A gathering to share prints: how do you do it?
We live near Vancouver BC, Canada. We started the Darkroom Group in December 2009 when my husband and I were fairly new to darkroom - beginners really. We invited four more experienced people to join us. Currently we have 15 members and 12 - 14 meet in our home twice a month -- one meeting is on a Friday, the other a Saturday. We start at 10am and end between 2 and 3 pm. We stop for lunch, premade by me or another member. We have beginners to most experienced in our group. To belong to the group one must have a keen interest in film and darkroom printing. All of our members either have access to a darkroom or have darkrooms of their own.
Meeting dates are set months in advance, never on a long weekend.
A typical agenda (created through consultation with two other members) is distributed by email.
1) Show & Tell - everybody brings old items or new photography related items( books, cameras, magazines etc).
2) Questions and Answers - about anything photography or darkroom.
3) Image critique -- prints (film or digital), negs, slides. Everyone is welcome to comment. We have a selection process (everyone participates in the selection process) for submission to four regional and national print competitions per year.
4) Photo Shoot organized by a club member. This Saturday we'll be photographing models in a wild west setting at a farm. We've had 2 shooting events this year.
5) Sharing Creative Projects - we all take turns making presentations to the group. We have a list of suggested topics gleaned from group discussions. We've just finishing our second project of developing film in pyro/PMK. In the future will also be trying different film developers like Diafine, HC110 and Xtol. In early November we'll be exposing a neg and using 3 different paper developers (BW-65, Dektol and PF 130) just for experimentation and evaluation.
We also have a "free" table where members place photography-related items they no longer use.
This is a lively group, much laughter and lots of fun and joking.
We have two darkrooms now, with 6 enlargers and a sink - often used for demonstrations.