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  1. #11

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    Here is an idea...Start a local group meeting monthly to discuss the full range of photography. Depending on the group, membership could give presentations addressing topics of group interest. Consider the group an analog support group. Organize photo contests. Charge a small entry fee and provide reasonable prize money. Use the participation list to recruit membership to your analog support group. As the group matures look for an art organization willing to donate space and utilities for a community darkroom. Check on-line local sales and ask the seller to make an equipment donation for the good of photography. Your group will need to provide user fees to cover costs and you will need to make arrangements for a DR overseeer.
    RJ

  2. #12
    Chris Lange's Avatar
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    There's a great community darkroom out in Bushwick in NYC, but it's an easier area due to the huge number of art students and young creatives that live out there now. Maybe give them a call and ask them for pointers?

    Just google "Bushwick Community Darkroom"
    See my work at my website CHRISTOPHER LANGE PHOTOGRAPHY

    or my snaps at my blog MINIMUM DENSITY
    --
    If you don't have it, then you don't have it.

  3. #13

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    Quote Originally Posted by Christopher Walrath View Post
    have no local film shooting acquaintances
    Right there is the nub of the problem. What you are actually asking for is a darkroom for your own use. If there were a half dozen of you, you would have figured out how you could do it already.

    I started a camera club here in my town, and while there was some interest, we maxed out at about 20 members, there was no one else interested in film or old cameras, and no one who was interested in running it when I became too ill to do it all myself. So it was dissolved after 18 months.

    It actually is not too hard to set up a club or association, nor is it hard to generate publicity. Money is a bit harder but you would be surprised at the availably of money for such efforts. What is hard is to get 3-6 people who will put in the effort to make such an organization work.

    If you are the only one in town doing film, what makes you think there is any other way of getting access to a darkroom other than setting up your own? That is what I had to do.

  4. #14
    FatBear's Avatar
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    I just looked up Milton, DE on Google Earth. There isn't much population around there within convenient driving distance. Unless Milton is a retirement village, I don't think you will succeed there with a rental darkroom. There might be enough people in Dover, but I can tell you that the entire San Diego county cannot support one rental darkroom, so you would have to work really hard to make sure you put it in the right place and did really good marketing. Portland, Oregon, has two of them, but one of them is very heavy into the digital darkroom with the wet darkroom as a small addition.

  5. #15
    JimO's Avatar
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    any meetup groups?

    you might want to check on some digital folks/groups, (please forgive my transgression...) - we have a couple here that share space/costs/etc. and have been interested in putting in a darkroom in their meeting space. (some of those digital folks are not so bad, once you get to know them...)
    Last edited by JimO; 08-06-2012 at 09:17 PM. Click to view previous post history.

  6. #16
    Steve Smith's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Christopher Walrath View Post
    Thinking, like, three stalls 12' x 12' with two hallways running down each side for two entrances (exits) and the LF room at the back, 12' x 20'. The front would have a 12' x 16' area, a small counter.
    That's bigger than my house!


    Steve.

  7. #17
    Jim Jones's Avatar
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    Christopher, think small! There is little demand for obsolescent technology. For B&W photography, you don't need such huge seperate rooms. I learned darkroom printing in a 4x6 foot darkroom with a pass-through for moving prints to a deep sink for washing. Decades ago the University of Iowa journalism school had one large room with many small booths with enlargers, but everyone processed their prints in a community wet area. At the end of a night, the teaching assistant finished washing and drying the prints. A few tiny darkrooms were available for loading film into daylight tanks. This worked fine for several students working at the same time.

    Heed Tom's advice. The digital age has made such facilities impractical in most locations. If you can't generate the demand, there's no need for the darkroom. Traditional photography hasn't died out, but it certainly has atrophied. I travel 90 miles each month to Kansas City's oldest and still exclusively black & white camera club. There are usually a little over a dozen at each meeting from an area with well over a million residents. Most of those dozen have gone totally digital (it's still B&W!).

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