reflective snaps

There’s been lots of shifting as of late. I redid the Fluffyland shop, which required all sorts of shifting of files; I repainted my room, which led to the shifting and re-shifting of my earthly possessions; and I saw the end of Lent, which caused me to shift back into the habit of eating sweet things, although hopefully with more restraint.

melting bridge - black & white film photographLifestyle changes, scenery changes; sometimes we let them all happen, and sometimes we cause them ourselves. Lately I’ve been antsy with my life, and I’ve been doing all this shifting to try and change things. It’s worked, I suppose – things have changed. But I haven’t. Not enough.

A few nights ago as I sat, exasperated, in my discombobulated room, I found the pile of my photography projects. Projects. Like they could possibly be called projects. Let’s restart.

A few nights ago as I sat, exasperated, in my discombobulated room, I found a stack of black & white photographic prints. 8½ × 11, developed in a darkroom on high quality fiber paper and then matted to 11 × 14 matboard. There we go.

And it’s been over a year since I’ve developed prints in a darkroom. It’s such an amazing process… letting your eyes adjust, focusing to the tiny grains of the negative, and finally watching your image gradually appear in the bath. There’s nothing like it. I have 14 of these prints, representing an entire semester’s worth of work. They’re one of a kind. They took forever. And they mean the world to me.

Scanning them in and viewing them on the digital screen completely ruins them. I love the way they look in person, the way the fiber paper plays up the textures to make them larger than life. I can’t wait to frame these and hang them on my wall and finally do them justice. I hope with all my heart I get to make more someday.

Despite the fact that these are digital scans, and I’ve hardly retouched them, here’s a sampling. I don’t know if I can convey the power of working with black & white film with just the images… but maybe my words have made up for it.

This is also just a sampling, and as any good sampling.. I’m not including the best ones yet. So stay tuned.

window light - black & white film photograph

a project on exploring light.

melting bridge - black & white film photograph

my ambitious endeavor to try and capture cleveland as “beautiful”.

linen ground - black & white film photograph

my professor’s favorite picture of mine. i printed it on a whim, and she was enthralled by how the ground appeared to be, in her words, “linen”. she was wonderfully encouraging, always ready to reassure us that, yes, the perfect print would be worth our time.

dripping lines - black & white film photograph

i took so many pictures of this parking garage. i walked by it every day and the lines intrigued me. but the shots were never interesting. finally, the rain did this for me. just goes to show that sometimes, you have good ideas – but you’ve got to wait for something outside your control.

asphalt island - black & white film photograph

something not usually worth noting. but i found it worth photographing. and in this picture i sometimes see a continent, and sometimes a transformer, and sometimes just so much texture.


So now, of course, the shifting will continue. But I will let myself change with each shift. It’s time to act like the person I want to become. And that person takes a heck of a lot more pictures than this person has been taking lately. She also gets a lot more joy out of the little things. I’ll get there.

(p.s. each image is clickable if you’d like to see it larger.)

2 Responses

  1. FWD says:

    Thx for sharing these. They are lovely!

  1. February 26, 2013

    […] (to see some actual prints I made, check out this post from the archives with some black & white darkroom prints) […]

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