|Darkroom Technique: Study of Dodging and Burning.
When a photographer shoots a subject that has more contrast or a greater brightness range than the film can record the final print in the darkroom may lack detail in either the shadows or the highlights.
In the darkroom the photographer must dodge or burn a print to fix it. MOST pictures need one or the other for best results. This is a challenge assignment for students with good darkroom skills.
This is where a portion of a print is too dark in the shadows after the main exposure is made on the enlarger.
To cure this a new exposure is made in the enlarger during which time the photographer holds back or shades the problem area using their hand or a piece of matboard on the end of a thin wire such as an extended paper clip.
This may only be done for a few seconds during the enlarger exposure. Keep in mind that the mask must be kept moving during the exposure or an unattractive exposure line will be produced.
BURNING OR "PRINTING IN"
This is where a portion of a print is too light after the main exposure on the enlarger. The majority of the print looks good, so additional exposure would make it too dark.
The cure, to add additional light ONLY to the white area. This will be adding additional exposure to an area that looks dark on the enlarger image as you view it in the paper.
To do this, use the edge of matboard or cut a hole in matboard to add exposure time to the section of the paper AFTER the main exposure. Keep in mind that the matboard mask must be kept moving or unattractive exposure line will be produced.
There are books available for reference in the darkroom. Ask for assistance.
Links to information you definitely should read before you waste time trying to figure this out: