Film Photography: Developing & Digitising Black & White Film at Home | Evgeniya & Dominic Righini-Brand | Skillshare

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Film Photography: Developing & Digitising Black & White Film at Home

teacher avatar Evgeniya & Dominic Righini-Brand, Graphic Design & Photography

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Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

    • 1.

      Introduction & Overview


    • 2.

      Black & White Film Photography Nowadays


    • 3.

      Preparing Your Film for Processing


    • 4.

      Loading the Development Tank


    • 5.

      Chemicals & Equipment


    • 6.

      Developing Your Film


    • 7.

      Stop Bath


    • 8.

      Fixing Your Film


    • 9.

      Washing Your Negatives


    • 10.

      Drying Your Negatives


    • 11.

      Archiving Your Negatives


    • 12.

      Digitising Your Negatives


    • 13.

      Image Resolution & Colour Mode


    • 14.

      Cleaning & Retouching Photographs in Photoshop


    • 15.

      Tonal Adjustments


    • 16.

      Sharpening Photographs in Photoshop


    • 17.

      Saving Images for Print & Web


    • 18.

      What Next & Conclusion


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About This Class

Take full control of your film photography by learning to develop black & white film at home, and then by digitising and retouching your photographs in Adobe Photoshop.

Being able to develop black & white film at home can give you a lot of freedom and room for experimentation, and it's not as complicated as it may seem! All you need is a few chemicals, basic equipment and attention, patience and precision when following the instructions—and you’ll learn to achieve great results and never go back to a black & white photo processing lab!

I am Dominic Righini-Brand, and even though most of my professional photography is digital, I still love chemical photography and shooting with black & white film! I first leaned how to process black and white film nearly 20 years ago when I was a high school student and have been doing it ever since!

In this class you will learn:

  • what equipment & chemicals you need to develop black & white film;
  • how to process black & white film in the home environment;
  • best practices for archiving your negatives;
  • how to digitise your negatives;
  • how to clean, retouch and enhance your scanned photographs in Adobe Photoshop;
  • and how to save your photographs for print or web.

This class is suitable for anyone who is already shooting on film and wants to level up their chemical photography skills. To complete this class you will need a basic understanding of black & white film photography—you will need to be able to successfully shoot a black & white film to be able to develop it afterwards.



  • Development tank;
  • Changing bag or lightproof space;
  • Scissors;
  • Bottle opener or church key;
  • 100ml measuring cylinder;
  • 1 litre measuring jug;
  • A large jug (1–2 litre) for mixing chemicals;
  • Thermometer;
  • Running water supply (with warm water);
  • Clock/timer or a timer app on your phone;
  • Safety glasses;
  • Rubber gloves (if you have a skin condition).

I cannot wait to see you in the class and hear about your experience with black & white film photography!


To celebrate the launch of this class will be running a special contest and giving away 3 photographic prints and one lucky winner will also get a 30-minute video call with us to discuss their photographic work! To enter simply watch the whole class, leave a review and drop us an e-mail or a message on Instagram or Facebook with the screenshot showing that you have completed watching the class. 

Entry deadline is at midnight EST on Thursdays, 12 October 2017, and the winners will be randomly picked and announced the following day, so good luck!

Meet Your Teacher

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Evgeniya & Dominic Righini-Brand

