Exactly what he said!
Originally Posted by dphphoto
Note to self: Turn your negatives into positives.
Thanks everyone for your kind words and encouragement. Just looking at the size of the film aperture on a DDS makes me feel excited...having been used to working mainly in 35mm, the sheer size of the the neg is going to be awesome :-)
I'm getting used to my 4x5 enlarger too. Recalibrating my zonemaster has been frustrating, but I'm getting the hang of it (again), so I'll be ready to make some nice prints once I make some nice negs.
My plan is to just keep the standards parallel to start with and get used to making BIG negatives. Then, I'll start to add some camera movements, one at a time.
I won't bother doing any film testing until I have got the hang of the camera: I'll stick to HP5 plus, rated at EI200 and developed in Perceptol to begin with. This combination has always given me nice negatives in both MF and 35mm, so it will probably do to start with.
Having to use my brain again to work out exposure corrections for filters and lens extension will be interesting to start with. I think the worksheets in Ansel Adams' book 'the negative' will be handy here, so I'll make copies to keep records.
Hopefully, my entry into LF photography won't be too rocky if I take my time and try not to run before I walk!
Mark, you're using the right approach with film and developer. Stick with what you have that is working so well for you already and build on that information (nice web site, by the way). The Adams worksheets are a good place to start for exposure and development. I think you will find a new sense of freedom when taking shots which would otherwise be a compromise between shadow and highlight values. Being able to stretch or shrink contrast for every shot is a challenge at first, but it is a lot of fun as well. New doors will open. tim
So, I now have film, darkslides, focusing cloth, enlarging lens, paterson orbital processor for developing film. I've liberated my Lowe-pro nature trekker, gotten a new hex plate for my manfrotto tripod head, read the relevant chapters in 'the camera' and Roger Hicks' & Frances Schultz's excellent book on MF and LF photography several times.
But I have no camera to practice with yet with little prospect of it arriving this weekend. Apparently, the standard lens hasn't arrived yet and the delays are being exacerbated by the half-term holidays :-(
Back to the books I suppose and calibrating the enlarger meter for some more paper types. Ho Hum. I feel like the kid in the back of the car saying "are we there yet?" ;-)
Mark I have the book by Roger Hicks' & Frances Schultz's too. For the most part it's ok but I think it takes a lax approach to photography. For instance Bracketing, some times it's good but it should not be a method of exposure for large format work. Make a duplicate if you need to in case of damage but testing for E.I. and development and learning the meter use is more important than a shotgun approach. Don't get me wrong though, experimenting is great if done purposefully. Changing formats from roll to sheet gives that new feeling all over again.
Sponsored Ad. (Subscribers to APUG have the option to remove this ad.)
I think lax is a little harsh. IMHO it's a pragmatic approach that doesn't get too hung up on testing. I enjoyed the book because it explains large format photography in an easy manner. When I started to find out about LF, I felt intimidated by the equipment and the apparent mystique that surrounds it. Roger and Frances' book helped to cut through the confusion and to be honest, had I not read it I possibly wouldn't have ordered an LF outfit.
As far as exposure and development is concerned, I will probably do some testing, but I already know HP5 plus and perceptol work well in MF, so will probably give good results in LF. Any testing will (hopefully) just be fine tuning. I'm pretty confident using a spot meter and applying zone system principles, so I'm confident that the results will be OK (or better).
I'm now fed up with all the theory and want to put it into practice. Patience was never a strong point when waiting for new gear!