Well, it has been a busy spring for me. I have been bringing the entirety of my aerial shop home and that entailed designing a "shed," and having to deal with all of the water issues and lighting and everything. It has been non-stop for over 5 weeks with a VERY capable hired hand. The actual shop was built by a construction contractor but so much of the prep and finish work were left to be done by me and my hand to save money cause we all know how anyone connected with photography stretches a buck. . . we jurry rig! Plus I had an unbelievable amount of business this past month (yeah! not complaining, just really tired.) Anyway last night at about 1:00 am was baptism. First print in the new shop. Well, I have to say it is sooooooo sweet. Jeez I am one lucky girl, and love my job! Anyway, I notice right off one huge improvement that I think I know the answer to, but I am curious as to others comments or ideas. I'll try to list the variables that I noticed were different. So the print last night here versus the prints over the past five years at the old shop were so much better for range of tones, (these are archival films and are b&w). The whites were cleaner yet had more information, and the darks were rich but didn't overpower the subtly paler darks. It even looks more "silvery" for lack of a better word. Variables: 1. The new shop doesn't have effective heat yet and the temperatures of the chemistry was just barely in useable range (I use Agfa and the low end on that is 78) and I adjusted with longer time. 2. The chemistry was new, but it was new at the old shop at least once a week. Otherwise the measurements etc were identical except for one thing and that would be the water itself. At the old shop the water was so bad, I would use distilled water for the developer, but I really didn't for stop bath, rinses, or fixes. Here the water is better so I used it across the board including the developer. 3. I love my new shop, and the freedom it will give me to expand the quality of my life and finances, and even give me time to expand my customer base. Maybe kharma is better?!? 4. The camera is essentially the same but I do have newer electrical and dedicated such that when my neighbors turn on their things my lights don't dim. In the old shop, they did dim sometimes. Other than the above I can't off hand think of what might have been different. Well, as I get engery again and find new and worth mentioning stuff, I will try to tell the story of the move and how things are going and what I totally screwed up on, etc. Anyway, now you know why I have been absent for so long. The move only entailed activity for the past 6 weeks, but the planning and looking at options, and trying to be sure that at this point I didn't have too many oops's to tend, took long and lots. But gosh I know so much about so much now that I didn't know then. Hopin' you all have the greatest of weekends! TGIF!