Graphic Design & Photography

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1. Introduction & Overview: There is something really special about black and white film photography, which digital, no matter how much it develops, cannot fully replicate. Being able to develop your own black and white film at home can give you a lot of freedom and room for experimentation. I am Dominic from Attitude Creative. I first learned how to process black and white film nearly 20 years ago when I was a high school student, and I've been doing it ever since. In this class, I'm going to show you what equipment and chemicals you need to develop black and white film. How to do it in the home environment and how to digitize and enhance your scanned photographs in Photoshop. This class is suitable for anyone already shooting on film and who wants to level up their chemical photography skills. Whether you've got a normal camera, or have decided to invest in a classic film camera like my Nikon F2, and want to take full control of your photography, this is the class for you. Most of the things I'm going to be showing are not super complicated. But you'll need to have a basic understanding of film photography and follow the advice and instructions to achieve great results. To celebrate the launch of this class, we're going to be running a special contest, in giving away free photographic prints. One lucky winner will also get a 30-minute video call of us to discuss their photographic work. To enter, simply watch the whole class, leave a review, and drop us an e-mail or message on Instagram or Facebook with a screenshot showing us that you have completed watching the class. Entry deadline is at midnight Eastern Standard Time on Thursday, the 12th of October, 2017. The winners will be randomly picked and announced the following day. Good luck. I cannot wait to see you in the class, and hear about your experience with black and white film photography. Join now and let's make something awesome. 2. Black & White Film Photography Nowadays: Although a lot of my professional work is digital, I still love chemical photography and shooting of black and white film. When I studied photography at college, digital cameras were still in the infancy. If you wanted to photograph using an SLR camera, then you pretty much had to use film. Digital SLR cameras were not readily available, and those which existed like the Nikon D1 were expensive professional level models. Film photography also produce better results, both in image size and quality. But overall, there is something special about chemical photography, which digital, no matter how much it develops, will not be able to fully replicate. I fell in love with black and white photography for processing and developing prints in my college darkroom. I have used many different film cameras over the years. My favorites include the Pentax Spotmatic series by Pentax ME Super, and my Pentax 645 Medium Format. I also enjoy shooting on my Nikon F2 and occasionally take my Soviet Fed 3 for spin. These days, there are still many different types of black and white photographic film available in 35-millimeter, 120 and sheet formats. I typically use Elephant film stock. But there are other brands available including Kodak, Fujifilm, and Kentmere. Ultimately, good black and white film processing is about control, so once you've decided what you want to use, it is best to stick with it and use it consistently because you will learn how to use it really well. For this class, I'm using Ilford film stock. However, if you're using a film which is not Ilford, then just try to match the ISO because all films conform to international standards. Some films have a slightly different grain or could be designed to perform better in different lighting scenarios. But you're going to find that 100-400 ISO is standard territory for black and white film, so you cannot go wrong here. I usually keep in my camera bag a range of different films for use in different lighting scenarios and lighting conditions. Ilford FP4 Plus is rated to a 125 by ISO, and it is a good all-rounder because it produces highly detailed photographs in good indoor and outdoor lighting conditions. It offered FP4 Plus is a medium speed all-purpose black and white film with very fine grain and outstanding sharpness. It is therefore an ideal film for portraits, fashion, street, product, landscape, and architectural photography. It has my work horse, and I always have it doesn't films in my camera bag. Ilford HP5 Plus is a high-speed, fine-grained film which produces medium contrast images. It is rated to 400 ISO, so the grain it producers will always be greater than that produced using FB4. Due to its increased exposure latitude, this film is great for journalism, documentary, travel, sports, action, and indoor available like photography. Ilford Pan F Plus is a slow speed, high-contrast black and white film, offering exceptionally fine grain sharpness and detail. Because it is rated to just 50 ISO, it is only suitable for bright conditions, sunny days, and controlled studio lighting. This makes it an ideal film for architectural, still Life, fashion, and portrait photography. It is also a great film to use if you intend to enlarge your prints due to its ultrafine grain size. Ilford Delta 3200 professional is an extremely fast black and white film best used in difficult situations. The images that it producers are very grainy. It is ideal for fast action and low-light photography, including nighttime shots, geeks, sport, and indoor photography where flashes for better. It is rated to 3,200 ISO, and I always keep a row handy. Could only shoot with this film in extreme scenarios. Have a look at offered website. You'll find tons of information about their range of films and information about how their best used. Also have a look around on the web. You'll discover that the film market is flourishing, and there's tons of options available. 3. Preparing Your Film for Processing: Before you can start developing, you'll need to prepare your film. Unlike Black and White Paper, photographic film cannot be exposed to any light, so you're going to need to find a light-tight space or use a changing bag. Possible spaces in your home could include your bathroom if it does not have any windows or the closet. It is really important to stop all of the light so check for any gaps or cracks which may allow the light to get it in. You might need to place a towel underneath the door to stop the light or tape over any gaps using PVC electrical tape. It is also a good idea to make sure you have a table or a comfortable place to sit and work while you're preparing a film. Remember, you will not be able to see anything. A film changing bag is a late proof bag with elasticated holes for your hands, allowing you to work with the film inside. Changing bags, especially designed for working photographic film and cameras. You can buy them online or your local photography shop. They typically cost $40-$45. To develop your film. You will need a film development tape, which is especially designed Light proof container with an opening to allow it add and to drain photographic chemicals and water. Development takes usually cost about $40 depending on their Making size. I'm using a Paterson universal development tank, which can hold several 35-millimeter or 120 medium format film. Different development takes work in different ways. For example, my Paterson tank takes up the film using ball bearings. However, some older development tanks may use a clip or hook in the middle of them real to hold the film in place. If you have never used a development type before, I recommend you get the Paterson design because it is probably the easiest one to use. You also need some scissors to cut the film or bottle opener or church key to open the film canister. 