Hello from Northern Virginia!

Discussion in 'Introduce Yourself to the APUG Community' started by isaacc7, Jul 18, 2005.

  1. isaacc7

    isaacc7 Member

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    I have been posting for a while, but I have never formally introduced myself to the APUG community. I live and work in the Northern Va. area, the subarbs of Washington DC. I received my B.F.A. in film, photography, and visual arts from Ithaca college in 1994. I have worked at Penn Camera as a salesman for 8 years and I have just started teaching photography at the parks and rec. of Fairfax (club run if anyone is interested).

    Unfortunetly, I have very little time for photography these days, my work and other hobbies are currently taking up all of my time. I still discuss and demonstrate photography every working day however, so it's never out of mind for long:smile: I like to think of myself as a multiformat photographer because I own 35mm, 4x5, and 5x7 equipment. In reality, when I have shot in recent times, it has been 35mm.

    I am planning on moving to Cairo Egypt next fall to begin an intensive study of arabic. With any luck the trip will allow me to really flex my photo muscles. I am really looking forward to that adventure.

    I am commited to analog capturing of my images for the time being. Certainly for black and white work I will remain all analog. I do use digital printing and editing for my color work. I find that I have more control and get more consistant results from lightjet and photoshop than I did in my color darkroom days. I have yet to see any digital black and white that I thought was worth the trouble. Same goes for inkjet printing... I'm hoping that my audio fever will calm down enough for me to get back into the groove with photography, we'll have to see...

    When I do shoot, I use a Leica M6 with a smattering of lenses, a Horseman LE with a Sinar shutter (for barrel lenses) and both 4x5 and 5x7 backs, and a 5x7 Gandolfi traditional field camera with several Scneider lenses. I have found this site to be mostly a helpful place and I have enjoyed most of the interactions I've had on here. Here's to many more!

    Isaac
     
  2. SuzanneR

    SuzanneR Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    Welcome from a former denizen of the Washington burbs. I know Penn Camera well! I escaped about eight years ago, and found that there, is indeed, intelligent life beyond the beltway!

    Enjoy APUG!
     
  3. mtnbkr

    mtnbkr Member

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    Hello from Manassas!

    Which Penn? I frequently go to the one over at Tysons.

    Chris
     
  4. isaacc7

    isaacc7 Member

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    I work at the one in Springfield, it's quite a bit smaller than the one at tyson's, but we manage to keep a decent supply of paper and chemicals regardless. I often wonder if there's any intelligent life inside the beltway...

    Isaac
     
  5. mmcclellan

    mmcclellan Subscriber

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    How I loved the Penn's downtown by the FBI building! Now that's a proper camera store -- lots of everything, including rentals. Glad to hear you're going to Cairo -- I started up the photo program at the American University in Cairo some 15 years ago and it was still going strong two years ago when I went back to visit. Did the darkroom, too -- all Zone VI gear, Beseler 4x5 enlargers, etc. Go and meet the head of the journalism school, Dr. Hussein Amin. Great guy, Illinois grad, and a devotee of photography and visual communications. There's also a nice photo gallery at the Adham TV Center called "Sony Gallery" (guess who sponsored that one!).

    All in all, Egypt is absolutely wonderful and one of the most photogenic places on earth. The people are nice, the life is exciting, and the photo ops endless. I just moved out of Alexandria (VA, that is, no Egypt!) myself so I envy your move back to the Middle East.

    Enjoy your studies and all the best in your work!
     
  6. isaacc7

    isaacc7 Member

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    It's funny, everyone that hasn't gone to Egypt thinks I'm nuts for going while everyone that has been says they're jealous and wish they could go back. I hope that this trip will be a springboard artistically, professionally, culturally, and maybe even spiritually... Can't wait....

    Isaac
     
  7. Claire Senft

    Claire Senft Member

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    How nice to have you here. I am confused. I have heard of Virginia, I have heard of West Virginia. Northern Virginia???...Is that Virginia that is midly being corrupted with the closer proximity of yankees?
     
  8. mtnbkr

    mtnbkr Member

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    Yes. :smile:

    In all seriousness, it's the area around DC. If I had to give it a geographic boundary, I'd say it's any part of Va that's within an hour of DC (without trafffic). That means as far west as Gainesville and as far south as Fredericksburg, IMO.

    Chris
     
  9. c6h6o3

    c6h6o3 Member

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    I nearly wept when they closed it. Imagine: walking into a camera store and buying 8 x 10 sheet film. Color 8 x 10 sheet film even. Those were the days.

    Penn's E Street store was also within walking distance of the National Portrait Gallery, my favorite museum in the world. When they shut that place down in 2000 for a two year renovation (hah! - it still hasn't reopened) they broke my heart. I haven't been down there since.
     
  10. c6h6o3

    c6h6o3 Member

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    The metro area seems to be going a little farther than Gainesville to the west. I know people who commute every day from Front Royal into Tysons. You can get a house out there for about half of what you'd pay even in Manassas. And Fredericksburg has just exploded with development.
     
  11. isaacc7

    isaacc7 Member

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    Umm, you do know that Penn has a store within a block of the old one right? The old building was really getting bad, so they moved. None of the Penns stock 8x10 any more, just isn't enough demand for it any more, but there is still a decent amount of 4x5 in all the locations.

    Isaac
     
  12. c6h6o3

    c6h6o3 Member

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    A pale, pathetic shadow of the old E street store. No storefront window full of yummy used equipment, no large format pro section like they had in the back at E street. A glorified Ritz Camera now.

    I buy all my 4x5 400TMax at the Rockville location. I'd get 8 x 10 there too if they carried it.
     
  13. thedarkroomstudios

    thedarkroomstudios Member

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    Ummm... don't know much about Penn but I do know that Va is an incredibly lovely state (I just enjoyed a mountainous weekend there) and wish you a fine visit here to APUG from one of the flatter statesmen.

    -Brad
     
  14. isaacc7

    isaacc7 Member

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    sign of the times


    Sadly, the amount of used equipment being bought and sold has gone way down, there is so much film equipment on the market that the value has plummeted. Very few people are interested in selling their cameras for so little, ebay is the choice for people getting rid of equipment these days. As far as a "pro" large format section goes, it went with the sales. LF simply isn't a big enough market for the stores to stock expensive inventory. Things are much different nowadays even compared to 3 years ago, let alone 5 or 10. Gotta change with the times if you want to stay in business..

    Isaac
     
  15. c6h6o3

    c6h6o3 Member

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    I'm not faulting Penn for anything. I know why things are different. I admire them for adapting so well. It's just sad to see, that's all.

    There's still a lot of good used stuff in all kinds of formats at Pro Photo on I St.
     
  16. Dave Wooten

    Dave Wooten Subscriber

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    thanks for the intro Isaac and have a nice trip.....hope you can keep in touch with APUG while in Egypt....I am one of the envious ones, but have not had the priviledge of living in Egypt....I have been to Cairo, Illinois and the area they call Little Egypt in S Illinois....lovely but not the same ambiance.