A negative is rarely so free from defects that some retouching is not necessary. Pin holes caused by dust or air bubbles during development are the most conspicuous faults common to the amateur photographer. In a previous article the treatment of these troubles was presented. In this one, the making of a simple desk trill be described, and anyone making one will find it very useful in removing the blemishes that are so frequently met with in negatives of home production.

Photography A Retouching Desk 308

As will be seen from the production, the desk consists of three parts connected by hinges and so arranged that they may be adjusted for light and height. The lower part consists of a frame, supporting an adjustable mirror. The mirror should be 9" or 10" square, with a flat frame, and may be purchased at a dealers. If made, obtain for the frame some 1" flat picture moulding, bevel the joints and put in a piece of mirror in exactly the same way that a picture would be framed. Make a supporting frame, the end pieces being 21/2" high, 7/8" thick and 12" long. The side pieces are 7/8" thick, 1" high and 12" long, joined to the end pieces as shown. In the centre of the side pieces, bore holes to loosely receive round headed screws which are screwed into the centre of the mirror frame. This allows the mirror to be adjusted to the proper angle to reflect the light upon the negative. On the upper side of the side pieces and in the rear half, bore 1/4" holes about 1/4" deep at a slight angle. These holes should be about 1" apart and receive the lower ends of pieces of round wood or brass rods about 6" long which support the centre section of desk.

The centre section is made of picture moulding about 1" square, of the same dimensions as the lower frame. The rabbeted side of the frame is placed on the upper side however and holds a piece of ground glass, which is fastened in place by thin strips of wood. A piece of wood 1/4" thick, 3" wide and just long enough to fit inside the frame, is placed upon the ground glass to form a support for the hand when retouching. The negative is also placed upon the ground glass, the lower side resting upon the wooden strips just mentioned. Another strip of wood about 12" long, 2" wide and 1/4" thick is placed upon the frame and supports the hand when working upon the upper part of the negative. Holes are bored in the under side of the side pieces of this section opposite those in the lower frame, to receive the upper ends of the supporting rods. These holes should be of the same size as the others and also at an angle.

The upper section is made of moulding and is of the same dimensions as the other frames, but the moulding may be somewhat lighter. The rabbeted side of the moulding is placed towards the centre section, and the frame is fitted with a piece of thin board. The under side of this board is covered with black paper or paint to prevent reflection or direct light from reaching the worker. On larger frames pieces of black cambric are sometimes hung between the upper and centre sections thus shutting out side light. The upper section is adjusted and secured in position by hooks and eyes. The hooks should be about 4" long and three eyes should be put on each side of the centre frame at such an angle as to prevent the hook from slipping out except when so desired.