Tuesday, January 31, 2012

A little more steps back

Until now, the best result I got was with the recipe below:
1 tsp washing soda
4 tsp soluble coffee
10 drops of lemon juice
10 ml CD4 5% solution
Water to make 500 ml
20 minutes development time and 40 ºC temperature
The photo you see below was an experiment to see what happens if we increase the coffee portion in the mixture. I made 30 minutes development because I already observed that there is no over-development but under-development may occur.

More coffee leads to loss of color

The result was not better, I got a darker negative but with less color.
So, by now, the above recipe is the best one.
Meanwhile I am testing some homemade recipes for the bleach-fix bath, because the bleach by-pass is not giving good results.
To be continued...

Monday, January 30, 2012

Two steps back

I decided to push more the process, lowering temperature and duration at the same time. It didn't work well. Then, next time I will be respecting the 40 ºC and at least 20 minutes development duration. Well, after some retouch with GIMP, I still got photos like this:

Am I creating a myth or is it really true?

Someone made a comment at Flickr, suspecting that it is all fake, the photos I am posting are not developed like I say. I am not offended, it is normal, this fellow knows me from nowhere, I may be a trickster.
Readers must gain confidence, it is not possible to try every trash that we see.

OK, let us put here some stuff that may make you confident. The photos posted in the internet are not, of course, the original ones. Mine have to be digitized with one of my digital cameras, Sony DSC-W170 or Olympus FE 4050. I don't have a digitizer, a cheap one is worst than mine, I already tried.
One negative film developed with Caffcol looks like this, a little greener.

The positive of this negative, without any treatment would look like this, after cropping the image:

Caffcol result without more

At this point the photo is already in digital form and can be treated (digitally developed) to give then this one:

Digitally treated photo

I think, personally, this is already something. But I am also convinced that the process will grow, with help of others. And there is a lot of work to be done for a homemade C41 to be true. Bleach and fix baths need to be made too, and CD4 should, if possible, be found in some everyday product, hair dyes maybe.

Finally I show you some photos of my digitizer, homemade, like most of my things:

Homemade digitizer with my Sony DSC-W170

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Pushing the process Caffcol

As I announced in the last post, the process I am working on will be called CAFFCOL for simplicity of speach. I came to the formula given in that post by trying and adjusting, according to some experience with caffenol. I have been using the proportion 1:2 for soda and coffee when developing B&W films. Caffenol without vitamine C takes some 45 minutes time to develop at tap temperature, witch is about 15 ºC here where I live.
I remember that once I developed a color film with coffee and vitamine C and I could see some vestiges of color there. This is one of the photos:

Color film developed with Caffenol-C, image treatement with GIMP

That was the reason why I started to develop color films and I choosed the Tetenal Colortec kit to start because it is more easy for beginners like me.
After some color experience I decided to try then with coffee, just to see if I was right about my former conclusion, that there was a little color on that film.
Indeed, I might have not been mistaken. If we add CD4 to coffee and soda, we have a color developer. It is not the «non plus ultra», of course, but it is starting now.
Today I made two changes in the process. I tried to put less soda, because I am working with a ph near 12 and this must be lowered to less than 11. Unfortunately I still don't have a ph meter, I will look for one at the pets (aquarium) shop tomorrow. But I made a solution with just one tsp soda, 2 tsp coffee and 10 ml CD4 solution. Image loss definition and I remembered that this also happened when I putted no coffee. OK, I repeated with one tsp soda, 4 tsp coffee and 10 ml. With this, I obtained a better negative and the results, after treatment with GIMP are better than the other, I got less grain, maybe because the ph was lower (I also added some drops of lemon juice, eheheheh).

Color film developed with Caffcol, image treatment with GIMP

Color film developed with Caffcol, image treatment with GIMP

Meanwhile I tried to develop some stripes of negative in Caffcol at tap temperature and then fix to see how long it takes until the silver becomes black. I came to the conclusion that 20 minutes was the best and because the color process takes place at higher temperature, maybe less than 20 minutes would be enough. But if developing in 40 minutes is OK, we don't get over-development, then I tried with 20 minutes. Resuming, the last recipe has changed to:
1 tsp sodium carbonate, aka washing soda
4 tsp coffee
10 drops of lemon juice
10 ml CD4 5% solution
water to make 500 ml
In this formula the lower ph gave less grain, more coffee to produce more definition and because the amount of water decreased, it has comparatively more CD4 and coffee than the other, see previous post.
To be continued...