4. Loading the Development Tank: I remember when I first learned how to develop black-and-white film. I had to practice 10-15 times before I prepared my first black-and-white film for development. If you have never done this before, I highly recommend that you practice first on an old film. Firstly in the light, and then multiple times in your changing bag or blacked out space. Remember to make yourself comfortable because you will not be able to see anything, and we'll need to be able to do this by touch and feel. If you are using a changing bag, place the development tank, film canister, church key, or bottle opener and scissors inside the bag and seal it up. If you're working in the closet or cupboard, neatly arrange them in front of you so you'll know where to find everything and turn off the lights. Feel around and make sure you know where everything is. Using the church key or bottle opener, pop the bottom off the film canister. Then by pushing on the spool, push the film out of the metal canister. Once outside the canister, the film will probably unspiral because it is under tension. Hold the film by its edges to avoid getting fingerprints on the emulsion. Hold the film in one hand, and use the scissors to cut the films' leading edge. Make sure this is done on the perpendicular angle. Also, try not to cut through the sprocket holes because this can make the film difficult to wind onto the reel in some development tanks. We're now ready to wind the film onto the development tank's reel. My Patterson development tank uses ball bearings to wind the film onto the reel, and there is two notches on either side to indicate where to insert the film. Have a look at your development tank before you begin and make sure you understand how it works and how to spoil the film. Different development tanks use slightly different methods, so it's always a good idea to check beforehand. Push the film's leading edge into the reel pastable bearings. Now, holding the reel in my left hand, I can start winding with my right. The film is pulled into the reel, keep winding until the entire film is on the reel and pastable bearings. If there is a problem, the film will snack and you will not be able to continue winding. If this is the case, simply open the reel and start again. There is a simple method to check that everything is working correctly. Gently push the film into the reel like this. You should be able to feel some slack. When you've finished winding film onto the reel you'll need to cut the spool off the other end of the film using scissors. Cut the film, and wind any remaining film onto the reel. I usually do this afterwards because the spool gives the film some weight and makes it easier to control when winding onto the reel. Yet again, if you've never done this before, I highly recommend that you practice first on a dummy film so you can get a feel and be well rehearsed before doing it for reel. Now that I have spooled my film onto the reel, I can place it into my development tank. My development tank is designed to process two 35-millimeter films at the same time. I am going to place empty reel on top of the reel with my 35-millimeter film. This will stop it moving around in the tank whilst I'm developing my film. Place the reels inside the development tank, and put in the funnel, and lock it in place. The development tank is now light-proof. Finally, place the waterproof lid over the top and you're done. I can now open the changing bag. Prepare the chemicals for processing. 5. Chemicals & Equipment: Processing black and white film is easy and can easily be done at home. You'll need to work in the kitchen bathroom or somewhere for running water supply where you can control the temperature. Like other chemical reactions, photographic chemicals work best at a specific temperature, too hot and the reaction will happen too quickly, too cold and you will shock the film and degrade the process. Black and white film processing works best at 20 degrees Celsius. Always check the back of your photographic film packet. This will provide important information about how the film should be processed. [inaudible] films have a diagram inside of the box with different developer types, times and temperatures. To process black and white film, you will need the following chemicals. Black and white film developer to process the film. The developer makes the latent images on the film visible. However, you'll not be able to see the images until later in the process. There are many different types of powdered and premix developers on the market. I typically use Ilford ID-11, which is a fine-grain powdered developer. This means that I need to mix the developer before use. When mixed powdered developers like Ilford ID-11 can be used in one-to-one, one-to- two and one-three solutions. For this class however, I'm going to be using Ilford LC29, which is a premix developer specially designed to be used economically. Ilford LC29 can be used in one to 19 and one to 29 solutions. ILPHOSTOP STOP BATH is a special citric acid stop bath which stops further development on the film. We'll be using the stop bath after developing our film. Attentively, if you do not want to use a stop bath you can wash your negatives with water, but this takes longer and is more inconsistent. Fixers, the final stage in the development process. After you have fixed your images, it is safe to expose them to light. As with photographic film developers, there are several different types fixer. I recommend using Ilford rapid fixer. Once the images have been fixed, they need to be washed to remove all the chemicals before drying. I normally tend to wash my negatives for 10 minutes in the kitchen sink and now the little Ilford Ilfotol which is a special non-ionic wetting agent used as a final rinse to aid rapid even drying for films and fiber based darkroom prints. Always read the instructions on the back of the packets. Other useful equipment for processing black-and-white film includes a thermometer for measuring the water and chemical temperature. The thermometer I'm using works best when imerssed and fluids. Remember your water and chemicals should be 20 degrees Celsius or 68 degrees Fahrenheit. A funnel for pouring chemicals and water into the development tank and bottles. A 100 milliliter glass measuring cylinder for measuring small volumes, very accurately. A one liter measuring jug for measuring and mixing chemicals. Several large jugs or containers for premixing chemicals. A large glass bottle for storing a fixer. A clock or Timer, so you can time the process. These days, I've got rather nifty app on my phone, which I used to time the process and it lets me know when to agitate. Safety glasses. Remember, you're dealing with chemicals. Photographic chemicals are known irritant so if you have dermatitis or any other skin condition, I recommend wearing rubber gloves and limiting exposure. Arrange all of this kits around your kitchen or bathroom sink so that you know where everything is and that you are now ready to start mixing your chemicals and processing your black and white film. 6. Developing Your Film: I'm now ready to start developing my film. Before I can start, I need to mix my developer. Have a look on the bottom of your development tank, it should state in both milliliters and fluid ounces, how much liquid do you need for processing one or two 35-millimeter films or a 120 roll film. My Paterson Universal Development Tank says I need 290 milliliters for one 35-millimeter film. Now have a look at the back of your developer bottle or packet. There should be a chart with different solutions and timings for different films. I am processing a 125 ISO Ilford FP4 Plus film using a 1-19 solution. This means that for each part developer, I need 19 parts water. For example, if I was mixing one liter of developer, I would need 50 milliliters of developer and 950 milliliters of water. Since my development tank says I need 290 milliliters of liquid, I will need to measure 14.5 milliliters of developer and 275.5 milliliters of water. Remember, both the water and the developer need to be at 20 degrees Celsius or 68 degrees Fahrenheit. Using the 100-milliliter glass measuring cylinder, I carefully measure 14.5 milliliters of developer from the bottle and pour it into the jug where I'll be mixing my developer. Now turn on the taps and get the water temperature to 20 degrees Celsius. Measure 275.5 milliliters of water, and then pour it into the jug which contains the developer and stir the chemicals so they're well mixed. The developer is now ready to be used. Now a quick note about agitation. Agitation is a method of keeping the chemicals in motion to aid the films development, speed up the process, and control the grain. Different photographers