Question regarding paper development...

Discussion in 'Film Discussion and Q & A' started by Queen of Spades, Jun 1, 2010.

  1. Queen of Spades

    Queen of Spades TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Jun 1, 2010
    Messages:
    4
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Central Coast, California
    Hello!
    So, I used to be an avid photographer in high school and college, and my husband recently built me a great light-tight dark room. I developed B&W film no problem. I also have some black and white film from a shop that was developed.
    The problem is that when I was doing test strips, the first one came out almost black with some of the negatives (contact sheet with varying times 3-15 seconds on f11), the second one (3 seconds on f11) came out BLACK with hardly any image, and the last one (no exposure, just straight to dektol...) came out stark dark grey!
    So, is the problem my crappy dektol (I'd been having issues with it and may not have gotten the mix/dilution right) or the old paper (given to me from a friend)?
    Help! Let me know what you think!
    Much Sunshine,
    Annie
     
  2. compur

    compur No longer a newbie, moving up!

    Joined:
    Mar 6, 2008
    Messages:
    2,722
    Likes Received:
    400
    Location:
    L.A.
    It could be the old paper. Try some new paper and if you still have the problem then ...

    Most likely you have light leaks in your dark room and/or enlarger and/or you're using
    the wrong safelight for your paper.

    After about 10 minutes in your darkroom (to accustom your eyes to the dark)
    you should be able to see absolutely nothing anywhere. If you see anything,
    you have light leaks.

    Your enlarger should only emit light through the lens and nowhere else and
    you should use the correct type of safelight for your paper (usually amber
    but some papers require red).
     
  3. Queen of Spades

    Queen of Spades TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Jun 1, 2010
    Messages:
    4
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Central Coast, California
    Hello!
    I don't seem to have any light leaks in my dark room or through the enlarger. Do you think it's the paper? The bad mix of developer?
     
  4. Dwig

    Dwig TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Mar 11, 2009
    Messages:
    1,261
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Key West FL
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos NOT OK to edit
    Grey without any intentional exposure means that the paper was fogged. Dark grey would be more fogging that would be expected from simple aging unless the aging can be measured in multiple decades.

    Bad developer, in the form of old, exhausted, or improperly mixed, would not cause fogging. Chemical fogging is possible, but it would require some significant contamination. Generally old or exhausted developer produces weak greyish shadow areas, failing to generate anything truly black.
     
  5. christopher walrath

    christopher walrath No longer a newbie, moving up!

    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2008
    Messages:
    1,265
    Likes Received:
    23
    Location:
    In a darkroom far, far away...
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos NOT OK to edit
    Mix the Dektol 1:2 or 1:3. Expose your test strip (new batch of paper). Expose a portion for 8 seconds while covering the rest. Then slide your cover back and expose for 4 seconds. Slide the cover and expose for 2 seconds. Slide the cover and expose for one second. Do this again, remove the cover and expose the rest for another second. This will give you exposure test zones of 16, 8, 4, 2 and 1 seconds. Process, evaluate and then go from there.
     
  6. Queen of Spades

    Queen of Spades TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Jun 1, 2010
    Messages:
    4
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Central Coast, California
    That is exactly what I wanted to know! Thanks!
    Much Sunshine,
    Annie
     

Share This Page