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  1. #1
    Mainecoonmaniac's Avatar
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    Joys of the latent image

    I spent 4 hours wandering Muir Woods in California Sunday and shot 4 rolls of film. They're sitting at home waiting to be processed when I have time this weekend. I'm feeling the joy of the latent image. I'm anticipating the fun I'll have processing the film, printing it on fiber based paper. It's all so therapeutic.


    How many of you feel that when they've shot some film, but can't process it immediately? Digital photographers are deprived aren't they? Instant gratification kills that joy.
    "Photography, like surfing, is an infinite process, a constantly evolving exploration of life."
    Aaron Chang

  2. #2
    Thomas Bertilsson's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mainecoonmaniac View Post
    Instant gratification kills that joy.
    All jokes aside, this is true for me. Instant gratification is not all it is keyed up to be. The beauty of taking time to get results, is that during the process there is more time to think and to enjoy each step.

    To me, undeveloped film is a very valuable thing that I protect dearly, because I'm afraid of losing what is on them. It's stressful to take exposed rolls of film through customs at the airport for example.
    Even though I enjoy having a little treasure trove of exposed film waiting to be processed, I am also a bit anxious to get it done. If there are too many rolls in queue it actually feels like a burden. But that's part of the beauty too, the excitement of finally getting the film processed, to see what's on the rolls of film. When they are finally developed, the joy of validating successes or failures is a lot of fun, and to make contact sheets to make sure processing is going as it should, and so on is magic.

    To finally get to print negatives on silver paper is the best part for me. It's a feeling of completeness and a satisfaction to have come full circle with the picture. Each frame is like a little project.
    "Often moments come looking for us". - Robert Frank

    "Make good art!" - Neil Gaiman

    "...the heart and mind are the true lens of the camera". - Yousuf Karsh

  3. #3
    Sirius Glass's Avatar
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    I have found that all latent images on film are perfect, after development not so much.
    Warning!! Handling a Hasselblad can be harmful to your financial well being!

    Nothing beats a great piece of glass!

    I leave the digital work for the urologists and proctologists.

  4. #4
    jp498's Avatar
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    Basically, Inkjet printing isn't therapeutic. I don't get to print enough in the darkroom. I probably print one for every 30 images I scan. I do proof-contact prints though, which confirm I have nice photos in analog form. That's satisfying even if it's not a final product. I'm not worried the photos won't come out well while the rolls or sheet holders accumulate enough for a time-efficient developing batch.

    Even shooting digital, aside from chimping, I don't get around to unloading the memory card for instant gratification. I'm a busy guy work work, family, etc.. My instant gratification comes from the three minutes it takes for my bunn coffee maker to brew a pot. I unload the digital camera once a week sort of like I develop film probably once a week.

  5. #5
    Mainecoonmaniac's Avatar
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    I know what you mean. When I shoot digital, I worry about the post production afterwards. Downloading the images into Adobe Bridge or Aperture and sort, color correct and adjust hundreds of images. I find it pure drudgery. Some digital photographers shoot thousands of images because they can. They think they're saving money by not shooting film. But now digital photographers have to spend time chained to a computer. Ugh.
    Last edited by Mainecoonmaniac; 01-21-2014 at 05:40 PM. Click to view previous post history.
    "Photography, like surfing, is an infinite process, a constantly evolving exploration of life."
    Aaron Chang

  6. #6
    vpwphoto's Avatar
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    Exactly what I think, cheers ^^^^^ OP.

  7. #7
    winger's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sirius Glass View Post
    I have found that all latent images on film are perfect, after development not so much.
    +1

    And I've been known to develop film from a shoot before downloading from an SD card shot at the same event.

  8. #8
    kb3lms's Avatar
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    Instant gratification kills that joy.
    Absolutely!

    And then there is that occasion when you've found an exposed roll that you forgot about. The guessing what might be on it and the surprise once you find out what it really is!

    Doesn't get better than that!
    All this has happened before, and all this will happen again.

  9. #9
    cliveh's Avatar
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    The latent image is probably the best definition of photography as conceptual art. How about an exhibition of latent images and the observer has to guess what the picture is?

    “The contemplation of things as they are, without error or confusion, without substitution or imposture, is in itself a nobler thing than a whole harvest of invention”

    Francis Bacon

  10. #10
    BradS's Avatar
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    ah, yes...the joy of the latent image...I hiked to the top of Maguire peak yesterday...stopping all along the way to make photographs with the beautiful zero image pinhole camera. I've a roll of 120 and four sheets of 4x5 waiting for me to process....maybe tonight?
    Last edited by BradS; 01-21-2014 at 07:47 PM. Click to view previous post history.

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