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Published on Sep 29, 2011
Tim Rudman, well known photographer and an instructor at the Photographers' Formulary in Condon, Montana, recently taught a series of workshops about Lith Printing. Unlike Lithography, which focuses on achieving pure blacks and pure whites without any grays, Lith Printing seeks the opposite: delicate tones ranging from subtle and delicate grays to bold blacks. It also capitalizes on the ability of the Lith developer to release varying colors during the development of various photographic papers, giving the papers a three dimensional, color quality.
In this short film Tim Rudman explains how the Lith Printing process works. It depends on what Tim calls the Two Golden Rules of Lith Printing. Follow them and you will have success.
1. Highlights are controlled by exposure; Shadows are controlled by development.
2. Grain size of silver in the print is everything. It varies from the fine, low contrast, silky and warm tones in the early stage of development, to the coarse, gritty grain size of "infectious development" as the process proceeds.
All important is the infamous and sometimes elusive "snatch point" at which the partially developed print is "snatched" from the developer and plunged into the stop bath to stop the development process.
Listen carefully as Tim explains the process, then listen again. Once you understand it, it's like riding a bicycle. You won't have to learn it again.