have different methods of agitation. I like to gently stir the development tank like this in a circular motion. It is really important not to be too violent when agitating, because if you're too violent, you'll create bubbles in the developer, which can cause your film to develop unevenly. Agitation needs to be consistent and regular. When I first place the developer into the development tank and close the waterproof lid, I will agitate continuously for the first minute of the development, and then for 10 seconds every minute thereafter. The timer App on my phone tells me when to agitate, but you can use a clock or stopwatch. Before you start the development process, double-check the development time for your film. I'm using a 125 ISO Ilford FB4 Plus film and a 1 to 19 developer solution. The table of my film package says that I should use a development time of eight minutes at 20 degrees Celsius. Everything is ready and we can begin. Take the waterproof lid off your development tank, and have your timer or clock ready. Pour the developer into the development tank and start the timer. Put the waterproof lid back on the development tank, and start agitating for the first minute. Remember not to be too violent. You just need to keep the chemicals moving over the surface of the film. Once the first minute has expired, firmly place the development tank down and wait until the end of the second minute. Remember, we need to agitate for 10 seconds every minute, until the film is developed. Now we've reached two minutes and need to agitate for a further 10 seconds. Pick up the development tank and agitate. Again when finished, place the development tank down and await the next period of agitation. Keep on repeating the process until the development time has expired. When the timer goes off, the development time has finished, pour the used developer away. If you're using a powder developer like ID 11, with a one-to-one solution, you can get a second development out of the developer if you use straight away. However, with LC 29, this is not the case and the spent chemicals need to be discarded. Have your stop bath ready to stop the development process. We'll cover this in the next video. 7. Stop Bath: You do not necessarily need to use a stop bath to stop the development process. However, using a stop bath will produce more consistent results and help preserve your fixer. For this class, I am using Ilford Ilfostop odorless stop bath, which comes in a 500 milliliter bottle and can mix up to 10 liters of stop bath so that's a lot of films. It's as a citric acid based solution which stops any residual development from happening once the developer has been removed from the development tank. Mixing the stop bath is really easy, the bottle recommends using a one to 19 solution. So as with the developer, measure 14.5 milliliters of Ilfostop into the 100 milliliter glass measuring cylinder and then 275.5 milliliters of water at 20 degrees Celsius into a measuring jug and mix them together. Also for demonstration purposes, I'm showing this separate from the developer. But I really recommend that you prepare all of your chemicals before you begin the development process. That way, you can pour in the stop bath straight away after you have removed the developer. Once you've poured in the stop bath, it only takes 10-15 seconds to stop any continuing development reactions and you should remove the stop bath thereafter. We are now ready to begin the final stage in the process, fixing the film. 8. Fixing Your Film: Fixing your film is really important because it makes it safe to take out into the light. If we were to accidentally open the development tank at this stage, we would destroy the photographs contained on the film. A properly fixed black and white negative, should last over 100 years if kept in the right conditions. I'm using Ilford Rapid Fix, which is diluted to 1-4 solution. Fixer can be used multiple times, so it is a good idea to have a bottle ready to store your fixer. Put a label on the side so you can record the date when you mix the fixer and how many times it has been used. I normally mix fixer in 700ml batches, so I've always got some ready to use. Your fixer can be kept in stoppered bottle for up to a month and a half. To make 700ml of fixer, you'll need 140ml of Ilford Rapid Fixer and 560ml of water. Remember, when you put the chemicals into your development tank, they should be 20 degrees Celsius or 68 degrees Fahrenheit. This is approximately room temperature, but you might need to cool the fixer in the sink if you live in a hot climate, or warm the fixer in the sink if you live in a cold climate. Immersing the bottle in water is the best way to control the temperature. Always stick the thermometer into the bottle to see what temperature the chemicals are before fixing. If the fixer is too cold, the process will be slower and you might shock the film. I am now ready to fix my film. Remove the waterproof lid from the development tank, if you have not already done so, and pour in the fixer. Close the lid and start to agitate. As swift developer, you will need to agitate continuously for the first minute of the fixation process. Remember not to be too violent, otherwise, you will cause frothing and air bubbles in the solution, which impede the process. After one minute continuous agitation, place the development tank down and let it rest until the end of the second minute. Now, agitate again for a further 10 seconds. Keep repeating the process until five minutes have passed. Your film is now developed and it's safe to open the development tank. Pour the used fixer back into your bottle using the funnel. Now, mark the bottle to show that you've used it to fix a film. Now, all we've got to do is wash and dry the film. 9. Washing Your Negatives: Washing your film is very important because it removes all of the chemicals from the processing and aids drying without watermarks. It is now safe to open the development tank. It is tempting to have a sneak peek at this point, but please bear in mind that once you've removed the wet film from the reel, you'll not be able to put it back again. With 20 degrees Celsius water. Washing your negatives takes about 10 minutes. But the development tank with the reels still inside under the tap with the water flowing into the chamber, and leave for about 10 minutes. If you're in a hurry, you can do what is known as a speed wash. This is where you fill the development tank with water, agitate, empty, and repeat 10 times. When ten minutes is up, take the film off of the reel in the development tank. Take care when handling the film, because until it is dry, the emulsion is very delicate and can easily be scratched. I use solution of ilfotol as a final rinse aid, to aid rapid drying without watermarks. This is particularly important if your water is hard. Ilfotol uses the ones 200 solution. You only need a really tiny amount. When mixed the solution might have a slightly soapy feel like washing up liquid. This is because ilfotol is very similar. A small dash of washing up liquid can be used as a substitute. Holding each end of the film, pass the film further in container several times, so the film is fairly covered with the wetting agents. The water in my house is particularly hard and chlorinated. Without using a wetting agent, I get horrendous watermarks. If your negatives dry of watermarks, you can rewash them to remove the watermarks. Using wetting agents will save you a lot of time later. Especially if you're digitizing your negatives and retouching them in Photoshop. Next, we'll look at drying the negatives. 10. Drying Your Negatives: In college and university, we had special drawing cabinets which circulated heated air to a safe temperature to dry the negatives. However, you do not need advanced kit to dry your negatives at home. In my studio, I have some string running from one side of the room to the other for hanging negatives to dry. All you need is a couple of laundry pegs or negative clips, like I'm using. One laundry peg or clip should be used to secure the negatives to the string and the other at the bottom to weigh it down so that it does not coil up as it dries. Leave your negatives overnight to dry. Do not be tempted to handle the negatives whilst they're drying. Because when semi-dry, the emulsion becomes tacky and any fingerprints or dirt could permanently damage your negatives. 