Monday, September 10, 2007

TAM: definition: burning in

I think this is a better definition of "burning in":


"Burning-in is a technique by which a photographer can darken the tones of a specific area of a photograph. It is used to alter highlight areas that show too little detail, i.e., are too light in tone, or for dark areas that are too light. The photographer usually decides to employ burning-in after examining the negative, a contact sheet, or, more likely, an enlarged trail print from the negative. The technique is most often used during enlargement and consists of interposing for part of the exposure a piece of cardboard, plastic, or the like, with a hole cut out in its center, between the beam of light coming through the negative via the enlarging lens and the print being made. The unshaded area receives more light and hence darkens, which gives more detail in highlight areas. To avoid creating a sharp shadow outline, the photographer moves the cardboard back and forth. Depending on the shape and size of the area to be darkened, holes or silhouettes of various kinds can be cut in the cardboard. The photographer can also use his or her cupped hands or fingers to shade the print. If a photographer uses burning-in while contact-printing, she or he interposes the instrument between the light source and the negative."

From Looking at Photographs: A Guide to Technical Terms by Gordon Baldwin.


Thanks for your time!



Heide Fernandez-Llamazares

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