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How Berkeley Can You Be? Parade
How Berkeley Can You Be? Parade

September 24th, 2004

Older Folk
Another rip roaring day, I will say, but I seem, at least, to have gotten off on the rip roaring part. Lunch with MSV, Chinese food at the Asiana Cafe, MSV picking up the tab. My turn next time.

The Tri-X developer and enlarging paper arrived from B&H today. Yesterday, actually, but my apartment manager, who normally receives packages, wasn't in when they arrived. I have four rolls of Tri-X and three rolls of Tmax ready to develop and I suspect I will not only develop the film (which would be a first), but I may also trundle over to the Berkeley darkroom to make contact sheets.

Wednesday was our first class in the darkroom. You pay a darkroom fee in addition to the class fee to use the darkroom for the school quarter. There's a room for film development and a print making room with perhaps twenty enlargers as well as a separate room across the hall with backdrops and studio lights, dry mounting presses and mat cutters available for framing prints. They provide the processing chemicals as a part of the fee, although for film that's a rub.

The whole point of doing my own film is to completely control the development process and I don't feel comfortable trusting the people who've mixed them or the people ahead of me in line who've used them to perform without error. (Be sure to make a mark on the sheet for each roll of film you've run through the fixer, now people.) Prints? Well, you screw up a print or a contact sheet and you dole out another sheet of paper, press the button and you're back in business. You screw up your beautiful film and you're, well, fucked. So, what the hell, I'll develop my film here in the apartment. (Hup!)

Let's see. Two hundred and fifty sheets of resin coated paper in the closet and I'm going to use every one. (Hup!) And see how they compare to the prints I've been getting off the Epson printer on the computer. (Hup!) I know this is taking your breath away, but we're into fast and loose here in Oakland, so you'd better hold onto your hat.

Icky, my friend, icky. You're giving yourself another pep talk.

It does sound like preaching, doesn't it? Preaching to the choir. I have been on a photography rush, though: as much of a rush as you can get, I guess, for an older folk. (Hup!)

The photographs were taken Sunday at the How Berkeley Can You Be? parade with a Nikon D2h mounted with a 17-55mm f 2.8 Nikkor lens at ISO 200.