Been practicing on enlarging! (some scans here)

Discussion in 'Enlarging' started by Chem.Student, Nov 14, 2012.

  1. Chem.Student

    Chem.Student Member

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    I've been shooting analog for a year or so, and recently an interest in printing myself emerged! It's super fun, and it feels much more rewarding making a print with my own hands, rather than editing in photoshop, running through photomatix and stuff.

    So, I've gotten access to the uni darkroom - which isn't much of a darkroom, to be honest. There is tons of old, waster chemistry that I'm planning on taking to special waste. There are many packages of old, fogged paper that is useless for anything other than demonstrating that it's possible to get a picture by lowering the exposed paper into the baths. This is the paper I've been practicing on - and it's been a slow walk! Hours after hours with being annoyed that my prints are grey, flat and lifeless - and with ugly grey-ish blobs of foggyness randomly placed over the print! In addition, the chemistry I used, was probably useless. Sitting too long in on the shelf, several years. The uni paper used analog up until digital cameras where normal to have, and I suppose you realise that is some years ago :smile:

    Soo, I bought my own paper, a pack of MGIV pearl, along with some ilford chemistry for paper development, namely MG developer, ilfostop and some rapid fix. The effect was drastic!

    I bought 13x18cm paper, which limits the possibilities for dodging and burning a bit. I'm only starting out trying that as well, but the principles are easy enough. One of the hard things is to figure out how to split the exposures, making sure it all adds up to the basic exposure of the work print, hehe.

    Here are three prints, scanned with my girlfriends Canon MP520.

    Common for all of these are:
    MGIV paper
    60 secs in MG 1+9
    30 seconds in ilfostop 1+19
    around 60-90 seconds in rapid fix 1+4
    2-5 minutes wash in still water bath (should probably have used running water)

    1
    Base exp: 10 seconds
    minus 5 seconds on the hangar and some shadows
    minus 5 seconds on the motor and volvo sign.
    These dodgings were done with a tool smaller than the area dodged, so the effective dodging time isn't really 5 seconds.
    [​IMG]
    Gunder sin gamle, blÄ traktor by Anders Myhre Brakestad, on Flickr

    2
    Base exp: 12 seconds:
    5 secs (magenta 30) on everything
    7 secs (magenta 30) on everything BUT the acre.
    7 secs (magenta 45) on the acre itself.
    [​IMG]
    Garden by Anders Myhre Brakestad, on Flickr

    3
    Base exp: 6 seconds
    Upper part, from just under the light: +1,5 seconds to mask some black part of a doorway or something, that looked really bad when this part was lighter. Magenta filter: 40.
    [​IMG]
    4 Ferdig by Anders Myhre Brakestad, on Flickr

    Thanks for reading. Tips and help is greatly appreciated! :smile:
    Anders
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 14, 2012
  2. bluedog

    bluedog Member

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    Looking good Anders. I like the last one. Keep up the good work.
    Greg
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 14, 2012
  3. MkII

    MkII Member

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    I think you have extraocular imbalance (as do many people, including myself). When you use one eye you will tilt the camera without realising. Ansel Adams writes about it in "The Camera" - that's how I recognised it in myself. When framing the photo, take some extra time to compare the horizon with the sides of the viewfinder. Then it will be your choice to have a tilting horizon or not.
     
  4. Worker 11811

    Worker 11811 Member

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    So, THAT'S what they call it? I thought it was called "I'm such a dumbass I can't hold the camera straight."
    It gets so bad, some times, I have to keep a ruler on the bench next to my enlarger to help me line up the images on the easel.

    Okay... Now, it has a name. That still doesn't make my pictures come out straight. :wink:
     
  5. ooze

    ooze Member

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    These are pretty good for a start. It will get better and better as you gain experience.
     
  6. paul_c5x4

    paul_c5x4 Subscriber

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    A tripod is invaluable in the field. Coupled with a spirit level, it is a big help in getting horizons level. A grid in the focusing sceen is another useful aid, the next step up is a full size viewscreen (I love the view on my Wista :tongue:).

    In the darkroom, a decent square along with the ruler are essential tools.
     
  7. Worker 11811

    Worker 11811 Member

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    Yep! :smile: I keep a tripod on the back seat of my car almost all the time in case I need it. There's a steel ruler hanging up on the peg board right behind the enlarger.

    I don't have so much trouble using my 4x5 camera. It does have a grid on the ground glass.
    Most of my trouble comes because, 90% of the time, I'll be walking on the beach hiking down a trail or walking somewhere where lugging a tripod is a less-than-optimal idea.

    If I'm careful, I can keep the tilt down to less than a degree. Unless I really buckle down and, like you said, use the edges of the viewfinder as guides in almost every handheld picture I take, the world is almost always tilted a little to the left.