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  1. #1
    ambaker's Avatar
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    Stupid film holder question...

    I purchased a Press Camera with a healthy supply of film holders, and some ancient film. (Kodak Royal Pan exp March 1966). I have also ordered some fresh film. To my surprise many of the holders have film inside. I'm wondering if some have be previously exposed. Is there some sort of code, photographers did/do use to keep track do such things.

    I just wonder whether to try to develop a few, shoot and then develop, or just rip all do the old film out, and start over.

    I've heard mentions of dark sides in, or out, or bumps in/out. Was there ever a real "standard" common among photographers that would help decide.

    Thanks!
    -alex

    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk HD

  2. #2

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    Each Photographer might do this differently, but I was taught that dark side out is for exposed.
    Dave

    "She's always out making pictures, She's always out making scenes.
    She's always out the window, When it comes to making Dreams.

    It's all mixed up, It's all mixed up, It's all mixed up."

    From It's All Mixed Up by The Cars

  3. #3
    Trail Images's Avatar
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    Not sure there really is a standard per se, but I always load my film with the "white" tab facing out. Then remove the dark-slide for exposure and roll it over and insert it back in the holder with the "black" side facing out.

  4. #4

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    Everybody's different. Personally I use white side out (with the bumps) for unexposed (because they develop clear and ...white) and I use the black side for exposed because... they would develop as dark

  5. #5
    MattKing's Avatar
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    If all the holders came from the same photographer, there is a good chance that testing the contents of one will reveal the "rule" that that photographer used, and therefor tell you something about the status of all the rest.
    Matt

    “Photography is a complex and fluid medium, and its many factors are not applied in simple sequence. Rather, the process may be likened to the art of the juggler in keeping many balls in the air at one time!”

    Ansel Adams, from the introduction to The Negative - The New Ansel Adams Photography Series / Book 2

  6. #6

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    The standard is unexposed=silver/white/ braille side out. Exposed=black side out. The reason for this is that you could die and your stuff could end up in an estate sale, and the buyer wouldn't know what of your film needed developing, and what of it he could shoot on.

  7. #7
    Ken Nadvornick's Avatar
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    Like everyone else, I use 'white=unexposed' and 'black=exposed'. Don't think I've ever known anyone to do it the opposite. (But of course that doesn't mean your fellow didn't...)

    I like Matt's approach best.

    Ken
    "They are the proof that something was there and no longer is. Like a stain. And the stillness of them is boggling. You can turn away but when you come back they’ll still be there looking at you."

    — Diane Arbus, March 15, 1971, in response to a request for a brief statement about photographs

  8. #8
    paul_c5x4's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ken Nadvornick View Post
    'white=unexposed' and 'black=exposed'.
    Same here. I also put a sticky label on the holder with shutter/aperture settings just in case (I sometimes forget to flip the slide).

    When rummaging for a film holder, I know "white" means "loaded, unexposed", "black+label" is "loaded and exposed", and "black, no label" is most likely "empty". If it is "white+label", it means I screwed up and there could be film in there and it might be exposed.

  9. #9
    Dr Croubie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tom1956 View Post
    The standard is unexposed=silver/white/ braille side out. Exposed=black side out. The reason for this is that you could die and your stuff could end up in an estate sale, and the buyer wouldn't know what of your film needed developing, and what of it he could shoot on.
    For the record, I do it the opposite. Black means it has only seen darkness. White means it has seen the light.
    But I never learnt from anyone or googled for a 'standard', I made that up myself when I started 4x5s.
    I also have stickers on the darkslide itself, green for unexposed and red for exposed, with a white sticker as well saying what's loaded in it.
    And before anyone says it yes, I know that it'll probably eventually ruin the light-tight sealing stuff.

    Not saying anyone else should do it my way, just letting you all know in case you get my holders in an estate sale.
    An awful lot of electrons were terribly inconvenienced in the making of this post.

    f/64 and be there.

  10. #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dr Croubie View Post
    For the record, I do it the opposite. Black means it has only seen darkness. White means it has seen the light.
    But I never learnt from anyone or googled for a 'standard', I made that up myself when I started 4x5s. ...
    Me too Dr. C., for exactly the same reasons

    If I were working with others (in a studio or business) or had assistants, I would likely change my practice to conform to "standard." But since I work alone, it makes no difference.

    Best,

    Doremus

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