2014/05/11

Black and White is a different beast

I just recently started shooting black and white film and of course, just like I do with color, I develop the film myself. I am still getting used to thinking in B/W and I have to say it's a lot harder than color. Even the development part - I seriously don't understand why so many people say that B/W is more easy than color development. The C41 Process is standardized, there are good chemical kits available and the only thing you need to know is to have the chemicals at 38 degrees Celsius. Look up the development times and have some stopwatch and you are ready to go.

Not so with B/W film. You need to look at massive charts that are missing you exact ISO/film/developer combination and everybody on the internet keeps writing that B/W development is easy without telling you how it's done. B/W film is absolutely not forgiving when you process it too long, mess up the dilution ratio etc. - the film gets grainy instantly. That said, here's a nice tutorial that won't go into all the unnecessary details (in German).

It's the first time that I developed and shot B/W, but the results are OK. Here are a few samples.