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Thread: Assessing film speed and development time without a darkroom.

  1. #61
    Drew Wiley
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    Re: Assessing film speed and development time without a darkroom.

    Quick and Ready Loads were around a quite awhile. The first version involved early Fuichrome 50 packaged by Polaroid in an adhesive closure sleeve using the Pola 545 holder. Worked well except that the film wasn't held sufficiently flat for big enlargements. Kodak came out with double-sided Readyload sleeves containing two sheets each, which could be unreliable; and their special holder had its own flatness issues. Fuji then came out with single sheet Quickload sleeves of both chrome film and Acros black and white, then finally Kodak with single sheet Readyloads in a variety of film types, which were a big improvement. I customized my own holder to accept either brand, and do a better job with respect to film flatness. I don't know when all of these were officially discontinued, maybe around 15 yrs ago when the necessary packaging machinery wore out, and neither company was willing to re-invest. I have one sealed box of E100G Readyloads still in the freezer, and have no idea whether it's still good or not (probably mfg 20 yrs ago).

  2. #62
    Drew Wiley
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    Re: Assessing film speed and development time without a darkroom.

    Alan, ya gotta understand the logistics - I had to tote two weeks of food, clothing, and a tent worthy of severe weather, often ice climbing gear too; then add to all that the weight of a Sinar monorail with an 18 inch rail, the lenses and accessories, plus a dozen 4x5 holders. That factors out as an average of only two shots allowable per day. I do own film changing tents; but those didn't work out very well during long difficult days with potential serious storms. It wasn't like being a kid again moving along quick with a little Pentax 35mm camera around my neck and Kodachrome in it.

    And now I'm on the reverse curve, constantly trying to figure out how to lighten my load. But putting more emphasis on day hiking options at this point in time, or even road trips, isn't just about the carry weight, but due to a far higher risk of being caught deep in the back country choking from tons of forest fire smoke. That has always been a moderate risk, maybe once a decade; now it's an almost constant severe threat. Times have changed. I'm just glad my sister and her husband got back from a delightful June trip to Spain and Italy, with a lot of walking opportunities in the Pyrenees and Alps, and lowland areas as well, before everything went wacko in that part of the world too due to forest fires and extreme heat.

  3. #63
    Drew Wiley
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    Re: Assessing film speed and development time without a darkroom.

    Duuuh ..... If one is realistically rationed to only two sheets of film a day, how many can you afford to waste bracketing? It's not like you can peek behind the nearest rock and find a camera store with your preferred film in stock! People are perfectly welcome to bracket if they choose so, and might have an entirely valid reason. But there is also an entirely valid reason why one can only carry so many filmholders at a time, and how that inherently limits this particular kind of choice.

    Hypothetical concepts wear pretty thin when you have four rough high passes to still get over during the next week before you finally reach your car. Frankly, the last time I did something like that was just shy of my 70th BD, and I wisely opted for a couple of roll film backs instead. But I still didn't feel the need to bracket in a single instance.

  4. #64
    Alan Klein's Avatar
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    Re: Assessing film speed and development time without a darkroom.

    Drew, I'm not as confident in my ability as you are in yours to get the exposure right the first time. I also don't hike miles but rather a few hundred yards from my car at the most. I even have a wheelie to carry the camera bag if the "trail" can handle it. So I usually have eight 4x5 holders with me, way more than I ever use in one outing with different film emulsions. So for me, bracketing when called for with 4x5 makes sense. Of course, with 120 6x7 roll film shooting, bracketing really wastes no time or energy.

  5. #65

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    Re: Assessing film speed and development time without a darkroom.

    So many opinions, during so many days, and without reaching a clear result.

    If one had put the mentioned woolen sweater in diffuse daylight (shadow) and taken the four, five necessary shots and analyzed them with the spot light meter of the digital camera, it would have taken a total of two, three hours.

    You would then have the N-sensitivity and the N-development for brilliant N-negatives with structured shadows and delicate highlights. You would have gotten to know your film and your developer and developed a sense of what more could be imaged.

    A very straight thing. One would have found out everything there is to know about N-development in no time. Too bad.

  6. #66

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    Re: Assessing film speed and development time without a darkroom.

    Please do share your published color transparency images over exposed and under exposed by ~ONE~ f-stop .. Curious as to what these look like in print.

    Fact and reality of color transparency film's designed in behavior remains, it has a workable range of four f-stops with an error margin of maybe plus/minus 1/2 f-stop.. before color shift happens. What is the realistic f-stop range that can be "bracketed"?

    Why use Pull-A-Roids if you're bracketing your exposes with color transparency film?

    After a stack of Pull-A-Roids (like Polaroid# 54) to check exposure, lighting ratios and all, still need to bracket color transparency exposures.. really?

    How does a photographer do multi-exposures on a single sheet of film with bracketing ... This means additive images on the same sheet of film.


    Tools that GREATLY reduce the need for bracketing exposure is a GOOD light meter, controlling the lighting with as much and as many electronic strobe units with light modifiers as needed. This could be several thousand watt/seconds from several strobe units .. explain how using this approach to lighting with extremely tight control over lighting.. the need for bracketing exposures.. Keep in mind color transparency film has a error window of maybe..plus/minus 1/2 f-stop..

