Thaks to all for the great info. I knew whatever I did would involve lots of practice, and practicing making photographs is a joy... I think I will bite the bullet and buy a meter, then using the info you have shared with me, determine the exposure, take the shot, then use the meter and take the shot, then compare the results when I see the print. I will also try XTOL, DDX, and D76 and see how that works out. I will let you know how things turn out and post a few pic's. Thanks again... 9fingers
I also would like to thank the folks that provided charts or links to them. These will be invaluable to me as I learn to "see the light". Now to read up on the different properties of developers. Thanks again everyone. 9fingers
Originally posted by Charles Webb "Your comment is very very wrong! How did we get the images that required finer control and detail before the invention of the light meter? I guarantee I knew no photographers who could afford to waste anything. A news paper editor would send us out with one film holder and a Speed and two #22 bulbs.
If you did not come back with two different printable detailed prints, your rear
was on the carpet before you left work. Getting the finer control and detail became rather easy, once you learned the necessary skills and actually knew what you were doing. The exposure meter for most camera persons is a necessary crutch, but it doesn't have to be!
But I ask. How much waste, unneed trial and error, might have been avoided if one had used, as Ansel Adams strongly suggested, a light meter?
"Wubba, wubba, wubba. Bing, bang, bong. Yuck, yuck, yuck and a fiddle-dee-dee." - The Yeti
It's funny to see your comments, Christopher... I just became the proud owner of a stack of photography magazines from the mid-1930s where they talk about a new-fangled device called a "light meter". Before there were light meters, there were charts and exposure calculators.
Your comments make me think about how people today cannot fathom that we put people in space using... a sliderule! Everything new tends to negate the old and render it "useless" in the eyes of the present... whether that is true or not.
Well, I think they used more than slide rules. Remember all those consoles with flashing lights in Mission Control?
Originally Posted by BWGirl
Anyway, I always thought that one needs ten fingers so they can count all the zones when determining exposures?
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Much of the design work was done with slide rules. Computer time in the mid 60s was way too precious to be allocated to every calculation in the design process. And for most purposes slide rules were faster and more convenient.
Originally Posted by Kirk Keyes
How did Ansel recommend the use of a light meter before they were invented?
Originally Posted by flash19901
Of course if Ansel said it it must be correct. I guarantee he was not using one during his earliest works.
Sorry to fan the flame, some folks will never see or understand!
BTW it was well into the 1940's before most photographers were able to aquire a light meter that actually worked. The majority of professionals just laughed at them as a passing fad, kind of like "Digital" camera use.
Just thought of something else funny to me, I have signed my prints CW and date for the past fifty plus years, what must I do now? he he!
First mass-market meter, Watkins Bee, 1890s
First extinction meters, probably 19-teens (sorry, from memory, too lazy to check).
First photoelectric meters 1920s...
Hmmmmmmmm. More for what it is worth :
All of my information points to the electronic exposure meter for photography being invented/patented on February 21, 1932 by W. Goodwin. That is the earliest patent date recorded I could find.
Regardless of when it was invented few photographers had or used them until the mid forties. I know of no individual photographer in Denver, Colorado Springs or Pueblo that had or knew how to use one. By the early fifties they began to show up, for use with even snap shot boxes. The first meter I ever saw was a Norwood incident meter that had been designed for a movie cameraman by Norwood. No Studio photographer had or needed one, they knew how to see the light from their Skylights or Mazda's or what ever they were using. I purchased a General Electric Professional model PR2 exposure meter at that time, still have it. Besides Norwood and GE, Seconic, I believe Weston and a few others were making their appearance. Now at that time I was a member of PPofA and attended their educational programs when or where ever offered in the US, and none were scheduled as far as I know until the mid fifties to demonstrate the use of an exposure meter.
I know what we did and how we did it, I rode the wave from 4x5 to 21/4 then the shift to 35 mm. I never gave up on the 4x5 or 8x10 for my best quality work. Still lean that a way!
Some of you seem think we were all stupid 50/60 years ago, but I guarantee
we weren't all !! Any body seen a Watkins Bee on ebay recently? I really would like to have one.
There are three on right now.