The Darkroom
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The Darkroom
Frances E. Schultz Sep 01, 2006 1 comments

Leonard Bernstein's Mass is the next thing I want to buy for my darkroom. It might seem an odd choice, but for me the darkroom is not only a place of work: it is also a place of sanctuary. We quite often get letters from people who are returning to the wet darkroom, or are setting one up for the first time. What is the appeal? After all, you can now just sit down in front of...

Frances E. Schultz Feb 01, 2006 1 comments

"Sorry, that's been discontinued." The salesclerk shakes his head. And that, you realize with sinking heart, is that: no more of your favorite film, paper, developer, whatever. These are trying times. What do you do?

First of all, make sure he's telling the truth. Far too often, "That's been discontinued" actually means...

The Darkroom
Frances E. Schultz Nov 01, 2005 2 comments

The way the battle lines are drawn, you might think that all photographers are committed exclusively to silver halide or exclusively to digital and n'er the twain shall meet. It isn't so. In reality the twain have met. More and more photographers weave seamlessly between the two without a thought. It's only the die-hards in each camp that refuse to acknowledge...

The Darkroom
Frances E. Schultz Sep 01, 2005 14 comments

After looking at the prints I had just given her, my neighbor Genevieve said, "I have never seen prints of these photographs before."

It all started when she showed me a box of 6x4.5cm glass plates from 1923-'35. It was a collection of family photos of her father, aunt, and uncle when they were small children. In France glass plates were used for far...

The Darkroom
Frances E. Schultz May 01, 2005 1 comments

Photos © 2004, Frances E. Schultz, All Rights Reserved

How brown do you like your toast? The answer, of course, is "It depends." What kind of bread is it? How old is the bread? How thick? What are you going to put on it? How are you feeling at the time? You can't make hard and fast rules, even for yourself. It's even harder to make toast for...

The Darkroom
Frances E. Schultz Feb 01, 2005 3 comments

Many people seem to believe that darkroom chemicals have a fixed capacity, beyond which they stop working. This is quite a long way from the truth. The life of most chemical baths used in the darkroom can be divided into four stages. First, there is the fresh bath, with full vigor. Second, there is the partially exhausted bath, which still works but takes longer. Third, there is...

The Darkroom
Frances E. Schultz Dec 01, 2004 4 comments

The easy way to make a great print is to start out with a great negative. In theory, it's not that difficult to learn to make great negatives. Each film you shoot and process, you learn a little more about how to get closer to the perfect negative. But there are two large, active flies in this particular ointment. One is that you don't want to throw away all your old...

The Darkroom
Darryl C. Nicholas Nov 01, 2004 1 comments

A few months ago I showed you how to create a background for a portrait by using the Adobe Gradient tool. That tool produced a nice, smooth, gradated background as though the photographer had put a small hot spotlight on a smooth background. In this article I will show you how to create a mottled background similar to the painted canvas backgrounds that are so popular among...

The Darkroom
Frances E. Schultz Oct 01, 2004 1 comments

Photos © 2004, Frances E. Schultz, All Rights Reserved

Large format is fun: magical tonality, and detail in the print that goes on and on. Better still, it's easy. If you already have a darkroom, you probably have everything you need to make large format contact...

The Darkroom
Darryl C. Nicholas Sep 01, 2004 1 comments

One of the secrets to making great ink jet prints is to set the black point correctly in the image file before sending the image to the printer. The black point in an image is the group of pixels that should be printed as solid, D-max, black. If this...

The Darkroom
Frances E. Schultz Jun 01, 2004 0 comments

Wrinkles or character lines? Few people want their portraits to show every line on their face. The camera may not...

The Darkroom
Darryl C. Nicholas Mar 01, 2004 2 comments

All of us take snapshots. Sometimes those snapshots can be turned into very nice portraits. Take a look at one of my snapshots (#1). Actually, this snapshot was taken of my wife Faye and I, one night when we were out celebrating our son's wedding.

The Darkroom
Bill Davis Feb 01, 2004 1 comments

There's no denying the greater convenience variable contrast printing paper affords. With only one box of paper and using appropriate filtration you can get virtually any contrast rendition you desire. But another benefit of multicontrast papers is...

The Darkroom
Frances E. Schultz Dec 01, 2003 1 comments

What is the use of having an old-fashioned, "wet" black and white darkroom in the 21st century? Well, it's a bit like religion. If you have to ask the question, you'll never understand the answer. Anyone who loves darkroom knows the...

The Darkroom
Frances E. Schultz Oct 01, 2003 5 comments

"A house is a machine for living."--Le Corbusier

Any machine needs maintenance. Here's how I maintain my darkroom: a "strip, clean, and overhaul" in...