Contrast Masking Gallery
Images From Contrast Masking Workshop Participants

Ben Wilbur

Final Print (after masking)

Point here to view final print after masking

The negative was shot at the Sunset Crater using Tri-X developed in D-76. I thought the composition rather interesting; natures voices so to speak. I raced against the sunrise moving towards the scene and probably didn't get the exposure right. The original print really didn't seperate the leaves and the log to my satisfaction. The HLM really brought the scene to life. I'm going to try your suggestion with a SCIM to give depth to the log.


After attending a 2005 Contrast Masking workshop, Ben returned again in 2006 to work on this image. His visualization for the print was to keep the black cinder as dark as possible while still revealing a bit of texture. We made a print on grade 3 Kentmere paper and achieved a good balance between the log and the dark cinder. The leaves, however, appeared very flat and barely showed any texture at all. Resorting to a higher grade paper would help the leaves just a little, though not quite as much as needed to reveal more texture in the leaves. In addition, the log would appear excessively high in contrast.

We chose to make a highlight mask to affect only the leaves. It was easy to isolate just the leaves and small piece of wood (laying to the right of the log) by opaqueing unwanted areas on the interpositive. The effect of the highlight mask on the final print was beautiful. The brilliance of the leaves was increased substantially and the subtle texture within the leaves themselves was more apparent. In retrospect, we could have also made a SCIM to deepen the dark shadows next to the log in an effort to improve the 3 dimensional feel of the image. Lynn Radeka



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