Doka 2013As before mentioned, 2013 was a photography year. And in addition to setting a new personal record of 12 rolls of film (being the slow shooter that I am) I got the opportunity to develop and print one of those films myself! Under the expert care of Marco Maas I got back into black and white darkroom developing. The last time I printed my own photos was more than 20 years ago, and I can’t remember ever developing any of my own films.


So, armed with my Leicaflex SL, a roll of Ilford Delta 400, a couple of bottles Tripel Karmeliet (good photography is all about the glass!) and a pack of smokes we turned of the lights four thursday evenings in a row. After a bit of home reading about the chemicals, the process and equipment plus a short introduction to developing and printing we got to develop our first films.

The following evenings we turned to printing and its various techniques including dodging and burning, remember those photoshop junkies? Especially the shot of the canal under the overpass took some manipulation to get all the greys in. If you look at the print you’ll notice all the dust and textile fibers from the vintage dry-mount press, I left them there on purpose. Another thing we did was to try to manipulate the perspective on the shot of Sabine in front of the Batiks by tilting the enlarger. Awesome stuff, and nothing can beat the magic of the final image appearing magically onto the paper*. If you’re wondering what to do this spring, I can definitely recommend getting back into the nearest darkroom!



*) All single images are scanned negatives and not meant to demonstrate loss of quality between prints and scans. Printing is completely different process, and both have their use. Sharing images across the internet for example.