Mobile darkroom bus construction updates

Discussion in 'Darkroom Equipment' started by Marco B, Apr 22, 2012.

  1. Marco B

    Marco B Member

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    Hi all,

    Since they are over their neck in getting it realized, I thought I would post some of the construction pictures of Anton's and Ryan's "Photo Palace" blog here. They are now fully into the realization stage of the project (see also this thread and some others on APUG: http://www.apug.org/forums/forum43/103515-mobile-educational-darkroom-needs-support.html), and are making some serious progress converting the 35 year old Gillig school bus into a full working mobile darkroom, that will have space for educational workshops as well.

    In the pictures below you can see some of the stuff being installed, including water tanks, table tops, storage space and conveniences like a shower, since they will be living and driving this bus for over a year through the U.S.! Ryan is visible in some of the pictures, last pictures shows one darkroom enlarger "cubicle" next to future bathroom in a very early stage of the construction, they are now reaching the stage of realizing the true darkroom setup after doing much of the preliminary but highly necessary plumbing and electrical work, it is getting interesting now! You can read more about the details on Anton's blog:

    construction_birch.jpg

    construction_cargo_bay2.jpg

    Construction_Ryan_bench.jpg

    Construction_DMV_interior.jpg

    Bus_building_2-28-12.jpg
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 22, 2012
  2. Steve Smith

    Steve Smith Subscriber

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    Excellent. Two of my favourite things - darkrooms and old buses.


    Steve.
     
  3. Bob Carnie

    Bob Carnie Subscriber

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    Marco

    where are these folks located, my friend John Bentley did this very thing with a smaller bus and travelled through Mexico with a 8x10 deardorf , 1000 sheets of E6 film and chemistry to process (donated by Agfa Canada).1996-97
    He had a Jobo with Expert drum on board , outdoor shower rigged up and created some very nice images..
    I think this is an amazing project , and I hope they come to Toronto , I can hook them up with some teaching gigs which can pay cash.

    regards

    Bob
     
  4. Marco B

    Marco B Member

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    Hi Bob,

    As far as I understood it from Anton's blog, the current construction is taking place at Ryan's house somewhere in California (also see the Californian "PHOTOP" license plate they acquired for The Photo Palace bus). Anton moved up there since they had a full mechanical workshop out there available to do the necessary work.

    I don't know them personally, but donated to the project (which still can be done here), as I think it is great.

    Don't know the exact route they will be following, but I guess you can always drop Anton an e-mail to figure it out or arrange something. They developed the concept just for that: teaming and meeting up with fellow analog photographers or interested people, and shooting a comprehensive series of portraits and photos throughout the entire U.S.

    Marco
     
  5. Bob Carnie

    Bob Carnie Subscriber

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    Marco

    Well I hope they get their passports.


    I run a small business and put all my financials to that effort. I hope they have the will and drive to make this a reality, if they get to Toronto
    I will certainly help them by introducing them to dedicated education groups that would love to promote them and get them some cash.
    By the time they get here some cash, Canadian Back Bacon and some nice cool beer would probably be appreciated. Just don't plan to arrive in Feb as we are all hunkered down in our snow tents, and they would need a team of dogs to help them get through the tracks.. I have met a few Americans in my time and they may not be too bright to plan well enough ahead.

    Bob

     
  6. bascom49

    bascom49 Subscriber

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    Bob,
    Whenever I travel away from home I always plan ahead and carry extra socks and underwear for me and my sled dogs as well.
    Why just the other day I found a wayward Canadian in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina that I needed a pair of socks. Fortunately I had a pair to give him.

    Charles
     
  7. Bob Carnie

    Bob Carnie Subscriber

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    He must have been from Quebec, we Ontarion's would never forget our socks.
     
  8. Marco B

    Marco B Member

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    A couple more pictures Anton posted on his blog late during the night. See the blog for details, but they have been making big progress with electricity and rewiring to accommodate the future darkroom. Also new wall paneling has gone up.

    Construction_cleanup_after_enalrgers.jpg

    Construction_frames_3_inBus.jpg

    Construction_walls_2.jpg

    Construction_walls_1.jpg

    Construction_Ryan_lights_wiring.jpg
     
  9. ChristopherCoy

    ChristopherCoy Member

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    How cool is that!!! I want one!
     
  10. michaelbsc

    michaelbsc Member

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    It's not to late to donate. Give them a buck or two.

    Folks ask all the time, "how can I promote film?" Well, here's one way. And I promise they'll take any cash, no matter how trifling.
     
