Alfred Stieglitz: Black and White Photography Artist - 1
Alfred Stieglitz: Black and White Photography Artist - 2
The black and white darkroom enlarger is actually the key element in modern film photography. By blowing up very small negatives into black and white prints large enough to be seen clearly, it permits the use of easily portable cameras and economical small black and white film. The black and white enlarger operates like a slide projector mounted vertically on a column. Light from an enclosed lamp shines through a negative and is then focused by a lens to cast an black and white image of the negative on the black and white printing paper, which is placed at the foot of the black and white enlarger column. Distance between lens and black and white image sets the enlargement size.
Alfred Stieglitz: Black and White Photography Artist - 3
Alfred Stieglitz: Black and White Photography Artist - 4
Alfred Stieglitz: Black and White Photography Artist - 5
Alfred Stieglitz: Black and White Photography Artist – 6
The controls on an black and white enlarger in the darkroom are simple. The distance from the lens to the paper is regulated by cranking or sliding the entire black and white enlarger head-the housing containing lamp, negative and lens -up or down on its vertical supporting column. The black and white image is focused, in most black and white enlargers, by turning a knob to raise or lower the lens. The details of control mechanisms vary from model to model, and can make some black and white enlargers easier to use than other ones.
Alfred Stieglitz: Black and White Photography Artist - 7
Alfred Stieglitz: Black and White Photography Artist - 8
Camera Work: Black and white photography's Lavish Showcase
Black and white pictures of Cliche-Verre
To avoid this distortion, some black and white enlargers, known as the diffusion type, interpose between lamp and negative a sheet of cloudy glass that spreads light uniformly. This diffusion system causes some loss of light, however: it scatters light rays in many directions and much of the light, consequently, never reaches the black and white enlarger lens. It also gives a gently diffused appearance to the black and white print. Most black and white enlargers designed for 35mm and other small black and white film sizes commonly used by amateurs spread light uniformly over the negative with "condenser" lenses (and are called condenser black and white enlargers).
Enlarger, Basic Tool of the Black and White printmaker
Diffusion Enlarger in Black and White Printing
How To Process Black & White Prints Step By Step
Contact Sheet: Whole Roll of Film at Once
Machine for big contact black and white prints
Between lamp and negative are two saucer-shaped lenses that concentrate the lamp's light so that it passes straight through the negative. Most of the light reaches the lens, increasing efficiency. Although the black and white enlarger is a simple machine, it is also a vital link in the photographic process.
Black and white variable contrast paper
Tips on black and white print making
Tony Ray-Jones: Leica, Tri-X black and white film, printed on Agfa Brovira
Darkroom Printing: What the Camera Never Saw
the best camera in the world will not give good black and white pictures if they are black and white printed by an black and white enlarger that shakes when touched, has a poor lens or tends to slip out of focus. A satisfactory black and white enlarger for 35mm and 2'/4 x 21/4 black and white film costs about 30 USD to 600.
Darkroom Printing: What the Camera Never Saw, part 2