All these photos were captured using film some new some old.
Written by Elsa Madrigal
1. Leverage Technology
Technology is definitely a factor. For instance, racing shoes and athletic clothing are much more optimized now and contribute to faster race times. Photography has benefited immensely from technological advances over the last century. Unfortunately these can be rendered useless when a brand new camera overwhelms the amateur photographer with 50 buttons and 5,000 menu options. A weak foundation of the skill used with a fancy camera won’t necessarily translate to great photography. In fact, the best teaching tools are those which strip away the bells and whistles and only delivers the essentials. Many teachers recommend a manual film camera to learn about photography. In professional settings, the advanced features of a camera will be a great aid to enhance creativity, but without knowledge of the essentials, they will be a hindrance.
2. Talent is not Enough
3. Build up your Knowledge
4. Find your Teacher/Guru
5. Find your Inspiration
6. Develop your Aesthetic
7. Locate your Tribe
8. Make Mistakes and Fail Fast
9. Share and Feel Good
10. Last Step
DARKROOM CLASSES THROUGH THE C.E. DEPARTMENT ALL YEAR LONG
Hello everyone, do you know that Truman College offers photography classes’ trough their Continuing Education Department? That’s right; you do not need to sign up for credit classes if you only want to learn photography or how to edit your photos in Photoshop.
All class runs for 7 weeks and are offered continuously all year long.
To see the current schedule press this link Classes.
There are several different classes that you can choose from:
The class runs for 7 weeks and is offered twice in the Spring, Summer classes and also twice in the Fall.
Beginners Photography this class is designed to teach you all you need to know about photography and your camera. (Yes, theses two subjects are two different things.) Unfortunately cameras come with a 300 page manual so you can use them properly. In this class you will learn that reading the manual is not needed to truly learn photography. You will learn about the camera, lenses, flash, filters, composition and much, much more. You can either use a digital or a film camera for this class.
Studio lighting class. In this class you will learn how to use automatic or dedicated flashes as well as professional studio lighting. It is designed to teach you how to create amazing photos using flash units placed away from the camera triggered by using very inexpensive control units; you will learn about different types of light and how to create cinematic looking photos. We try to have a model for every class and for this purpose we look for people interested in modeling. We exchange photos for their time as we cannot pay the models (no budget!). Every class is practice, practice and of course learning.
Darkroom Photography. You probably have read about some of the great masters of photography, well guess how they learn? With film of course! Learning how to use a film camera and then how to develop and printed the film the way Ansel Adams, Edward Weston and many other great masters did, is just awesome.
Photoshop. If you prefer to spend your time in front of a computer or screen editing your photos, this class is for you. Most people don’t know that their cameras capture images in .jpg format, which is actually the worst format! This format was not created to give you the best image but rather it was created to reduce the size and resolution of your photos so you can post them in social media o send by email. But your Digital DSLR can capture images in RAW format which is non destructive and will give you the best file to edit. You also lean the principals of photo restoration and other things like replacing a sky on your photos. This is all for beginners and not for advanced students.
To register for any of these classes, just call Truman College at 773-907-4440. Laura Smith will help you register over the internet.
Hello, everyone. As some of you know, I have been a photographer for almost 40 years. During that time I have been fortunate to capture many very good photos. I am posting some of them here. Since I have been capturing images for a long time, a few of these were captured with film but most of them are digital images. I do have other interests, but whenever I have free time, I am taking pictures. Right now I can barely wait for the Darkroom classes to start since I have about 10 rolls of film to develop! Lately, I have been using two different film cameras, a Bronica STRs 645 and a Fujifilm 6×9, both great cameras. As soon as I print some of these images I will post them here, or rather, on my other website dedicated to film photography. Here is a link, for the darkroom class, www.
Well, the darkroom class is once again in full swing. Students are busy developing film that they shot either here in the USA or abroad, as is the case of a couple students. Regardless of where they shot their film, now they have to develop it and make sure they develop it correctly. Some students also print some of the negatives using fiber base paper, creating some very good images. So, how did you spend your summer? Shooting hundreds of digital images hoping that they look as good as the ones you see on the internet? If that is what you do and you like doing it, more power to you. But, if one day you get tired of shooting indiscriminately hoping for one good picture, maybe that will be that day that you decide to actually learn photography.
There is nothing wrong if you don’t know anything about photography, long ago I was in the same boat. Then, one day I purchased a film camera, learned how to use it and I end up owning my own photography studio and business for 26 years. But before I could do that I needed to learn what photography is. You and anyone interested can learn photography as well, either with a digital camera or a film camera. But it is important to learn from someone that knows and has been teaching for a long time! Yes, you can look at videos on the internet and do what they tell you to do, but, do the people that uploaded the video know what they are talking about? Or are they just re-posting something they themselves found on the internet?
Photography as we all know it has not changed in the last 200 years, what has changed are the cameras that we use to capture images. Do you know that you can capture a photograph using nothing but a shoe box? Yes! You can. But that is not how we all capture images nowadays Now we use computerized cameras that come with a 200-page manual so you can learn how to use them.
Film photography is easier and way more rewarding. You finally get to create something with your own two hands and not by trying to find the right app that edits the photos the way you like them. I hope you give yourself a chance to learn photography the way ALL the great masters of photography did. Become the next Ansel Adams!
Few people realize the amount of work that goes into getting a darkroom print. During our darkroom photography classes at Truman College in Chicago, we go through it all. After you’ve shot your film, we need to develop it. A contact print normally follows, where the film strip will give you a preview of your images.
Someone once said your worst images are your first 10,000. Imagine shooting 10,000 images in film! That is over 410 rolls of 24 exposure film! Or over 830 rolls if you’re shooting medium format.
Back to the basics: contrary to today’s digital photography mantra of ‘spray and pray’, shooting film, economically speaking, forces you to shoot less. And that’s a good thing. It forces you to be mindful. To pay attention. To be in the moment and use your powers of observation. It isn’t just an image that you want to create, but also the technical journey with your camera that you need to follow in order to make it happen.
This image is one of those observations of mindfulness. Shot in medium format, a cactus was shot first at the Garfield Chicago Botanical Conservatory. It was exposed at half the metered exposure, and then the papaya leaf was shot. The camera used was a Mamiya c220, which allows two exposures shot on the same frame of the film. The film was Ilford HP5 at 400 ISO.
The negative was then developed and printed in the darkroom. This image might not speak to many people, given the bombardment of digital photography images these days. But to those who know film, it speaks of one element that was the result of paying attention by my student. It speaks to mindfulness.
Next time someone asks ‘What’s in a print?’, I can assure you… if it came from the darkroom, SO many things had to go right for it to come to life. Or perhaps it was a result of many mistakes, and among so many things going wrong, eventually one thing had to go right. And that thing that goes right happens when we practice mindfulness.
Find out more about my darkroom classes by contacting Truman’s Continuing Education adviser Laura Smith at 773-907-4440