Making Digital Negatives with an Ink-Jet printer

by Mike Ware

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Making Digital Negatives with an Ink-Jet printer by Mike Ware
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Buy the collection of Mike Ware’s digital downloads on for 6 USD.

Buy the collection.

The ‘collection’ is all the downloads together – that means five files: Making Digital Negatives, the 100 step test negative (.tif file), Siderotype Report 1, Siderotype Quarterly 1, and the short (1.5 minute) Quicktime film Coating Paper with a Glass Rod with Mike Ware.


A 20-page downloadable workflow on how to make negatives. Excellent value.

Customer rating:

9 of 10

Rated 8,5 – based on 2 votes

Over the past four years Mike Ware has been experimenting with digital negatives and has now released Making Digital Negatives, a 20-page downloadable workflow that presents the subject in a step-by-step manner suitable for both beginners and advanced practicioners. Dr. Ware’s method is designed to work with a wide range of printers, requires no additional software beyond Photoshop (or similar) and includes a high resolution 100-step test negative.



Mike Ware, found it necessary to develop his own way of making negatives. He stayed clear of the commonly used curves and applies the levels control instead. Not happy with an ordinary 21 step wedge, Mike also created his own 100-step table to assess his negatives.

As always with Mike’s texts, it is written in a clear and methodical way. The text can be used by photographers new to both digital negatives and Photoshop, as well as advanced users and Photoshop pros wanting a shortcut to making good negatives.

Starting with calibration, the text then moves on to working with the digital file, making a perfect positive, adjusting it to a negative and printing it onto transparency film. The appendices also describes the technical aspects in more detail.

I look forward to testing this new, seemingly simpler approach to digi negs in my next print session.

– Malin Fabbri, Editor,

About Mike Ware

Dr Mike Ware graduated in chemistry at the University of Oxford, where he subsequently obtained his doctorate in molecular spectroscopic research. Following an academic career at the University of Manchester, he is now independently committed to studying the science, history, art and conservation of alternative photographic processes. His research on printing in noble metals was recognised by the award of the Hood Medal of the Royal Photographic Society, and the Richard Farrand Memorial Award of the British Institute of Professional Photographers.

He consults for the National Museum of Photography, Film & Television, Bradford, England, and has supervised postgraduate research at the Victoria & Albert Museum and the Royal College of Art, and at the University of Derby.

His researches on improving historic alternative processes, such as the platinotype, cyanotype, chrysotype and argyrotype, are published in both the scientific and popular literature. His studies of early photography have appeared in the academic periodical, History of Photography. The conservation of the first photographs on paper by Henry Talbot is the subject of his book ‘Mechanisms of Image Deterioration in Early Photographs’ and the process invented by Sir John Herschel is the subject of his book ‘Cyanotype: the History, Science and Art of photographic printing in Prussian Blue’.

By way of a counterbalance to scholarly activity, he has exhibited his personal photographic work in galleries in Europe and the USA, and has appeared on BBC Televison in the Open University series ‘The Chemistry of Creativity’.

Read the Mike Ware interview.

Feedback on Making Digital Negatives:

“An excellent analysis of the digital negative process for alternative processes. It helps to make a really difficult subject comprehensible and usable.”

– Jon Harwood

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