C. H. CLAUDY

There are certain things about the use of developing papers which are common to all instruction books. There are other things which are left out of many of these manuals, or included only partially. The things that are left out are usually the things the beginner most needs to know; they are let out, presumably, for lack of space, or because the manufacturer dislikes admitting that there is anything which his paper lacks in the line of perfection, or which cannot be done with itNow it must be understood that these three papers are more for the beginner than the advanced amateur, and that no attempt is being made to tell anything brand new. But they are written from pprsonal experience not only with my own troubles when I was a beginner, but from knowledge of the troubles of a somewhat large circle of photographic acquaintances who have also tried and failed and wasted paper by the box and so won their way to success.

In this present paper I shall confine my attention mostly to contract printing with the slower papers. In the second paper I shall undertake to speak of development and fixing and after processes, and the third paper will be devoted to the faster or bromide papers.

For convenience and because it is the largest of the family I am going to hang my remarks in this paper on Velox. Personally I have had more satisfaction with this brand than with others, but I am not saying that there are not other good brands. If a man can work Velox he can work any developing out paper of similar speed. Not because Velox is the most difficult but because it is made in so many surfaces and varieties that a thorough knowledge of it gives a knowledge of all.

In the first place then, for average negatives, for thick negatives and for thin ones full of contrast, use the special emulsion; if another paper than Velox, get the " soft " grade. Most of these papers are made in two grades one soft, the other the contrasty. But the soft grade is the one to employ nine times out of ten -the tenth time the regular grade or hard paper is most useful, but its employment the other nine times is fatal. I do not think enough stress is laid on this in the books and advertisements relating to these papers, hence I want to emphasize it.

In the second place, do not bother with any contraption for printing. Don't buy yourself a neat little wire and metal frame with a gas jet at one end and a rack for the frame at the other. It is money wasted. Don't make a light box. That limits you. But if you have a dark room and gas, get yourself a gas jet that can stand on the table or work bench and provide yourself with a weight or block of iron or lead. One of the great charms of the developing paper is the facility it affords for variations in prints, due to the different distances the frame is from the light and the various angles at which it may be held. A printing device or a printing box in a large measure prevents the full use of this feature.

In making any print, for a certain length of time of exposure, you must consider that you are using so many light units. If you halve the time you have halved the units; if you double the time, you have doubled the units. But if you change the distance of the frame from the light by a divisor or multiple of that distance, you change the number of the units the paper receives by a root or a power. Does that seem dreadfully complicated? It isn't in practice. Suppose that you find a certain negative gives, with a certain brand of paper, the kind of print you want at one foot from the light in one minute. If you make a second print, removing the frame to a distance of two feet from the light, you must give not two minutes but four minutes in order to have as full an exposure. The intensity of light diminishes with the square of the distance; that is, at twice as far the light is four times as slow; at three times as far, it is nine times as slow; at four times as far it sixteen times as slow, and so on. Consequently, if you know the exposure for a given light at a given distance, you can find it for any other distance by finding out the square of that distance and multiplying that by the first exposure.

Now the reason all prints are not made at one distance is that the further away from a light you hold a negative, the more opaque the high lights become in proportion to the shadows, and consequently the greater contrast secured in the print. Hold any negative two inches from a gas flame, and then two feet, and notice that you see the flame clearly enough through the thin parts in both cases, but that a decided difference is apparent in the looks of the flame through the high lights. In other words, a certain penetrative power of the light is used up in getting through the negative - what is left does the printing. This penetrative power is stronger close to the flame than far away from it. Therefore, if you have a flat negative, print far away from the light; if you have a contrasty negative, print close to the light.

If your negative is uneven and one side will print too fast or too contrasty - slant the printing frame on the bench so that one end or one side is closer to the light than the other. What is the block of metal for?

So that when you wish to make more than one print from the same negative, you can mark the place for the frame on the bench once the proper location has been determined, then by setting the frame against the block the second and other successive times, the same distance and angle is secured, and if the time given be the same the prints must be duplicates.

