Posts Tagged ‘darkroom’

Amazing Surreal Photomontages Created Without the Use of Photoshop

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Upon first glance, artist Thomas Barbèy‘s surreal photomontages may seem rather amateur when compared with all the highly-polished photomanipulations that are floating around on the Internet. However, one simple fact will make you see the pieces in an entirely different light: Barbèy shoots film and uses in-camera and darkroom techniques to create the works!

That’s right: he eschews Photoshop and digital trickery in favor of analog processes.
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BTS: Creating a Wet Plate Portrait Using an Ordinary Negative and an Enlarger

Slovenia-based professional photographer Borut Peterlin was recently tasked with shooting a portrait of painter/illustrator/author Milan Erič for influential Slovenian magazine Mladina. Peterlin decided that he wanted to create a wet plate collodion photo, but spent weeks worrying about whether he would be able to accomplish it given the tight schedule of the on-location shoot. He writes:

I can’t get rid [of] questions like where will I work, who will complain about it, where will I get water, will there be a drain to waste used water and developer, will there be enough light, will the person being portrayed have enough patience and what if something will go wrong with chemistry? If everything goes well, I make a portrait in an hour and if it doesn’t…

The night before the shoot, Peterlin decided to just play it safe by shooting the portrait on standard film and then converting the picture into a wet plate “in post” in a darkroom.
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How to Process Your C-41 Film at Home

After almost two years of shooting film nonstop and more than $1,000 worth of expenses on processing and prints, I needed to reconsider my budget and find a way of being able to shoot more and pay less. I thus began to process my C-41 rolls at home. It’s extremely easy to do and I‘ll show you today how to do it, step by step.
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How to Use Your iPhone as a Quick and Easy Negative Viewer

If you do any darkroom work, you probably regularly print contact sheets to peek at the positive versions of your B&W negative film strips. Did you know that your iPhone can be used as a quick an easy tool for this same purpose?
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Digital Darkroom: Printing iPhone Photos Using Traditional Chemical Processes

Lincoln, UK-based photographer Adam Rhoades came up with an interesting way of printing digital photographs using analog darkroom processes. By mounting his iPhone (displaying a photo) onto a 35mm enlarger, he’s able to enlarge and focus his digital photograph on photo paper as if it were a negative being projected.
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Use Music as a Timer When Working in the Darkroom

Sick of staring at giant darkroom timer while waiting for chemicals to do their work? Try replacing the timer with carefully selected music. Photographer Lauren E. Simonutti writes over at Lens Culture,

For some reason I only listen to music in the darkroom. I find watching clocks tiresome so I time film processing by music — I have a range of songs of the proper length. Film goes in, music goes on (Tom Waits, Bowie, Bauhaus), song ends, film comes out.

An easy way to find songs with the correct length is to sort your music library by duration.

Photographic notes from a madhouse (via Photographs on the Brain)


Image credit: Exposed Darkroom by Gamma-Ray Productions

US Army Darkroom Aluminum Shelter

If you’ve always wanted your own military-grade portable darkroom, today’s your lucky day! There’s a used US Army one for sale on eBay with the starting price of $4,500. The 4,500LB shelter contains 3 rooms with 614 cubic feet of space, and comes with all the darkroom equipment you need, including a fridge, film drying cabinet, film processors, sink, storage spaces, and an escape door! It even packs its own temperate water control system and heating/AC unit. You can find more photos here.

Used Dark Room Aluminum Shelter with Equipments (via tokyo camera style)

Quickly Look up Development Times with the Film Development Database

Knowing how long to develop film for is easy if you use popular films and developers, but what if you want to use some obscure combination that isn’t well documented? If that’s you, check out the Photocritic Film Development Database. It’s a simple service that outputs development times for 1440 different film/developer combinations. For combinations that aren’t officially published, creator Haje Jan Kamps has come with a formula that estimates the time — a formula that he says is surprisingly accurate.

Photocritic Film Development Database (via Pixiq)


Update: Digitaltruth also has a massive film development database/chart.

How to Develop Film Using Coffee and Vitamin C

Here’s a step-by-step video tutorial teaching how to develop your B&W film using instant coffee and powdered vitamin C instead of actual developer. You’ll still need some darkroom gear and some fixer, but it’s a neat way to experiment with film photography. Photo geeks call this solution Caffenol, and there’s even a special Flickr group dedicated to making homebrew developer.

If you’ve never learned how to process film, this is also a great introduction to how it’s done.

(via Make)

How to Make Your Own Redscale Film

Redscale is a technique where film is exposed on the wrong side — rather than having the light hit the emulsion directly, you expose the film through the non-sensitive side.

The name “redscale” comes because there is a strong color shift to red due to the red-sensitive layer of the film being exposed first, rather than last (the red layer is normally the bottom layer in C-41 (color print) film). All layers are sensitive to blue light, so normally the blue layer is on top, followed by a filter. In this technique, blue light exposes the layers containing red and green dyes, but the layer containing blue dye is left unexposed due to the filter. [#]

The two main ways for doing this are loading the film upside down (if your camera allows it), or by purchasing film that has been “converted” already. A third way is to make DIY redscale film by going into a darkroom, pulling out the film, cutting it, flipping it, taping it back together, and then winding it back into the canister. Messy, but it works!
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