This is the first time I have shot colour film rated at 1600 and I am blown away by the fine grain at a high ISO.
I have yet to receive my thermometer which goes to 38ºc and beyond (for standard develop and rapid develop) so I am doing a slower develop. I have read online there can be colour shift and the yellows/cyans not as strong however (as of yet) I have not experienced any problems.
Warm bath 30º for 5m
Develop 30ºc +-0.5ºc for 8m
Bleach 30ºc +-1.0ºc for 6m
Rinse 30ºc – 40ºc for 6m
Stab 20ºc – 40ºc for 1m
Hang to dry with Patterson neg clips for 2 hours (use squeegee lightly to remove excess water, be careful of tram lines)
During scanning there was a colour cast leaning towards red. This was adjusted in post along with cleaning, curves and saturation.
I have noticed there is more cleaning in Photoshop required on my developed colour film than the black and white. I think this is because of the final process and the water used. In black and white after fixing there is a 10 minute wash, after that I use a wetting agent with deionised water. The wetting agent reduces grime on the negative and deionised water will ensure there aren’t any mineral marks left behind once dried.
On my first C-41 mix of chemicals I followed the instructions word for word and used water from the tap. However next time I will use deionised water for the final stage (STAB) so that there is a low chance of mineral residue on left on the negative once dried.
See the full gallery below.
Prelude to colour:
Since starting The 35mm Project in 2013 I have sent all my colour film to labs, but over the last eight months I have had some great results with black and white since taking the time to really understand the development process and what I want from film. My negatives have never looked better and with every process, push, pull or out of the box I am learning. Now, I want to explore colour processing to hone my skills further, to save money and to see (if any) what difference in quality there is between my negatives and the labs I once used. I am interested in good results and bad results, colour shift, colour cast, what mistakes I make and what affect it has on the photograph, will it change the image for better, or worse? Lets explore!!!
Step 1: Receiving the goodies!
Contents of photograph: Tetenal C-41 kit, 3 x 1 litre brown chemical storage, 2 x 1000ml jugs, 2 x 600ml beakers, 1 x 150ml beaker, Ilford stop bath, Ilford rapid fixer, Rodinol R09, Hama Negative Storage, 2 x Patterson negative clips, scissors, cleaning equipment, syringes, development tank, 2 x spools, negative cleaning alcohol, thermometer, chamois, microfibre cloth, agitator, eyepiece. All equipment purchased from Silverprint.
Most of the items in the photograph above I already had but today (05/06/18) I received a pack of Tetenal C-41 Developing Kit. YAZOOOO!
Step 2: Setting up
Setting up the gear was easy! I followed a similar process to YouTuber Wild We Roam and also referred to YouTuber The Art of Photography. I would check both these guys out, their process is simple to follow and informative.
I labelled the bottles with steps so the chemicals aren’t mixed and it’s easier for me when concentrating on temperatures and timing. It’s important to keep the chemicals away from one another, especially bleach to developer as the bleach will neutralise the developer and stop it from working. A 2.5L pack of Tetenal will develop around 30-40 rolls of film and last around 6 months from the date of being opened. I will process 14 rolls per 1/L of solution and 7 rolls in the final 500ml solution over the next few months.
I mixed the chemicals following the guidelines in the Tetenal instruction booklet. The temperature requires great accuracy with a maximum deviancy of +-.05ºc for development. +-1ºc for the bleach fix and between 30-40 degrees for Stab & Rinse. Unfortunately just before starting the development process I realised my thermometer doesn’t go above 30ºc! The Tetenal instructions do have a development process at a lower temp (usual being 38ºc) however there may be some colour shift.
Eager to try the kit out and unable to wait for a thermometer with a larger range I decided to develop 1 of the 3 rolls of Lomography 100 I have shot at the lower 30ºc temperature to see how the development is affected compared to 38ºc. I used a bucket filled with water with a temp of around 33ºc (slight guess as there was no markings past 30ºc on the thermometer) to keep the chemicals warm. While the chemicals were warming I turned the lights out and loaded the film on to a spool.
Step 3: Develop
Stage 1 of development is a warm water bath for the negative for five minutes, during this time I kept checking the developer temp to ensure if stayed at 30ºc. The development times are pre-set by Tetenal however the agitation times are my own:
Water bath & pre heat developer tank 30ºc for 05:00m
Developer 30ºc for 08:00m (agitate for 15s every minute)
Bleach Fix 30ºc for 06:00m (agitate for 15s every minute)
Rinse around 33ºc for 06:00 (acceptable range of 30ºc – 40ºc change water every 30s)
Stabilizer 30ºc for 01:00m (acceptable range of 20ºc – 40ºc)
Step 4: The moment of truth….
Step 5: Scan, Clean, Upload
There aren’t any predefined settings on Silverfast for Lomo 100 but I found the Fuji Superia 100 settings to work the best for this type of film. Images were scanned using a Plustek Opticfilm 8200i 35mm scanner with Silverfast 8. Scanned as PSD and imported to Lightroom & Photoshop. Images were spot, dust and scratch removal at 100%. Cropped to 6×4 ratio. No sharpening. I wanted to retain as much of the original negative colour and sharpness (otherwise, what is the point?).