To be continued...

Wellcome to the new address of Caffenolcolor, the blog about the homemade process I am developing step by step, one step in front and two backwards, eheheheh!

The process, that already can use homemade developer where the only special think you need is CD4, a p-phenylenediamine derivative.

Developer formula:

2 tsp sodium carbonate, aka washing soda
2 tsp cheap soluble coffee
10 ml of a CD4 5% solution
Water to make 700 ml

Temperature tested: 40 º C; development time: 40 min
Results: weak negative with color shift to green but with all color information., giving acceptable colors but still very grainy. See photos below.

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Well, let us resume

It is perhaps time to choose a recipe, maybe not what I desired but what is possible with my means and understanding.
In the last experience, photos bellow, I used the following recipe for the developer, after knowing what was on the bottles of Tetenal Colortec Kit:
500 ml water
10 ml of the solution of Tetenal (2.nd Part of the developer) that contains 1-5% p-phenylenediamine derivate.
2 tsp. sodium carbonate (washing soda from the drugstore)
2 tsp. soluble coffee (the cheapest one)
water to make 700 ml

Remarks: like for the other best results, the negative has a greenish appearance, when 'positivated' it changes to a magenta like tone. Any image treatment program is able to correct the colour. The picture will probably present more grain than usual but may serve artistic purposes. The negative is weak and more developing time doesn't make it better, I tried already, perhaps an overexposure should be tested in addition.
The bleach and fix procedures, as well as the stabilization, are to be done with commercial ones but my purpose is to search more, and produce homemade products for bleach and fix.
In addition, another possibility for a Cafenolcolor process is being studied and will be tested soon. Keep on watching.
Studying Tetenal information on the three bottles, the first bottle contains Hydroxylamine sulfate, the second contains CD4, a p-Phenylenediamine derivate, the third contains only Sodium Carbonate, that is to say, Washing Soda.
If, then, I am getting results replacing only the Hydroxylamine sulfate, a very hazardous substance, this means that the coffee can be used as neutralizer/stabilizer and not only as developer. There was an increase in quality when putting only 2 tsp of coffee instead of the 4. Well, maybe just one tsp? I shall try.

Increasing Tetenal developer to 60 ml, brought NO quality increase in the negatives. Above is one of the photos that could be developed also with just 30 ml, I think. Recipe for the next experiment:

30 ml Tetenal developer or just 5 ml of the second bottle
1 tsp coffee
2 tsp washing soda
Temperature and time at the 40's.

Friday, January 27, 2012

Another coffee, please!

I have stopped the works for today, but I want to share the last experience with you. Very promising, I think. For you that appreciate coffee  like me, I have good news. In the last experiment, I proceeded like I promised below, and I used this recipe:

2 tsp washing soda
2 tsp coffee
45 ml Tetenal Colortec developer mixed with the three components to make 1 liter

40 minutes developing time, semi-stand (1 minute turning every 5 minutes), 40 ºC temperature

And here is what I got:

The negative, again more green but less than former

After positivation with GIMP

After applying an automatic tread called 'normalize' in GIMP

Finaly hand adjust of contrast and luminosity. This time automatic white balance is worst than hand adjust.

Obs.: For me, it is now clear that coffee and CD4 may work together, not competing but completing one each other. In the next experiment, tomorrow, I will increase Tetenal  to 60 ml and maintain developing time and temperature in the 40's.

I need some coffee

I may now say that my intuition was not wrong, coffee is a great stuff, it will be preserved in the next experiences.
I accepted the suggestion of the commenter ErikP and made a soup only with soda and Tetenal developer, leaving coffee apart. The results are a disaster. Only a mix of color dyes and no clear image definition. Yes, there may be other reasons for that and I simply can't see. Waiting comments!

The negative is dark and more red:

Positivation with GIMP gives bright colors.

Automatic white balance with GIMP gives this:

Observations: One could expect, according to the theory, a better negative with more colour and definition. The reality shows that the approach with coffee and only 30 ml Tetenal is better. I am now thinking what will be the next try. Maybe reduce coffee quantity and increase Tetenal to let us say only 45 ml. Because the shift to red is good, but there was a lost of definition.

