Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Developing Ultrafine High Contrast Ortho Litho Sheet Film

I bought some Ultrafine High Contrast Ortho Litho film from Ultrafineonline.com. I am using this film as my introduction to film developing as it is cheap and can have very interesting results. I exposed the film in a 4x5 Orbit Monorail MF camera made by Burke and James. The first thing I noticed was that the film is 4x5 - not 3.9 x 4.9 - so it doesn't fit easily in the film holders for the camera. I was still able to load the film, but am not sure it was flat - but this was a learning process so I didn't worry too much about that.

I took a several shots with f15 and a shutter speed ranging from 1 min to 5 mins.  It was a partly cloudy day and somewhere I had read that this was a good starting point. 

I developed the film in Dektol  paper developer and a fixer. I read where you can develop by sight. All of the negatives were black - which means they were over exposed.

I did a test where I developed a negative without exposing it and it turned out clear. I think this proved my darkroom was ok and the chemistry was fine. I realized later that I didn't dilute the Dektol. I took some more sample shots at a 3 min shutter and the negatives were still overexposed.

I am slow. Once I had in my mind I needed long exposures - I ignored the fact that I was getting overexposures.

I am going to take a break, regroup, do more study, and then try again and use a light meter to set up my camera.