FrogTown Creek Revisited


In the last week of November I decided to drive up to the Desoto Falls camping area and try to take another image of the upper falls. The trail was closed due to storm damage over the summer. So I walked along the creek on the campground side and found this composition. Frogtown creek is full of boulders around which water swirls and tumbles. In bright light the contrast is very high so hard to capture, but in the morning subdued light the tones from white water to dark wet boulders is only 4-5 stops.

I perched at the edge of the stream straddling two smaller dry rocks and set my tripod in the water. I pulled out my trusty 135mm lens and set about focusing and prepping for the exposure. After metering I found that the light ranged from 5.2 to 9 so I set EV of 6 at zone V which would be a slight over exposure. Even so, my time for the exposure suggested around 8 seconds at f22 plus another 6 seconds for reciprocity. I double checked my settings and fired the shutter then closed it around 14 seconds later.

I processed the negative a few days later and it was very dense. This surprised me since I used my “Normal” development time. On the light table it looked okay, just darker than what I expected. Once I started printing at grade 2 I could see all the details were there that I needed but that contrast level seemed too high or did not allow enough time for the mid tones to come in. So I split the printing between a grade 2 filter for 24 seconds and the 00 filter for 16 seconds. I dodged the rock in the foreground and burned it the top and corners while using the #2 filter. The 00 filter was used to enhance the lighter tones. I developed in LPD 1:2 for 2 minutes. I like the grey-scale of this image but it will be a great candidate for split toning and warming it up. UPDATE: See toned version here

Techical: Chamonix 4×5 FP4+ @100, f22, 14 seconds, 135MM. Developed in diluted Pyrocat HD for 27:30. Printed on Ilford MGFB Warmtone paper , scan of print.

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