My approach to Film ISO’s

For now, and the foreseeable future, I have settled on using Crawley’s FX-55 developer and something that I have noticed in my negatives in both printing and scanning for digital work, is that for 100,200 and 400 ISO films I get similar results at set times.

What do I mean by that?

Well I have started shooting 100,200 and 400 ISO films at 200 ISO across the board and, at the moment, am finding that times of around 12 minutes for development deliver very good results on all films I am using.

Here are three shots I took with my recently acquired Canon F-1 loaded with Fomapan 400 shot at 200 ISO.

I scanned all of these 35mm negatives on my Epson v850 at 3600dpi, I scan medium format at 2400dpi, and find the higher scan rate delivers better digital files for 35mm.

These needed very little, and I mean little, post pro in Photoshop and for me the one that ticks all the boxes is the chair image.

I took these in my hotel room on a recent visit to Leeds as I wanted to see how the F-1 handled an indoor setting with dim light, handheld, and the chair image built up in my head.

I did not note the setting for shutter and aperture but as the ISO is at 200 I can only assume the aperture would of been f/1.4 (using the original FD 50mm f/1.4) and a speed of 1/60 or 1/30.

The TV shot captures the bands of hard shadow and light that I felt summed up the lamp and TV in the frame.

The window shot I deliberately took to test the extremes of highlights (the outside sunlight) and the darkness of the inside room.

This roll of film (FomaPan 400 shot at 200) was developed in FX-55 @12 mins with on the minute 3 agitations, stop for 30 seconds and fixed for 5 mins using Ilfords Rapid Fix.

I have quiet a bit of Fomapan film to get through, 100, 200 and 400 ISO 35mm, so it is going to be fun to see if sticking at shooting them all at ISO 200 will give the results I am getting.


I am aware that I am over or under exposing the 100 and 400 films by 1 stop, but if the real world results deliver negatives that I can easily print via my enlarger and or scan for digital work, then I see this as a bonus due to less faffing around changing settings on the camera and or light meter and getting on with focusing on the shot.

Couple this with using only one developer (FX-55) for all my B&W films and working with it to find the sweet spot in dev time that produces for me reliable and workable negatives, I believe I am on a very productive path.

A side note:
I also shot using the same film stock and ISO 200 setting on a recently acquired Canon AE-1 Program, shot in both manual and full program modes, developed the film at the same time as the F-1 roll above, but for 10 mins.

The negatives look fine to me but I have not scanned them yet, when I do I will upload a couple here, but to me for now, the extra 2 mins I gave the F-1 roll has delivered better negs. But as I say, I have not scanned the AE-1 Program roll yet so let wait an see.

Latest Video:

Here is my latest video with all the pictures I took using the F-1 and AE-1 Program with Fomapan 400 shot at 200 ISO.

Film Photography Fun.

After 3 years or so in photography I am starting to develop my own style and approach to our art form and love the element of experimentation B&W photography allows us all to explore and find our path in which to travel.

Looks like it is panning out for me and I look forward to sharing the result, and failures, of my journey with you.

I wish you well

DC x

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