Lets make some time

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this is in response to the post by Jim Galli on 11/12. I think there is a large contingent of forum participants in the same boat as Jim, deep passion and desire to create images, but limited time. I know I am. I would like to challenge everyone to share some of their tricks or techniques to save a few minutes here and there. While some may seem obvious to some people, there may be a few gems some of us havn't considered.

I will start with a couple of suggestions. First, i have found it is worthwile to have a large number of film holders. I have 25 at the current time. I keep almost all of them loaded with different film ready to go when I get a chance to shoot. When I only had 8 it seems I only had 3 or 4 loaded at any time, then when I wanted to go out I had to waste time loading the extra holders. This way I always have 5 or 6 loaded with different film rady to go.

Second, I have found that I make far more efficient use of limited darkroom time if I make a list of what I want to accomplish, set a time limit and stick to it. For example, I may decide I need to mix some fresh chemistry, and I want to print two negs in 2 hours. I will mix chemistry first, because if I run out of time and don't get that done, it means wasting time the next session because a task now requires it be done. If I get everything accomplished before my deadline i quit anyway. I have found if I try to rush and do to much I get sloppy, make mistakes and waste materials.

Suggestioins need only be as simple as, use a good digital thermometer instead of a standard one, you won't spend time waiting for the temp to stabalize. Anyways, you get the idea, I look forward to your contributions.

-- James Chinn (jchinn2@dellepro.com), November 22, 2001


Here are a couple of things that I do to make time, firsly to take pictures, I try to get jobs or go on weekend trips with the family or holidays that take me to places which I want to shoot, I get my work/ family stuff done quickly and then get on with my photography.

Secondly as far as the darkroom is concerned I make all my rough "work copies" on the computer, i.e. not good scanner, not good computer and not good printer, but enough to see and decide what I really want in the darkroom. this saves time 'cos I can get about 18 reasonalble copies done in the darkroom on a good day, but about 200 on the computer. This has been the biggest timesaver for me in photography EVER.

Hope this helps


-- adrian tyler (tyler@nova.es), November 22, 2001.

I have allocated additional time for printing by no longer developing my own negatives. I am fortunate to have a local lab that does outstanding film processing for me. I also scan my film and make my own proofs on the computer. This allows me to work out the composition, examine the image at different levels of contrast and alerts me to areas that may require dodging and or burning as well. This does not take much time, and when I step into the darkroom, I'm pretty much set on what I want to accomplish. Up until very recently, I limited my time in the darkroom to weekends, but now try to take advantage of any widows of opportunity during the week in which a can do some printing. Even if I'm tired, I still do it. As I've gotten older, it seems time goes by faster and faster. I find now that time is probably my most precious commodity and try to put all of it to productive and positive use. I have also found a renewed interest in spending time in the darkroom. I can't explain why, but it feels good. I hope it lasts :)

-- Jim (jim@jimbillups.com), November 22, 2001.

Photographs are happening all the time (at least in India where I live). The main thing is to have your gear with you all the time - thats the diffculty. To overcome this I have a small 4x5 flat bed that folds up and 8 holders/lenses etc that get into a Domke FX !! It weighs like a normal 35mm bag. A small Gitzo with ball head goes along with this and I have this most of the time with me.

-- Dileep Prakash (dileep_june@hotmail.com), November 29, 2001.

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