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Thread: Developer Question

  1. #11

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    Re: Developer Question

    I switched to Pyrocat-M (Metol) and only need 3 chemicals for Part A and had enough left over to make Obsidian Aqua and some D23. Most of my raw chemicals come from Artcraft, Bostick and Sullivan, and Photographers Formulary. My main print developer is now the PF-130 based on Ansco 130 and I find it easier to just buy the kits.
    If you dilute your paper developers you can use them with film too in some cases but it takes some experimentation. Bleach, reducers, and toners are another area you will likely experiment with so its good to build up your inventory and equipment needed for mix-your-own solutions.
    Adventure is worthwhile in itself. ... Never interrupt someone doing what you said couldn't be done. -- Amelia Earhart
    http://www.searing.photography

  2. #12
    Randy's Avatar
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    Re: Developer Question

    Quote Originally Posted by LabRat View Post
    D23 is the gateway drug... ;-)
    I agree - read Ken Lee's website for mixing my own. I was very frustrated with how Rodinal treated my Ilford films - the grain was horrible. D-23 seems to have taken care of that.
    https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/52893762/bigger4b.jpg

  3. #13
    Drew Wiley
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    Re: Developer Question

    If you like your results, simply stick with HC-110. I use different developers for different specific purposes, which includes various tweaks of HC-110, but my primary go-to developer for general photography is PMK pyro. It's been 30 year since I last used D23, and nearly as long for D76, but they obviously work too.

  4. #14
    Steve Sherman's Avatar
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    Re: Developer Question

    Quote Originally Posted by jtomasella View Post
    Since I just got back into Film a Year ago I always see people talk about Rodinal or Xtol ect. I see Kodak makes the Xtol and D76. I've been using HC-110. Is everyone using Photographer formula for things like Rodinal or Pyrocat? If not, what are you using. I'd like to experiment with other developers just to see what I get. Although I have no complaints with the HC-110, it has been a great developer.
    Whatever developer you choose, stick with it, ignore other suggestions until you truly know what your film / developer combination will yield, if you're pursuing maximum results. If you simply enjoy experimenting than try them all


    Real photographs are born wet !

    www.PowerOfProcessTips.com

  5. #15

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    Re: Developer Question

    Quote Originally Posted by Steve Sherman View Post
    If you simply enjoy experimenting [then] try them all
    +1 - Not all who wander are lost. For some it is the journey, not the destination.
    Adventure is worthwhile in itself. ... Never interrupt someone doing what you said couldn't be done. -- Amelia Earhart
    http://www.searing.photography

  6. #16

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    Annapolis, Maryland
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    115

    Re: Developer Question

    +1 "What Steve Sherman said.

    Used more options than I care to speak about. It grows old. Simplicity is bliss. Thought I'd settled into doing Caffenol-CH as my off-beat, "forever" thing until Covid-19 made my Dollar Tree rot gut coffee scarce. Had the chems on hand so mixed up 2 liters of D-23 which I'm loving. Couldn't be simpler. So I ordered more chems from Arts+Crafts and think this D-23 will do me for a long time with B&W. Like keeping the kit stuff in reserve, but mixing your own is simpler than you think. Did I switch formats? Oh yeah. Did that, too, and I find that with LF 4X5 pretty much driving you to a tripod, some of the other typical considerations are less compelling. D-23 is fine 'cause hey, the developer is NOT the magic... the magic is you and putting the time in to figure out how to dial in your handling, processing, exposure, and all the things that go into the craftsmanship of the image.... but the magic.... that's still not there but what you see before you, and how you're able to capture it. Composition, lighting... the usual stuff. And the courage to get close enough to let your subject draw your viewer in. Have I got a lot of work to do there? Yeah. The good thing is that I think if we can "solve" some of these other things or push them into the background, we can move on to the main event.

  7. #17
    Ironage's Avatar
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    Re: Developer Question

    The art of photography is the development not of the film but of the photographer.

    Go ahead and play! Your choice of developer does make a big difference in the image, and finding what is sweat to your eye is like discovering new recipes. Mix it up a bit and taste and see. If you are not having fun, you are not doing it right.

    I recommend the phone app Formulas by digitaltruth.


    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk

  8. #18
    Tin Can's Avatar
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    Re: Developer Question

    The best advice when I returned to film in 2011 was to pick one and get to know it very well. Less confusion...

    So I did

    Now, 9 years later I am adding 2 more

    Some know what I use, as i posted it

    Safety First and Always
    2022

  9. #19
    Joe O'Hara's Avatar
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    Re: Developer Question

    "The art of photography is the development not of the film but of the photographer."

    +1 to that.
    Where are we going?
    And why are we in this handbasket?


    www.josephoharaphotography.com

  10. #20

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    Re: Developer Question

    When I ran out of a large stock of prepared chems, me and another photog tried mixing up a batch of D23 as a test... Was really pleased!!! But as some time went by, noticed it was fine over 4X5 but a little mushy for smaller formats... Mixed up some D76, but was a little harsh in the Cali hard sun (even diluted) so tried a # of formulas... Studied some development theories and looked to possibilities for a good "general" developer... Scoured the books to find one and found one I have been using for most everything for 30 years...

    And great it costs pennies to make, and can be made fresh easily when needed, or stock that lasts a long time...

    But D23 was the "gateway drug" that got the ball rolling, but other special film & paper dev can be produced on demand when needed... And mixes fresh and clear, rather then some reports of new oxidized factory formulas now being sold...

    I won't go back to store bought...

    Steve K

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