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Harman Direct Positive Paper

Discussion in 'Everything Film' started by Zou, May 4, 2010.

  1. Zou

    Zou Well-Known Member

    As many of you know, I enjoy pinhole photography with my Zero 45. I shoot both film and paper negatives, but find film difficult to deal with (I don't have the equipment to home develop, and scanning involves stitching two half images together) and paper annoying as it needs to be cut to size and has less lattitude. So when I heard about Harman's new paper, I was genuinely excited - could this be the media I have been waiting for? See here for the original AP news story.

    For me there are two principal attractions to using this product. Firstly, no more trimming with a guillotine (I currently cut multigrade to 4x5 for use in my DDSs) and secondly, when developing by inspection, no guessing at how the image will invert. The image being a positive should make it easier to judge shadow and highlight areas when developing.

    I am now in posession of two packs of the RC (1 glossy, 1 luster), and have mixed feelings so far. Firstly, the 4x5 size is just that, 4x5 - ie a smidgeon too big for a 4x5 sheet film holder. Drat. In the FB Glossy they do have a 3.9x4.9 which apparently is JUST the right size for a standard DDS. You live and learn. I've just loaded up two sheets having trimmed them slightly. It's actually fiddlier to trim a tiny strip off than a bigger chunk, so whilst it is less wasteful, it's still a PITA. :( The downside with the FB is that being FB, it requires serious washing (an hour under running water), so I think I'll play about with the RC first, and if I like the results, then I'll look into using the FB.

    I'm heading out this afternoon to try out the first couple of sheets. Results will be posted in due course.
  2. Zou

    Zou Well-Known Member

    Link to first pictures.

    I shot these two pictures alongside some Multigrade and the results were very similar. Typically the sun came out when rain had been forecast so instead of dull flat lighting I had OTT contrast. C'est la vie. Perhaps an indoor test shot will be more revealing of the paper's character?
  3. Damien_Demolder

    Damien_Demolder Well-Known Member

    Have you done any more with this Zou?
  4. Malcolm_Stewart

    Malcolm_Stewart Well-Known Member

    As I've reported elsewhere, there were crowds around the Harman stand demonstrating this at Focus-on-Imaging last Wednesday, and I couldn't get close, or see any of their results live. Perhaps you were luckier, or more likely busy with visitors to the AP stand.

    From the examples displayed (and which I did manage to snap through gaps in the crowd) it looks as though it could give portrait imaging another option. It's a pity that their website and downloaded pdf (pre-flashing techniques etc.) info sheet gives no hint that the 4" x 5" size doesn't fit standard 4" x 5" DDSs without some trimming. Trimming is mentioned for a Lomo type camera.
  5. Zou

    Zou Well-Known Member

    Not really. :eek: It's been a rather lean year in terms of taking pictures.

    My plan was to cut it down to use as sheets in my Brownie. Having a normal lens should result in shorter exposures and better tonality than the high contrast long pinhole exposures.

    I have heard that all 4x5 is now trimmed to fit dark slides, but I haven't confirmed that with Harmann.

    Here's the Flickr group I made, as you can see some others have been perservering. http://www.flickr.com/groups/harman-dpp/
  6. Damien_Demolder

    Damien_Demolder Well-Known Member

    Thanks to you both

    I had my portrait taken at Focus by a group of grinning safe-light-coloured-hair students using a 10x8in and the direct positive. After three days and nights in Birmingham I'm not sure I was an ideal subject if they wanted the paper to look good. It looks very green/blue sensitive, which brings out the manly side of anyone. I just looked slightly homeless. They were using it flashed too, so the contrast was much milder than I've seen unflashed.

    I'm having desk-bound fantasties of using it in my plate camera. I rather like the way it looks, and am slightly struck on the idea that each print will be a one-off (unless I switch the scanner on, of course).

    Need a couple of days off really. Obviously I'll have to tell my wife I'm at work or she'll get the clip board out and that will be that. :)
  7. taxor

    taxor Well-Known Member

    The more I think about this the more I reckon using it in camera seems like a good idea. I suppose pre-flashing would also be better done in camera to suit the subject contrast. Now I'll just have to get me a 10x8 camera.
  8. Damien_Demolder

    Damien_Demolder Well-Known Member

    If you happen to be on Faceache you can see the picture they took of me here.
  9. Zou

    Zou Well-Known Member

    Is "since 1968" part of a caption? ;)

    Seriously though, it does look good. I will have to make an effort to use it more.
  10. Damien_Demolder

    Damien_Demolder Well-Known Member

    I know! The use of the word 'colour'is rather too close to my colourless hair too. And I was born in 1969.

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