New York City Perspective Project – Working with Film

This week us photo kids had the opportunity to shoot with 35mm film cameras, some of us well experienced…others not so much, myself included. It took me a while to make sure my exposure was correct and my focus was on my desired subject considering everything on this camera is manual.

This project consisted of having a series of ten photographs with a theme that supported the artist’s personal perspective of the city, mine being personal expression. We were to shoot in black & white film, having at least one self portrait, one cliché, and one discovery.

For me personally, the hardest part was loading and processing film. It was the first time i had ever worked with film, and as i discovered the dark room, is actually dark. You can’t see a thing, which makes it difficult to load, especially as a beginner. Luckily our TA’s were there to help! Unfortunately there were a few poor souls whos film had fallen out of the tanks during chemical processing and were lost due to exposure to light, which I’d imagine to be the worst case scenario when dealing with film.

Because this program is at such a fast pace, we were crunched for time. We were given 6 hours at a time in the darkroom when printing, but it never seemed to be enough. The time really does fly when you’re printing. Luckily we were all able to complete our projects, and we were all satisfied with the conduct!

As we discussed in the darkroom, many of the students prefer digital photography over film, which is understandable considering there is a risk of light exposure with film. However, I personally enjoyed working with film, maybe even a little more than digital, though there is much more to learn! I’ve left a photo of my perspective project as an example, and I’m very satisfied with the way it turned out!

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