PROCESS AND PRINT SCHEDULE TEST SHOTS
Exposures can also be made during dress rehearsal (without strobe), but available light is only marginally adequate and the situation is very difficult. During rehearsal 400 film would need to be pushed to 800 or 1200. Or, use P3200. Only sharp focus and correct exposures will be displayed. Try a role of film during rehearsal for the learning experience, but do not depend on having these prints accepted in competition with exposures made before rehearsal with the house lights on. In evaluation, learning experiences are also given credit. If possible, take a short role of film in the theater at an earlier time in order to prepare yourself. See Processing below for a warning about the loss of one negative.
1. Try getting closer. Fill the frame. Don't plan to crop much as it will get grainy and not be as sharp. Consider blocking the actors closer together for the photograph than when they actually play the scene.
2. Look for good tonal exchange between faces and background. You want the actor's faces to project out of the photo. Change the lighting if needed.
3. Pay attention to which way people face in your composition.
4. Look for action (freeze the scene if needed).
PROCESSING IF THIS IS THE FIRST TIME YOU ARE USING HIGH SPEED FILM
Begin by getting the latest information available regarding the best developer, temperature, developing time and agitation routine. Find out what other students have learned using the same materials and shooting speeds. Feel free to check with the instructor about this. Compare your meter to others. Camera meter calibration errors can give you unsatisfactory results even if you do the same processing another student does.
T-max liquid developer is recommended. It is in a square plastic Kodak bottle. Carefully measure out and mix at the exact temperature. Use 2 ounces of liquid concentrate from the Kodak container and 8 ounces of water for each film. Check temperature carefully.
If the negatives from the test look too thin and lack contrast when printing, you'll want to increase the developing time and/or temperature significantly. Increase it least 25%, 50%, or double the time. A 50% increase in developing time will be about the same as one stop more exposure. So, if you negs are only slightly thin, increase from 10 minutes to 15 minutes (if 10 minutes was the original time). If the negs are really thin, consider 50% more time plus 5 degree higher temperature.
If negatives are too dense (black) reduce time and/or temperature.
All pushed film and high-speed film will be grainier. Some newspaper labs use substantially less agitation in hopes of minimizing grain. This also slows the development, so be consistent. Flat white areas will tend to develop more around the edges when there is inadequate agitation, but longer times with less agitation does decrease grain while maintaining contrast.
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