11. Archiving Your Negatives: Taking good care of your negatives is a very important part of the process. In chemical photography, dust and scratches are your enemy so storing our negatives correctly, is good practice. A good investment for anyone starting out in black and white photography and film processing, is a lightbox. Fortunately, lightboxes these days are fairly inexpensive and can be purchased online. I have got an A3 LED lightbox which I use to review and cut my negatives. I also have a loupe to magnify my negatives when they're on the lightbox. However, if you do not have a loupe, a magnifying glass will suffice. Another good investment is negative archival sleeves to store your negatives. Classic browns include Kenro and Hama. Negative archival sleeves are designed to be stored in a ring binder or folder and hold the negatives in rows of four or six. Before I can insert my negatives into the negative archival sleeve, I need to cut them into rows of six. Place the negatives down on the lightbox, making sure that tail end does not hang off the table or on the floor where there is dirt, which can easily scratch your negatives. Using some scissors, count six negatives and carefully cut in-between the sixth and seventh image. Then place the first six images into the negative archival sleeve. Keep repeating the process until all of the negatives are inside of the sleeve. I usually tend to discard the odd ends as they are of little use. Using a fiber tip pen, name and date the negative archival sleeve. This will make finding a particular batch of photographs easier later, especially if you're dealing with a large number of negatives. I store my negatives in chronological order, oldest to newest. 12. Digitising Your Negatives: Now, you have two options. Either you can print your negatives in a dark room or a photo laboratory, or you can digitize you negatives and further refine them in Photoshop. In this class, I will concentrate on digitizing and retouching negatives. To digitize your negatives, you will need a negative scanner. Fortunately, these days, they are relatively inexpensive and often come built-in to the lens of traditional flatbed scanners. I'm going to be using a Plustek Optic film 8100 negative scanner, which is specially designed to scan 35 millimeter negatives and slide film. If you do not have a dedicated film scanner, there are a number of tricks and hacks which will allow you to digitize your negatives, including photographing your negatives using your mobile phone, or scanning your negatives in high resolution with a white sheet of paper behind them in a flatbed scanner. The quality of images produced using these methods is not as good as those produced using the proper equipment, but it will allow you to digitize and share your work. Most dedicated negative film scanners, come with their own software, but all scanner apps have some features in common. All scanner software should allow you to adjust the exposure, contrast, sharpness, crop, and rotation of your images, and choose different file formats. I'm going to give you a quick overview of Silverfast 8 , which came from my scanner. However, if you're using a different scanner program, please bear with me as the basics are the same. You might need to refer to the documentation which came with your scanner, to learn about its specific features. Before I can start scanning my negatives, I need to load the film into the scanner. My scanner has a special holder designed to hold up to six, 35 millimeter negatives at a time. Unclip the negative holder and carefully inset negatives. Make sure you inset the negatives the right way up, that means emulsion side down. Many flatbed scanners with a special built-in negative scanning unit, also contain a similar negative holder. Having loaded the holder, I can insert it into the scanner so that it is ready to scan the first image. Silverfast 8 has a fairly straightforward user interface and workflow. Taking up most of the workspace is a large image preview, which allows you to see in real time your scan and any adjustments and settings you have applied. On the left-hand side to the Workspace, you'll see the Control Dock, which contains a series of dialogues that let you configure Silverfast tools. The Control Dock is expandable. Clicking the little arrows allows you to open and close tools. Along the top of the Workspace, there is what Silverfast calls their Standard Tools, and in between the Control Dock, and the image preview, there is the special tool section which contains some additional special features that are not required for every image. I'm not going to cover every feature in this class, I will instead concentrate on the basics, just enough to scan your image in high-quality. Most of the tools I'm going to show you a fairly standard, and available in most scanning apps and software. Remember, if you're using different scanner software, for example, Epson scanner , checkout it's documentation for detailed instructions on how to set up your scanner and get the best results. At the top of the Control Dock, set your image type. I have three options here, Positive, Kodachrome, and Negative. Because I'm scanning a black and white negative, I'm going to set my image type to Negative. This means when I scan my negative, the scanner will realize I am scanning a negative and automatically invert my image. Next, we need to set the color formats and bit depth. The drop-down menu situated next to the Image Type button, gives us a range of different options, including 48- 24 bit, 16-8 bit, 16-1 bit, 48 bit HDR RAW and 16 bit HDR RAW. If I was scanning a color negative, I would use either 48 -24 bit or 48 bit HDR RAW. However, because I'm working with black and white negatives, I'm going to select 16-8 bit, which will produce a workable scan of my image. We're now ready to make a preview or prescan by clicking on the Prescan button here. The scanner is now producing a low-resolution preview of my negative. It automatically converts the negative image to positive. Afterwards, use your mouse to drag the red scanning frame to the desired size. Makes sure that the scanning frame is completely inside the original, and it does not include any white or black areas of the preview window outside the original. Next in the scan dimensions section of the Control Dock, set your image name. I usually give my scanned images fairly matter of fact names, name, place, and date. I also include the negative number ranging from 1-36, so I can identify the negatives later in my archive. This is a completely different logic to naming and archiving digital images. Remember here, you're dealing with a physical negative and the digital copy. Here, you can also set your file type. Options include TIFF, PSD JPEG, JPEG2 and PDF. I'm going to save my file as a TIFF because I'm going to be enhancing it later in Photoshop. Select the little folder icon and select where you want to save your image on your computer. Then use the preset drop-down to define your images purpose. Options include 300 pixels per inch for printing, 150 pixels per inch for quick drafts, and 72 pixels per inch for saving for the web. Nowadays saving for the web incentive to pixels per inch is irrelevant, so best scan at 300 pixels per inch. Finally, select your scan resolution here. My scanner can scan a maximum resolution of 7,200 pixels per inch. Next stop is the Negafix section in the control dock. This is a special preset feature in Silverfast 8, which allows you to define the photographic film you're scanning and set the ISO. It includes most commercially available films, including Ilford, Kodak, Fuji, and Agfa. I'm going to set the vendor to Ilford, film type FP4 plus, and the ISO to 125. Most of the scanner software, including Epsilon scan wise, does not include this useful feature. It is particularly useful when scanning color negatives because these usually have a color cast which needs to be removed. Underneath the Negafix controls, there are a couple of sliders for adjusting the exposure. All scanner software should have equivalent controls here. You might need to make a small adjustment before scanning, especially if it was a difficult