metronome and red filter.
I made some prints at a friend's places today using a metronome as exposure timer.
It was actually much fun and works very intuitively.
Wondering if any of you have other unusual method to time your exposures in the dark?
I certainly wouldn't consider a metronome to be an odd thing in a darkroom. I have a nice digital timer, but still use the metronome once in a while. Before I had a foot pedal it was great because it is hands-free.
I guess the most unusual timing method is one hippopotamus, two hippopotamus... simply because it involves an African animal. Its also the most simple and requires the least equipment, and surprisingly accurate, as long as exposures arn't too short and arn't too long.
Where did the red filter come into play?
Some timers allow you to go from focus mode - red filter in position and dodging/burning tools aligned - to exposure mode - red filter out of the way and dodging/burning tools still in position - with the tap (or taps) of the footswitch. There are two timers that allow this, I'll leave it to the reader to guess which two they are...
A metronome will allow you to do the same thing - if you have 'rhythm' - and don't mind that the metronome ticks in old-style paternalistic linear-thinking tocks.
I don't print with a metronome, but occasionally the darkroomgnome, that little devil that does stuff like moving the developing tank lid when I am loading film, accompanies me in the darkroom.
I used metronome (wife's, actually from her piano lessons) for years. It was annoying to wind it up after every 45 minutes or so. And one really can't listen to the music with a metronome background.
Sponsored Ad. (Subscribers to APUG have the option to remove this ad.)
I've never used anything other than a metronome. Dont know where I'd be without it.
Only two downsides I can think of:
1. As someone else mentioned, it does make listening to music while printing a bit of a chore.
2. Its annoying when my wife or daughter (who use it for music practice) have moved the "weight" that controls the timing off 1bps and I dont realise till after a number of prints ...
I used to use a metronome a bit... and in a bit of crossover from the wolrd of a musician, it is interesting to time prints in terms of measures. It's quite easy to keep track of a large number of beats when you think of them in 4/4 time. I found my metronome too loud and percussive, though. In my little darkroom its quiet tick tick became a deafening CLACK CLACK. I can vividly recall the physical sensation of those beats hammering against my brain. :o After awhile it was either Gralab or earplugs for me.
Tom, on Point Pelee, Canada
Ansel Adams had the Zone System... I'm working on the points
system. First I points it here, and then I points it there...
One of the earlier electronic timers (Beseler?) had a metronome built in. I have always used one for burning and dodging - often I need 2 or 3 times the base exposure, or I want to dodge an area for part of the timed exposure. I don't know how to dodge places any other way unless you want to make a whole bunch of timed exposures. Just start your timer for, say, a 20 second exposure, and with your metronome you can dodge 5 seconds here, 3 seconds there etc. It is much the easiest way to print.
The RH Designs StopClock Pro has a built in metronome.
It has a plesent "tock" every second - which I find great for dodging and burning
There is a menu option for switching the "tock" off if you want to
A great peice of kit
I have a Gralab digital timer which has the metronome feature. It works well for dodging and burning as you count the beeps. The tick tok of a real metronome would drive me crazy if I'm not already.