About Me

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I'm a Guilford College graduate with a B.S. in Criminal Justice; I minored in Visual Arts Photography. My blog tracks the highs and lows of my experience in a Film Photography course during the Spring of 2013 and up to the present, as I delve into digital photography. I may even include other mediums of art such as acrylic paint, graphite drawings, etc. I'll talk about my experiences snapping photos or simply snapping from frustration as well as my successes and failures, tips and tricks that I've learned, and exploring the photography/art world through the lens of a Black woman.

03 February 2013

What is Caffenol?

"Caffenol is a photographic alternative process." [x] Caffenol is composed with Instant Coffee (Caffeine), Washing Soda, and Powdered Vitamin C. There are various recipes for different types of film and photo paper, but the key to successful development with Caffenol is finding a recipe which works best for you. I use Ilford HP5 Plus 400 Black and White 35mm film (36 exposures) as well as Ilford Multigrade IV RC Deluxe Glossy Paper for Black & White prints. When I develop film, at the suggestion of my professor, I have found it best to also add Potassium Bromide (kBr) as a restrainer in development - to prevent over development - and to reduce fog. I do not use kBr when developing prints, however. Listed below are the two Caffenol recipes I use for developing film and prints.

Caffenol Film Recipe*
  • 54g/L Washing Soda
  • 10g/L Powered Vitamin C
  • 40g/L Instant Coffee
  • 1g/L kBr
Ensure that you mix this recipe thoroughly and let it sit for 5 minutes or until your mix is at 68 degrees F before you begin development.

Caffenol Photo Recipe**
  • 45g/L Washing Soda
  • 16g/L Powered Vitamin C
  • 18g/L Instant Coffee
Ensure that you mix this recipe thoroughly and let it sit for 5 minutes.

* = 1L is equivalent to 1000mL. 1L can be used to develop exactly 4 rolls of film at once. If developing only one reel, reduce this recipe by a fourth.
** = 1L is equivalent to 1000mL. For single use development of prints with a tray that you're not sharing with others, I suggest reducing this recipe by a fourth.

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