If you have mastered these few points you can proceed with your printing in the certainty that you will get results. You must eypect to spoil your paper before you get the hang of exposing. To spoil as little as possible, get a couple of dozen small sheets - say four by fives - even if printing large negatives, or cut some large sheets in strips. Make test exposures by exposing a strip at a time - the first for half a minute at one foot, the next for a whole minute, etc., or, if a very thin negative, the first for five seconds, the next for ten, etc. Develop, and note whether the whites are clear and the shadows dark, or whether the print is grey and muddy, or light and washed out, or black all over. The first means a correct exposure. The grey and muddy print is too long exposure, too short development - the washed out print is too little exposure, the black one overexposure. Instructions as to the way to develop belong to the next paper so for your tests follow the maker's directions.

If you stand across the room and put the paper in the frame on the negative in the shade of your own bcdy, you will be perfectly safe. Suppose the correct exposure is half a minute at one foot; at eight feet the proper exposure would be thirty-two minutes, and in the shade of your body it might be three hours! Consequently the light which hits the paper while being transferred from package to frame amounts to nothing.

The sensitive side of the paper is the side that curls in. If the paper is moist from humidity, it will not curl. It is the side that tastes sweet - it is the whiter side of the paper. Laying two sheets side by side, one front up and the other back up, you can easily see which is which by the color. All such paper comes packed with the sensitive side all facing the same way with sometimes an exception in the last sheet which faces in.

Don't handle the sensitive side. Finger marks show in development, the oils from the fingei's preventing the developer from taking hold. Handle small sheets by the edges, large ones by taking hold of as little of the paper near the edge as possible.

Get yourself a box, either wooden or pasteboard, with a hinged lid. Put your unexposed paper in this, face down. It is very inconvenient to take one sheet from the package when doing printing, and most easy to get it from the box, letting the lid fall into place when that one sheet is extracted. Develop each print as made, at first. When you get expert it is easier to do all the printing at once and then all the develop-ng, but at first development should immediately foliow exposure in order that errors of exposure may be seen and noted at the time.

A watch lying face up near the light should be used for timing unless you have one of those new dark room clocks, which ought to be very convenient. As a matter of safety I use a dollar watch for this purpose instead of my cherished pocket time piece, because I do not think the occasional slop of developer or fixing bath which gets on the work bench is good for it.

There is one more point in printing which deserves consideration. That is the facility for "dodging" the print. If you have a slow printing negative to do in solio and platinum, you know what hard work it is to vary results by waving a piece of cardboard between the negative and the sun for ten or fifteen minutes. With a gas light paper which produces a print in a few seconde, however, such dodging is a pleasure instead of work. Use heavy paper or cardboard, and put the side or edge of the negative to be dodged at the top - leaving that part which is to be continuously exposed at the bottom - when the frame is stood on edge. Do the dodging first.

Keep the paper or cardboard moving gently in front of the part you wish to shade from too much exposure and finish up by making the exposure of the entire negative. This way is preferable to dodging last, as any join in the dodging is less likely to show if a subsequent exposure covers the work. By this simple means an obdurate sky may be made to print out beautifully or a too thin face held back. Iu dodging a face alone, stick a hat pin into the edge of a small circle of cardboard and manipulate it so that the shadows of the hat pin do not fall in the same place all the time.

For learning, I would advocate the use of a smooth paper - such as special portrait Velox, or special Carbon, which is a semi-matte. If you can manage these you can manage the rough papers without any trouble and the glossy surfaces you will not want to bother with until you are an expert.

Lastly, do not be discouraged if your first end in disaster. I have keen recollections of spoiling two dozen sheets to get one passable print the first time I used the paper, and my troubles all disappeared once I was able to correlate correct exposure, proper development, with proper manipulation. Of course printing is in a way bound up with the process of development, and in the next paper I shall revert to this part of the subject, but the points given above are important enough in themselves to demand close attention from the beginner without reference at all to subsequent processes required to make a print. - " Photographic Times."