Pushing Season!!

My go to Black and White film to push is none other than Ilford Hp5 Plus.

As some may know, rating, metering, and developing Ilford HP5  in different ways gives different results. Ilford HP5 is a 400 speed film. When shot and developed at box speed, you can expect finer grain and medium contrast (lots of grays). But if you’re looking for a little more punch and contrast, you can rate it at a higher speed. The faster your ISO, the more contrast and grain you’ll see in your photos. You must note that every time you push your film 1, 2 or 3 stops, you need to add to your developing times for each stop. Different developers will also have different times.

The more you push this film, the more grain you’ll see. If you want bright whites and true blacks, shoot it and develop it for 800 or 1600. This gives you more blacks and whites, and your images will have more contrast and more grain.

The sweet spot for me is 800. I love the contrast and grain at 800, and how it makes the blacks stand out in my photos.

If you decide to push your film and do not develop at home, be sure to communicate to your lab exactly what you did and how it needs to be developed. If you don’t, you will likely end up with muddy, underexposed images. Always make sure to look at your negatives as well. Example of what you should tell your lab: I shot this roll of HP5 at 800, I would like to push it 1 stop.

If you develop at home, there is good news.

Ilford HP5 Plus can be developed in a variety of developers including Ilford Ilfosol, Ilford DDX, or any developer. Different developers will give you different results, so I highly recommend experimenting with all kinds of developers to see which one works for you. Each developer will give you different developing times and be sure to check the developing chart and develop accordingly.

When developing, you can also use the handy Dev chart that Ilford has provided on their website.

The Massive Dev chart is another great source you can use to find out different developing times for your film and developer.

Developing film for the first time can be intimidating, however if you would love to learn as a beginner or want to relearn how to develop your B/W film, I highly recommend the B/W developing workshop we provide at Beau Photo.

work shop

You can see some of my images down below.

Hp5 Pushed to 1600

Hp5 Pushed to 1600

Hp5 Pushed to 800

Hp5 Pushed to 800

Hp5 Pushed to 800

Hp5 Pushed to 1600

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One reply on “Pushing Season!!

  • Gus Kilpatrick

    Great post, love the photos! One of the biggest benefits of getting into developing, for me, is the ability to play with pushing and pulling. HP5 @ 1600 is becoming my standard winter walk-around.

    I know that El Camino!

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Beau Photo Supplies Inc.
Beau Photo Supplies Inc.