Tuesday, July 21, 2020


Quarai Ruins, Salinas National Monument, New Mexico
Update Just To Update

Here's one of the paper negatives from the wide-angle pinhole camera, with "processing artifacts" in the sky.


I actually like it, though I can't take credit for an accident. This is one of those examples where a true artist would know how to embrace serendipity in their process; whereas myself, as more of a technician than artist, just sees fault. I think it's important that photographers learn to inhabit that space where the unpredictable arises as a result of a continual process of experimentation. It's all too easy to get wrapped up in the classic 20th century photographic techniques, that were refined more for commercial purposes.

My mistake was sloshing an unmeasured quantity of fresh developer in the tray as a replenishment, which then proved too strong, as the subsequent negative got too dense too fast. Then, to compensate, I pulled the next negative out after only 20 seconds and let it sit face-up, in an attempt at compensating development (where the shadows continue processing but the highlights slow down), but this resulted in the uneven tones.

As I mentioned in the typecast, today I did a controlled experiment, using only 50mL of used developer, merely enough to barely submerge a 4x5 negative in a 5x7 tray, and with sufficient agitation (intermittent but thorough) the result was rather nice.


Note the compensating effect, as the sky retains some detail that might otherwise be lost. This technique certainly deserves more testing.

Here's another iPhone image I like:

Quarai Ruins, Salinas National Monument, New Mexico

Here I purposefully exposed for the clouds to retain some detail (since digital sensors can so easily over-expose the highlights), then pulled up the shadows and adjusted the tones afterward.

Typecast via Royal Mercury.

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Blogger Ted said...

Very nice. Love the sunbeam you caught in the first one. (:

10:03 PM  

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