Trying to get back!
After a rebuild of my darkroom where I didn't really finish that last 5 percent, an overload of work and some sad family events, I think I am ready to try to get back into analog. It was actually when I framed a portrait of my father for his funeral this monday that I realized how much I missed this kind of work. I had taken the picture with the old Mamiya 645, that I don't have any more. The picture had some soft light that I like because I took it under a tarp at our boat during a winter.
We have moved houses, so I don't have a darkroom yet. But I have plenty of space to set one up in the basement. The new house even have a real studio built by an artist 1950, with a large window facing north. So portraits feels like number one on the project list. My 12 year old daughter is also really keen on trying something beyond Instagram.
So, now I have do decide what camera to use. The 4x5 + funky lens and enlarge. Some old 4x5 bw polaroid? 6x6 with the Rolleiflex? The 8x10 + Petzval and contacts? Or some alternative process with the 8x10? Holga? Leica?
I have plenty of paper, will probably need to renew the film and chemicals.
Or maybe I should go backwards when I decide. Ikea-frame, image size, paper, process, camera. When deciding what to do. Why a project you won't frame, right?
When I think about it, I should try something simple. Probably time to waste those polaroids.
So, in a way it is a sad return. But I have really missed photography for a couple of years.
Sorry to hear of your father, and the troubled times you've gone through.
Your father will always be with you, living through memories and photographs like the one you show. Photography can be so important, and to me those portraits are some of the most important photographs we can make.
From my own experience, my strongest work has always come in times of turmoil and pain, or even extreme happiness. My creative juices don't flow very well when life is easy and I actually have time to do something with it. Use the feelings you have within to strengthen your work, and it may even be therapeutic to work on your emotions by thinking about them and channeling them in your work.
Hope you can get that darkroom up and running soon. I agree with the approach of starting with the finished product and what you want to achieve, and based on that decide which equipment to use. The camera is, to me, the least important piece of the puzzle, so long as it is reliable.
Best of luck to you, Matti!
"Make good art!"
- Neil Gaiman
"...the heart and mind are the true lens of the camera".
- Yousuf Karsh
"We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit".
Matti - sorry to hear about your father. APUG is a great place to receive encouragement on the path back to analog photography. Hope to see you around the site again.
Long live Ed "Big Daddy" Roth!!
"I don't care about Milwaukee or Chicago." - Yvon LeBlanc
Hi Matti, welcome to APUG!
Hi Matti, and welcome back. Sorry about your father.
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Tank you all. Time to put some old tmax 400 in the Rolleiflex and see if the old Pyrocat HD in glycol is still working!
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I leave the digital work for the urologists and proctologists.