Film Development

It is the photographer’s job to see more intensely than most people do. He must keep in him something of the child who looks at the world for the first time or of the traveler who enters a strange country.

-Bill Brandt, 1948

The choice of which film developer to use is perhaps the single most important decision a photographer can make. Film developers directly affect the sharpness (acutance), graininess, tonal scale, and contrast of the image. All are interdependent. For example, film developers that maximize sharpness do so at the cost of increased graininess. High-energy film developers shorten the tonal scale of a negative, and soft-working developers, while extending the scale, lower the contrast.

For landscape and architectural ...

Get The Darkroom Cookbook, 3rd Edition now with the O’Reilly learning platform.

O’Reilly members experience live online training, plus books, videos, and digital content from nearly 200 publishers.