Exposing for shadows developing time.
I've read quite a bit about the benefits of ''exposing for the shadows, developing for the highlights.'' Last year, I was shooting tri-x 400 at 200 and developing normally and ending up with negatives that were REALLY dense. Here's what I've been working with now: Tri-x 400. Fm2n. I've been cutting the film speed in half and shooting at iso 200, and then cutting the development speed in half by 20%. Our darkroom water is pretty consistently 68 degrees, so according to kodak, I should be developing d76 at 9+3/4 minutes. So cutting that by 20% leaves me at 7:45s or so. My negatives are coming out pretty thin, which makes me think I'm under developing. Can anyone give me some advice?
Arista Premium 400 at 200
I used Arista Premium 400 at 200 EI once:
Film: Arista Premium 400 (TriX equivalent Freestyle Film); fresh roll cut from 100 ft film.
Camera: Nikon FE
Developer: D76 1:1, 150ml D76, 150 ml water.
Agitation: 30 sec inversion then 5 inversions per half a minute.
Temperature: 20 C.
Developing time: 9.5 minutes.
Result: It was a little dense but shadow detail was well preserved in a sunny day.
If I develop it today I would go to 9 or 8.5 minutes to start my experimentation.
Exposure information: The Nikon FE I used (average metering) under exposes about 1/3 stops compared matrix metering of early film Nikons and Nikon DSLRs in most cases. All my three FEs measure the same. In an average sunny day Nikon FE shows me f/11 and 1/125 sec (50mm lens) when I measure mixed foliage and asphalt covered street with some shadows.
I hope this helps.