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  1. #11
    mr rusty's Avatar
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    I think what is needed here is to Keep It Simple.

    I am new to darkroom work, but what I have discovered is that it is very *easy* to get passable results without worrying too much.

    Read simple guide e.g. Ilford's.
    Mix chemicals to standard dilutions.
    get the temperature about right.
    Follow the instructions using each chemical in the correct order.

    Unless you do something very silly, you will get an image.

    Once you have emphasized how easy it is to process your own film, you can then go on to say how interesting and challenging it is to improve your skill and understanding of the processes. It would be very easy to get bogged down in technical detail that will just put people off.

  2. #12
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    Mike, I will just discuss 'one shot', as I don't have that much time, so have to do all in about 2hrs. One of my goals too, is to show them that developing is not that difficult. I mean, getting a result can be done with a TMAX 400 and 70 seconds in Eukobrom 1:4 if you know what I mean.

    And of course, getting a 'good' result is extremely difficult and so relative. Probably hours and hours to talk about, but I just want them to get started and also encourage them to go out there and read books, visit apug.org for answers etc. But if I overwhelm them with lots of theoretical stuff, they might think it is too difficult to do themselves.

    And yes, temp is discussed, but I don't thinks I understand the last part you wrote: "depending on where the temperature basis is started at. ". You mean, if you develop on 20c that after a certain amount of developing time the temp will drop?

  3. #13
    /dev/null's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mr rusty View Post

    Once you have emphasized how easy it is to process your own film, you can then go on to say how interesting and challenging it is to improve your skill and understanding of the processes. It would be very easy to get bogged down in technical detail that will just put people off.
    Exactly! Keep it simple. First stick with the 'normal' development procedures like shooting boxspeed, following the instruction manuals and understanding them too. Some of them already have troubles when they read something like 1:19 to mix a stopbath.

  4. #14

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    Quote Originally Posted by /dev/null View Post
    And yes, temp is discussed, but I don't thinks I understand the last part you wrote: "depending on where the temperature basis is started at. ". You mean, if you develop on 20c that after a certain amount of developing time the temp will drop?
    Different developing agents can respond differently to changes in temperature. Some are more linear etc. I think this is way beyond what you're looking for at this point. Keep it simple. Continuing with keeping it simple, something like HC-110 or any other general purpose developer would be good to use, rather than more exotic, specialized, or home made chemistry.

  5. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Michael R 1974 View Post
    Different developing agents can respond differently to changes in temperature. Some are more linear etc. I think this is way beyond what you're looking for at this point. Keep it simple. Continuing with keeping it simple, something like HC-110 or any other general purpose developer would be good to use, rather than more exotic, specialized, or home made chemistry.
    Caffenol

    I also find HC-110 very cheap in use. I mean, if they start developing themselves, they should also see the financial benefits. Cause some already shoot analog, but pay U$10,- to have a roll developed. That was one of the reasons I started to do it myself, and after some rolls got messed up

  6. #16

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    True, HC-110 is very economical. The concentrate also lasts a long time, and the developer itself is very flexible.

  7. #17
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    echo 'The classic MQ developers like D-76 and ID-11 are also cheap, easy to prepare and use, and give good results with almost all emulsions.\
    However HC-110 is an equally valid choice IMO.' >/dev/null
    Last edited by andrew.roos; 04-16-2012 at 10:39 AM. Click to view previous post history.

  8. #18

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    You could look up massive development chart.

    Jeff

  9. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by /dev/null View Post
    My teacher at the academy asked me to do a class on 'b/w development' (it's all digital), as I am one of the few ones that work analog mostly. Just very basic class, but the idea is to motivate other students to either start with analog photography and the ones that already work analog; motivate them to start developing the film themselves.

    I am wondering if I have the 'main' variables straight here in b/w film development that will influence the result, I know, very subjective and much more to tell, but I want to keep it very simple, so here they are:

    - Developer/dilution.
    - Development time.
    - Agitation.
    - Temperature.

    Any thoughts anyone?
    It's probably a mistake to ask such a question on a site like this, as you can be quickly led down the road of complete confusion. As some others have said you need to keep it simple. I think what you have put in your original post is fine, but you may emphasise that development in general is all about time/temperature.

    “The contemplation of things as they are, without error or confusion, without substitution or imposture, is in itself a nobler thing than a whole harvest of invention”

    Francis Bacon

  10. #20
    Thomas Bertilsson's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cliveh View Post
    It's probably a mistake to ask such a question on a site like this, as you can be quickly led down the road of complete confusion. As some others have said you need to keep it simple. I think what you have put in your original post is fine, but you may emphasise that development in general is all about time/temperature.
    I think this is important, to keep it simple.

    As the OP says, if it sounds too difficult the majority will probably not find it worth their time, or intimidating, or both. It's a real art to explain something difficult in easy to understand words. Thankfully, film developing in its own right, isn't rocket science. It's actually very simple.
    It's the combination of targeting a certain quality in the negative (to print or scan well according to whatever printing process is used), in combination with exposure, that is difficult. But film developing, on its own, is actually very simple, which works beneficially in this case.

    The list mentioned in the original post is fine in order to explain the basic steps. By keeping things simple you also leave a 'buffer' of your own knowledge in order to answer the inevitable complicated question, perhaps from someone that has taken a darkroom class before, or something along those lines.

    As an aside: visual tools help immensely, and I would recommend showing pictures of over-developed, under-developed, and normal negatives. In order for the audience to understand and relate to those results, it also makes sense to show resulting prints of such negatives, so that the audience can get a real feel for what happens when you start to push the boundaries of what's possible with film.
    "Often moments come looking for us". - Robert Frank

    "Make good art!" - Neil Gaiman

    "...the heart and mind are the true lens of the camera". - Yousuf Karsh

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