Using Multiple Toners

Discussion in 'B&W: Film, Paper, Chemistry' started by H. G. Hart, Jul 9, 2005.

  1. H. G. Hart

    H. G. Hart Member

    Oct 5, 2003
    8x10 Format
    I am interested in using more than one toner on a single print. I remember reading (possibly in a post about platinum toning which I am unable to find) that the "nobility" of metal in a toner determined whether or not it could replace the metals already in the print. I am wondering how this along with the fact that some toners seem to tone in proprtion to image density (selenium) while others tone evenly (gold).

    Also, if one were to use an indirect toner requiring the print to be bleached before toning, could this be used in conjunction with other toners such as selnium or gold? If so, how would the image be affected if the other toners were used before, rather than after, the indirect toning. I have limited experience with toners other than selenium so please excuse any errors in my understanding of how they work. Thanks.
  2. ann

    ann Subscriber

    Sep 10, 2002
    you can use a variety of toners on a single print, the important issue is to be sure you wash carefully betweent toners.

    i.e. one can use sepia toner and then selenium, happens all the time.
    the tones will shift depending upon which toners are used.
    for example. selenium works from the shadows up and gold from the highlights down.

    check tim rudmans book on toning , it will provide more information than perhaps you need, but it should be very helpful.
  3. rshepard

    rshepard Member

    Jun 11, 2005
    Troutdale, O
    Medium Format
    I second Ann's recommendation of Tim Rudman's toning book. It's fascinating and worth having on your bookshelf if you tone prints. Another excellent resource is "Beyond Monochrome" by Tony Worobiec and Ray Spence.

    You can mix toners to your heart's content. Results will vary with the paper and other factors, but you'll easily find results that you like.
  4. Ole

    Ole Moderator Staff Member Moderator

    Sep 9, 2002
    Bergen, Norway
    Large Format
    I have got strange but fascinating results by combining yellow and blue toner. "Archival" it isn't, but well worth the trouble of playing about with.

    Oh yes - I got the idea from Tim Rudman's book :smile:
  5. andre laredo

    andre laredo Member

    Jun 23, 2005
    4x5 Format
    try this,make the print,fix,wash,permawash,wash,sepia A,wash 10 min.sepia B,wash
    30 min.then iron tone until the shadows are blue/green,clear in warm running water
    until the yellow stain is removed from the paper,then dry.
    I make my own toners and they work really well with this process.
    sepia A: 4 grams potassium ferricyanide
    4 grams potassium bromide
    1 liter water
    sepia B: 4 grams sodium sulphide
    1 liter water
    iron toner: 3 grams potassium ferricyanide
    3 grams oxalic acid
    3 grams ferric ammoniun citrate
    1 liter water
    when you use the solution A sepia,bleach the print until the highlights disappear
    to about the mid tones. the shadows will lighten and become a bit brown,this is
    when you should pull the print out and wash it before going to sepia B.
    what happens with this process is that the sepia color goes from the highlights
    to the mid tones and the iron color,blue/green goes from the shadows to the mid
    tones,with the two colors meeting in the middle.this works best with full range
    prints,high contrast not so good.
  6. Mark H

    Mark H Member

    Oct 28, 2003
    Eddie Ephraums has several books out that focus on toning, which are also good reading for insight into the How and Why negatives are selected and printed. Tim Rudman's book on toning, as mentioned by others, is excellent. It led me to doing some interesting things with blue and sepia toning carried to extremes. Two examples can be seen at Here's a link to my photos:

    Have fun!
  7. jim appleyard

    jim appleyard Member

    Nov 21, 2004
    Multi Format
    Back in high school, we used to cover selected parts of a photo with rubber cement and then bleach/tone. Afterwards, you peel off the rubber cement. Not quite multiple toning, but fun.