Contact Printing Proper Proof

Establishing a Standard Exposure Time

Making contact printing proof prints from your negatives in the darkroom can provide you with invaluable information about the performance of your camera, film, and darkroom practices.

It is important to establish a standard exposure time for making and assessing your contact prints.

  • Have you ever wanted to compare one film against another, or see what advantages a new developer has over the current one you are using?
  • Maybe you just want to know if you are over, or under-developing your film.
  • Perhaps you want to conduct your own personal film speed index and developing regime?

So where do you start? There are so many variables including your camera optics and shutter, your choice of film, developing techniques, your choice of photographic paper, chemistry, your enlarger setup, and the darkroom technique you employ.

How do you control so many photographic variables to make an informed choice?

The short answer is to establish a standard contact printing proof procedure for your film and paper combination.

I have prepared a 12-page downloadable PDF about the importance of the Proper Proof. Keep it on your phone or other device for handy reference. Check out the Chapters by following the link.

black and white photographic print of Rapids Margaret River Western Australia
Margaret River 01-8-02-2 16×20 inch silver gelatin print

Since 1989, Alex Bond has published cards, calendars, books, and posters under his imprint Stormlight Publishing. His images showcase the West Australian environment. Bond's handcrafted, silver-gelatin, fibre-based prints are personally made by the author in his darkroom.

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