I’ve been re-looking at my 35mm negatives from the last 12 years and was thinking about printing some of the older negatives. I have a particularly decent set from our visits to Paris from 2008 to 2010. It was an eye opener! Some of the very early negatives hadn’t survived too well. My processing wasn’t up to scratch then and some of the negatives are starting to degrade – not massively – but from tiny (miniscule!) dark spots. On the print they hardly show up but when I scan them….well, I haven’t the patience to go through the scan and ‘heal’ the white spots! I’m not sure what it is that originally caused it – water scale, bad fixer? – but it’s annoying. Luckily, it seems to have only affected the first couple of rolls.
Secondly, my exposures in those early days were all over the place. I would photograph everything and anything and sometimes the light was really bad – and it shows! Also, again, my processing wasn’t taking lighting conditions into account.
Luckily, over time things did improve but I was fed up with struggling last night to get something worthwhile in the darkroom from those Paris negatives. In the end, in frustration, I selected my latest roll of 35mm from a couple of years ago and ended up with this print which I was pleased with. It still needs some finer adjustments but I’m keen to work it up to a decent print now.
This was taken a couple of years ago near Hawnby. The farmer came to check me and my mate out to see what we were up to as they’d had a couple of burglary’s recently. Once he saw the old cameras he left us to it! Around here is an ancient settlement and some of the outline of the settlement can still be seen. (The scan is a photo taken on my iPhone so the format is slightly cropped).
Nikon FM2n; 35mm f/2 AI lens; Ilford HP5+; printed on Ilford MGIV RC paper.