Hi Brian, The first thing that we need to determine before we get into exposure and development considerations is whether F5.6 will give you adequate depth of field so that the nearest and fartherest object in your scene are at acceptable focus. In my experience using a view camera I don't ever remember making an exposure at F 5.6. All the proper exposure and development in the world is for nothing if the image is not sharp.
Originally Posted by bpm32
Now that we have that out of the way, let me begin by saying that a F5.6 to F22 scene comprises five zones of brightness (in Zone System parlance). This would equate to Zone III through Zone VII or Zone II through Zone VI. Since you can represent tonal scale of Zone II through Zone VIII on paper, you can see that this scene could afford to have the contrast expanded and the way that is done is through N+1 or N+2 development.
Now if you exposed this negative at F5.6 then you have recorded Zone V through Zone IX. The meter always indicates a Zone V value at the recommedation. You could also have exposed this at F8 at 1/125, or F11 at 1/60, or even F16 at 1/30 second. (nearest actual shutter speeds to the multiples or dividers of your indicated shutter speed). All of these combinations would have given you the exact same exposure that you have with the important addition of greater depth of field.
Now let's take the F16 at 1/30 second...remember this is a Zone V placement in order to give a Zone III placement the proper exposure would have been F16 at 1/8 second. (Two stops less exposure then the Zone V recommendation of the meter).
Always remember exposure (f stop and shutter speed) is about shadow detail and development is for print highlight values.