A belated introduction from Memphis

Discussion in 'Introduce Yourself to the APUG Community' started by Ottrdaemmerung, Jul 4, 2011.

  1. Ottrdaemmerung

    Ottrdaemmerung Member

    Messages:
    258
    Joined:
    Jul 27, 2010
    Location:
    Memphis, TN
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Hello, guys and gals --
    Ever since I started posting on APUG and also eventually made the leap into joining, I've been meaning to post an introduction. Of course procrastination got the better of me and I never did! I just looked at my stats and saw that I made my account a year ago this month, so it's about bloody time I introduced myself, right?

    I live in Memphis and grew up not far away in rural eastern Arkansas, still in the Mississippi River delta. As a child I had an Argus 110 camera and later a Polaroid One-Step: my father believed that Polaroids were cheaper because of not having to have the shots processed. Needless to say I still hate Polaroid to this day. :laugh:

    It wasn't until late 2008, after having a (my first?) mid-life crisis that I at first decided to quit my job and go back to college. I wanted something lucrative so as to not waste my time. My husband suggested graphic design, but I've never been able to draw. A friend mentioned that I nevertheless had an artistic eye -- and that got me thinking about photography. People close to me then reminded me how much I'd always loved taking photos. Faced with a terrible bureaucracy that stifled my attempt to re-enter college, I decided to keep my job so I'd have health insurance and money to buy gear, and to teach myself photography. My husband helped me buy my first "good" camera, a Nikon D80 DSLR.

    The instant feedback of digital helped me master the basics of photographic theory, but I still felt that I needed to learn film, since darkroom is still an indispensable part of a photographic curriculum. I started buying up film bodies and then developing supplies, and taught myself to develop film, both B&W and C-41. I now enjoy both film and digital, and see them as both being good for different purposes. Digital is good for when I need to get "the shot," and for intricate lighting setups, but it doesn't even come close to film for when I simply want to be creative Film gives me an artistic satisfaction I can't get anywhere else. I've already subscribed and unsubscribed to several different photographic magazines already because they're digital-centric. I shoot every format, from 35mm to medium format to 4x5. So far medium format is my favorite because the larger negative size and the convenience of rollfilm, although my Crown Graphic is begging me for more exercise. My favorite medium-format camera is my Mamiya 645 Pro.

    Now, nearly three years after my big jump into photography, I've just acquired two enlargers (Omega D2 and a Beseler 45MCRX) and still need more accessories for both, but I'm close to getting all the supplies I need to start the next phase of my photographic education: printing!

    Thanks to everyone on APUG for selling me stuff through the Classifieds (I'm no stranger to GAS), and for providing me with so much good information about everything having to do with photography. Thanks to Sean and APUG itself for being here. I'm glad to be part of it. :happy:

    Regards,
    Terry E. Christian
    Memphis, Tennessee
     
  2. MattKing

    MattKing Subscriber

    Messages:
    17,049
    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2005
    Location:
    Delta, BC, Canada
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Terry - welcome to APUG.

    Sorry I'm so late with the welcome :smile:.

    Thanks for the background - I always find that it enriches my APUG experience when others share.
     
  3. Jeff Kubach

    Jeff Kubach Member

    Messages:
    6,930
    Joined:
    Sep 29, 2007
    Location:
    Richmond VA.
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Hello Terry and a warm welcome to APUG! Better late then never!:smile:

    Jeff
     
  4. Diapositivo

    Diapositivo Subscriber

    Messages:
    2,326
    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2009
    Location:
    Rome, Italy
    Shooter:
    35mm
    Terry, your picture wouldn't suggest you might have a husband. Not in Tennessee, that is.
     
  5. benjiboy

    benjiboy Subscriber

    Messages:
    8,611
    Joined:
    Apr 18, 2005
    Location:
    U.K.
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Welcome Terry to the ranks of subscribers, but I'm confused by your post, your avatar is a picture of a men with a beard and I always assumed in your previous posts you are a male yet you write about your husband, would you please clarify the matter :confused:
     
  6. Ottrdaemmerung

    Ottrdaemmerung Member

    Messages:
    258
    Joined:
    Jul 27, 2010
    Location:
    Memphis, TN
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    benjiboy: My avatar is indeed a self-portrait. I wanted this intro to be about my photography and only about my personal life only insofar as it is relevant, so I was attempting to downplay the fact that I'm gay. I assume you have those in the UK as well. :smile:

    Diapositivo: [nods] We've been together for eighteen years come this summer. For our fifteenth anniversary a couple years ago, on the way to a camping vacation in Wisconsin we made a slight detour west to Iowa and got legally married.

    Now about my photography...! :smile:
     
  7. benjiboy

    benjiboy Subscriber

    Messages:
    8,611
    Joined:
    Apr 18, 2005
    Location:
    U.K.
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    I'm sorry Terry,you must think me very naive I hope I caused no offence, congratulations on your marriage, we certainly have gay people in the UK, at the moment the law only allows Civil Partnerships not full marriage, but society is becoming much more tolerant, gay couples with long term relationships who are in Civil Partnerships now are able to adopt children , it's only a matter of time before they will able to legally marry.
     
  8. M.A.Longmore

    M.A.Longmore Subscriber

    Messages:
    1,886
    Joined:
    Aug 25, 2009
    Location:
    New York
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    .
    Happy Almost First APUG Anniversary, Terry.

    And Welcome Home !

    Ron
    .
     
  9. Ottrdaemmerung

    Ottrdaemmerung Member

    Messages:
    258
    Joined:
    Jul 27, 2010
    Location:
    Memphis, TN
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Absolutely no offense taken, Benji. Things are rather spotty here: Tennessee and most other states don't recognize our Iowa marriage -- guess it's another sort of reciprocity failure! The answer, of course, is more exposure.

    Temperatures are hot here, regularly reaching 100F during the summer, so I'm shooting on the weekends when I can, until we go again to Wisconsin next month; it's generally quite a bit cooler and less humid there.
     
  10. Diapositivo

    Diapositivo Subscriber

    Messages:
    2,326
    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2009
    Location:
    Rome, Italy
    Shooter:
    35mm
    Dah, one never stops learning.

    There was an attempt to some kind of civil union during the last legislature in Italy, but it was written by two idiots, and the parliamentary majority itself sent it back to the Government to be written with the brain turned on. Then the Government fell, new elections were held, and this clown* was re-elected.

    Fabrizio

    * (Silvio Berlusconi, in case you missed the last 17 years of Italian affairs).
     
  11. Sirius Glass

    Sirius Glass Subscriber

    Messages:
    20,652
    Joined:
    Jan 18, 2007
    Location:
    Southern California
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Welcome to APUG!

    Do not put of something to do tomorrow, it you can avoid doing it at all.

    Steve
     
  12. papagene

    papagene Membership Council Council

    Messages:
    5,304
    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2004
    Location:
    Tucson, AZ
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Terry - hello and welcome to APUG (belatedly) from western Massachusetts. Looking forward to seeing some of your photos in the Gallery.
     
  13. Valerie

    Valerie Subscriber

    Messages:
    907
    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2005
    Location:
    Magnolia, Tx
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Hello Terry!! Big ol' welcome from Texas!
     
  14. guitstik

    guitstik Member

    Messages:
    1,098
    Joined:
    Jun 19, 2010
    Location:
    Eads TN.
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Terry, we still need to get together and shoot some film. I am getting closer to getting my DR room set up but it looks as if you will beat me to the punch as it were.

    Oh, welcome even tho I have never given a proper introduction myself.
     
  15. Ottrdaemmerung

    Ottrdaemmerung Member

    Messages:
    258
    Joined:
    Jul 27, 2010
    Location:
    Memphis, TN
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Thanks, guistik - yeah, definitely count me in for a photowalk. I don't actually have a darkroom set up yet. I'm going to set it up in the crazy cat lady house across the street (she's deceased, we bought the property, and nothing's being done with it at the moment), in a middle room close to the hall bath. I just had to pounce on those enlargers, gettin' while the gettin' was good. The only must-have I think I need at this point is a safelight, and then I should be minimally functional.

    I've still yet to try Caffenol, too! I've got washing soda and found the Vitamin C, now I just need to know the right type of coffee product to use. My latest commercial developer obsession is Ilford DD-X, and Rollei Digibase C-41. Oh, and you'll be glad to know I finally got bitten by the Minolta bug. I now have an XG-A and an SRT-200. The lenses are awesome.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 6, 2011
  16. guitstik

    guitstik Member

    Messages:
    1,098
    Joined:
    Jun 19, 2010
    Location:
    Eads TN.
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Cool on the Minolta gear, as far as the type of coffee, Folgers instant is what I use. IM me and let's see if we can set something up.
     
  17. Ottrdaemmerung

    Ottrdaemmerung Member

    Messages:
    258
    Joined:
    Jul 27, 2010
    Location:
    Memphis, TN
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Okay, so I just had to make an update: I did my first attempt at darkroom printing this evening, and it was a success! I just hung the prints up to dry. Everything pretty much went without a hitch, so I'm overjoyed. I can't wait to dive in deeper once the weather gets cooler: the crazy cat lady house where I've set up the darkroom doesn't have air conditioning.
    Significant equipment: Omega D2, Nikor 50mm and Rodenstock 70mm lenses, Arista.EDU Ultra 5x7 paper, Speed-Ez-Els, Ilford Multigrade filters, Ilford Multigrade developer.
     
