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Thread: Darkroom as Recreation

  1. #1
    Deceased, but remembered fondly here... johnastovall's Avatar
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    Darkroom as Recreation

    "Darkroom is on the way out, on the way down, Banco Unpopular. Easy to kick, backward-looking, subject to ridicule (gentle and otherwise). But there's nothing inherently wrong with darkrooms. They have at least one good thing going for them: they're not computers. Anybody out there dying to spend more time at the computer? Are there legions of people today who prize what little computer time they get, and just feel they do not spend enough hours basking in the glow of monitors and clacking away at various sizes and kinds of keyboard? Just aching for some valid excuse to spend just a little more time that way? Any excuse will do?..."


    Full essay by Mike Johnson.

    "The market wants a Leica to be a Leica: the inheritor of tradition, the subject of lore, and indisputably a mark of status to own."
    Mike Johnston


  2. #2
    ddk
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    Re: Darkroom as Recreation

    Boy, does the title brings back memories. I remember our high school's darkroom more for its recreational value than any printing that went on, which was mostly for boring yearbook picts; some really good times. Just don't see the same type of recreation happening on a keyboard...

  3. #3
    Hill
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    Re: Darkroom as Recreation

    I loved to print, John, and when I bought my first house in 1977 my first project was to build a dedicated darkroom. Prior to that I'd converted, for temporary use, three bathrooms in three apartments.

    The place I bought had an outbuilding - a very well built playhouse that had floor dimensions of 12'x12'. That was mine. I built a plywood sink with hot and cold water plumbed from the house 100 ft away. It ran the length of one wall and two worktable surfaces one on the other wall and the other closing the end that didn't have the door. I was able to extend the column of my enlarger, an Omega B200 (I think it was) to the ceiling and bolt it to a plate there so that the structure was immune from vibration. Three good Kodak safelights, the old kind found at flea markets, FOUR timers, the big black faced (one oldie had a white face) plus a footswitch operated enlarging light. Shelves all up the walls, a print dryer and film hanger in there too. A good padded stool, an old but working room air conditioner, and my then wife had to troop out in the rain over the 100 ft from the house to collect me for dinner. I'd be so engrossed in a darkroom that I'd lose all track of time.

    I still own that house as a rental property, and wouldn't be surprised if my sink is still there. I haven't even been there or in California where it is for over ten years now. Renters probably looted the place but that sink would have been too heavy to take casually.

    This is my first post here. I bought a lens from Jack and followed his link. That there is interest in film work interests me very much so I'll be following your progress, but I've got a doctor appointment that I've got to go to right now, so won't be able to respond to any comment this morning.

  4. #4
    Super Moderator Cindy Flood's Avatar
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    Re: Darkroom as Recreation

    Welcome to the forum, Hill. Your darkroom must have been wonderful. I wish I had one like that right now.

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