Experience is such a Great Teacher

In the previous week the photographs were all about film but for legal reasons I’m not able to publicly display the images. However I’m very happy with the results, although getting it done was not all beer and skittles, as they would have said in them there olden days.


Back in the days of Yor,when I had a fully functioning darkroom, developing film was so routine that the process required little preparation and even less thought. Nowadays the time necessary for me to prepare and develop a roll of film makes a large hole in any part of the day, and pre-planning is an absolute must.

It goes without saying that to roll the film onto the developing spool requires total darkness and I’ve found that now, in winter, early in the morning is the best time. But in all major cities there’s always light coming from somewhere and so consequently I designed an easy-to-erect-and-use portable darkroom. In essence it’s: I sit in the darkest part of the apartment, cover myself with a black sunblock curtain and then a thick blanket to block all light, and then get the film loaded and the top on the developing tank as fast as possible.

The first couple of rolls were messy, but the system worked and now the habit of years has kicked in, relieving any feelings of angst or worry about mistakes and making the process fast and efficient. It’s the same when doing the actual developing: old habits are what make the work easier. Keeping everything clean, with spill rags handy. Being aware of where everything is so as not to repeat the broken bottle and chemical spill of the first roll.

Making sure all the water and chemical temperatures are the same.

Experience is such a great teacher.

It’s all a bit odd if one spends time thinking about it, but the challenge of improvising a darkroom was part of the spark that made me addicted to film and here I am, back at the beginning, huddled in the hallway under a blanket.



28mm, f4, 1/100sec, ISO6400


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