So, my last blog post basically explained a little about what I was aiming to do - I thought I would show you.
My first ever session was getting to know the dark room again - remembering how to develop black & white photographic paper and getting used to fumbling around with nothing but a red safety light!
The technician at Derby, Chris, was most helpful in reminding me what to do (its been a while), so I wanted to go back and try and experiment by myself.
Not only was I exploring exposure times, how much contrast, working with filters, but I was also seeing what glass worked well too.
Owing to some personal/family goings on, I haven't been able to spend much, if any at all, on my AA2A residency. I've thought about it often, and have ideas galore bubbling under.
Finally, a couple of weeks ago, I found myself with a free afternoon, so I quick made my way over to Derby and found myself a slot in a darkroom. Thankfully it wasn't very busy, being Easter/Reading week, so I had the whole darkroom to myself. That was a good idea, as it's been a while since I've done any dark room work, and I felt a lot more relaxed about spreading out, and taking over the space!
I work with glass mostly, and I want to explore how people see glass. A lot of people love glass for its beauty, it's fragility, for me it's also it's technical wondrousness (is that a word??). I love the way glass casts patterns and shadows. How it can distort. What it does to light.
So I want to explore photograms - where objects are placed directly onto traditional photographic paper and exposed to light. It can actually be done without any specialist equipment, apart from a dark room, but the traditional enlarger set up, with lights, timer, etc makes the whole process easier.
This time's session was about getting to know the dark room again, and seeing which patterns work. A lot of the results of kiln fired glass are unexpected, due to the nature of the glass, capturing bubbles, irregularities and how the rounded off edges refract the light. Given time, I hope to see how coloured paper and devleoping could be affected by different coloured glass and filtering. And also to see if I can specifically create 'images' in glass that I then photogram.
Essentially, I am wanting to show a different view of glass. I want to capture my glass on film. I dare say that a photograph of one of my glass pieces would only be of interest to a gallery wanting to promote work, or for me on my website, or as publicity literature. Maybe I can find a way of producing images of my glass that are artworks in their own right. Of course, it's a great excuse for me to play in the dark room, and go back to a love I have had since I was 14 or 15, of traditional darkroom photography (no, never do it now, with the advent of the dSLR.
So, here is the first result - only one image so far, as I haven't been able to scan each image yet (photographing the prints brings it's own issues). Can't wait to scan the images and manipulate them with effects in Photoshop.