Newbie-- (WET!) Color printing aid question...Which is best?

Discussion in 'Darkroom Developing and Printing' started by Jos. Burke, Jan 25, 2004.

  1. Jos. Burke

    Jos. Burke Guest

    Want to try my hand at traditional color printing using a Durst enlarger (
    CLS-301 head). My question--Which color printing aids are the best bet for a
    beginner to get a good print? Kodak has them! Jobo has them? whats the best
    bang for the buck?
    This is in regard to obtaining proper (tweaking) filtration settings
    primarily and exposure secondary.
    J Buke
    Jos. Burke, Jan 25, 2004
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  2. Jos. Burke

    Jim Phelps Guest

    Get yourself a set of the Kodak Color Print Viewing Filters (pub R-25 IIRC).
    These will help aid you in determining what and how much filtration you need
    to adjust.

    Also, Make a standard negative for your film and process. Include someone
    with average skin tones and a color chart and gray scale. Process this the
    way you will always process your film. We used to call this a 'Shirley' as
    that was the name of the model who posed for Kodak (they came in the Color
    Darkroom Dataguides).

    Don't rely on someone else's standard negative. Make your own!

    Jim Phelps, Jan 25, 2004
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  3. Jos. Burke

    Nick Zentena Guest

    I was in the same spot more or less a few months ago.

    1) A notebook. Write everything down. On the back of your test prints
    right down the filter settings and exposure. Don't toss the bad ones. You
    want to learn what happens when you change the filters.

    2) On the Kodak website a series of pdfs on processing Ra-4 can be found.
    In at least one of those documents is a little chart that goes something like

    Your print is too:

    Red add yellow and magenta
    Yellow add yellow


    I assume you mean the Kodak viewing filters. I don't think they are made
    anymore. I bought a used set and to be honest I've never figured out
    anything with them. For exposure I just do a test strip.

    Once you've got the filter settings right for a photo then I found
    any photo taken under the same lighting doesn't require a change in the
    filters. It's just a question of getting the exposure right.

    Nick Zentena, Jan 25, 2004
  4. Jos. Burke

    Nick Zentena Guest

    Ooops the chart is in the document on the Kodak paper.

    I personally got more out of having the section on color balance next to
    the enlarger then I did from the viewing filters.

    Nick Zentena, Jan 25, 2004
  5. Jos. Burke

    Jim Phelps Guest


    I believe they're still made. At least I see them still offered for sale.
    They are acetate filters and if you bought a used set, they may be faded or
    discolored, and therefore not usable. Especially if they came in the Kodak
    Yellow wallet. The wallet color was changed to black several years ago. In
    fact, I'm getting ready to order another set as the one's I have are faded
    To test, lay them on a piece of color paper and give them a short exposure
    at mid aperture range, and process. You should see the expected colors (red
    under cyan, green under magenta, etc, etc, etc). You should also see
    significant changes in color intensity and density. If you don't, they're

    I found them very helpful when just starting out. Trying to earn the
    experience to say the print is 7CC to yellow without them was frustrating.
    However, I will admit, that was in the days of Ektacolor 37 paper (have I
    been doing this that long - sheese). Ektacolor 37 (and later 74, which was
    twice the speed) were very picky papers. A couple of seconds to long in the
    developer and the color shifted. Same with temps.

    To use them, under daylight (or viewing light if they will be hung under
    other lighting), you dodge them in and out of your vision while looking at
    your print at about arms length. Don't let the light that illuminates the
    paper pass through the filter, or you have twice the color correction (once
    as the light goes through the filter and again as it's reflected back to
    your eye through the filter).

    None of the above will be a help unless you've determined the correct
    exposure for the print. It's important to have the correct density in your
    test print before you begin to judge for color.

    [Nick, some content of this message is for the OP]
    Jim Phelps, Jan 25, 2004
  6. Jos. Burke

    Nick Zentena Guest

    I couldn't find any when I was looking. I actually couldn't even find the
    set of Kodak printing filters. The various retailers had single filters but
    I couldn't find the CP set. My viewing filters are in the black wallet.
    I'm not saying the viewing filters don't work it's just they seem to require
    you to know what changes are needed. I ended up using the filters more for
    confirming what the little chart from Kodak said then to figure out what to use.

    Nick Zentena, Jan 25, 2004
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