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Back to the beginning

Like I said before, the experiments with hair dye were not successfully, leading to very weak negatives, that is to say, with fast no color development. So, I suppose the quantity of CD4 present in the hair dye solution was not enough to produce color development. And if the quantity must be larger, that is not interesting on the economic point of view. So, I have to order CD4 as component of the developer bath. Unless I discover another color developing agent present in some other think. Any ideas?
Not to fill much frustrated, I returned to the former experience, using color developer from Tetenal Colortec. I had a batch of the 3 baths of Tetenal that I prepared and already used to develop successfully some 4 or 5 color films. I just replaced now the developer bath with a Caffenol base to witch I added this time 30 ml of the prepared Tetenal color developer bath. The recipe was:


2 tsp washing soda
4 tsp Soluble coffee
30 ml Tetenal developer solution
water to make 700 ml

The temperature of the developing bath was kept at about 40 ºC, some times more, some times less because I had to poor hot water (I don't have a thermostatic bath). The developing process took 45 min, followed by the other parts, bleach-fix and stabilizer according to Tetenal Colortec.

The negative looked like this example:

The image above, after positivation with GIMP:

The same image, with a slight reduction of saturation, followed by automatic white balancing in GIMP:


The colors in the last picture are quite correct, the appearance of grain is not due to the negative but more to the automatic process in GIMP. But I am not an expert in GIMP. And I didn't care too much with the dust spots in the negative (they are digitized with a digital camera), the purpose is to get color with caffenol!

Fourth experience

The same procedure as before, just increasing the quantity of the P-Phenylenediamine hair dye component to 10 ml instead of the 5 ml tried before. In the next experience I will double the quantity again, that means, 20 ml. I noticed a visible increase in the density of the exposed areas of the film, a darker green.

Be pacient, I think it will work better and better, until the final result, a satisfactory color print made with Caffenol. I also will come to homemade Bleach and Fixer, with help of some other experimenters.

PS - Meanwhile I finished the 5th experience  with 20 ml hair dye component containing P-Phenylenediamine and the result is identical with the 4th, no significant changes for better. Well, I am back to the first experience, with the color developer. This time I measured 30 ml for a bath of 700 ml Caffenol. I am waiting to see.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Third experience

Yes, it will work! This time I took the right bottle but I preserved the procedure. I used only 5 ml (1 tsp) of the liquid of the 60 ml bottle containing a portion of P-Phenylenediamine. The color of the negative shifted to green, like I obtained in the first experience when I used the ca. 20ml of color developer of Tetenal with the classic Cafenol developer.

But it is clear that I have to add more than the 5 ml I guessed, the negative is still very weak. I took photos with flash inside my house, it is possible to guess some objects but nothing that one could already say: Eureka!

Second experience

In the first experience I made a bath of normal Cafenol, that is to say, 2 tsp washing soda + 4 tsp soluble coffee and water to make 700 ml. Then I added just a little of Tetenal color developer (perhaps 20ml), already mixed and used alone to develop color negative film normally. It worked as you have seen below in the firs post.

Well, this showed me that perhaps if we add a little P-Phenylenediamine to Cafenol it may work as color developer. And where is P-Phenylenediamine in common household substances? Hair dye! Today I bought a package of hair dye where one can see that it contains P-Phenylenediamine.

Well, I followed the same procedure as for the first time and instead of Tetenal color developer, I puted just 5 ml of this hair dye component wich is also called the color developer. Wait a minute... I made a mistake!!! I used the wrong emulsion! I must repeat tomorrow the experience? No, I will use a flash now.

The result is obviously the same you get when using b&w developer alone and the bleach washes the silver out!!!

Here is one of the best negatives, that was not washed out totally.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

The (im)possible project

Today I decided to start this blog about an alternative process to C41. I always believed that this is possible and I have been studying and searching others experiences in this field in the internet. That one can use cafenol to develop color negative films, is certain, some already tried and succeeded, obtaining monochromatic pictures. I found none that succeeded to obtain color.
But today I am about to declare that with cafenol it is possible to develop color and I decided to call this new process Cafenolcolor.
Before I tell you about my experiences, wich are still not completed, I can show you below one of my first results. It is promising...

PS -I am a non-english writter, sorry for any mistakes.