with fujicolor crystal archive, type C. Really nice stuff, and cheap, too.
Match your film to your paper -- if you shoot on Kodak film, expose on Kodak paper. The manufactuers design their papers around their films and match the dye set of the paper for best results.
I only do color on a 42" replenished roller transport system, so I can't offer much advice for jobo, but: RA-4 is pretty simple to keep in control and far more tolerant to processing variations than other color processes, but consider buying RA-4 control strips so you can do a visual inspection every few prints. We use fuji chemistry and while it isn't super toxic, I find the fumes irritating, so you might consider a respirator when mixing the chemistry. For cleanup, see if you can get some Hydra from Sprint, it works absolute wonders on developer stains, but again, is pretty harsh on the nose.
Lastly, I have to say that color neg looks pretty good when scanned and printed on state-of-the-art inkjet printers -- but it looks MUCH better when used as intended: printed on color negative paper.
Good luck. :)
How do you have to dispose of chemistry these days? I've thought about tinkering with color in the dark, but the chemistry would have to go to a good end... Maybe you could convince a local minilab to take it off your hands for a fee?
I work at the state college- disposal is easy there as we have a chemistry dept. with a chemical safety officer. This Fotospeed RA4 is advertised as non-toxic, so that's why I thought to start with that.
I'm shooting mostly Agfa Ultra 100 (still 130 rolls in the freeze), but it does look good on the Kodak paper in proofsheets form. I do shoot some Fuji 400, so will start with the Crystal Archive on those.
Thanks for the encouragement with RA4- I ran an E6 machine for a few LONG weeks in 1984. Couldn't keep the thing anywhere near stable to save my life or my job. Promoted to be fired! At least I got my one and only paid vacation in first.
Disposing of color chemistry isn't a scary deal; at my school, we flush our bleach-fix through a silver recovery machine, and that's pretty much that. Everything else can go down the drain with lots of running water.
For those who are interested, color chemistry isn't much more challenging to deal with than black and white.
If I get really serious about trying it, I'll visit the local labs and see if any of them will handle the spent chemicals for me.
The Photospeed room temperature kits sound really enticing for home darkroom use.
Well the order is placed! Paper, chemistry and viewing filters (despite searching I can't find the old ones- some vague memory of having given them away a long long time ago).
Whew! this should be fun!
I run a color darkroom. I use a Jobo CPP-2 with Kodak RA-4 chemistry and Eudura paper (with Fuji film). The CPP-2 will automatically keep the temperature right; the CPA-2 requires adjustment as the ambient temperature changes. The added cost for a CPP-2 is worth it. Also, get the lift.
You will need to get good viewing lights. Color correction filters don't mean much without good viewing lamps. Also have a neutral space to view in. The viewing conditions cannot be underestimated in color printing. I wish I could give recommendation, but I have just returned from 16 years in Japan and I am now in the process of setting up my viewing lights. And no, daylight tunsten photofloods do not work well.
If you process with the Jobo, you will find working with two color enlargers very efficient as you can work on two prints at a time. I use a 4x5 Omega and a 2x3 Beseler. I use a hair dryer to dry the test print - never judge it wet, the density is off and will have a different color from dry (I can judge B&W better when wet although dry is better as well in that case).
But color printing is fun. I really enjoy color work and the qualities you can get in a c-print. It does take some time to get to see color critically. Red/magenta and blue/cyan are tricky to differentiate at first, but a correction for the wrong color never makes a print better. Also slight changes in filtration can emphasize or subdue structures and details in the image. It is quite amazing.
...You will need to get good viewing lights. Color correction filters don't mean much without good viewing lamps. Also have a neutral space to view in. The viewing conditions cannot be underestimated in color printing. I wish I could give recommendation, but I have just returned from 16 years in Japan and I am now in the process of setting up my viewing lights. And no, daylight tunsten photofloods do not work well....
...It does take some time to get to see color critically. Red/magenta and blue/cyan are tricky to differentiate at first, but a correction for the wrong color never makes a print better. Also slight changes in filtration can emphasize or subdue structures and details in the image. It is quite amazing.
Thanks for the reminder on light! I've worked a lot with B&W print color, and have a good viewing light right outside the darkroom, and then can walk easily into the kitchen or mudroom to see the prints as well in daylight. Will keep good track of this as I start.
Paper, colorhead and viewing filters are here, chemistry is back ordered:bang:
Will hopefully get here before I go away (and not the day before I leave!).
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