In an attempt to reconnect with "days gone by," I'll be shooting all the EKUpdate Spotlights this year on B&W film and processing them in the old darkroom in my office using the very same equipment Kodak installed in the 1960s. I came into photography right at the end of film and beginning of digital, having only shot a year’s worth of assignments on film for previous University Photographer Tim Webb. It's been nearly nine years since my last roll of film (that mattered) and I have to say it was pretty nerve wracking to get back into it.
It's my goal to shoot an entire roll of film on each "spotlight" person and show you every frame. No photoshop. Only in-camera exposure and adjustments made with the enlarger (probably some contrast filters) and good old fashioned dodging and burning. Funny note: I shot from 30 to 150 digital images on these portraits in the past, but I found it difficult to get 36 exposures on film this assignment with Jenny. Thankfully, she was an excellent subject. I can't remember the last time I was so focused on every little setting… it was exhausting. My experience trying to roll the film on some silly little plastic spool during the development process was one of the most frustrating moments in recent history, but I'll spare you that story.
The thing of which I'm most proud in all this... Finally starting to clean out the darkroom. It's really great to be back in there. But the most awesome thing... helping my son believe in magic when he witnessed the images appear for the first time. I love my job.
One Last thing. George Terrizzi had been my student worker since 2008. He really made my work MUCH easier and more enjoyable when he was around. Setting up lights for a big shoot will not be the same without him. We'd set up so many times that it got to the point that I didn't even have to tell him what I wanted, he already knew. His last day was this past Friday. Here's to you, George. Best of luck on your next big adventure.
Published on August 22, 2011