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Contrast Control with D23 Developer

April 29, 2011


Four sets, "TLF #2, 2.4": Unaltered dry plate negatives and their PS'ed positives (invert, autocontrast, and USM 20/50/2.) All plates had anti-halation backing.

1) 1 sec, f/11, Photographers' Formulary 'BW65' 1:1:4, 5 min.

2) 1/2 sec, f/11, same development as #1.

3) 1/4 sec, f/11, ditto #1 and #2.

4) 1/2 sec, f/11, "Kodak D23", 6 min.


I feel like this experiment was a rip-snorting success. 'D23' is perhaps the simplest, cheapest, and most versitile developer available. I used it exclusively back in the day when I shot pre-T-grain emulsions in the southwestern US. It will be my 'TLF#2' emulsion developer for the rest of the summer. The slight speed loss seems more than worth it.

The recipe and directions for 'D23' are available in The Darkroom Cookbook, by Steve Anchell, and hither and yon on the internet.


'TLF#2,2.4', anti-halation backing, 1/2 sec, f/11, 'Kodak D23' developer (6 min.)

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