Amazing darkroom sign

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous Equipment' started by Photo-gear, Jun 25, 2012.

  1. Photo-gear

    Photo-gear Member

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    Two years ago, I registered to a photo club in my area, especially for doing some darkroom sessions. Once I showed up for the first reunion, I realized I was the only one caring for film. All the other 30 members were digitals. Some of them did not even have the slighest notion of a darkroom !

    Anyhow, I finally got hold of the member responsible of the club equipment.

    After getting the key of the darkroom door and checking out the equipment, I started wondering when was the last member that showed up in this room. Along the little dust cleaning and the general evaluation of the equipement, I got hold of one strange sign against a wall.

    It was said this:
    Be aware, you have to make sure your name is on the darkroom schedule before showing up. You might be badly surprise if not!

    There was a little footnote beside the president's name : 2001.
     
  2. Jerevan

    Jerevan Subscriber

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    I could imagine going in there, doing the usual darkroom stuff and after an hour or so in the dark, suddenly hearing shuffling noises in the darkness, and then someone (or something!) coughing and saying "hello?"... :D
     
  3. PhotoJim

    PhotoJim Member

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    Sad but, alas, not terribly surprising.
     
  4. Photo-gear

    Photo-gear Member

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    Not too surprising, of course.
    But, every time I get across something that reminds me the year 2000 or 2001, I realize the decline of film was too quick. Hopefully, the film industry is stabilized.
    :confused:
     
  5. Wolfeye

    Wolfeye Subscriber

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    You know what? I think people, just plain assumed film was being replaced by digital. That once they went digital there'd be no turning back. I know I did. I was fortunately a Minolta user, so there was no DSLR option, and by the time one came I had jumped into Canon.

    See, I think that's really it. Everyone went digital because that's what you did. Not because you consciously thought "wow this is way better than film" but because that's just what was coming. Me, I've gone backwards, from never developing my own (since HS at least!) to doing it all, B&W and Color. I don't know if there's a camera club around here. If there is it's probably holding virtual meetings online. No sense being around actual people. :smile:
     
  6. T-grain

    T-grain Member

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    Photo Gear, I also recall those years with tears in my eyes....but film is probably not going anywhere so soon, at least the BW stuff.
    Here, in Europe, is encouraging that small companies like Adox, or even Efke or Foma are still doing well (it's not a multi-million business anymore, but it's still a breadbasket for many people)
    I have heard from my relatives from Toronto that you can hardly get film to buy there (in a regular shop)....strange enough for a multi-million city....




     
  7. Photo-gear

    Photo-gear Member

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    To Wolfy,
    I agree with you. Sometimes, marketing says to the customers what to buy, not the opposite...

    To T-grain,
    In Montréal, only serious photo retailers offer a respectable selection of films (3 or 4 in the Greater Montréal area) + pharmacies that carry mainly no-name color and B&W films + Fujifilms. But prices are quite high, so I tend to buy bulk film & papers from American distributors (Freestyle and Ultrafine Online).

    In "One hour photo service", sometimes they just sell photo frames, tripods and digital cameras. Films shelves are empty.

    The other day, in the countryside, an old clerk sold me his last Kodak Gold 100.

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/inukshuk5/6921886813/
     
  8. Prof_Pixel

    Prof_Pixel Member

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    Consumers went digital because it has one major advantage to them; immediacy. Sadly, we live in an 'I want it now' world.
     
  9. Ektagraphic

    Ektagraphic Member

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    I ran into a similar situation joining a club of 50 with nobody else that cared about film. They didn't have a darkroom though! That's awesome. Perhaps you can get others interested and back in the darkroom? :smile:
     
  10. Photo-gear

    Photo-gear Member

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    I stayed there 2 years without getting nobody interested. The vice-president once asked me, with a smile, after I took a shot with my K1000, where he could see the picture. That was not intended to hurt me, just a digital joke that shows no interest in the film handcraft.

    Now, I have my own darkroom. BTW, I heard the club darkroom has been dismantled in order to leave some room for some other community needs. Same thing happened with an another much beautiful darkroom in another district. But there are still some public darkrooms around in my town.
     
  11. pgomena

    pgomena Member

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    I recently was approached by the art instructor for a local high school who had just received a $20,000 grant for digital photo gear and was going to have the darkroom area remodeled. She has no idea of darkroom processes or equipment, and showed me a picture of one of the enlargers, of which they have several, and said "I don't even know if they still work or if you can get parts." It was a Beseler, and I assured her that not only did most of them probably work, but that there was no doubt parts were available and repairs easily done.

    I offered to look the gear over, suggested that she keep at least one or two in good shape, save a couple for spare parts, and build a smaller darkroom where students still could try darkroom work if they wanted. It really doesn't take much space, and the running water is still there. The grant makes her hell-bent for digital, but she does understand the historical and hands-on value of the traditional craft.

    The high school happens to be my alma mater, and they still have the gigantic gray 4x5 Beseler enlarger I used there 40 years ago. She wondered if it had any value or if it was dumpster material.

    Peter Gomena
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 26, 2012
  12. T-grain

    T-grain Member

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    yes, similar thing happened to me. Fortunately, at our photo club, we are 2-3 analog guys left, plus a newcomer:he began with digital, then embraced (partially) film as well. That's why I still keep hope :smile:
    Once, we projected our slides with a Leica Pradovit projector. Now, there's some crappy video projector to view the images, and nobody seems to care too much about the image (non)quality (even those who did, back then!). But now, everybody comes with a USB drive full of photos, without any selection or so. bad, bad, bad!
     
  13. PhotoJim

    PhotoJim Member

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    Tell him to meet you in 25 years, and you can compare photos. Chances are his will be long gone. :smile:
     
  14. polyglot

    polyglot Member

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    I joined a club in Perth when I was over there (2009-2010); they had a shared darkroom and I was the first person to sign in to it since I think 2003. There were 2 or 3 other film shooters (from a club of 120) but they had home darkrooms. We got one more person into film (an RB67) in that time; someone started with LF just as I was leaving and I now see them posting at LFPF.
     
  15. Photo-gear

    Photo-gear Member

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    So true.
     
  16. ambaker

    ambaker Subscriber

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    I was in a real camera shop a few weeks ago. They had an RB67 with a beast of a huge lens for sale for reasonable money. Since I was going out of town on business I decided to hold off, until I got back.

    Last weekend I went back, with the idea of likely buying the camera.

    First the bad news... The camera, you guessed it, had found a new home.

    The good news... The shop owner bought it. He had run a test roll through it and fell in love. He offered to sell me his Canon 5D Mk II, which he was no longer interested in keeping. He has decided to go all film. So there is at least one place, within driving distance that will be supporting film a while longer. That's the best news. I keep telling myself that it is better than me having one more camera... ;-)