Complete these sentences and help me understand development

Discussion in 'B&W: Film, Paper, Chemistry' started by milkplus-mesto, Dec 13, 2008.

  1. milkplus-mesto

    milkplus-mesto Member

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    Hi, I've got a few really basic questions regarding development times, film speed and how the negatives appear, so can anyone complete these sentences to help me out a bit please?

    As development time increases, the negatives will appear (lighter/darker?).
    As developer concentration increases, the (more/less?) dev time needed.
    As films are pushed, the higher the rated speed the (more/less?) development needed.
    As printing grade increases, the contrast of the print (increases/decreases?).
    As print exposure increases, the (lighter/darker) the print.

    Any help with these would be appreciated. Thanks.
     
  2. Nick Zentena

    Nick Zentena Member

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    Longer development will basically increase contrast.

    The more dilute the developer the longer the time so the flip side is more concentrated will mean less time.

    Pushed films need longer times.

    Higher grades are higher contrast.

    Longer print exposures will move things toward dark side. Think of the negative. A highly exposed area will be very dense letting very little light. That leads to a light print.
     
  3. milkplus-mesto

    milkplus-mesto Member

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    Thanks Nick, I just needed to confirm exactly what would happen for my art exam on monday. As long as I get everything right in the darkroom, it should be the best two-day exam ever.

    Thanks
     
  4. Herzeleid

    Herzeleid Member

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    As development time increases, the negatives will appear 'darker'.
    As developer concentration increases, the 'less' dev time needed.
    As films are pushed, the higher the rated speed the 'more' development needed.
    As printing grade increases, the contrast of the print 'increases'
    As print exposure increases, the 'darker' the print.

    I had an exam two weeks ago. Good luck :smile:
     
  5. wogster

    wogster Member

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    As development time increases the negatives will appear darker.

    As developer concentration increases the less dev time needed.

    As films are pushed, the higher the rated speed the more development needed.

    As printing grade increases, the contrast of the print increases/.

    As print exposure increases, the darker the print.

    These are general rules, in that your mileage may vary on the first three. Generally there is an optimum, there is a development time, temperature, concentration and agitation that is recommended by the developer maker, to give a quality negative with that film and developer combination. A quality negative is one that can be easily printed, using normal grade paper, with an optimum exposure and full development, grain will be present, but fine and will add to the result. I have found out something interesting, a negative that is easy to print, is also easy to scan for a hybrid process.

    Changing the factors will change the results, sometimes those changes will still result in a quality negative, other times changing the factors will mean a negative that is impossible to print normally on any paper. Sometimes you want a special effect and will change the factors to get it, we have all seen the smoke filled jazz club photos that were shot on Tri-X where the film was pushed to the limit, the grain is huge, and contrast is at the absolute limit, and loved the photos.

    If your just starting, pick a film and developer, use the recommended concentrations,
    times, temperature and agitation, shoot for optimum and consistent results, once you have that down, you can start playing with factors to see what you can do.... When experimenting, only change one factor at a time, otherwise it gets mighty confusing mighty fast.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 13, 2008
  6. SilverGlow

    SilverGlow Member

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    Paul, what great advise you wrote!

    So when it comes to different contrast paper grades, does one pick a particular grade based on how much or little the negative density and/or contrast is?

    What is the deal with RC vs FB papers?

    To the OP: I hope you don't mind me adding a few more basic questions....what a great thread!
     
  7. ic-racer

    ic-racer Member

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    Increasing development time on negatives that are under-exposed can make them even harder to print. (re: 'push processing' question)
     
  8. smieglitz

    smieglitz Subscriber

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    Here's a way to remember this stuff:

    If you don't expose a film, the negatives will be very thin, light, etc., so the more exposure, the darker the negatives become OTBE.
    If you don't develop a film, the negatives will be very thin, light, etc., and have no contrast since they will be blank, so the more development, the darker and higher contrast the negatives become OTBE.
    Just like getting a suntan, more exposure to the light makes negatives and prints darker. (Polaroid and other positives (transparencies/slides) work the opposite way.
     