exposure. Now, we're almost ready to scan. However, before I do that, I want to have a quick look at the histogram and gradation features in the Standard Tool area up here. Histogram and gradation are basically the same as levels and curves in Photoshop and allow me to fine tune and adjust the light levels in my image. What is particularly important here, is that they allow me to control the highlights, mid tones, and shadows individually, enabling me to pull and push different parts of the image. This can be particularly useful if you're photographs were taken on a bright sunny day and include both bright and dark areas. For this image, I'm going to use the gradation tool. When open, the gradation tool appears in the control dock. Like Curves and Photoshop, I can adjust individual points on the curve line to control different parts of the image exposure. In this case, I want to pull my highlights back a little, enlighten the shadow areas a little. Remember, like Photoshop, you only really need to make small adjustments here. Other things I could do before scanning, could include an unsharp mask. After setting everything up, I can now proceed with scanning my negative by clicking on Scan button. Scanning negatives takes some time, especially if you're scanning at high resolution using a flatbed scanner with the inbuilt negative scanner. Whilst you're scanning all ago negatives in batches or one by one, to save time, you can start retouching and finalizing your images in Photoshop. This is what we are going to be looking at next. 13. Image Resolution & Colour Mode: Before you publish your black color images online, or send them to be printed, you might want to retouch and enhance them further in Adobe Photoshop. This is not cheating because if I was working in a dark room, I would be able to Dodge and Burn various elements, control the development process, and the print contrast using the filters built into the enlarger. In this sense, many of Photoshop's tools are merely digital representations of darkroom techniques. Let's open a scanned photograph in Photoshop and have a look at a few useful tools and processes which can help you improve your images. When you open a scanned photograph, go to the Image menu and check out the Image Size and Resolution. The scanning software might change the resolution for you to something manageable, like 300 dots per inch, even if it has scanned the image at a much higher resolution. In this case, you do not need to worry about anything. But if you see a much higher resolution value here, it makes sense to decrease it to 300 dots per inch and adjust the size of the image if necessary. Make sure to keep your photograph at a manageable large size. My photograph here is just under 80 centimeters on the long side and this will do just fine for pretty much anything. Before you start retouching and enhancing or image, you'll need to convert it to grayscale. This is particularly important if you're planning to print your image in black and white. Unless you've already selected the grayscale color mode when scanning, your image most likely is saved in RGB color mode and might have attentive green or magenta when printed, depending on the printing process and the printer settings. So go to the Image menu and select Mode, Grayscale. If Grayscale is already ticked, then your image is already in grayscale and you do not need to do anything. 14. Cleaning & Retouching Photographs in Photoshop: The biggest problem of black and white images, especially when scanned, is dust and watermarks. Small specks of dust, which are invisible to the human eye when looking at the negative, will be visible as white specks when enlarged. You will need to remove these, especially if you want to print or display the image in large format. To clean your image, you'll need to zoom in and out quite a bit during the process. So remember to use command plus or minus shortcuts or control plus or minus in windows, to save yourself some time. In Photoshop, there are quite a few different tools which can be used to clean and reattach images. These tools are the spot healing Brush, healing brush, clone stamp, and the patch tool. Each of these tools has slightly different purpose, but it's best to use them in a combined way to achieve the best results and have an efficient workflow. The first tool I'm going to use is the spot healing brush. When you have this tool selected, and move your mouse over the image you want to clean, you'll notice the brush cursor, you can control its settings by right-clicking and selecting an appropriate brush size, hardness, and spacing in the dialog window, which appears. Size and hardness settings depend on what you're working with in your image, so you might need to try different settings until you get the results you like. Usually, I keep the brush relatively small in comparison to the image size and as for hardness, it really depends on what is in your image. Be sure to try out different settings and pick one which allows you to smoothly blend with the surroundings, but at the same time does not create any smudges. When you've set up the brush, press enter to close the window and start cleaning your image. Spot healing brush is one of my favorites, because it is easy to use, which is a bonus because the process of removing all the specks of dust from images is laborious and repetitive. When you click or draw on the image, the spot healing brush removes specks of dust, spots, and other image imperfections, automatically selecting the correct corresponding area from the image and blending it seamlessly with area you have clicked. The selection is automatic, so you need to watch what you're doing when you're repetitively clicking to make sure it does not make a mistake or blend something badly. 99.9 percent of the time, the spot healing brush works perfectly with small specs and scratches, but sometimes there's an error which refuses to blend correctly. In these occasions, I revert to the healing brush, which is similar to the spot healing brush, except it allows you to select the area from which you are copying and blending from. Select the healing brush on the tools panel, now go to the spot you want to remove and finds an area which looks similar. Press the alt key and click on the area to sample it. Now go back to the spot you want to heal and click on draw on it with the healing brush tool. The principle is the same as spot healing brush tool, except here you're in control and choose the source area. Sometimes humans are more accurate. The spot healing brush and healing brush tools are great for dealing with lots of tiny imperfections. However, they're not very good at clowning and blending large areas. This is because they're too complex and the rest of the image might not have enough information for the algorithms to work correctly. In this case, for example, if you've got a large scratch or watermark in your image, you will need to use the clone stamp and patch tools. The clone stamp tool has been a part of Photoshop since the beginning it simply copies one user-defined area to another. It has a little crude when compared to the healing brush tool because it does not attempt to blend two areas together. However, conversely, this can be very useful when dealing with tricky areas for example, edges, find an area which you need to stamp. For example, I've got this mark which sits right over an edge in my photograph, and I'll move to an appropriate sample area, and press the old key as with the healing brush tool, small targets symbol appears in the place of your cursor. Click to select the area and then release the alt key and move back to the mark you want to remove. Nowadays, the clone stamp tool shows you the error you have selected in the cursor. This is really useful for alignment and showing you how the finished results will look. Having your source area sampled, you can now right-click on the image and select the correct brush size and hardness and preview the results by hovering the clone stamp cursor over the desired area in the image. Unlike healing brushes, clone stamp does not blend the edges, so what you see as the preview is what you get. So adjust the brush settings and press enter when ready to close. Play campaigns over the mark you want to remove. If it does not work well, try