Monday, 20 March 2017

Ilford Cooltone vs Kentmere

"Reelcraft" - A thing wot I saw when wandering about Coleraine Marina the other day.  It houses a fuel line, necessary for those boats with engines.

Anyway, I had printed it out on Kentmere VC Select last week, gave it a slosh in sepia and was pretty pleased with the result.  Then a couple of days ago, when I received the new Ilford Cooltone RC paper, I printed the same neg, just for comparison.  Here ya go:

Kentmere on the left, Cooltone on the right
Clearly the Cooltone print is way more contrasty.  It's strange, before the Cooltone print I was pretty happy with the Kentmere, but when I look at the two side-by-side the Cooltone one has a lot more sparkle to it.  Of course it's entirely possible that the Kentmere print could have done with a bit more contrast. With a different scene things might be the other way around, but given the fact that the main subject is metallic and has a lot of reflective highlights I think the higher contrast print works better.

Just for the record, the untoned print on Ilford Cooltone paper:


  1. There seems to be a lot more span in contrast in the Cooltone thing than anything else, I think. Probably because of the very white whites and the deep blacks it will produce quite easily and naturally. It just got a lot of oomph inside, I think.
    This scene really comes to it's right on the cooltone, in my opinion anyway.

    1. Thanks Roy I'm tended to agree - the Cooltone paper suits the subject matter well, in this case. The whites are really striking on this paper, as are the blacks - as you know.