I just started with making Ziatypes

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Mainecoonmaniac

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I bought a Ziatype kit from Bostick and Sullivan months ago and started using it last weekend. I find it really easy to use. I coat my emulsion with a glass rod. I find Ziatype printing is easier than salt printing. I made my first test print with a digital neg made with Chart Throb and in the process of calibrating my digital negs.

What really blew me away was a print made from a 6x9 neg. Once I cleared my print in the citric acid solution, I was amazed by the beauty of the process. My first impression is that analog negs look way better than it's digital counterpart. Is my observation pretty much true? Or well made digital negs can equal the quality of analog negs?
 

Klainmeister

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Your observations are pretty accurate, although a higher-end Epson using Quadtone RIP will get close. Doing side by sides of 8x10 neg vs digi-neg...yeah, you surely can see it. Is it enough to make me shot 16x20? Noooo way. But go larger and start using normal viewing distances...hard to complain about anything.
 
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Mainecoonmaniac

Mainecoonmaniac

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Thanks for your verification. Digital negs offer a lot more tonal control than an analog neg. But I feel there's something special about a print made with a piece of film was used to make the shot. Scanning a neg then printing it makes the print feel someone removed from the original shot.
 

Loris Medici

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Well, I have Ziatype prints made with digital negs that I'm prefectly sure no one could tell the difference, only if they weren't too perfect. Actually it depends alot on image size / paper and subject matter. I think traditional in-camera negatives still have the edge in the extreme highlights, but by not much. And simply - even if you're doing internegatives - the degree of control with digital can't be matched with film negatives.

What matters is, using whatever procedure that makes you realize your vision and artistically / technically satisfy you.

Good luck with Ziatypes, I like the process alot. Once you're addicted you can't print iron-silver anymore, the results are simply unmatched...

Regards,
Loris.
 
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Mainecoonmaniac

Mainecoonmaniac

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Thanks Loris. It sounds encouraging for digital negs. Digital negs have revived alternative processes. I am addicted to Ziatypes.
 

Klainmeister

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No doubt that the paper and subject matter can make a big difference with this as well. The only real prints that I look back and think "Boy, I bet if that was shot in camera it could have been better" is carbon. Strictly because carbon reveals any sort of the tiniest of mistakes and has remarkable resolution to it.
 

Loris Medici

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You're right about carbon, especially when printed on perfectly smooth paper such as fixed out fiber based s/g paper and such. Even the even best hot press watercolor paper isn't able to give matching resolution (not even close!) with POP or DOP pt/pd process (in fact, it's not the resolution but the tonality that attracts us to pt/pd...), that's why digital negatives pass despite having much less resolution than film.

Regards,
Loris.
 
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