  9. wogster

    wogster Member

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    Some prints will have low contrast and look muddy, so you reprint with a higher contrast paper, some prints will have to high contrast so you reprint with a softer paper.

    RC means Resin Coated, the base paper is coated with a plastic material, before the emulsion is applied, this leads to faster processing with shorter fixing and washing times for prints. They also curl less after processing. Many B&W papers and virtually all colour papers are resin coated. FB means fibre based, this implies no resin coating, some of the processing chemistry is absorbed into the paper base, this must be removed, hence fixing and washing times are much longer. Single weight papers curl considerably unless mounted, double weight papers curl less, but more then RC ones do.

    Some people say that FB papers are vastly superior to RC papers in every way, mounted, framed, behind glass and hanging on the wall, I doubt anyone can tell the difference. I have a number of RC prints (I know they are RC, because I made them), that have hung on the wall for many years without issues.
     
  10. CBG

    CBG Member

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    All things being equal other than the single variable you mention in the sentance - time, temperature, dilution of the developer, agitation , age of the developer, etc ...

    Presuming we are talking film and a negative image in the first three statements:

    As development time increases, the negatives will appear 'darker' and more contrasty - that is the highlights which will be the darkest parts of the image will get darker and darker, faster than the rest of the negative, thus adding contrast. There will be an increase also in base fog, a general overall minor density, usually inconsequential most of the time.

    As developer concentration increases, the 'less' dev time needed to attain the same density and contrast.


    As films are pushed, the higher the rated speed the 'more' development needed to end up with the highlights about the same density. The deepest shadows lose more and more exposure and detail as you use higher speed ratings until shadow detail is utterly lost in inky black.


    As printing grade increases, the contrast of the print 'increases' - but you will have to change exposure to best see the changes from grade to grade. Each paper grade tends to have a different sensitivity to light. The lower numbers like grade 1 have a softer gentler contrast, and th3e high numbers tend towards a stark, very contrasty rendering that pushes towards "chalk and soot".


    As print exposure increases, the 'darker' the print - all other things being equal.

    Best,

    C
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 13, 2008
  11. MattKing

    MattKing Subscriber

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    As films are pushed, the higher the rated speed the (more/less?) development needed.

    The question is a tad confusing, because strictly speaking when we say that we are going to "push" a film we are using a bit of shorthand. Actually, you don't "push" film, you "push" the film's development.

    If you rate the film at a higher speed, it receives less light when you expose it. When you process the film, in order to have the highlights come out dense enough in the negative, you often need to increase (in other words "push") the development.

    Usually, we increase development by increasing the time, but increasing temperature or decreasing dilution also works.

    You will also end up increasing the contrast too, but unfortunately won't be able to get the same increase of density in the shadows, so most likely some detail will be lost there.

    Hope this helps.

    Matt
     
  12. c6h6o3

    c6h6o3 Member

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    As development time increases, the highlights in the negatives will appear darker. There will be a negligible effect on the shadows. There will be a moderate effect on the midtones.

    As developer concentration increases, the less dev time needed.

    As films are pushed, the higher the rated speed the (more/less?) development needed. Films cannot be successfully pushed. Shadow density is a function of exposure. Increasing development time of underexposed film only increases contrast. Your shadow detail will still be obliterated.

    As printing grade increases, the contrast of the print increases.

    As print exposure increases, the darker the print.
     
  13. Jim Michael

    Jim Michael Member

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    "darker" is not a precise enough term since it can be construed to apply generally to the entire image. Use density instead and in proper context. The oft-used phrase is "exposure controls density and development controls contrast". If you increase concentration of developer it does allow for a decrease in development time but also may result in uneven development, e.g. due to the time it takes to drain developer from the tank. Agitation is another factor affecting development. It's important to understand the effects of different variables rather than simply being able to regurgitate them on demand. Your next exam might require you to provide a strategy to deal with a particular exposure scenario.