I am so enjoying working with chemicals and enlargers and stuff. Here is a selection of scans from 35mm negatives I developed last week. One of them, not sure which yet, will get sent to Leanne Cole for this week’s Monochrome Madness Challenge. I hope you enjoy them as much as I have.
In my quest to learn all about this photology magic, I have taken a workshop to learn how to use the darkroom. I recently found out that a small charity who have set up a community darkroom in town were holding an introductory workshop for amateurs. I went and since then, I’ve been back a couple of times, on my own to practise what I learned. The results leave a lot to be desired but I want to record here, my first attempts at processing my own film.
To convert the negatives to digital, for the sake of keeping record of what I have (the eyesight is not what it was and those negatives are pretty small) and to blog about it occasionally, and hopefully see some progress, I have treated myself to a little, stand alone negative scanner (Veho VFS-008 Smartfix) which, although the file sizes aren’t very big, is perfect for what I want to do with it.
Here are some of the negatives I then had a go at making prints from. I have to say making prints on 8×10 paper is VERY satisfying. Now, I want to buy a better printer to print off some of my digital images… And so the cost goes on.
On two accounts has working with film thwarted me this week.
Firstly, being a novice photographer, I don’t want to pay too much to get my films processed as I still take loads of c**p images. This was fine as Tesco supermarket were only charging a couple of pounds to process the film and give me the disc – cheaper still if they put several films on one disc. I say were. They’ve stopped doing it in house and now, send it away for 7 days and charge £5 a film. Damn!
So, I went to the little independent camera shop in town who still charge a fiver a film but do it in 24hrs. OK, I’ll have to shoot less film until I get a better success rate on the digital camera. Well…. No! Looking at the images that have come back, most of them have a horrible white line right through the image.
Was it me or was it them? Has something gone wrong with the camera since last I used it? Looking at the negatives, it’s not just the picture as there seems to be a green ink blot that goes from the top to the bottom edge, beyond the image and into the area where the little square cut-outs are (What are they called?). It seems it might have been them but regardless, what am I to do?
Any Photoshop experts out there who can advise me on the easiest way to remedy this?
Having read Doublewhirler’s post about his uncle’s camera, it reminded me that I had two roles of film to develop. At the moment, I’m practising with two old cameras, circa 1970s I think.
The first camera, a Fujica ST706, came to me through a house clearance. It was daunting to use it the first couple of times but I can buy film for £1 a roll in a well known discount store and the photo booth at the local supermarket will record it on to disc for about £3 and if I put more than one film on a disc and it becomes even cheaper than that, so it’s affordable to experiment. There is no auto focus but I quite enjoy twisting the lens and although this camera doesn’t have an ‘Auto’ mode, at least it does have a basic light meter to get the exposure almost right. Because I only post 6 images, I shall next do a second post on the Zenit 11 which doesn’t have a light metre.
I need more experience to be able to explain why I love the quality of these compared to images from the digital camera. Here are six of the 27 Images returned on a 24exp film, untouched in any way, Perhaps someone else has the terminology to explain the difference of quality.