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Results of developing b/w neg in b/w print developer?


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#1 Marc Roessler

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Posted 19 October 2008 - 04:05 PM

Hey guys,

what kind of results would I have to expect if I developed a b/w negative not in a regular
D96 b/w developer but in a b/w print developer? What difference would there be in
gradation/contrast, grain, base fog.. ? Just interested...

Greetings,
Marc
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#2 Robert Houllahan

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Posted 20 October 2008 - 10:52 AM

Print developer works well if you want to run a 5-6 stop push and make the film much more contrasty, of course you could cut development times but it would still end up with more contrast then with regular development.Or you could underexpose and develop up. In general the recommended development times will add 5 stops to the negative.

-Rob-
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#3 Marc Roessler

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Posted 20 October 2008 - 02:32 PM

5 to 6 stops.. holy moly..! what gamma will this result in?
Anyone ever tried this? Would love to see this.. Otherwise I will try it myself some time...
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#4 Robert Houllahan

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Posted 20 October 2008 - 04:45 PM

5 to 6 stops.. holy moly..! what gamma will this result in?
Anyone ever tried this? Would love to see this.. Otherwise I will try it myself some time...



We have run this from time to time for certain effect or for an extreme push in a couple of cases, grain tends to become golf-ball sized and Bill said that in general Hi-Con run in the print developer is about a 3.5-4.0 gamma so negative is most likely similar very contrasty. Depending on how you run it I would rate the negative at between 500iso and 1000iso for DoubleX and between 320iso and 500iso for PlusX. Firm numbers aer hard to give on this process as you really need to run a few tests to find a development setup to process to and a speed to rate the film for the shooting situation. That's why it's experimental film making.

-Rob-
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#5 Simon Wyss

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Posted 23 October 2008 - 03:49 AM

To process a classic soft camera negative film in a classic projection positive bath is rape. The emulsions of print film and recording film are very different. My experience is also that grain explodes, contrast pulls up and fog, too. One can dilute the positive developer and adapt time. Better don't do it. One exception: high contrast camera stock for titles, subtitles, mattes or special effects such as the vision of a perturbed character and the like
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#6 Robert Houllahan

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Posted 23 October 2008 - 12:23 PM

To process a classic soft camera negative film in a classic projection positive bath is rape. Better don't do it.



Ummm Yeah, right rape huh????

Ok

-Rob-
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#7 Mark Dunn

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Posted 24 October 2008 - 03:43 AM

Print developer is much more energetic than film dev, both to keep the processing time down (2 minutes instead of 6 or 8), and because it can be- paper grain is so fine that grain isn't an issue. But it also oxidises much more rapidly. There's no question of reusing it.
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#8 Chris Keth

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Posted 05 November 2008 - 03:52 AM

To process a classic soft camera negative film in a classic projection positive bath is rape. The emulsions of print film and recording film are very different. My experience is also that grain explodes, contrast pulls up and fog, too. One can dilute the positive developer and adapt time. Better don't do it. One exception: high contrast camera stock for titles, subtitles, mattes or special effects such as the vision of a perturbed character and the like


No good filmmaker ever does anything not recommended by the 'experts' anyway, you're right.
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#9 Brian Pritchard

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Posted 05 November 2008 - 04:56 AM

No good filmmaker ever does anything not recommended by the 'experts' anyway, you're right.

There are many hundreds of developers with different compositions. They will all give different results. When Black and White was king each lab had its own formulation for neg and pos baths, some labs also had a high-contrast bath for developing sound negatives. Some labs used MQ developers and some phenidone developers.

There is no reason, other than persuading a lab to install a special bath, for you not to use any developer. Developing neg through a pos bath will increase the contrast, grain and speed but if that is what you want they just go ahead and do it. If you don't experiment you will never find out.

If you want the very highest quality, good gradation, low grain then you correctly expose the negative and process it through a high quality bath. If you need something else then change whatever you want, but don't blame me if you get horrible results!

If someone had not suggested bleach bypass then this effect would never have been seen. It is not the 'official' Kodak ECN2 process but certainly gives a different look.


