This past semester I took a photography class. The class dealt with old school analog techniques. We took pictures on film, developed the film, and printed our own prints. This is something that I have been interested in since high school. Too bad I waited so long. The process of printing and developing was very relaxing and therapeutic to me.
When the class began, I was hoping to use a SLR camera that I have owned since about 1991. Unfortunately, we were required to use a 50 mm lens and a shutter release. To get a lens and shutter release cable for the camera I already owned was cost prohibitive. I stumbled on a very vintage Canon AE-1.
Along the way I learned lots about taking good pictures, how to get good contrast on a black and white print (not something many photographers seem to know based on images found on 500px.com), what the crap split filtering is, how to dodge and burn outside of Photoshop, and getting a good print takes lots of paper and patience. The other students in the class produced some great images. I was always in awe of what folks were coming up with.
Now I am hooked. I am currently planning to setup a darkroom at my house. I have researched buying the equipment. Also in the works are two new cameras. One is another analog camera and the other is a nice new digital camera. I really want to get a medium format camera. Currently that camera is on hold until i have the darkroom setup. The other camera is likely to be a Nikon 5100. This seems to be a good starting point for the kind of images I am interested in creating. The Canon will remain in my arsenal though. The digital will be great for images that I want to get at quickly, but analog is still great for some images. Images requiring true blacks and more artsy prints are going to be ideal for the Canon.
Below are a handful of my best images from the semester. These are scans of prints. So excuse the quality.