Technical skills

Following our ‘What is Fine Art?’ lecture, we had 3 workshops – tank development, darkroom skills and the Nikon scanner.

Tank Development

  • To take the film out of its cartridge, use the bottle opener.
  • The roll of 35mm film needs to be fed onto the reel, therefore it has to be fed onto the ball bearings. When it is a 35mm film the reel is already set, however for a 120mm film the reel has to be adjusted by twisting so you are then able to pull it apart and slot back into place so the 120mm film is able to be fed around.
  • When the film is fed onto the ball bearings, gently twist the reel so the film is twisted into it. Make sure you do this at a steady speed so the film doesn’t come off or get stuck as this could mess up the developing.
  • The reel with the film on then needs to be put into the tank. Inside there is a black pole which goes through the middle of the reel, which is then placed in the bottom of the tank. On top of this, the funnel is clicked into place followed by the lid of the tank therefore no light can get in to ruin the film.
  • Developer (stock solution) – 3 parts water, 1 part chemical. Fixer (hyphen) 4 parts water, 1 part chemical.
  • Holding the tray at a 45 degree angle, pour in the developer. This will take 20 minutes to develop.
  • It is important to make sure all air bubbles are gotten rid of, therefore to do so gently knock the bottom of the tank.
  • Agitate the tank every 20 seconds to make sure the film is continually covered in the developer however only do this if the tank is water tight. If not, put in the stick and twirl the film every 5 seconds.
  • 20 seconds before the time is up, pour out the developer. Following this, run it under the tap for 1 minute.
  • Following this, the fixer goes in. This is very similar to the development and needs to be agitated for the first 30 seconds of the fixer being put in. After this, the tank needs to be agitated every 30 seconds.
  • When the time is up, pour away the fixer. Next, wash the film in the stop bath for 10 minutes.
  • Finally, dry off the film. Once dry, you are able to cut up your film into strips of 6 negatives.

Darkroom Skills

Following on from our refresher in the dark room, this was a chance to familiarise ourselves further with working with the enlargers and developing our own images. By doing so, this gave us chance to experiment and come out with a good print ready for using the dark room in the future.

Nikon Scanner

Following a demonstration of using the Nikon Scanner, along with instructions for future reference on Moodle, I am now able to use the scanner to upload my negatives and adjust them using Photoshop.


~ by victoriasimkissphotography on October 19, 2012.

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