Giving Fomapan 100 a “nudge”

Two of my greatest photographic joys this year has been becoming acquainted with Fomapan 100 and the use of homemade developers. At the beginning of the year when I purchase my first 100′ spool of Fomapan 100 (it was actually branded Arista EDU Ultra, but it’s the same film) I knew, or at least highly suspected, that I was going to like the film. After shooting less than half a dozen rolls my suspicions were confirmed, and then some.

In my quest to learn Foma 100 I’ve pulled it to 50 ASA, pushed it as high as 1600 ASA, and shot it at box speed. The only thing I haven’t done is shoot it at different ASA’s between 100 – 400 on the same roll yet develop it at normal development time. Apparently, you are able to do that without any problems and I intend to find out so “watch this space”

My latest endeavor was not only a simple 2 stop push to 400, but also a test for Thorton two-bath with pushed film. I say “simple” because it has been proven to me time and again that this film pushes quite well. At least for my liking. I chose to use a 4 minute time for both baths since this is a 100 film. Being uncertain of how much time to extend the times to compensate for the push I threw caution to the wind and decided to see what I would get by developing normally. I’m certainly pleased with the results, however, if and when I use this combination again I may extend bath A by 30 seconds or possibly a minute. Not that I don’t like the current results but i would like to see a comparison of the two times.

Nikon N8008 | Fomapan 100 EI400 | Thorton Two-bath

Nikon N8008 | Fomapan 100 EI400 | Thorton Two-bath

Nikon N8008 | Fomapan 100 EI400 | Thorton Two-bath

The treatment to grain and tones that Thorton produces is quite pleasing to me. Plenty of shadow detail as well as highlight control, which is to be expected from this developer. Are there blown out highlights? Possibly, but to me they are not in unwanted areas. The developer shows it’s ability to be sharp, particularly in the image of Ferris. Overall, I find this to have been a successful test of the film/developer/EI combination and one I will gladly utilize again.

So what say you? What are your thoughts on these results? Is this a combination you would have attempted? Would you have extended the bath times or kept them where I did? I’m curious to hear your thoughts. As always, feel free to leave your comments, suggestions and/or questions below.

God Bless and Happy Shooting!

10 thoughts on “Giving Fomapan 100 a “nudge”

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    1. It certainly is. I fall more and more in love with it with each roll I shoot. This is my first year of making my own chemistry. At first I was nervous but now I wouldn’t have it any other way. Thanks for stopping by and taking the time to comment!

  1. Great results with Thornton two bath. I also started this year with Homemade Chemistry. I tried fomapan 100 with Thornton two bath but did it at box speed.
    Now I am researching with 510 Pyro and FP4 +, Rollei superpan 200..etc.
    A very interesting blog. Thank you for sharing your experiences. Greetings from the south of Spain.

    1. Thanks for stopping by! I love mixing my own developers. For me, it just adds to the experience. I have no doubts you’ll love 510 Pyro. Everyone I know that has used it loves it. God bless and Happy Shooting!

  2. I had missed this post. I love your photography where you make seemingly innocuous objects into lovely photographs. Thornton Two Bath is quite amazing to me. I mean, look at those specular highlights on the cutlery. One would think a compensating developer would make them dull and grey but, as seen here, they zing! Wonderful Tony, thanks for sharing.


    1. Thank you for your generous words, John. Had it not been for you sharing about this and other developers these images would not exist in their current form.

  3. I’ve found you trough Pictorial Planet, which I’m a fan. I’m very glad since after finishing a 100′ roll of Arista 200 I’m about to purchase a Fomapan 100 roll and I’m researching a good developer. Currently I use PMK Pyro (with great results on Arista 200) and Rodinal, which I find very useful for asa 100 films. Greetings from Puerto Rico.

    1. Greetings and thanks for stopping by!

      Rodinal is a great developer for Fomapan 100. I haven’t used PMK but do use Pyrocat HD and have gotten very good results with that as well.

  4. According to the actual prices, the Foma100 is a very interesting film. I use i it with Pyro510 and the results are very good! I tried a lot of developers but Pyro510 gave the best results. Now i’m working with Foma200 and 400. Until today, FX15 seems to be a very good developer for these films. Trials are ongoing.

  5. Thanks for the review! The grain is pretty interesting on that 1st shot of the coffee. Of course, I’m seeing a web page image and assuming the image was scanned. That can do odd things to grain, but I actually like the grain on all the shots. It’s “different” than my usual Rodinal 1:50 for 7.5 minutes. Foma is such a wonderful film. I’m thinking of trying it in F76+ if I can decide on the dilution. Steve

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