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Thread: Film sharpening

  1. #1
    Member Majik Imaje's Avatar
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    Default Film sharpening

    All posts on this topic should be placed here.

  2. #2
    Member Majik Imaje's Avatar
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    I have a lot to say about 'FILM SHARPENING' from decades of experience first hand. from LIVING inside a darkroom(s).

    If you have to worry about film sharpening - You are not focusing correctly and or keeping the camera steady enough.

    I have a lot to say about FILM sharpening here, in the correct thread. I do not want to participate in 'hyjacking' someone else's thread. Especially since I have so much to say on this subject on FILM. I AM AN EXPERT with hands on experience for forty years time. (Oct 69 ) is when I began to 'literally live" inside darkrooms !!

    Now with digital. that is an issue I am not expertly versed in. But basically the same applies. If you need to worry about using that freature that is available, in 'graphix' programs. My best guess is to say - learn how to create a photo that doesn't require 'post processing'. That is the 'key' to becoming CONSISTENT and successfull.

    My purpose here is not to insult - but to seperate FACT from FICTION !

    A DISCUSSION - civil - based on FACTS only !!

  3. #3
    Member Majik Imaje's Avatar
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    Lets begin - with the TRUTH !! it is easily found in BOOKS that are in circulation for decades - commonly known! Now I submit here that you can FIND anything on the internet to prove (??) a point.

    We all know - just because it says somethng on the internet (pages); that does not in any way PROVE it is the truth. I mean lets take something very simple - GOD ! does he exist? SURE that is a no brainer. Yet I can search and find millions of pages that state (with error) that HE doesn't exist. (point made.) ! Lets move on .

    FILM: how to sharpen FILM !! ?? I would never ever try - (personally) this techique. In any way. Not for a customer - nope ! why ? there was never NEED to attempt something like this (for me).

    now for someone using a 35mm camera, hmm ? they might find a need - especially if they are printing larger size images 16 x 20 & up to 30 x 40

    There was a process in the 70's that was published by a photographer using one B&W developer ( for b&w film). This doesn't apply to color. only B&W. Rodinal I purchased one bottle and I did not like the results because the info was too vague. you had to experiment with this stuph. It was incredibly concentrated usign various dillutions. NOPE - not for me. I like SIMPLE. simple is easy to understand.

    ALL B&W films (processing) by hand, tank or tub required the same set of agitation rules every 30 seconds agitate for 5 seconds via the four methods, inverting (tank) lifting (sheets) rolling (tank) or rocking (tray).

    Now with RODINAL and certain b&w films there would occur - "acutance"


    (apparent sharpness) if you used the other rules for agiation. Bob ? was the photographer who published this info in the early 70's. SOME EDGES on the emulsion were 'sharper' ?? I dare say.. the average human eye could never distinguish the difference to go through that much extra effort and work.

    I never had to worry about sharpness. 35 mm can't compare to 120 mm
    NO WAY MANNER SHAPE OR FORM.

    when you enlarge a 35 mm neg / slide to 8 x 10 paper / film the magnifcation rate is extreme !!

    not so with medium and large format cameras.

    AND AS I said.. none of this is true concerning color.

    Now final point - Makie lines is in no way associated with -film sharpening THAT YOU WOULD USE or COULD use on a ? NORMAL print !!

    to obtain these sharp distinctive lines - you must re-expose the film or print to additional light THAT IS CALLED "solarization"

    Not something one would use to create a normal print because in essence re-exposure to light actually destroy's the original it is much like "
    posterization. not a process to make a normal print ENHANCED !!

    true YOU WILL GET LINES. well defined - but print in no way resembles the original in any way.

    sure there are all sorts of different ways to 'create' lines on prints or film but they in no way ENHANCE the original composition or subject matter to a point that this would be used.

    much the same is exactly true in DIGITAL. moire' lines when you try and scan money or other objects.. these colorful SHARP lines cannot be put into the same(false category) as 'FILM SHARPENING".

    If you are using film and you want to 'sharpen it' F. A. S. T.

    FOCUS - APERATURE - SHUTTER - TRIPOD !!

    that is simple !! it is easy to understand.

  4. #4

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    I use the Unsharpen Mask freature () all the time.


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    Quote Originally Posted by BrianW View Post
    I use the Unsharpen Mask freature () all the time.

    Just shake the camera real good when taking a picture. That should do it

  6. #6
    Member Majik Imaje's Avatar
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    Priceless !!! Roflmao

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    Quote Originally Posted by Majik Imaje View Post
    Priceless !!! Roflmao
    I just hope that Brain won't get mad at me, since I was only kidding
    Besides, Brian uses some of the expensive Canon lenses with IS, so shaking his camera won't make a difference

  8. #8

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    No offense taken.

