As a part of Skill Sets lessons with our tutor Laura, we are being taught how to develop our negatives and next we’ve learned how to print these negatives onto paper.
The process we are learning about at this time is similar to one we followed last year and which we went on to use in the photogram project.
Firstly, using the enlarger, setting both aperture and contrast, then secondly, we expose the print to the light, otherwise known in the photographic lexicon as ‘burning’.
So as to take a first look at the negatives I set the enlarger, as follows,
Seconds: 20, Contrast: 3-24-42
This print gave me a first view of the photographs, I then selected a single image which I thought to be most fitting to the project, then did a first print based on the same settings. The only setting I did change was the timing, because for a first print we need to determine which timing is best for the print selected, so resulting that we enlightened every 2 centimetres of the photograph for 2 seconds.
During the lesson we had been taught different techniques, such as ‘dodging’ and ‘burning’ which can be best explained as the means whereby attempts can be made to add or detract the number of seconds in the enlightening process.
Dodging is the process whereby we take seconds off the exposure, the process also consists of the covering of a part or detail of the frame so as to take some of the exposure off. This will result in those parts of the print being lighter than the rest.
‘Burning’ is a longer exposure of part of the print, to achieve this we used a pice of cardboard with pierced to create a hole, and to make a part of the print darker we position the cardboard above the print and allow light to pass through the hole and so creating the depth of darkness desired.
After several attempts I decided to start from a contrast setting of 2 then burning the foreground of the frame for 10 seconds with a contrast setting of 3 seconds.
As suggested by my tutor Laura I then printed a selection of photographs I felt best suited the project we had been given, so therefore I should emphasise these photographs with the identity within them.