General Processes and Darkroom Tips

How To Make A Great Black And White Print

It may seem like magic, but the steps to making a great black and white print are simple and methodical. This article will provide a step-by-step guide to paper processing, for both Fiber and RC prints, as well as some helpful hints to guide you on your way. Also, if you are starting your darkroom from scratch, you will want to see our Darkroom Supply List...

Darkroom Supply List

Here are the essentials of any good basic darkroom. In setting up yours, you can choose from a wide variety of equipment to suit your needs. This is a recommend list of everything you need to start a darkroom...

Enlarger Bulb Chart

This chart covers the enlargers we sell. We also have bulbs for almost every enlarger made. If you don't see what you need, give us a call at (800) 292-6137, or e-mail us...

How Safe Are Your Darkroom Safe Lights?

Light is both a blessing and a curse for photographers! Without it, Hershel could not have coined the term "photography", which literally means "writing with light" (Photo means light, graphy means writing). On the other hand, if uncontrolled, light is an obstacle for anyone wishing to work in the darkroom...

Developing Time Based On Temperature Changes

Ideally, your film developer and other chemicals should all be used at 68°F. In reality, temperatures can vary widely unless you have an expensive fluid control system installed in your darkroom. Fortunately, we have found an easy Fahrenheit chart that works great...

Understanding Toners

Toning has been around almost as long as photography itself. In 1840 Frenchman Hippolyte Fizeau created a gold chloride toning bath to increase the stability of Daguerreotype images. Since then, many toners have been developed...

Using Color Enlargers with B&W Paper

Most enlarger manufacturers use these filtration values. This table is intended as a guide to making prints on Ilford MG paper when using a Dichroic Head Color Enlarger. You may also use them with other brands of variable contrast paper with good results...

'Pseudo-Platinum' Printing

I've long been a fan of soft, warm, tactile, earthy traditional/analog/darkroom prints. Some are platinum/palladium. Others are vintage silver prints that exhibit a similar warm 'feel' that is just so inviting to me...

Contrast Masking The Traditional Print

By using various kinds of contrast masks, the traditional photographer can have far greater contrast control, from subtle to extreme, on his prints than merely using standard methods such as paper grade or developer changes. Contrast masking can also be used to affect contrast or brightness in localized areas of the image. Another great benefit of contrast masking is that the original negative is never subjected to any potentially damaging or risky chemical processes...

Toning Black and White Prints

There are two reasons for toning black and white photographs: to achieve greater longevity of the image by protecting or altering the silver in the emulsion of the print or to change the feeling of the photograph by modifying the print color. Selenium, sepia and gold are the most popular types of toning used to enhance the archival permanence of the image. These toners also can alter the color of a print depending on the type of paper used, the type of developer used and the dilution of the toner...

Contrast Masking The Traditional Print - Example Images

Example Images All photographs below copyright © Lynn Radeka. All rights reserved. Abandoned Building, New Harmony, UT...

Precipitate in PMK developer Solution A?

Dear Gordon, I recently noticed a white precipitate in Solution 'A' of my PMK developer, which is now several years old. I have also noticed a progressive increase in fog in negatives (FP4+) processed in this chemistry. Is it possible that the precipitate is sodium sulphite and that this is causing the increase in fog density, due to loss of acidity and hence an increase in pH?..