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Thread: need help!

  1. #1

    Talking need help!

    hey guys and pros... i'm quite a newie..need some advice.... i had just taken a roll of B&W photos(my 1st)... and results.. are quite disappointing. Most does not have the contrast. My scanner is down, so unable to upload them. But for taking BW, do i have to underexpose? how many stops?
    Btw, i using AGFA APX400.. recomend by photo shop... what are the reviews for it?

    Btw, just another ques.. do i have to keep the negatives in the dry box?

  2. #2
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    Did you use any filters? Coloured filters can be used to boost contrast. The most common filters for B&W are yellow and red filters, followed by green and blue filters. The red filter will dramatically darken any blues, so the blue sky turns in a very dark colour. Basically, any coloured filter will lighten its own colour while darkening its complementary colour in the colour wheel.

    A common saying for B&W is to expose for the shadows and develop for the highlights. Basically, when metering a scene, try to see which part of the picture has the darkest shadow in which you want to retain detail, and expose for that. When developing and printing, the opposite occurs and you look at the highlights where you don't want to get blown (I'm not really an expert, so please correct me if I'm wrong).

    So lack of contrast may occur if you meter the scene wrong, or if the developer develope it wrong. I sent my first few rolls of B&W to 2 different developers (one a high street shop, and the other is a mailer from Ilford), and the film which I sent to Ilford, came back very good while the high street shop gave me muddy prints, so the developer is very important (especially if you are not developing yourself).

    I personally prefer Ilford HP-5 and the classic Kodak Tri-X, both of which have good latitudes and excellent grain for the reportage look.

    Negatives can grow mouldy too (like lens), so its best to dump them in together with the camera into the drybox if you have space.

    Hope that helps!

  3. #3

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    Quote Originally Posted by justarius
    Did you use any filters? Coloured filters can be used to boost contrast. The most common filters for B&W are yellow and red filters, followed by green and blue filters. The red filter will dramatically darken any blues, so the blue sky turns in a very dark colour. Basically, any coloured filter will lighten its own colour while darkening its complementary colour in the colour wheel.

    A common saying for B&W is to expose for the shadows and develop for the highlights. Basically, when metering a scene, try to see which part of the picture has the darkest shadow in which you want to retain detail, and expose for that. When developing and printing, the opposite occurs and you look at the highlights where you don't want to get blown (I'm not really an expert, so please correct me if I'm wrong).

    So lack of contrast may occur if you meter the scene wrong, or if the developer develope it wrong. I sent my first few rolls of B&W to 2 different developers (one a high street shop, and the other is a mailer from Ilford), and the film which I sent to Ilford, came back very good while the high street shop gave me muddy prints, so the developer is very important (especially if you are not developing yourself).

    I personally prefer Ilford HP-5 and the classic Kodak Tri-X, both of which have good latitudes and excellent grain for the reportage look.

    Negatives can grow mouldy too (like lens), so its best to dump them in together with the camera into the drybox if you have space.

    Hope that helps!

    Hey hey 1st of all thanks alot!
    No i didn't use any filters.. but just bough a green filter as i thought it may help.. so that means my green filter complement yellow?
    mailer from Ilford? what does that mean? pardon me pls...
    i saw Ilford.. how much is it? i got my agfa at 5.50...
    yeah.. i am really in love with BW... i love moods... so really thanks...

  4. #4

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    Quote Originally Posted by armand78
    i saw Ilford.. how much is it? i got my agfa at 5.50...
    yeah.. i am really in love with BW... i love moods... so really thanks...
    I normally get mine from ruby@penisular plaza.Do talk to the nice uncle there! I got my Ilford FP4 Plus, which is ISO 125 quite cheap there. Its buy 2 get one roll free. So i think it was about 9bucks plus. If i'm not wrong,they've got an ISO 400 buy 2 get one free too.

    And perhaps you may wanna try a lower film speed? Pros,do correct me if i'm wrong, but with a lower ISO, the grains are much finer, so when you print your pictures right, they actually come out much sharper and more contrasty! which is exactly what you want for a real nice black and white shot! Yummy!

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by raine
    I normally get mine from ruby@penisular plaza.Do talk to the nice uncle there! I got my Ilford FP4 Plus, which is ISO 125 quite cheap there. Its buy 2 get one roll free. So i think it was about 9bucks plus. If i'm not wrong,they've got an ISO 400 buy 2 get one free too.

    And perhaps you may wanna try a lower film speed? Pros,do correct me if i'm wrong, but with a lower ISO, the grains are much finer, so when you print your pictures right, they actually come out much sharper and more contrasty! which is exactly what you want for a real nice black and white shot! Yummy!
    where to go to dev ilford? & how much?

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by armand78
    Hey hey 1st of all thanks alot!
    No i didn't use any filters.. but just bough a green filter as i thought it may help.. so that means my green filter complement yellow?
    mailer from Ilford? what does that mean? pardon me pls...
    i saw Ilford.. how much is it? i got my agfa at 5.50...
    yeah.. i am really in love with BW... i love moods... so really thanks...
    Green is opposite red on the colour wheel, so it would lighten greens and darken reds.

    I don't think Ilford has any mailers here, but basically a mailer is an envelope which you buy from the company (Iflord, Fuji, Kodak all have mailers in the UK which you can buy online or from some photo shops. Some developing shops also use the mailer system). You pay the price of developing and printing when you buy the envelope, and when you want to develop pictures, you put in the film in the envelope, mail it to Fuji or Ilford or whatever, and about a week later, you get back the prints and negatives in the mail.

    foxtwo: I got my HP-5 and Tri-X developed at a Fuji Frontier lab (they had to sent it off to the main branch to develop though), but it costs me the same as normal colour prints.

  7. #7

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    wao guys thanks for all the advices!! just went to library@orchard to borrow 2 B&W books! keke... hopefully it helps....

    Raine: actually i prefer a little grainy feeling for B&W... well just preference... for now.. haa.. still i will try out the Ilfords u mention and see the difference! thanks thanks... btw, ruby is at which floor? i bought mine at konota.. 1st level.. alot of pros develop their photos?

    justurius: Really lots of thanks!

  8. #8
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    No problem... we are all here to help

    anyway, ruby is in peninsular shopping centre on the ground floor next to The Camera Workshop.

  9. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by justarius
    No problem... we are all here to help

    anyway, ruby is in peninsular shopping centre on the ground floor next to The Camera Workshop.
    yar yar, we're just hear to share and help each other out! so no worries mate! I'm just starting out too! but been doing lots of black and white.

    Oh, and i develop my black and whites myself, in school. So,yeap... But i think justarius has got a good lobang if he's able to print his b&w photos for the same price as normal coloured prints. That's a steal!

  10. #10
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    hehe, 30 cents per print, regardless of B&W or Colour.. and it's just at my doorstep, so can't complain.

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