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Langford's Basic Photography, 9th Edition by Richard Sawdon Smith, Anna Fox, Michael Langford

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Processing film is relatively simple but it requires a consistent, controlled routine. The gelatin of the emulsion absorbs liquid chemicals, which react with those within the film, differentiating between exposed and unexposed parts of the image. Essentially the ‘latent image’ formed by the action of light on the emulsion while in the camera is developed, changing its chemical make-up into something more permanent, and then fixed and washed to make it no longer light-sensitive and to remove the chemical by-products.

The most accurate processing is given by automatic machinery, which gives very consistent results but is expensive to set up and ...

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