Let's Develop Film and hope it doesn't go terribly wrong
06 Feb 2019
Lately photography (especially analog stuff) has taken a bit of a back seat.
This week I decided to take the next step in the process and have a crack at developing my own film.
What follows is possibly the worst first attempt in the history of photography.
I decided the best idea was to develop a roll that I had accidentally exposed by opening the back of the camera without knowing how much film had been exposed. I considered it basically ruined. So why not experiment with it.
So here I am developing a roll of Kodak Colorplus in my kitchen using Caffenol (a homebrewed b&w development agent made from ingredients you can get at the supermarket).
The recipe I used is straight out of the Caffenol Bible.
- 54g/l Washing Soda (it says water free, but I couldn’t get my hands on any, instead they recommend 2.7x this amount for washing soda crystals)
- 16g/l Vitamin C (I used chewable orange flavoured tablets - not recommended)
- 1g/l Potassium Bromide (I used iodised salt because I saw someone else use it in a youtube video)
- 40g/l Instant Coffee Powder
- The ingredients above are for 1 litre. So I used half the amount to make a batch of 500ml for my development tank.
- They also recommend to make the solution in two parts, one for the soda and another for the coffee. This is so that you can see when both are completely dissolved (the darkness of the coffee powder makes it really hard to see the soda).
- The bible recommends a 15 minute develop time, 10 inversions in the first minute, 3 every minute after.
- Then stop and fix normally. I just rinsed with water for my stop bath (I saw others do this). And I used Ilford Rapid Fixer at a ration of 1+4 to fix the film.
- Then lots of rinsing and hanging up in my shower to dry.
Well, it turns out that the film only had 3 frames on it. And there was very little transparency (they were very opaque), this made it very difficult to scan. Not that I have a scanner - I have an mirrorless camera with a 30 year old macro lens that is quite dirty.
Here are two of the three pictures…
Yeah. We hella cute.
Overall I am really happy with the results, especially considering how many mistakes I made. Very keen to have another try with some black & white film that has been exposed properly :D
Getting into Portraits with the Pentax 6x7
23 Oct 2018
We went to Stanley Bay in the evening to catch the sun setting behind the harbour bridge and as I was setting up this cat appeared.
It would not stop hissing at me. It was seriously pissed off for some reason. And then when I got closer to take a photo it hissed loudly and started coming towards me.
I wussed out and ran away, but managed to get this shot.
I am enjoying the level of detail that I can get out of these medium format shots. I feel like when taking portraits especially there is a whole other feeling that you get with medium format.
Also, when I take images of landscapes sometimes I feel like that extra detail doesn’t add much.
So I find that I need to be more careful when shooting landscapes with this camera (samples below).
Early Morning Photography
01 Oct 2018
I’m a morning a person. Every day while I have been in Christchurch for the last two weeks I have been up at dawn, exploring the city in the hours that I can before I have to go to work.
This old school 1950’s Studbaker sat on the side of the road.
This is my routine whenever I go to a new city. Spend an hour or two exploring. Then most importantly to the coffee shop.
Panoramas with the Pentax 6x7
28 Jul 2018
Another new camera?
This beast of a camera came with a 45mm f/4 lens and a panorama kit. Now I can do super wide shots like the above.
The pano kit lets a roll of 35mm film cross the entirety of the 120 frame. I can get about 21 shots off the roll.
Get ready to scroll…
The Yashica 35 M
22 Jun 2018
Look at this beauty!
The Yashica 35 M is now the oldest camera I own, from 1973 it’s more than twice as old as I am.
It shows its age in how you use it. It has a lightmeter on the front that I thought was a flash hahaha. It uses Selenium, a chemical, to measure the light rather than the more modern silicon semiconductors.
The lightmeter displays a number on top of the camera telling me what the EVS (exposure value scale)is, so that I can choose an appropriate aperture and shutter speed myself.
The other noticeable difference with this camera is that it’s a rangefinder. Sadly the viewfinder is not very visible and makes focussing this camera difficult.
And look! It’s me. Also, the self timer on this thing is mechanical. It’s pretty cool to hear the ticking and winding as it counts down.