It is times like this when I see a negative that I have developed myself and think “why did I not do this from the beginning?”. Honestly! Everyone should develop their own film, the results are far superior than that of any lab I have ever sent film to. The negative is well developed, colours are consistent and it was extremely fun!
Have a look at the gallery below to see more.
Full development stats:
I am in love with JCH 400. The results are outstanding. Great tonal range, contrast, sharpness and grain. This film was shot during the London snowy period (Feb 2018) and the following week (1st week of March).
Full development stats:
I took a roll of Bergger Pancro out to Kew Gardens. The results are interesting, I was not expecting so much grain. The research I have done on this film (Flickr, Wiki, Google) showed the images to be fairly fine grain for this speed. The wide shots are fairly standard with no remarkable features but where this film has stood out is on the close ups. The grain and contrast definitely compliment the photograph.
I am unsure why there was so much grain, I followed the develop instructions from the box. I bought this roll from eBay so am suspicious I have bought an out of date roll or a cassette which is not Bergger but labelled as such and the film inside is a crappy coated emulsion?
I decided to go crazy and push a roll of Kentmere 100 to 1600iso.
It took a while to decide which development time I should go for. Kodak, Ilford, Adox and various forums all suggest different timings. I was reading from one commenter to double the timings plus 20%. The Massive DevChart has a rough guide on how to work out timings when pushing however did not extend to four stops. I decided on Rodinol 1+100 at 120 minutes, 20ºc. The first 5 minutes I agitated the soup every 30s for 15s. After 30 minutes I agitated for 15s.
Full development stats:
I must admit when I pulled the negative out of the soup I was expecting a series of black frames from either the contrast going crazy or from over developing. I peeled back the first few frames to check the fix and to my surprise saw some well developed shots!
Kentmere 100 is rated best between 50-200 ISO….. so I was expecting a lot of grain….once I dried and scanned the negative I was blown away how detailed the shots are. The grain is fairly small and overall contrast not as intense as I expected. The night time/darker photos are when I was drunk on a night out and was underexposing instead of overexposing. The daytime photographs on the street I overexposed by at least a stop.
There is change in the contrast levels of each photo, some pictures (such as the swimming pool shot) have a lot of grey tone without much highlight and shadow whereas other pictures are more contrasty.
I will push this film beyond four stops in the future to see how far it will go and still give me useable shots.
This is the first time I have shot with Lucky 100 and I am very pleased with the results. I was surprised how much detail I was able to read from the negative as quite a few photographs looked washed out, as a result the contrast was fairly flat, even though pushed. The final photographs uploaded have been worked in Lightroom.
I try to retain as many aesthetic features of the film type I am shooting however on this occasion I made adjustments to achieve the best image overall as the contrast was too flat for the effect I was going for.
I used the recommended development times from DevChart. Next time I will add an extra 2-4 minutes on to the developer to see how this affects the negative on Lucky 100.
One thing I found frustrating is there are no identifiable marks on the negative. No frame numbers, film type etc. This may be me nit picking but I like having frame numbers next to my shot so I can correlate that to my digital archive. The plastic used for the negative feels flimsier than the Kentmere 400 which is hanging on the left in the photograph above. The negative also curls easily even when dried straight for two hours, I have not experienced this amount of curling once dried from any other film I have shot, ever.
I love the Lucky 100 film. It’s produced some strong black and whites with detail in the shadows and highlights, images are sharp with an un-intrusive grain. A bonus to having a low contrast negative is the massive tonal range and control in post with where I wanted contrast.
Some great contrast, grain and tones from the Kentmere 400. I scan my film at 300DPI and for this particular roll I used the delta negafix profile as it provided good results from the highlights and shaddow. I used the Canon AE-1 for this roll of film with a 50mm prime lens. The camera handled well, for its age there was no light bleed on the roll of film. I noticed when scanning/in post that the negatives are a little darker, the camera meter may be suggesting an exposure that is under by a stop or so. I will test this further in upcoming shoots.
I found the manual focus on the old FD lens exceptionally smooth and quick to use. The manual film wind coupled with the retro look and feel of the AE-1 gave a very enjoyable shooting experience. I would highly recommend this camera!
It has been a long time since I uploaded to this blog, my first post in over 3 years is Ilford Pan 100 pushed to 200. Developed myself. Details are below….
No pushing or pulling, shot straight out of the box. With a little bit of love.
Ilford XP2 Super 400 is the second film I shot at London Pride 2014. The streets were once again alive and buzzing, by this time of the day i’d had a fair bit to drink and was definitely enjoying the evening!
I have said this a lot over the past year but Ilford always performs well. This film has an excellent tonal range and really bites in the shadows whilst holding on to details. The highlights are given a glow by the grain softening them.
The 400 speed SP2 has a much larger and higher grain value compared to other 400 speed films such as Kodak TMAX or BW400CN that boast a super fine grain at high speed. That being said, the ‘rugged’, grainy look is something that I love about Ilford.