selecting another sample point, with a little skill and practice, you can become quite proficient at using the clone stamp tool to fix tricky marks and blotches on your photographs. When using the clone stamp tool, keep an eye on the options bar and a pasty settings. If you have set it to 100 percent, the clone stamp or fully cover the selected area and if not, you're sampling will have a degree of transparency. In some cases, this might be useful, but I usually stick with 100 percent. The patch tool was specially designed to remove unwanted image elements and can be particularly useful when dealing with large watermarks, in your photographs background. In this instance, I want to remove this watermark here in the foreground of my image. When you select the patch tool and move it over the image and little patch icon appears under your cursor. Make sure content aware fill is selected in this patch drop-down menu in the option bar at the top of your workspace. Go to the area on your image which you want to patch and draw around it with the cursor. The area will be selected. Now, click and drag to the area which you want to patch from. You might need to drop the patch into several different locations before you find an area which works. Release the mouse button when the preview of patch area looks right, and Photoshop will apply the patch and blend it into the surrounding areas. In the option bar, there is a couple of settings, structure and color, which you can adjust after you've applied the patch, but whilst you still have the selection active, the structure allows you to enter a number between one and seven to define how closely the patch should resemble the existing image. If you enter seven, the patch adheres very strongly to the existing image patterns. However, if you enter one, the patch adheres very loosely to the existing image patterns. Similar to structure, color allows you to specify the extent to which you want Photoshop to apply algorithmic color blending to the patch. If you enter zero, color blending is disabled. The color value of 10 applies the maximum color blending. The fact that you can adjust the setting after applying the patch makes it really useful for fine tuning and making small adjustments. For example here, from playing around with the structure setting, I can see that it works best with 3-4. I'm going to go four. If you've not got your settings right or are trying to patch a too complicated image area, you'll end up with a smudgy patch, which does not look very nice. The patch tool works best on out-of-focus areas, for example, backgrounds or areas which have a consistent pattern or texture. Watermarks tend to be more visible in out-of-focus background areas of image due to their lack of detail. My advice is play around with Patch Tool settings to see what works best and do not try to patch complicated areas. 15. Tonal Adjustments: Even if you've done some contrast and tonal adjustments while scanning, you might want to fine tune your image afterwards. In Photoshop, there are a number of tools which can be used to control image contrast. But the most advanced one, which allows you to control both global contrast throughout the whole image and local contrast in different tones is Curves Adjustment. You can apply adjustments both destructively and non-destructively. If you have a choice, it is always better to stick with non-destructive adjustments since they allow more flexibility and can be removed or changed at any time. To add a non-destructive curves adjustment, you'll need to add a Curves Adjustment layer, which you can do either by using create new fill or Adjustment Layer button, or by selecting curves from the Adjustments panel. The curves adjustment layer will be applied as a separate layer in your document and it should be above the image layer you want to effect. When you select the "Curves Adjustment" layer on the Layers panel, the Properties panel will show you this graph with a histogram and a diagonal line going through it. Below there is a slider which controls the dynamic range in the image. Dynamic range is the number of shades of gray in your image, and it goes from black on the left to white on the right. On the graph above, the black point is the bottom left point on the curve, the white point is the top-right point. A histogram is built upon this dynamic range and visually represents the distribution of different shades in your image and their intensity. The higher it shoots in specific points of area, the more of these shapes you'll have in your image. Looking at the histogram, you can very quickly understand whether you're missing certain tones in your image. For example, black or white. You can use this dynamic range slider and move these toggles in to reduce the dynamic range and make lighter areas even lighter or darker areas darker. When you move these toggles, the black and white points on the graph move along the horizontal axis and their position along the vertical axis stays the same. The vertical axis represents the output dynamic range of the image. The black point is at the bottom, and the white one is along the top. If you move the white point down, you'll start losing the whites in the image and the image will get darker. If you move the black point up, the blacks will also disappear and become dark shadows instead. This way you can make the image look faded. You can use these two points to control the overall tonal range of your image. To adjust contrast using curves, we need to add at least one more point to this line. Let's click on the line somewhere in the middle to add a mid tone point in the image. Now, if I drag it up, I'll make the mid tones lighter. If I drag it down, the mid tones will get darker. Looking at your histogram and at your image, you can decide which tonal areas need to be adjusted and add a point on the curve to control each area. You can add up to 14 points to the curve but you probably won't need so many. Having two to four points between black and white point might be enough in most cases. The diagonal line going through the middle of the graph is where the input and output values are equal to each other. Moving the point above the diagonal line will make this tone lighter and moving it below will make it darker. Look at your image and work out which tones require local contrast adjustments to make the image more interesting and adjust the curves accordingly. Since the curve adjustment is applied as a separate layer, you can toggle the visibility of this adjustment on and off at any time and you can also decrease the intensity of this adjustments by changing its capacity value. 16. Sharpening Photographs in Photoshop: Sometimes, you might want to make your scanned images a little bit crisper and there are several different ways to sharpen your images in Photoshop. The same as with non-destructive adjustment layers, these days, you can apply non-destructive filters to your work to make it easier to control and not to destroy the original image. To apply non-destructive smart filters to a image firstly, you'll need to convert it to a smart object by right-clicking on the Image layer, on the Layers panel and selecting Convert to Smart Object. If you need to edit the image, for example, further retouch it after it is converted to a smart object, you can do it by double-clicking Smart Object layer on the Layers panel. This will open the content of the smart object as a separate document. You can edit it the usual way. Save the changes, and you're done. Close the document and see the updated smart object in your main file. As far as filters go, there's a few options you can choose from in the Sharpen section of the Filter menu. Some of these filters, such as Sharpen and Sharpen Edges, do not allow to control their settings. So I tend to stay away from them and use Smart Sharpen instead. When you apply this filter, this window opens up here. You can preview and control the type and amount of sharpening to be applied to the image. Firstly, lower the Reduce Noise slider to around 5-10 percent to view the full sharpening effect. Then go and adjust the amount value for the strength of the sharpening. This will depend on the size of your image and the effect you want to achieve. There are no hard rules here. Finally, play around with