the Paper Chase

Corrected view

Corrected view if printed.

Well today I took a few minutes to make a couple of test Paper Negatives (I used my Kodak 5×7 2D and Ilford MGIV RC photographic paper) to use for my developer testing as I try to iron out my mixtures (Formula) and technique to produce some usable paper negatives using Caffenol developer.  It is a fun diversion from straight darkroom work, and is the root of many a happy accident, I spend a lot of time recording the failures as much as the successes, you never know where it may lead.


The following Negatives where inverted to make them positives.

(B) Neg, exp 6 min, f/16, rated ISO-6 developed Caffenol Test mix #1

(B) 5×7 Negative, exp 6 min, f/16, rated ISO-6 developed Caffenol Test mix #1


Negative (A), inverted to a positive

5×7 Negative (A), inverted to a positive. exp 2.5 minutes @ f/8

Paper Negative on (Ilford MGIV RC photographic paper), developed in Caffenol test mix #1.

Test formula # 1  . . . Caffenol – P (not my recipe)

Water        500ml

Instant Coffee    15g

Washing Soda    12g

Vitamin C            10g

The above photos where taken with my fuji x100 in B&W mode and are not scanned as is my normal practice, but are sufficient for the purpose of this blog and to show what is going on.  Photo (A) is a series of blunders, I didn’t stop down the lens as intended so it was wide open @ f/8 that was terminated early and I did not allow it full development in the Caffenol Developer which produced smoky effect in the upper part of the negative (the part above the camera).  This actually answered an earlier issue I observed and thought to be Bromide drag which I now think I can attribute to incomplete development.  Ilford MGIV is an RC based paper that you develop to completion to get proper blacks so my observation when compared to Photo (B) which was allowed to develop fully is that you do not see the cloudy, wispy effect as seen in Photo (A).   The lighting was ambient from the window to camera right and door to camera left, in my dim living room.  This test answered many of my questions about the Caffenol Developer and the RC multi grade paper.

Next test will include a yellow filter and pre-flash of the paper before exposure.  As to the Caffenol Test mix #1 I am satisfied with the results. So that is how my paper Negative / Caffenol testing is going.

Get off your BUTT . . . and go make a picture . . .


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