Questions tagged [darkroom]

A darkroom is a workshop used by photographers working with photographic film to make prints and carry out other associated tasks. It is a room that can be made completely dark to allow the processing of the light sensitive photographic materials, including film and photographic paper.

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Why is a dark-room safelight safe?

I'm no expert in darkroom photography, but it seems a little odd that there is a type of light that doesn't affect film or developing paper etc. The only way that I could think to explain it is: The ...
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3answers
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How was contrast increased back in the film days?

How was the contrast increased with film? One technique is given in this answer and involves Selenium. Are there other methods that were/are used to increase contrast in a photo taken on film?
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Two films in a tank, only one comes out with a development error – why?

I recently developed two 35mm films together in a tank. One, and only one of them, came out with artefacts on most (but not all) of the exposures – spots of uneven development that seem to originate ...
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Can I use a cheap night lamp as a safelight?

Has anyone experienced with dollar store night lamp, preferably red one with black and white photo paper? I don't have a safelight and I work in complete darkness. I am wondering experiences others ...
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4answers
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Is stop bath necessary for black and white prints?

I got my enlarger and I'm ready to start making prints. For chemicals, I have Kodak Dektol Developer and Fixer; however, I'm missing Stop Bath. I've heard conflicting reports about how necessary Stop ...
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4answers
707 views

How did film photographers deal with issues around dynamic range?

HDR and multiple exposure blending seems very popular these days. I wonder, what did film photographers do to solve dynamic range issues? For example, I know GND filters were common (and still are), ...
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2answers
3k views

Can leaving a print in fixer too long cause damage/staining?

This is a question for you oldskool B&W photographers, I'm hoping there's some of you out there ;) I am just getting round to sorting out my darkroom and thought I'd give it a test run now the ...
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4k views

How do I give a darkroom course without negatives from the attendees?

I will give a short, one-time darkroom course for a small number of people who largely have little to no film photography experience and thus don't own any negatives that can be printed during the ...
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9k views

How do I manually wind up film without exposing it?

I've adapted my Diana f+ a little bit and I use 35mm film in it instead of 120 film. However when I've finished taking pictures on the film and I need to wind it back up, I have to take the film out ...
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4answers
352 views

Is it possible to do darkroom contact prints from a high-ppi phone or tablet?

Basically just the way it sounds - you put a tablet or a phone displaying (the negative of) your photo on top of a photo paper for a certain duration and then develop the print as if exposed by an ...
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3answers
368 views

Can red LEDs be used as darkroom safe lights?

In the past when I have used a darkroom the safe lights have been a dim incandescent bulb, with an 'orangish' colored filter. Given red light is less energetic than orange, and LEDs are reasonably ...
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2answers
12k views

How to make color darkroom prints?

I'm diving into the intimidating world of color darkroom prints (RA-4). I've heard some things (no safelight, needs to be the correct temperature, and so on). However, I haven't really found a ...
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1answer
985 views

Could I do glass plate photography myself domestically?

Hi I recently came across the works of an old photographer named Jean Gilletta. He worked in Nice, France around the turn of the 20th century. A lot of his works are still in pristine condition ...
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1answer
1k views

What are the dark room techniques used to manipulate the *local* contrast of a print?

What dark room techniques are used to achieve effects similar to those of unsharp mask or "clarity" in digital post-processing?
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1answer
101 views

Considerations for a Digital to Film workflow?

I've always loved the deep blacks of a wet mono print, it's not something I see often (if ever) from an inkjet and so I'd like to try to do a wet print from a digital negative. I don't really want to ...
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2answers
147 views

My developer went dark quickly — what went wrong?

My developer went dark in a few days, without using it... I recently change my storing pots. Is it the air or the darkness where I failed?
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1answer
121 views

Inaccurate Time-O-Lite - How to adjust?