the radius value until the image looks just right. Try to avoid the overly sharp or artificial HDR look like this. Now will go to the Remove menu and select an appropriate sharpening algorithm for your image. Gaussian blur is a good around choice suitable for most images. Lens blur sharpens details with fewer resulting halos, and Motion blur is useful for correcting blurring due to slight movement of the camera or subject. One of the main advantages of the smart sharpen filter is that you can individually control how much sharpness is applied to the image shadow and highlight areas. Do set up the shadows or highlights how you want them. Play around with the Fade Amount and Tonal Width settings. Fade Amount controls overall sharpness of the filter. By reducing the slider, I can remove the filter from the shadows or highlights. Tonal Width value controls the range of the mid tones that are affected by the fade amount. The higher the Tonal Width, the wider the range of mid tones that are affected and the more gradually the sharpening fades into the shadows. At the low value, 5-20 percent, only very dark shadow areas will be sharpened. Click "Okay" when you're happy with the settings. Since we've applied the filter as a smart filter, you can now see it like this in the Layers panel. You can change its settings at anytime by double-clicking on its name and adjusting it to using this window. Let's hide this filter for now and have a look at another of my favorite methods of sharpening images, which is the High Pass filter located under Other in the Filter menu. The main advantage of using the High Pass filter for sharpening is that the filter sharpens only well-defined areas of your image, and background and out-of-focus areas will not be touched. To use the High Pass filter, go to the Layers panel, select the Smart Object layer, and go to the Filter menu and select Other High Pass. When you apply this filter, your image will turn gray like this and the dialog box with custom settings for the High Pass filter will open up. In the bottom of the dialog box, adjust the filter strength. Unless you want a really artificial HDR look to your photograph, I recommend you keep the radius rather small, around 1-2 pixels. As you adjust the filter down, you'll notice that the details highlighted by the filter become fainter. This is normal. When ready, click "Okay". High Pass filter will be added as a separate smart filter to this image and you'll be able to see it in the Layers panel. Now we need to change the way this filter is applied to our image. Double-click on this Options icon for the High Pass filter. In the window which will open, change the Blending Mode to Overlay, and click "Okay" to apply the changes. Toggle the visibility of the filter on and off to see how it affects the image. Now, you can also go and edit the settings of the filter at anytime by double-clicking on its name here. Having the preview ticked, you'll be able to see the changes as you apply them. So these are two of my favorite ways of sharpening images in Photoshop. Experiment with them and use them to create a desired effect. Often film photographs look more authentic when they're not overly sharp. So if you're after a more natural look, try not to overdo the sharpness. But other than that, feel free to experiments. 17. Saving Images for Print & Web: When you're done working with your photograph in Photoshop, make sure to save the master files with all of the adjustment layers and filters as a PSD so that you can easily make any required changes in future. If you're planning to print your photographs in black and white, keep them in grayscale color mode to ensure they're printed correctly. Then go to the Menu, File, Save As. In this window, go to the format options and select TIFF. Unchecked players to have a smaller file size. Make sure that your destination folder or file name is different from the original scan file. Especially if you've scanned in TIFF. You do not want to overwrite the original scan files. Click Save when everything is ready. In the next TIFF options window, set the image compression to none and make sure that you have discarded layers and save a copy selected here. Click Okay and your print file is ready. If you're planning to display your work digitally, you can keep in grayscale or change it to RGB if you want. The most important thing to do to prepare your image for digital use is to change its size. So go to the menu, image, Image size. Here set units to pixels and type in the dimensions you want to display your image at. If you're planning to upload your image to Facebook or Instagram, set the width to at least 1,200 pixels. If you want to upload your images to Behance, set width to at least 1,400 pixels. As for resolution, I usually keep us at 300 DPI these days, regardless of use. In the resample options, choose either bicubic or bicubic sharder, depending on the image. And the results you're after. Best approaches to try both and maybe some other ones on the list. See the difference and then decide which one works best for you i this particular case. After you have resized to image, go to the Menu, File, Save As, and save your file as a JPEG. Enable the color profile regardless of whether using RGB or grayscale. In the JPEG options, select maximum quality, especially if you're uploading your work to social media or any other platform which will optimize your image upon uploading. If you're going to upload your images as they are, for example, on your own website. Then consider experimenting with different size and quality options to get the optimum results at the lowest image size. 18. What Next & Conclusion: After you have developed and digitized your photographs, you can also consider taking them further by toning them and giving them either a classic photographic toning look or a more experimental modern look. You can learn about different approaches to choosing colors and techniques of toning images in our class, Mastering Duotones in Photoshop. If you decide to tone your images, make sure to start the process by changing the color mode of your files from gray scale to either RGB or CMYK, depending on how you plan to use your images otherwise, toning will not work. Being able to develop black and white film home can give you a lot of flexibility and room for experimentation. If you love film photography, don't hesitate to checkout our class, making your own pinhole camera and create some awesome experimental work. That's it for this class, I hope you have enjoyed the process and learned how to develop black and white film. This class was an overview of the process. There are many finite details and things that you can only really pick up through experience and experimentation. I hope that this class will make it easier for you to start on this path. If you have any sort of questions, be sure to leave a comment on the community board of this class and I will happily answer and provide feedback. I can't wait to see your black and white photographs and hear about your experience. Make sure to post your work in the project section for this class as soon as you are ready. We also love seeing projects done in our classes on Instagram. Please tag attitudeskills and check out our Instagram profile for updates. If you liked this class, please leave a review so more people can discover it. Don't hesitate to follow us here on Skillshare to be the first to know about our new classes. Be sure to check out and follow our page on Facebook to see what we are up to, get all the latest updates, send as private messages if you need to get in touch about something and not to miss if you are featured in our students spotlight gallery. Since you made it to the end, you should enter our contest for a chance to win one hour of free photographic prints or the first prize in the 30 minute video call with us to discuss your photographic work. Simply leave a review for this class and drop us an email or a message on Instagram or Facebook with a screenshot showing that you have completed watching the class. Entry deadline is at midnight Eastern Standard Time on Thursday the 12th of October, 2017. The winners will be randomly picked and announced the following day. Good luck. Thank you for watching this class and I hope to see you in other classes.