Brian.
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#10 Charles MacDonald

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Posted 05 November 2008 - 11:09 AM

There is no reason, other than persuading a lab to install a special bath, for you not to use any developer. Developing neg through a pos bath will increase the contrast, grain and speed but if that is what you want they just go ahead and do it. If you don't experiment you will never find out.

It is also not imposible to get 5231 and 5222 and shoot them in a still camera, giving you a chance to mix up a small sample of any of the published formulas to learn the degree that one can change the look of the film. Get a copy of "the drakroom Cookbook" and plan your own experiments. You can even get some 5302 or the Polyester equivelent and contact print yourself a black and white slide to get some of the feel. (I would even buy a 100 ft of 5302 myself if you have to buy a 1000 ft roll of it)
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#11 bwff

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Posted 11 November 2008 - 05:29 AM

Hey guys,

what kind of results would I have to expect if I developed a b/w negative not in a regular
D96 b/w developer but in a b/w print developer? What difference would there be in
gradation/contrast, grain, base fog.. ? Just interested...

Greetings,
Marc


I have a sample posted at YouTube:

Irena.jpg
7222 16mm b&w neg processed in D97 Kodak hi-con developer, FramebyFrame transferred at 24fps.
Processing and video transfer done at Black & White Film Factory
www.blackandwhitefilmfactory.com
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#12 Simon Wyss

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Posted 11 November 2008 - 06:33 AM

Chris, you cannot provoke me that way. You're saying yourself, the 'experts'. That's it, we have expertise. Like stated above it is the creative who has to ask the technician for a change. Don't you think I never came out the darkroom with heavy dense negatives, the cinematographer still in the ear: "Everything should be fine." The sh[ ! ] was f{ = } overexposed two to three stops. "We'll fix it in post . . . "

I am a peaceful man.
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#13 K Borowski

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Posted 11 November 2008 - 03:38 PM

Simon, I think your use of the word "rape" is what was negatively provoking. That is no better than saying "This film was a total abortion it came out so bad." Very charged connotations on both of these words in English that you probably didn't intend.



Simon's just trying to say that results aren't satisfactory from a technical standpoint. Although I have to say, Simon, if everyone shot with primes, stopped down two stops, only with Double-X or Gigabit film or 5201 all overexposed one stop, we'd have pretty boring filmmaking. But, then again, I think everything has gotten just as out-of-hand lately in the other direction with everyone shooting 500T film pushed a stop with a bleach-bypass and a DI. Or lately, the stupid craze for "realistic" lighting. You can shoot "realistic" lighting by just using available lighting. And, frankly, it looks like poop. Movies generally aren't imitating reality, they are an idealized, stylized portrayal of the way reality "should" be.

From a alternative process standpoint, non-standard processing techniques can produce very interesting "effect" looks.

I mean, imagine if we'd never had "Barry Lyndon" or "Saving Private Ryan" or "Sleepy Hollow". Imagine if they'd never made "Wizard of Oz". Howabout that movie they shot on VNF 5239? Or "Smallville"? Howabout Kubrick's last movie?

Kodak always used to say, Simon, that push-processing wasn't recommended, and according to David Mullen I think or John Holland, they tried to make it even harder to push film right around the time they switched from ECN to ECN-2 by building in some sort of color shift or designing one of their emulsions without push processing even being tested.

Cinematographers still found ways around it, because, obviously, only being able to shoot at 50T or 100T film speed is extremely limiting creatively. How can you record scenes by candle-light at 100?

Devising alternative, new techniques, is the exciting part of filmmaking. It shouldn't replace "technical correctness" as prevalent, as it has unfortunately to some extent in the war genre of films, but it would be incredibly boring if we didn't have exciting new visual trends influence the world of cinematography from time to time.
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#14 Simon Wyss

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Posted 12 November 2008 - 03:18 AM

Although I have to say, Simon, if everyone shot with primes, stopped down two stops, only with Double-X or Gigabit film or 5201 all overexposed one stop, we'd have pretty boring filmmaking.