    Even despite the IS on most of the lens I own, I still like to hit the Unsharpen Mask button at bit in PSE. I'm a convicted pixel-peeker of the worst sort.

    Truth is, I probably over do it.

    This brings me to another topic, I'll start a new thread...

  9. #9
    Member Floyd_Davidson's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BrianW View Post
    No offense taken.

    Even despite the IS on most of the lens I own, I still like to hit the Unsharpen Mask button at bit in PSE. I'm a convicted pixel-peeker of the worst sort.

    Truth is, I probably over do it.

    This brings me to another topic, I'll start a new thread...
    IS has no relationship to either "sharpening" or to using an "Unsharp Mask". All three are distinctly different things, each of which affects how "sharp" an image appears to be, but they each cause that effect in different ways.

    Virtually everyone who shoots JPEG straight out of the camera uses "sharpening", simply because virtually all cameras apply it by default. USM, which in most cases actually looks better, requires post processing. The result is that most JPEG shooters don't even know they use sharpening, and only those who typically get deeply into post processing actually do much of anything different with either sharpening or USM.

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    Member tull777's Avatar
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    And your thoughts, Majik???
    http://www.pbase.com/tull777

    http://www.eddiefisherphoto.com/


    "If you're too open-minded, your brains will fall out. ....."Tight Lines & Best Fishes"

  11. #11

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    I'm not the seasoned expert like 'Majik' but I understand Floyds description of the differences (as I'm sure you do tull777.)

    The film sharpening is before my time, and I can't begin to discus it.

    In camera sharpening via JPEG is a digital phenomenon, thanks to technology.

    Unsharpen mask is another digital phenomenon that takes place in computer programs used to process digital pictures.

  12. #12
    Member Floyd_Davidson's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BrianW View Post
    I'm not the seasoned expert like 'Majik'
    Keep in mind that he steadfastly claims there is no such thing as sharpening related to film development. That is clearly untrue.

    If anyone actually doubts that, just say so and in addition to the one cite that I provided because it had a very nice description (from an impeccable source too), and I will post a short bibliography of references from other highly credible sources that will leave no question about the "if" part. (Granted that they may not be tutorial in nature or even something most folks want to read, but...)

  13. #13
    Member Majik Imaje's Avatar
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    Well Floyd - Lets put this discussion in the proper perspective shall we ??

    First of all - you have grouped together several 'differenet processes and clumped it all under 'film sharpening' which is more false than it is truth.


    Let me make myself perfectly clear so there is no room for mis- interpretation.

    film sharpening in digital is a post processing procedure (that is simple enough to understand)

    Film sharpening in the darkroom (getting sharper images) is done by using the correct film developer !!

    Rodinal verses ANY fine grain film developer will not be comparison

    There are two different methods of film agitation for B&W film

    Every 30 seconds agitate for 5 seconds OR Every minute agitate for 10 seconds !!

    Now - it has been documented that there occurs - accutance - or edge sharpness (apparent sharpness) verses perceived sharpness.
    If you let the film sit with no agitation during the half mniute mark. This accutance occurs BUT what I am claiming is that if you want the sharpest image possible on that film - use a FINE GRAIN film developer.

    You will get the sharpest results with a different film developer than using rodinal ! ALSO Tri-X is not the film to use for sharp(est) results.

    Tri-X = 400 ISO - extremly grainy results. (over using) Plus-X or Panatomic X film!

    Rodinal is the OLDEST B&W film developer on the market !! It was never intended as a fine grain film developer.

    There are many other 'fine grain film developers' that do a far better job in producing incredible much sharper results !!

    So although your correct in saying - film will get sharper (accutance) leting the flim sit for the extra 30 seconds and not agitating. It will in no way shape or form - PROVIDE SHARPER RESULTS OVER USING A FILM DEVELOPER THAT IS a true fine grain film developer such as Microdol - X

    Makie lines and Erbhart effect are not methods for gaining sharper results in the normal method - these two effects have absolutely nothing what so ever do do with any form of film sharpening !!

    What I would like to do is to each create an image of the exact same subject and use the different processes and compare the results !!

    Microdol X will provide much sharper images with noticeably less grain than Rodinal !!

    Every professional photograher knew Tri-X 400 ISO produces much finer results and much better contrast if exposed @ 300 ISO !

    T here are all sorts of tricks and processes to use in the darkroom. - letting film sit with no agitation in no way produces finer results than a fine grain film developer !!

    I respect your opinion - but it doesn't make sense in the manner in which you originally posted it.

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