It’s not a good darkroom, but it works

My last house had a proper darkroom. It was a little janky, but there was a big sink, room for three enlargers, a wet side, a dry side, etc.

When I moved into my new house, I originally planned to turn an extra room in the basement into a shiny new darkroom. That didn’t happen, so I’ve been using the bathroom instead. It works fine.

Here’s my fancy darkroom.

The worst part of the whole thing is that tiny faucet. At minimum I should put in a tall one. As it is now, I need to fill a 1qt measuring cup, and then use that to fill containers. It’s a pain. The HomePod is nice because I can just tell it what to play in the dark.

I don’t have a fitting for the faucet to run a hose into the washing tray, so I just let the faucet pour into it.

I ran some string across the shower to use as a hanger for drying prints and film. Works great.

Here’s the meat of the operation. This is the bathroom closet, converted into the “dry side”. There’s room for this Leitz Focomat V35 enlarger. The V35 is a fantastic piece of equipment, but only enlarges 35mm film. I’m considering something that can do medium format as well. I have two 4x5 enlargers in storage but there is no way they’d fit. I can, however, make 4x5" contact prints on 5x7" paper. I love making those, so that should do.

There’s room for all sorts of photo paper and chemicals. I’ve only been making enlargements up to 8x10" so some of this is no longer needed but I can’t bring myself to get rid of it. I also store my film scanner here.

Anyway, that’s it. That’s my darkroom. I was planning to not shoot any film in 2021 but I don’t think that’ll stick, so I dusted everything off and mixed up a fresh batch of chemicals in preparation for spending more time here.

Originally published at https://copingmechanism.com on January 12, 2021.

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Director of Unspecified Services. Former partner at Fusionary (1995-2020). Now an interested bystander.

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Jack Baty

Jack Baty

Director of Unspecified Services. Former partner at Fusionary (1995-2020). Now an interested bystander.

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