Saturday, 29 October 2016

The Darkroom Project: Ready to Begin

After not doing any work on my darkroom over the summer months, I finally got it all set up in the last few weeks. :D I found it hard to motivate myself to get on with it throughout the summer. Shutting yourself in a small darkened room is not so appealing when it's warm and sunny outside.

Since the summer, the room has had a big clear out. This is what it used to look like, if you remember...

...and here is how it's all looking now :D (excuse the poor lighting)

Most of my equipment is second-hand. I got a large haul of smaller items like the tongs, trays, developing tank, stirrers, thermometer, easel, some paper and one of the safe lights from someone on eBay who was obviously having a clear out of his attic or something.

The enlarger is also second-hand and I got it from You can still get the same one on their website. I originally hoped to find one much cheaper on eBay but most of them were "collection only" and since I don't drive that was a problem. I preferred the idea as well of getting one that had been tested by a professional so getting one from a store that supplies them to students seemed sensible. My enlarger is also a compact and portable one, so it's ideal for a small darkroom like mine. It only does 35mm, but I don't shoot much 120 at all anyway, so that's really not a problem to me at the moment. Obviously, I've not yet tested it to make a print so I'll find out how good it really is tomorrow...

I also decided to invest in a better lens for the enlarger and I opted for a Schneider Componon, which was another eBay find.

Some of the items in the room I decided to buy brand new - the bigger safe light, the warmer tray (which I'm not sure I really needed but never mind), a couple of the measuring cylinders, a timer, and some negative clips. Oh, and the "do not enter" sign, which I just thought was cute :D I also had to get some blackout fabric, as unfortunately the door to my darkroom does not close fully and there was a tiny bit of light around the edge of one side of the door coming through. The blackout fabric seems to have done the job.

This afternoon I developed 2 rolls of 35mm and the negatives are now hanging up to dry. The negatives look OK to me, although I'm not very experienced yet in recognising what is a good/bad negative. Hopefully, I will have a print or 2 to share here very soon though! I still can't quite believe I have my own darkroom and I wonder when it's going to sink in! :D


  1. This is so amazing! Having my own darkroom is a dream so I can't wait to see what you create with this new space!

    1. Thanks! :D I will share all my best results, I'm sure :)


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