So, it took me longer than expected to get around to processing my film from the trip to Monterey over a month ago, and even longer to finish this post. Part of it was needing to get new photo chemistry, part of it was just the generic chaos of October and November.
It’s been a while since I’ve swung a developing tank. Some things were on autopilot, other things were filled with a bit of erring on the side of caution.
Things got started on a good note. I can still load Patterson Super System 4 reels in record time. Double checking the development time on PMK Pyro, I was glad my memory of 13 minutes for Ilford HP5+ was dead on. New batch of TF-4 fixer, and I was good to go for the power hour of music and tank agitating.
All photographers are chasing “a look.” In black and white, I found mine when I was turned on to Pyro. Or maybe it just turned my “look” to 11. Digital has made us used to instant gratification on imagery. Film forces economy of images, as well as delayed gratification. Pyro seems to have an even greater ability to unlock the alchemical magic within the latent image on the negatives.
It’s not a developer for everyone, but if you are serious about black and white, it is worth trying, only after you read Gordon Hutchings book The book of Pyro.