I bought a lightly used Time-O-Lite, but it always runs about 5 seconds longer than the number reads. At 0 seconds, it runs about 5 seconds. At 10 it runs for 15, etc. The screw inside the red needle ...
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2answers
435 views

Light proofing a doorway

In a previous apartment, I converted the bathroom to a darkroom. Light-proofing the door and window proved to be a huge challenge. Fast forward to today, and now my wife and I own a house and I'm ...
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1answer
1k views

Can I re-rinse developed negatives?

While printing this weekend I noticed my negative had a very visible dry mark. Can I rewash the negative, possibly adding Photo Flo and drying it again ? The negative isn't very old (1-2 years max), ...
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2answers
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How do I develop black and white film myself? [duplicate]

I have recently got a film SLR and I have shot a lot of pictures (say like 6 rolls in a weeks time). To develop these pictures in my area takes up to a week or two.... so what struck my head was to ...
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2answers
58 views

How long do XTOL and D-76 last unmixed?

When I bought my darkroom sets, I additionally acquired two powder developers, being XTOL and D-76. I have only ever used Rodinal (Adonal) to develop my negatives, so I know little of how well such ...
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3answers
1k views

Is there a cheap alternative to Hypo fixer?

Help! I am a photo teacher. It is near the end of the year and we just ran out of Hypo with no budget for buying more. Some black and white projects are still due. Is there a cheap alternative that we ...
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1answer
2k views

What are the differences between D-76 and Xtol?

I'm starting to run out of developer for B&W film and was looking online for some more. I've been using D-76 and I see nothing wrong with it; however, I saw that I could also buy Xtol. What are ...
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4answers
2k views

Is there a formula for calculating exposure when enlarging prints?

I'm curious if there is a formula to determine my exposure in the dark room. Suppose my print comes out perfectly with the following: 8 seconds f/11 height of 8 +3 contrast filter Is there a ...
4
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1answer
549 views

Weird artifacts when using Tmax 100 for black-and-white reversal processing

I'm new to film development and previously managed to develop two rolls of Kodak Tri-x 400 (let's call roll A and B) using reversal processing: D-11, dichromate bleach, D-72. Today I tried to develop ...
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1answer
194 views

In a darkroom, is fresh air or internal circulation more important?

When installing ventilation in a darkroom, is it more important that air circulates well (in a closed room) or that there's a source of fresh air? The room I currently use for printing has a window I ...
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2answers
668 views

Why are my enlarged darkroom prints out of focus on edges?

I have a small darkroom where I've just started making B&W prints from 4x5 negatives. Even when the negative is very in focus from edge to edge, and scans nicely, when I print 8x10 with my ...
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2answers
873 views

How can I avoid a yellowish hue in my darkroom print highlights?

Using Ilford Multigrade Developer on Ilford MG RC Glossy paper, my prints have a yellowish hue in the highlights. I'm very new to darkroom printing, but I was expecting a greyer/whiter color in the ...
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1answer
110 views

Filter pack scale on Unicolor enlarger

I'm trying to get back into color printing and came across this Unicolor enlarger in a junk pile, the filter dials only go up to 17. Is that the actual value of the filter or this this a unique scale ...
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2answers
160 views

Fiber paper curved on arrival?

I recently bought my first box of Ilford Fiber B&W 8x10 paper. Even though the box is straight and undamaged, the entire ream of paper is curved. This seems like it will make it hard to ensure ...
3
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1answer
270 views

What kind of darkroom fan will fit in a window

I have an internal room in my apartment with a window that faces an air shaft between buildings, so I'd like to block the light from that window and make a darkroom. I am trying to figure out what ...
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3answers
203 views

Desktop Darkroom?

I'm interested in doing some black and white film photography. I was thinking with the relatively recent DIY/'maker' movements, and miniaturized production systems, such as 3-D printers, I thought ...
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3answers
422 views

Developing an image on photo paper, using a scanner?

I've heard that it is possible to take an image on photo paper, either as a contact print or with a pinhole camera, and develop it by using a scanner rather than through the wet process. Does anyone ...
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8answers
2k views

Controlling darkroom chemistry temperatures automatically

The temperatures in my house fluctuate wildly. I spend a fair amount of time before printing just bringing my chemistry to temperature. Are there any automated solutions or aids that help with this? I'...
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3answers
508 views

What is important in a chemical container?

