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Experimenting with analogue

Updated: Jul 9, 2020

I am lucky enough to have access to a dark room at my university. I decided to try out doing some editing in the dark room as, before Photoshop, this was how you could transform your photographs, in the developing phase.

The first photograph I named Passions, my aim was to collect in one single photograph the things I love. I took a photograph of someone holding a camera to symbolize my love of photography, as well as the creative side of me. Similarly the strip of film I added illustrates the part of my life that includes film and postproduction. The sol clef (that is actually a necklace of mine) represents music and my passion for dancing. The element with the most hidden meaning is the line with the dots in the bottom right corner (an earring). This symbolizes the idea of karma, or the butterfly effect, however you want to call it. It's the belief that everything you do matters and affects your next action.

On the technical side of things, the settings I used to develop this photograph are:

- the aperture of the enlarger was set at 4

- I had two film strips, one with the photograph of the person with the camera and the other as a prop as I've already mentioned.

- the time of exposure was 8 seconds.

The second photograph I experimented with was Dreamland, I used the overlaying technique, where I put two negatives, one on top of each other.

I was very decided to use this technique to create a more mystical and magical photograph. To get this final image, I took a picture of a woman against a tree and another of some flowers in a grassy field. I wanted the combination of both these images to give the feeling of being a bit lost in her thoughts, lost in nature, lost in her own world.

In this case, the settings were:

- the aperture of the enlarger was, once again, set at 4

- I had two negative photographs, as I've already mentioned.

- the time of exposure was 6 seconds.

It was an eye opening experience, and extremely creative. You feel more pressure, as you haven't got the option of cmd+Z. Also, you're working with expensive materials, something we're not used to when editing digitally.

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