So, this is one general assumption, f 5.6 on primes for black-and-white stock? Why don't we then just condemn whole classic Hollywood? Nono, Karl, boring cinematography has nothing to do with solid techniques but rather with a lack of ideas and flow and surprise. There is always a guy who deviates from mainstream and he is right in doing so.

I'd like to apologize for my harsh expressions. Looks like everyday German is a kick harder than English.

Speaking of Eastman-Kodak Company: You all know EXR. But who imagined it? XR - Extended Range Film was invented by Edgerton, Germeshausen & Grier in 1964. Speeds from 0.004 to 800 ISO, at least three different layers. They might have left that concept with the Vision series, I don't know.

I have absolutely nothing against experimentation, on the contrary. There was this lady student who made a short on 7302 as originating stock. She wanted to bring the contrast down later, so the pictures were duplicated onto 7234. I must say that it had its own charme. What turns me into a steam engine at full throttle is the more and more prevailing ignorance of exactly the basics. Not to have a connection with what happens when the pace is changed or shutter angle or the iris or perspective or light scheme, that is sad. I'm outing myself here: technique comes from texne (greek) meaning grasp. The most human about us, the use of our hands, is it. Those people with little or no feel frighten me. Everybody is free to join such a forum, only should I never simply go and ask questions in order to get free answers. Isn't it much more interesting to learn from the reactions that come up, to learn about the workers themselves? Physics are the same all around the globe.

More or less
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#15 Marc Roessler

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Posted 12 November 2008 - 12:48 PM

come on guys, calm down... :rolleyes:
I had asked what _would_ happen, and some have replied.. Thanks to you all!
bwff, interesting results, thanks!

While I wholeheartedly agree that knowing the basics is of prime importance, but I also think the following:

1. posing "what if" questions and actually trying those gives you a much more in-depth knowledge about how technology works than just processing it 08/15 "because this is what is technically correct". Sometimes you have to make experiments (and errors!) to find out how stuff really works.

2. Remember, in the end it is all the creative decision of the filmmaker (!). If something gives me the look I am after, I honestly don't care if it's "proper processing" or not. I'ven spent hours having my ears talked off by a lab owner who thought b/w fine grain developer was the only true thing. Nevermind I wanted a negative with increased contrast and visible grain for aesthetic reasons... he just wouldn't get it! So I switched to another lab and shot 7231 pushed one stop in D96. And in the end it looked exactly like I wanted it to look!
I've heard "but things are always done this way" so often that it hurts.

Greetings,
Marc
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#16 Simon Wyss

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Posted 14 November 2008 - 06:20 AM

come on guys, calm down... :rolleyes:
Sometimes you have to make experiments (and errors!) to find out how stuff really works.


We're not upset. That is the sound of rolling commerce.

He's got it !
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#17 Brian Pritchard

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Posted 14 November 2008 - 06:32 AM

I've heard "but things are always done this way" so often that it hurts.


I always tried in my days as a lab Technical Director to do whatever the customer wanted although I had to draw the line with the film maker who wanted to print his negative when still wet with fixer!
Brian
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#18 Daniel Porto

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Posted 15 November 2008 - 12:04 AM

I always tried in my days as a lab Technical Director to do whatever the customer wanted although I had to draw the line with the film maker who wanted to print his negative when still wet with fixer!
Brian


Would that do anything at all??? Would it leave water looking marks on the negative?
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#19 Brian Pritchard

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Posted 15 November 2008 - 03:40 AM

I don't honestly know what the result would be other than it would probably wreck the printer. Fixer is very acidic and would cause rust. You would have to strip the printer down to avoid contamination of the next roll.

I think his idea was that the fixer would partly fix the undeveloped print stock and give a very odd look with part of the picture missing. Having paid over £20,000 for the printer in the early 60's I wasn't going to find out.

Brian
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#20 Dirk DeJonghe

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Posted 15 November 2008 - 07:05 AM

Once, late at night in the early 70'ies, I had the company of a very well known television presenter who did a weekly program about new film releases in the cinema. He had brought in his Ektachrome 16mm reversal films to be developed in a hurry (as usual).

Since there was nobody left in the lab besides him and me, I showed him the processing in progress. He was astonished that the film was WET!
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