Hi all, Im new to TPF and hopefully im not making a dreadful fau par by saying i dont develop my own film. In my defence im only really starting out. Ive had a reasonable (but old) SLR for about 5 years but somethings just suddenly kicked me up the arse and got me going out and investigating different techniques, equipment, films etc. The only problem i have about getting advice from web pages is that ill be scrolling down going - "hey.... wow..... yeah, that looks good............." Scribbling down bits and pieces and then it will go into how to complete the whole technique by holding back on certain parts of development, diluting thia and that etc. How important is it to be able to develop your own? If you go to a reputable, independant photographry store with someone who knows what theyre doing, is it just as good a quality? Do larger stores (dont know in the US, but Boots in England for example) chuck things in a big auto developer machine? Basically: -Can you trust some spotty little gimp at some mega-store? -Can you trust the guy whos 50 in the independant (although he may wear paisley slippers)? -Is it a good idea, at this relatively early stage, to start investigating in potions and converting a room? P.S. is this emoticon vomiting mercury? He/she looks happy whatever so im not worried.