film? whats that :D!

Discussion in 'The Darkroom' started by TheCatch22, Dec 27, 2006.

  1. TheCatch22

    TheCatch22 TPF Noob!

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    ok guys i feel rather dumb writing this because, i am really into photography and have alot of time, money and in the past year experience working with professionals doing alot of wedding editing and doing shoots, i still myself to be an amature,My problem is i still cannot develop film :(, In my opinion a photographer is a professional that understands all aspects of his work. At the moment this is not true for me because i have been digital for some years now. Im also not saying your not a photographer if you only use digital, this is more of a persional goal for me, so shoot me some pointers, im going to be learning with a friend the next few weeks, i just dont want to look like a Noob so help a brotha out TPF!:mrgreen:
     
  2. ferny

    ferny TPF Noob!

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    Developing your own B&W is a piece of ****. Took me a while to get a good idea of what was needed in my own head. There was a lot of information and brand names which meant nothing to me at the time.

    Where are you? Country I mean. It'd help with brand names and prices etc.

    For ISO 400 I've used the following. Kodak D-76 was the developer I used. It's dirt cheap and comes in granules you add to water to dissolve. The stuff lasts 6 months or X amount of films. Just store it in a collapsible bottled so you can remove as much air from the bottle as possible. My stop bath was Kodak MAX-STOP (with indicator), my fixer a generic brand as was my wetting agent. Total cost including three collapsible bottles was just over £20. You'll also need a developing tank and a light tight room. Plus a measuring jug and a thermometer. I've only ever used plastic tanks and reels. So I can't give solid advice on how to load a metal one. Plastic ones are said to be easier to load and they will also help with temperature control.



    • Read the back of all your chemicals to see what you need to do.

    • Mix your chemicals as instructed by the manufacturer.

    • Pour them into their bottles you're going to store them in and put their tops on.

    • Stand all the bottles in water which is just below 20°C. You'll want your chemicals at 20°C (double check on your chemical packets to make sure that's what they want) when you use them but they will be hotter than this as the moment. It is far easier to bring their temperature down and bring it up than put them in water at 20°C and wait. Do that and you'll find everything will be too warm. Check the temperature of the water they are in after 30mins. If it's 20°C then the chemicals should be. If it's below then wait and check when you feel that you should. If it's too high bring it down to just below 20°C and start this step over again.

    • It's best to waste a roll of film and do this step in the light to practice first. Buy a cheap out-of-date packet of film or something so you're not wasting lots of money. It may even be wise to do that with your first developed roll of film just in case it goes wrong. Don't shoot anything vitally important with your first roll just in case it fudges up. When you do it for real you need to be in complete darkness. Make sure that your reels are dry as you will struggle. This is for 35mm. Roll film follows the same idea except you have to remove the backing paper, extend the reel and fiddle more to get it on.

      If your roll of film sticks out of it's cassette slightly pull it out a little more and cut off the end so it is now square. This helps with loading. Tempt it onto the end of the reel and when you feel it has a grip start rotating the reel. When it is all of the way on cut off the end and let the empty cassette drop to the floor. Place the reel into the tank, put on its lid, have a good feel to make sure it's on properly.

      If your roll of film has wound all the way back into the cassette pop the end off with a can opener. Be careful as you'll not be able to see what you are doing. Then follow the above.

    • Put the light on stand the tank with the chemicals if you can to bring them all up to the same temperature and then when you're ready start developing.

    The steps I've used with the chemicals I stated above and they were taken from the packets.
    Times don't have to be 100% exact, and they won't be for your first few goes. Also factor in how long it takes to pour out each chemical. So as an example, if it takes ten seconds to pour out the chemical then start pouring out the developer at 470 second. The film will still be developing until you pour in that fixer. If you pour out at 480 then it will be developing for 490 seconds. Make sense?

    Now colour, that's a little trickier. It uses the same principles but different chemicals and your temperatures have to be exact or you can get colour casts, thin negatives, etc.

    If you want to know how to do colour I'll grab my book and copy from that.


    Some B&W links for you.
    http://www.ehow.com/how_1353_develop-black-white.html
    http://www.photogs.com/bwworld/bwfilmdev.html
     
  3. Torus34

    Torus34 No longer a newbie, moving up!

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  4. ksmattfish

    ksmattfish Now 100% DC - not as cool as I once was, but still

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    The basics are easy, if you can read a measuring cup and thermometer you can develop film successfully. Do a search for "the zone system" though, and you'll see that mastering it can be a much longer project.

    By the way, very few professional photographers that I have ever met continued to do their own lab work once they were out of college. Not knowing (or remembering) how to develop film or print in the darkroom is the norm. Sad, but true.
     
  5. terri

    terri Administrator Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Matt is right, but I would also hold that it is an overall empowering feeling to know you can control the process from start to finish. I certainly appreciate that desire. Another barrier removed, kind of thing. :)
     
  6. TheCatch22

    TheCatch22 TPF Noob!

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    thanks for the help guys, im in FL btw, yea i like digital editing alot though i shoot in RAW and use CS2, aperture and photomatix at times though im thinking about switchin to just aperture and photoshop all togther
     

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