6 x 6 Again?


Moving into our new home went smoothly, in part because we had an “extra” room where everything that didn’t have a place elsewhere ended up. As covid is slowly transitioning from epidemic to endemic in our area we are starting to think about having houseguests again, and I have to turn the “extra” room into a proper guest room. Part of that project involves sorting through boxes of prints, and this brought me face to face again with some of my 12 x 12 medium format prints for the first time since the lockdown began……and for no particular reason I decided I wanted to scan one of my last 6×6 negatives, shot in 2018, to see how the process worked with the software I have been using for my 35mm negatives. 

I got out my BEOON copy setup with the 50mm lens and 35mm film mask. The only change to the Fuji X-T20 settings was to turn off auto exposure and manually adjust the exposure to center the histogram in the rear LCD display. I left the aperture of the Schneider 50/2.8 enlarging lens at f/8. I took six overlapping photos of the 54mm by 54mm Hasselblad negative and developed them individually with Iridient X-Transformer, producing six DNG images. I stitched them together using the Panorama Stitcher app, producing one TIFF image. I imported the TIFF image into Affinity Photo where I changed the format to Gray16/Gamma 2.2, inverted the image, cropped it to leave just a bit of the black border showing, set the black and white points, played a bit with the gamma and contrast, and exported the JPG image above.

There were limits to what I could do with the image because it was bright sunlight. The only thing that saved any detail at all in the foreground grass was the Ilford FP-4 Plus film that is inherently less contrasty than some other medium speed films. Not even the Ilford film could make it an interesting picture for the general viewer. It is simply a record of the shed that friends and relatives know was home to a number of interesting motorcycles over the years. Sadly gone now, both the building and the bikes.

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