Film Help with my B&W processing

LongHairedDavid

New Member
I have a nice Canon EOS650 fitted with a 35 -80mm zoom. It takes really nice images. I do the processing myself and then scan them at 4800dpi using my Canon 3000f flatbed scanner.

I have just processed two rolls of film and are very disappointed. This one of my previous images take a few weeks ago.
26.jpg
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. In Photoshop, this is the Levels view.
levels old.jpg


OK, not great but not bad.
I took a roll on Saturday. This is a sample.
IMG_20220628_0019.jpg
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and this is the levels view.
19 levels.jpg


I know that I forgot to put the rinse aid in with the final wash but even so, how did the exposure get so wrong? My guess is that it must be my processing as the camera is working fine.
Can anyone shed any light?
David
 
Location
Oregon Coast
Name
Andrew
What film were you using? Some films have greater sensitivity to certain colors. For example Fomapan 100 is extra sensitive to blues, so the sky (and other cool highlights) gets somewhat blown out easily.

Also, cameras usually better for the center of the frame, so the second shot may have been one where the camera thought it needed a brighter exposure. B&W film scans should have a lot of latitude which just looks like white before editing, too. Can you bring those bright areas down? Scan in TIFF if possible, for more latitude. Generally there's something still in there.
 

Lawrence A.

Hall of Famer
Location
New Mexico
Name
Larry
I'd want to see the negative - or a contact sheet - before offering film processing advice. The picture of the boat looks like it just needs to be printed down overall. Are you sure your negative is blown out instead of the scanner not reading a perfectly good negative? I'd judge my film by looking at the film, not at a scan of the film. If after that you find highlights consistently blown, you might want either to adjust your development time downward, decrease your agitation, or both. In film ,the highlights contain most of the silver, so they keeping developing and are much more effected by development time, the mid-tones less so, and the shadows develop very quickly and then stop, as there isn't much silver there to develop. Also, if you shoot roll film in a variety of settings, processing for lower contrast will yield better overall results. The dictum of exposing for the shadows and developing for the highlights is great if you are shooting one subject. If your roll subjects are shot with widely different scene contrast, you are better off under-developing your film and making up the contrast later -- with higher grade paper or tweaking in Photoshop. So expose for the shadows, and then, for rolls with different scenes on them, pull a stop in processing.
 

LongHairedDavid

New Member
Thinking it through, I think that that I did two things wrong - I didn't agitate enough and I kept it going for around 8 minutes. This is HP5 that I am using. Previously, I have agitated every minute and stopped at 7 30. The trouble is that I can recover it, sort of, but I lose a lot in the process. I can get there shadows a bit better but at a cost.
Thanks for your ideas. I will try another film. This is only the fifth roll that I have developed after some 47 years of doing this regularly so I am bound to make mistakes.
David
 

LongHairedDavid

New Member
What film were you using? Some films have greater sensitivity to certain colors. For example Fomapan 100 is extra sensitive to blues, so the sky (and other cool highlights) gets somewhat blown out easily.

Also, cameras usually better for the center of the frame, so the second shot may have been one where the camera thought it needed a brighter exposure. B&W film scans should have a lot of latitude which just looks like white before editing, too. Can you bring those bright areas down? Scan in TIFF if possible, for more latitude. Generally there's something still in there.
It is HP5. I scanned at 4800 as a JPEG. I will try as a tiff and see if there is any difference.
David
 

wee-pics

Legend
Location
Germany
Name
Walter
As the histogram shows you have possibly too broad a range. Try using Ansel Adam's zone system.
More in: The Practical Zone System for Film and Digital Photography. Classic Tool, Universal Applications by Chris Johnson.
 

fredlong

Just this guy
IF it was exposed correctly then it is overdeveloped or a bad scan. Do you pay attention to your developer temp? Higher temp develops faster.

Are the highlights on the film actually blocked up? If not you can change your scan settings for a better exposure.
 
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