  18. Diapositivo

    Diapositivo Subscriber

    Messages:
    2,326
    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2009
    Location:
    Rome, Italy
    Shooter:
    35mm
    Congratulation on your first print. The question I have is: did you have somebody show you how to print, or did you just study the theory and then applied it on your own?

    I learned developing just with internet sources, "by myself" so to speak. When I begin printing, I am afraid that I would need at least a minimum of personal training. I'm wondering if printing is something that I could begin to do on my own, without personal help.
     
  19. coigach

    coigach Member

    Messages:
    1,589
    Joined:
    May 23, 2006
    Location:
    Scotland
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Welcome from Scotland!
     
  20. bill spears

    bill spears Member

    Messages:
    565
    Joined:
    May 30, 2007
    Location:
    Cornwall Eng
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Hi Terry, enjoyed the introduction
    There are places here you can go with the GAS problem.

    Be careful what you say about crazy cat people as I'm one of them :smile:

    Bill
     
  21. Ottrdaemmerung

    Ottrdaemmerung Member

    Messages:
    258
    Joined:
    Jul 27, 2010
    Location:
    Memphis, TN
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Diapositivo: I did it all myself, without any tutoring. I've merely been reading and watching YouTube videos on printing. Of course I'm not proficient yet and still feeling my way around. I chose a negative; sized and focused it on the easel using a #2 filter; used scrap cardboard to expose the paper at 4-second intervals; developed the paper; chose the best exposure time and changed to a #1 filter for less contrast in this case. Then going back to the enlarger, I exposed a full sheet of paper for the chosen time and developed it. Success! I haven't tried dodging and burning yet.

    Bill: The house in which I've set up my darkroom is a house directly across the street from ours, in terrible condition. The lady who lived there grew up in the house, and her son and sister both live many states away -- too far to have any interest in the property. They sold the house to us a few years ago when the lady died of emphysema, only in her fifties: animal rescue had to be summoned because she had something like thirty cats and dogs in the house and she wasn't a good caretaker of them. The hardwood floors were nasty and scratched, the ductwork grilles were corroded from urine, etc. - you get the picture. We've cleaned the floors somewhat and primed the walls, which has reduced the odor in the house greatly but it still needs lots of work.
     
  22. Terry Christian

    Terry Christian Subscriber

    Messages:
    698
    Joined:
    Dec 2, 2011
    Location:
    Memphis, TN
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Just a quick note from Yours Truly to say that it's been a year since I became a full-on subscriber to APUG, and so I've officially gotten rid of the unwieldly nickname here and have made this, a new account with my real name. (I tried merely put in a request to change names a few months ago, but never got a suitable response.) So this will be my account from now on. I just wanted to make a note of it for people who know me here, including people from whom I've bought film and gear, so I don't seem like a whole new person!

    While I'm at it, I might as well attempt to define where I'm going in my photography this coming year. It is exceedingly difficult since it is so convenient and I'm loving my new Minolta X-570, but I'm trying to wean myself away from shooting so much 35mm, and shoot more medium and large format. I'm soon paying off some medical debt from a kidney stone problem I had earlier this year, and so I'll be in the market soon for a modern 250mm+ large format lens. A friend is St. Louis has been trying to tempt me with an 8x10 camera he saw on Craigslist up there, but I'm trying to convince myself that my two 4x5 cameras (a Crown Graphic and a Calumet 540 monorail) are enough, that 4x5 is a sweet spot and I don't need to get anything larger! I'll be also concentrating on my printing skills. I haven't done nearly enough printing so far, just a couple of small sessions in the latter part of this year.
     
  23. guitstik

    guitstik Member

    Messages:
    1,098
    Joined:
    Jun 19, 2010
    Location:
    Eads TN.
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Terry, did my wife tell you to keep the 8x10 secret from me? I thought I told you that I was in the market for a reasonably priced one for contact printing and wet plate work. Must be the voices in my head again. We need to hook up and do some winter shooting when we finally get some snow to stick.

    Now you just have to work on getting your post count up again :laugh:
     
  24. Terry Christian

    Terry Christian Subscriber

    Messages:
    698
    Joined:
    Dec 2, 2011
    Location:
    Memphis, TN
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Joel, I'll get you the link to that 8x10. :smile:. I think I still have it saved at home.

    I won't be having my jaw surgery after all. Long story short, my birth defect is such that the only surgery that would do me any good, my oral surgeon found, would be possible but extensive too impractical at my age, requiring a bone graft and other such tricks. And even then it would risk the functionality I already have. So we agreed leaving well enough alone was the most reasonable option. And that means less stress and more money for me, so I'm not too disappointed!

    And I'm loving my X-570. It could be my favorite manual-focus 35mm camera now. I've also just bought online a Unicolor roller base and some tubes so I can make a "poor man's JOBO and process reels and 4x5 with it. It should be really sweet.