Assignment 1 – Second day in the darkroom

So I arrive in the darkroom for the second day of printing and luckily I got my same enlarger and it was still set up in the same way. This made it a lot easier for me to get straight into printing.

My first print was the one below in which I had my enlarger set on F/8 with 4.0 contrast. As these photographs were taken on the same day with the same lighting I was able to get a consistency throughout my images whilst printing.

F/8             12 Seconds                      9 Seconds                  6 Seconds                      3 Seconds

This was extremely dark so I decreased the amount of light coming through the aperture by setting it at F/11. And this was the result:

F/11       12 Seconds                    9 Seconds                6 Seconds                3 Seconds

I chose to go with 7 seconds as I felt it would show the different tones throughout her skin and hair. Conformation strip below:

F/11 – 7 Seconds

I felt that I was happy with the result so I printed the whole image at 7 seconds.

Second Print:

This was the print that caused me the most hassle. Due to his fringe it caused a slight shadow over his eyes, I did many big prints of this photograph so I could keep trying to dodge the eye area for 2-3 seconds I also wanted the bottom half of the photograph at 12 seconds whilst his face was at 9 seconds – aperture F/11. Unfortunately I miss placed my test strips and conformation strip, but I do have two larger images one without the dodging and one with:
















Before – Without dodging the eyes

After – With dodging the eyes

You can slightly see how the eye has become visible, however I have decided I will be reprinting this image again as I am not happy with the final result as the overall photograph is rather dark.

Third Print:

This print was a lot easier than the previous attempt. I changed my settings to F/8 and continue on to do my test strip:

F/8     12 Seconds            9 Seconds           6 Seconds                       3 Seconds

My first conformation strip:

The was at 4 seconds, and  I knew that was not long enough for a print to be under the enlarger, so I turned my aperture to F/11 to have less light come down own the paper. I then did another conformation strip at 8 seconds and this was the result:

F/8 – 4 Seconds

F/11 – 8 seconds

Due to the test strip being a little bigger, I was able to noticed a spot of dust that was on the negative. So I took my negative out of the holder, cleaned it and then replace my negative back in. I then printed out my final:

However at the end of the day when I checked my prints I noticed something on the edge of my print. At first I thought it was dirt but then realised that the developer had not gone all over the edge of the print, leaving the paper white. This means I will have to re-print this further down the line.

Forth Print:

This photograph was taken in a different location, and it was a little darker than I would have liked. However I was surprised that it actually turned out fine. My test strip is below:

F/8         12 Seconds                    9 seconds                     6 Seconds                    3 Seconds

I decided to do a conformation strip at 7 seconds:

I noticed how dark the eyes were so I did another conformation strip with a little dodging around the eyes but they still were rather dark. I decided to print it full size and dodge the eyes for a little longer.

Without dodge

With dodge

Final Print:

I was planning on re-printing but it was closing time for the dark room, meaning I would need to re-print this photograph again.

Overall, all the prints I had done in the darkroom I was not 100% happy with and once that gets put in my head I go back and start all over again. And that is exactly what I have decided to do. I want to finish all my prints in the next two days and hopefully get good results so I can start making my photo book. I also noticed that a lot of my ‘failed final prints’ had odd borders on meaning all the photographs would have been different sizes once I had cut them off. So next time when I am in the dark room I am going to make sure the projection of my photograph fills out the whole of the paper, meaning I would have no borders.


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