Making a print: chapter 10 Alternative approaches: chapter 11, and finishing the print: chapter 12 1 9 Taking pictures is one part of the equation, but just as important are the steps of film developing and printing. Developing turns your film into a reversed image, or a negative—dark areas appear light or clear on the film and light areas appear dark. This all happens in a succession of chemical baths. You can send film to a processing lab for development, but you can also process it yourself. It also gives you more control over the final results. For example, you can increase or decrease the overall image contrast by extending or reducing the developing time.
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Making a print: chapter 10 Alternative approaches: chapter 11, and finishing the print: chapter 12 1 9 Taking pictures is one part of the equation, but just as important are the steps of film developing and printing. Developing turns your film into a reversed image, or a negative—dark areas appear light or clear on the film and light areas appear dark.
This all happens in a succession of chemical baths. You can send film to a processing lab for development, but you can also process it yourself. It also gives you more control over the final results. For example, you can increase or decrease the overall image contrast by extending or reducing the developing time. Once you have negatives, you can make positive prints. This process is more complicated than developing film and requires a darkroom, but it is relatively easy to learn.
You put the negative in an apparatus called an enlarger, which projects the image onto a sheet of photographic paper. Then you put the paper through a series of chemical baths similar to those used for developing film. You can send your negatives to a processing lab for printing, and many labs produce excellent results. Even if you have labs make your prints in the future, knowing how to make prints gives you an idea of what kinds of results are possible and how to communicate what you want to achieve.
The best reason for learning how to make prints, as well as develop film, is to take control of the process. Aside from the control it offers, successfully developing film and making prints can be very satisfying— even exhilarating. Some photographers actually like darkroom work more than they like taking pictures.
The rest of the text discusses other approaches to taking pictures and making prints which may give you ideas on how to produce your own visual style.
It also covers various ways to finish a print—by changing its overall color, retouching it, and matting or mounting it. When you have completed reading, you will have learned all the techniques necessary to make excellent black-and-white prints. You also will have learned much of what you need to know when photographing in color or by digital means. However, a book can only carry you so far.
Like most skills, good photography comes from practice and hard work. Good photojournalists like Davidson must focus on the action, but still keep an eye out for less obvious details that help tell the story. Film sizes: pages 26—29 Single-lens-reflex SLR Black-and-white film: chapter 3 The shutter: chapter 4 AM Page 11 Camera Types There are many different types of cameras for you to choose from, ranging from cheap generic models used by millions of snapshooters to costly specialized models used by very few advanced amateurs and professionals.
Most modern cameras are quite sophisticated; they are controlled by small computerized circuitry, and they offer more features than you will ever need or even learn how to use. Such models are often linked to a camera system, an array of lenses, flash units, and other accessories made by one manufacturer, designed to work together with the camera for maximum effect and automation. Still, it helps to understand the various types of available cameras, so you can evaluate your options and make informed choices.
One way to categorize cameras is according to the size film they use: 35mm cameras use 35mm film, for example, and medium-format cameras use size or film. Another way is according to the viewing and focusing systems they use, such as single-lens-reflex SLR or rangefinder. This chapter describes the different categories of cameras and how to use them. A single-lens-reflex SLR camera is so named because you view, compose, focus, and take a picture through a single lens with the help of a reflex mirror.
So the SLR redirects the light from the lens to your eye with a reflex mirror, focusing screen, pentaprism, and viewfinder see the illustration on the following page.
Reflex mirror. The reflex mirror is located in the camera body right behind the lens and in front of the film. The mirror also is hinged; when you press the shutter button, it flips up and out of the way as the
Black and White Photography, Third Revised Edition
Black & white photography: a basic manual