Capture One Film Presets Walk-Thru

Yet another walk-thru of Kodak Classic B+W Presets For Capture One. Just one thing before we start — a news flash — one very considerate user alerted me to a big screw-up. The workspace included with the download is the wrong one. We’ll that’s fixed. Just use the same link from before and re-download. It’s there now. How’s that for customer service. Problem and fix in five minutes.

On with the show. At the top we have your garden variety OOC RAW in Capture One. This time from a Fuji X100S. I try to test the presets across a wide variety of conditions to make sure they are useful but any input from users is welcomed. Today, lets mess with a tricker emulation — Kodak BW400CN. Not really tricky but more twitchy in a lot of cases. Don’t let the twitchy-ness put you off. Here’s a few ways that will apply to a lot of scenarios to make use of it…

First thing we’ll do is obviously apply the preset. In this case I know I really don’t want to mess around with highlights that are gone on the right edge of the main subject… but I do want them to render a tiny tiny bit of grain texture and not appear too harsh/digital. So here’s BW400CN soft whites with nothing else…

I could live with that… truth is most images will need an exposure tweak somewhere in the neighborhood of +/- half a stop. A little goes a long way with this emulation. Even though I could live with it and it’s a perfectly good aesthetic for 35mm film all of us had completely different nuances and styles using the same BW materials. Heck my darkroom mood caused variation from one print to the next in many cases. Here’s a few variations on the same theme that might float your boat or fit the particular image better.

First up the shadow police might give you a ticket for clipping blacks. With real film I did that all the time. I like black blacks and in many cases printing on higher contrast paper that couldn’t contain what was on the negative was a better aesthetic choice, not always but we all love are mid-tone contrast. Let’s say you want a softer rendition with not so so much crushing of the blacks/shadows. Try this…

One click at the top of the handy-dandy included work-flow tab. Film Extra Shadow. Done.

So, now that we’ve got a bunch more room in the shadows we maybe want to compress the highlights not so much… how about dialing -0.3 stops-ish on the exposure slider… that’s like just a hair more print time on a real enlarger. I mean a hair. See how the highlights change characteristics completely…

The shadows get darker too and they also get lower contrast but not really blocked… a typical film look. Before we decide this is it how about just a hair more detail in some of the shadows? Let’s do a local sloppy dodge of half a stop…

That looks like this…

While we’re at it how about the same thing for the mirror reflection just a touch…

and we have…

Okay, enough with that. Getting rid of the local dodges What if we want a softer look, something that may have happened if we tried to eek out this scene with a higher shutter speed (which I did as I didn’t shoot it at 400, I shot it at 1600). What I mean is I didn’t drench BW400CN in exposure which it likes a lot. That would be much more like BW400CN soft blacks and whites…

This is what happens if you have a “thin” under exposed negative but print so that you still have bright highlights/mids…

Since the highlight curve shape is still the same all the shadows register dark but not black especially with that minus exposure dialed in for the extra dimension in the highlights. If I printed on lower contrast paper (I set the base curve to film extra shadow again now) everything would get lighter that’s below mid-tone but the darkest parts would stay where they were — just above black like this…

For me, my mood today, and how I really would have shot/printed this using BW400CN based on my own history. I would prolly go with something like this…

This is BW400CN soft whites. Base curve = film standard. With those two local dodges above and ultimately -0.25 exposure. The screen shots are all full-size 27” iMac if u want to see all the gory details open them in a new window and zoom in.

RB

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