  11. Marco B

    Marco B Member

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    Can't agree more. This is an undertaking of baffling proportions and I wish them all good fortune to pull it off. Any help should do good.
     
  12. michaelbsc

    michaelbsc Member

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    I chipped in my pittance. Who else?

    Most of us here can cough up $5.

    (OK, yeah, I'm trying to guilt people. It isn't like I'm saying cough up $500.)

    MB
     
  13. Marco B

    Marco B Member

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    Latest picture updates of the construction. Again, for the details and more pictures, see Anton's blog about The Photo Palace bus and all the work they are doing. They've been making some great progess the past week. Some stuff of the enterior is now in the process of being finished. See some of the beautiful woodwork / tabletops and flooring now installed. This is not just a functional solution, but it looks great as well. They also try to recycle / retains as much of the bus' details as possible, see the use of one of the Gillig bus outside stop lights as darkroom warning light inside the bus.

    Construction_darkroom_wall_1.jpg
    Darkroom wall with electric in it, this was sealed off after the picture. A sign of attention to detail.

    Construction_warning_light2.jpg
    Stop light of bus now serving as darkroom warning light.

    Construction_vent4.jpg
    Hole being cut in roof of bus for installation of darkroom venting.

    Construction_vent3.jpg
    Ventilation tube installed.

    Construction_interior_cushions.jpg
    Flooring and tabletops.
     
  14. Marco B

    Marco B Member

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    Latest updates by Anton on the blog.

    They are now really into the darkroom construction phase. Darkroom sink is installed, and drying racks and first phases of future enlarger stations are under construction, all in the back of the bus, the part that serves as the true darkroom. It's looking great!

    Here are some of the pics, for more and Anton's stories, see the blog.

    Construction_Sinks.jpg

    Construction_Darkroom_Print_Racks.jpg

    Construction._Darkroom_stations.jpg

    Construction_enlarging_station1.jpg

    Anton and Ryan also took the bus out on an outing to San Jose State University's art building, featuring art shows and allowing them to show the bus under construction to a wider public.
     
  15. Marco B

    Marco B Member

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    Darkroom almost finished!!!, Anton and Ryan are fast closing in on hitting the road.

    Well, some wonderful pictures by Anton again. See The Photo Palace blog for the details, but the pictures speak for themselves, as Anton and Ryan are in the process of finishing the darkroom. It is looking very real now! What a great place they created. Must be big fun to hit the road with this and shoot and process on the road.

    They still can use financial support for their journey. The earlier date for hitting the road Anton mentions on his blog has to do with the financial constraints too. Think I'll drop in some extra myself once my salary including holiday benefits gets in at the end of the month. Won't get them that far riding a bus like this, but all small donations make for extra mileage :wink:

    Construction_darkroom_done1.jpg

    Construction_darkroom_done2.jpg

    Construction_darkroom_done3.jpg
     
  16. Marco B

    Marco B Member

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    Photo Palace Bus close to departure !

    Well, Anton and Ryan and the Photo Palace Bus are now really close to hitting the road... Rough schedule 10th of june~!

    Not much to show, as Anton and Ryan focused on finishing the stuff, but they currently have the bus serviced professionally before departure for a safe and sound drive. In addition, they are working on graphics to cover the outside of the bus, and all the little things that need finishing.

    Anton also now put up a call for suggestions and invitations of places and people to visit. If you are an US APUG member, now is the time to contact them if you have any great idea and like to join up with them!

    As Anton wrote on the blog:

    "I look forward to the open road and being guided by intuition and light. The Photo Palace Bus is, of course, still open to invitations for specific and non-specific events. If You have an urge to see TPPB in your neck of the woods - contact us and it will be arranged. While thinking of this, please consider that it would be ultra-nice if The Bus arrived to a reserved parking spot we can count on(Gilli is 35ft long and she requires ample room for turning around). Otherwise we can visit You for ANY reason - hold a portrait session in Your town, do a small art show of hand-made prints (vintage and contemporary), give a demo to a local middle or high school or to a few more advanced photographer who, perhaps, have never had a chance to work in the darkroom, but have always wanted to.... Possibilities are endless! I we would also stop by if you just want to say hi and show us your favorite place to eat (nothing like tasting the flavors of local cuisine, I'm personally looking forward to some good soul food when in The Gulf area)."


    Presentation counter with silver gelatine print covered doors (protected by epoxy):
    Construction_Counter_doors.jpg
     
  17. jvo

    jvo Subscriber

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