I know that you can buy datatainers for your darkroom chemistry. These are brown and plastic, presumably of some special plastic. I'm looking for alternative shapes and sizes that I can't find pre-...
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2answers
491 views

Darkroom 8x10 prints aren't as sharp as 4x5 negatives

I have a small darkroom where I've just started making B&W prints from 4x5 negatives. Even when the negative is very in focus, and scans nicely, when I print 8x10 with my enlarger the details aren'...
2
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1answer
38 views

Instax Film Developing Red

I have completed the Instant Pinhole Camera which I mentioned in a previous question. To open the pack of Instax Film, I used a pitch black room, blocked all the edges around the door, and opened it ...
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1answer
54 views

For analog color printing, why does a diffused projected image “average” to gray?

In analog printing color negative film to RA-4 paper, one approach is to project the image to the easel, place a diffuser in the light path, and then place a filter calculator (an array of filters of ...
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2answers
98 views

When producing prints in a darkroom, should I aim for the longest possible exposure time?

Recently I was thinking about the fact that getting longer exposure time results in less impact of the initial vibrations (because of turning on/off of the enlarger) on a print. So my idea is to dim ...
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2answers
616 views

Difference between Condenser and Variable Contrast Enlarger (Beseler)

In high school, we used Beseler 23C-iii's - and in my current set up, am using a Beseler 23C-ii. But, I've the opportunity to get my hands on a 23C-iii with a Variable Contrast head (please note that ...
2
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1answer
111 views

Easel hangs off the enlarger baseboard - how to keep the easel level?

I am setting up my first darkroom. I purchased an Omega D2 and an 11x14 enlarging easel that takes up 14x17. I immediately noticed that when I tried to position the easel under the image, most print ...
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2answers
330 views

How to Change the Bulb on an Omega Enlarger?

Alright, recently bought an Omega C700 enlarger, and when I turn it on, nothing happens - so I'm assuming the bulb's dead. The issue is, I have no idea how to change it. It looks like you unscrew the ...
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3answers
97 views

Are there consumer/prosumer-level digital-to-film or digital-to-photo-paper projectors/enlargers?

My source image is a medium-high resolution (say 50MP) digital capture and I'm interested in producing a darkroom print from it, there are industrial machines like the Durst Lambda and other minilabs ...
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0answers
105 views

Characteristic Curve for Split Toning?

We can see from the data sheet on Ilford Multigrade Paper (link) that the curve gets steeper with increased contrast and tonal range shrinks (as expected). Various techniques seek to maximize tonality,...
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3answers
393 views

Enlarging - how to increase exposure time without closing the aperture too much?

When enlarging, let's say the sharpest f-stop on your 135mm lens is f8, but at that aperture you need to expose for such a short period of time, say <1sec, that dodging and burning become ...
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2answers
602 views

Omega D2 enlarger - Is it really for 4x5 negatives?

So I bought an Omega D2 enlarger for making 8x10 prints out of my 4x5 negatives at home. I have had two unsolved issues with it that make me question whether it is really suitable for 4x5 printing. ...
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3answers
145 views

why aren't filter dials doing anything on Durst enlarger?

I've just acquired a Durst M370 color enlarger that's probably been unused and stored for many years. The cyan, magenta and yellow dials turn but don't do anything to the white light. Anyone know how ...
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4answers
929 views

Can I develop black and white photo paper with T-Max developer?

Quick question for my film users out there. I develop T-Max film at home, with T-Max developer, but have never tried prints. Can I develop black and white photo paper with T-Max developer? I know that ...
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3answers
411 views

How do you use a gray card…in the dark room?

Similar to this question; however, I'd like to know more information about using a gray card in a dark room. I know that I am supposed to balance off of it; however, after I make a test strip, how do ...
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1answer
425 views

Too short exposure times in Darkroom

I'm pretty new to film photography. My first prints were very greyish. Then i reduced the developing from 1 minute, normally , to just 8 seconds... Then i get a more or less descent print out of it. ...