    Mixed lighting brings on a different challenge, this is where a GOOD color meter with recording electronic strobe coupled and each and every CC filter in the CC filter range becomes very useful.

    ~Explain how this can solve a long list of why using a color meter and CC filters can and does help greatly to resolve mixed lighting and color shift issues for color film images?

    Back in the days of The New Lab, They had process request sheet pads, Normal, Push, Pull. The most often used was "Normal".. There were days when TNL ran out of the process "Normal" sheet pads.. reverting customers to writing process normal on plain paper.. Why is this?


    Bernice


    Quote Originally Posted by bdkphoto View Post
    For the professional world bracketing was how it was done - there isn't a single professional photographer that I met in my 40+ year career that didn't bracket or proof his/her film - most everyone "overshot" by a wide margin depending on the project and type of photography being done. There are a myriad of reasons, economic and aesthetic that this is done especially if you are working on location where the lighting conditions are variable or you are mixing strobe with ambient - there it is necessary to cross bracket (bracketing both the overall exposure and the ratio of strobe to ambient). When I was doing assignment work for Architectural Digest (4x5) I would average 16/20 frames per shot (bracketed -1 to +1 in 1/2 stops, 2 sheets each) and 10/16 sheets of polaroid (type 54) - we would do 12 -15 shots over 2 days - 250+/- sheets per job plus the same in polaroid. And I brought both daylight and tungsten film just to be sure, and a full 2 1/4 kit with film/polaroid as well.

  7. #67

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    Re: Assessing film speed and development time without a darkroom.

    Consider...

    folks like Drew that makes contrast mask for contrast control and MUCH more during the optical printing process would have LOTs of experience in exposure AND controlling contrast of the print being made... This need, reality and practice enforces the discipline of exposure control to a degree and in ways the majority of photographers never experience or will experience.. This is likely the root and foundation of why folks with this kind and degree of experience exposing photographic film materials deeply frown on bracketing exposures.. They FULLY understand the personality, limitations, capabilities of these photographic materials in special ways..

    There was a time when it was common for photographers did the entire process from loading film to mounting the finished print.. These photographers get forced to deal with the realities of making film images that can be printed optimally with the available print making materials with the least amount of grief.. This happens due to Darwinism and the need to reduce frustration, excessive work, conservation of materials and their irreplaceable time..

    This was the motivating force and passion to why Ansel Adams & Fred Archer created the Zone System.. or a simplified way of presenting the un-bendable and designed in demands of photographic film materials.

    Except in these days of scanning film coupled with software extremely capable of bending the image data to what the image maker essentially wants.. greatly distorts the perception and need for the discipline of creating a film image that is forced into the range and demands of the optical process print material..

    ~That appears to be the frame of reference for so many film photographers today.. Now, compare that to the frame of reference and world folks like Drew has lived in.. Wanna bracket your film exposures, absolutely do so.. All that might not result in meeting your image goals in mind..

    ~To Alan, that magical hour about dusk/dawn. Colors recorded on color film (specially color transparency film) is due to rapid shifts in outdoor light's color temperature and intensity of light. Both these factors have profound effects on color rendition of the color film image. This could be managed by using a GOOD incident/spot light meter and GOOD color temperature meter and TESTING of the color film under varying color temperature and exposure.. Test like these can provide reference information as to how a specific color film will shift/behave under these light conditions that the film was not designed and produced for.. much about color rendition for artistic goals.


    Bernice

  8. #68

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    Re: Assessing film speed and development time without a darkroom.

    Appears Ansel Adams is well known among folks on LFF..

    Here is Ansel Adams "bracketing" exposure on 8x10 B&W film.. to meet his print image goals.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DQT_rzI1Xdw



    Bernice

  9. #69
    Alan Klein's Avatar
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    Re: Assessing film speed and development time without a darkroom.

    Quote Originally Posted by Bernice Loui View Post
    Appears Ansel Adams is well known among folks on LFF..

    Here is Ansel Adams "bracketing" exposure on 8x10 B&W film.. to meet his print image goals.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DQT_rzI1Xdw



    Bernice
    Thanks for that link. Ansel had constant midday lighting in that video clip. He had plenty of time to get the exposure where he wanted. However, shooting color chromes during magic hour with quickly changing light is harder, especially for an amateur photographer like me. I need all the help I can get.

    When Ansel shot his famous Moonrise, he had to shoot it fast because the light was changing so quickly. He got it a little wrong (overexposed?) and had to correct a lot in the darkroom. Maybe bracketing would have helped him had he had the time.
    https://images.search.yahoo.com/sear...1&action=click

  10. #70

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    Re: Assessing film speed and development time without a darkroom.

    Quote Originally Posted by Alan Klein View Post
    Maybe bracketing would have helped him had he had the time.
    My memory isn't 100% reliable, but as far as I can recall, the account I read about the Moonrise shot was that he didn't have time for exposing a backup plate because after the first shot, the light had already changed and the shot was gone. Which implies that he by all means had the intention to shoot at least a backup, possibly even a bracketed one.

    Under the condition of course that he somehow didn't have his light meter at hand for this shot. I think that's a rather important 'detail' if you want to make an argument about Ansel Adams and bracketing...

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