Wolfgang Moersch Photochemie
Am Heideberg 48
50354 Hürth

Tel.: +49-2233-943137
Fax.: +49-2233-943138


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Gold toning
Gold toner is a preferred choice to increase archival permanence of silver prints. In contrast to selenium toner, which starts in the shadows and reaches the highlights only later, gold toner affects all densities simultaneously. If the image silver was reduced by using cold- or neutral tone developer, a shift in colour is barely discernable.

The densities increase immensely. You can make use of this to add brilliance to the print. If you desire cool or even blue hues, you have to develop warmtone paper with a high content of chlorine silver to warm or brown tones.

untoned print

after gold toning

Wolfgang Moersch

Gold toner causes a cooler tone the warmer the initial print was developed. In this extreme example, the image was developed on Fomatone warmtone paper in a highly diluted ammonia alkaline metol developer.

lith print, selenium toner

lith print, selenium toner + gold toner

lith prints on Oriental

These two initially identical prints were briefly toned in selenium 1+10. This only increased the deep shadows, but left the highlights unimpressed. The print on the right was additionally toned in gold for about 30 seconds. It is clearly visible that apart from the colour shift there is an increase in density of the highlights.

Pre-toning is not imperative, but according to experience, prints react more readily to gold toning, if pre-toned in selenium. If you extend the duration in selenium, you can achieve pleasant split tones. I cannot make any binding statements on the effect as every paper reacts differently to this procedure.

polychrome print, selenium toner + gold toner
Select Sepia VC
Patrik Budenz

Another example may clarify the differences. Here, you also see that the print has to be a lot lighter prior to toning, to prevent the shadows from turning obscure.

polychrome print, untoned

polychrome print, gold toner for 1:30 min

polychrome print, gold toner for 3 min

Kentmere Kentona
Wolfgang Moersch

Tones that emerged yellow or red from the developer shift towards magenta to blue. This is shown in the example below.

polychrome print, untoned

polychrome print, gold toner

Select Sepia VC matte
Patrik Budenz

Depending on the duration, toning in sulphur results in a more or less intensive red cast.



lith print on Classic Vario
Helga Pisters