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8 sessions, 3 hours each, over 8 weeks
Dedicated to students working with 35mm black and white film cameras, this course will teach you how to shoot and keep working with black and white film in mind. Learn how to process film, make contact sheets, problem-solve particular areas in your photographs and print your own pictures whilst developing a small body of work for exhibition purposes.
In this course we will develop an understanding of how the Single Lens Reflex Camera functions, whilst drawing particular attention to the use of aperture, shutter speed, ISO, and decisions regarding film and how these variables determine the photograph you take. Students will learn how to process their own film, make their own contact sheets, how to work an enlarger in the darkroom, develop their own images, and work selectively with filters whilst learning how to dodge and burn in order to create the best possible printed image. Your outcome for this course will rest on the production of a completed body of work consisting of 6 – 8 hand printed black and white images for exhibition.
An Introduction to the Darkroom, the SLR Camera, Black & White Film and Resin Coated Paper.
In Lesson 1 we will explore the darkroom and it’s equipment, how our cameras work and look at Black & White Film and Black & White Resin Coated paper; the Darkroom and It’s equipment: enlarger, processing trays, chemistry, easels, focus finders, safe lights. Time permitting; make a print from acetate negative.
We will also look at: the SLR Camera, lenses and how they work: Shutter Speed, Aperture, ISO/ASA, loading film; Black and White Film and Photographic paper.
Requirements for Lesson One: Illford FP 4 Plus 125 Professional film to be loaded together in lesson one. A 35mm SLR Camera, paper will be discussed in this first session, it is therefore perhaps better to purchase your paper thereafter.
Processing of initial role of film and making a contact sheet.
In Lesson 2 we will systematically work through removing our exposed and unprocessed role of film and placing it into a film-developing tank.
We will follow this with the required processing steps and when completed move on to creating our first contact sheet.
Requirements for Lesson Two: Illford Resin Coated Black and White Paper, Glossy or Pearl
In Lesson 3 we will evaluate our contact sheets and discuss possible problems or shortcomings. We will look also look more carefully at the relationship between our camera work and the
production of a dense negative. This is the session where we make our first print, using easels to create white borders and the use of filters to correct or adjust image contrast – in light of this, we will also look at making our own easels.
This week we will further develop our printing skills by means of exploring the use of filters.
Processing of a second role of film and exploring different film speeds.
Learning the technique of dodging and burning to selectively bring out or hold back particular areas of an image to create a printed image that is exposed correctly.
Problem solving through exposing photographic paper to white light before printing an overexposed negative where there is a loss of information.
We will start this session with a short critique session followed by the printing of final images for exhibition purposes
In our final session together, we will critique the work produced and consider the sequencing and the display of our final selection of hand printed images, in conjunction with making decisions regarding presentation.
Darkroom Demo Sessions
To all Orms Cape Town School of Photography students who have a sound understanding of the darkroom, we invite you to join us for a series of single darkroom demonstrations to further develop your darkroom printing skill-set and experience. Students who would like to practice these newly acquired skills are welcome to join our Open Darkroom sessions, scheduled as unsupervised sessions on Thursday afternoons and supervised sessions on Thursday evenings.
Open Darkroom Sessions
Thursday afternoons: 13h00 – 17h00
Bring your own chemistry and photographic paper – only open to students who have completed a darkroom course at Orms Cape Town School of Photography. If you would like to use our darkroom and have not completed a course with Orms Cape Town School of Photography, please make an appointment with us for a darkroom orientation session. Please note – unsupervised sessions are only available to those who have had darkroom printing experience in the past. The strictest of darkroom etiquette is expected of all those who use this space.
Thursday evenings: 18h00 – 21h00
Bring your own chemistry and photographic paper – only open to students who have completed a darkroom course at Orms Cape Town School of Photography, or to those who have had darkroom printing experience in the past. The strictest of darkroom etiquette is expected of all those who use our space.
The course is presented in weekly sessions of 3 hours each, over a period of 8 weeks. Practical darkroom work will be combined with theory lectures, slide shows and demonstrations. Students are expected to complete a number of practical assignments in their own time.
To do this course you will require a film SLR camera, the ability to use it and an interest in black and white photography. If you do not own a SLR camera we can provide one for you.
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Students are expected to provide their own film and paper. (Payment in full before commencement of course or upon arrival. Card facilities are available at the school.)