Sunday, 31 January 2016

Building a Darkroom Pt 1 (making the workbench)

Some of you might remember that a year or so ago I managed to find this bargain in our local Emmaus and at the time I was living in a single room had no place to set up a darkroom. Well since then I've lived in three other places and finally in September I moved into a house where the only person I'm sharing with is BadCatt. We've been trying to get the spare bedroom useable (not an easy process when all the junk we couldn't immediately fit into the other rooms ended up there.) The last four months has been full of moving things, throwing stuff away and Freecycling mattresses. Eventually creating just enough space to be able to think about setting something up. Which is what I've spent this weekend doing.

 I've got a confession at this point which is that when I started this project I wasn't entirely sure what I was making. I came home stressed and tired and instead of sitting in a chair moping I thought I'd get out the power drill and do something productive. This became the workbench which slowly is becoming the darkroom. So, let's get started with showing you the process.

What You Need To Build MY Workbench
DISCLAIMER many better choices of wood are available 


  • All the old bed slats
  • A wardrobe door (which for some reason the previous tenants painted half black)
  • Odd chunks of wood
  • Power Drill (my only true love)
  • Saw
  • Fuckton of screws
  • Rawlplugs
To make the bloody thing didn't take me too long. It fell way into the category of 'trial and error' though. Given my very limited materials and hesitance to buy anything for this stage of the project I was really making do with what ever I have. 

I chunked three bed slats together for the front legs. Two in the back, one of which is sawn at the  bottom to sit over the skirting rail. I screwed them all together and the top to the legs. It felt a bit wobbly so I screwed a chunk of wood to the wall (hello rawlplugs) and the workbench to that wood. I'm pretty convinced there would be a better and more sturdy way to do all of this but it's what I had to use and here is the finished result... 
You'll notice I've popped the power drill on there to demonstrate how it stays standing.

Surprisingly it definitely looks like a workbench and as part two will show you, mostly functions like one too. Check back soon to see how the next stage goes... 

Saturday, 30 January 2016

This Burning Ground

Here I'm sharing a couple of self portraits I took as part of the promotional material for my band The Wingless Heron's second album This Burning Ground.


               This Burning Ground 2016

These were taken on Fomapan 200 pushed to 800 and developed for just under 14 minutes in Ilford DD-X diluted to 1:4. If you're interested in push processing then the Massive Dev Chart has a handy guide for timings with different types of developer. I think there is a bit of give in the timings for certain films and with this one the guide says 13 1/2 minutes and I wasn't exact with my time keeping but it still seems to have produced pretty good results.

Saturday, 23 January 2016

Blackest Eyes

This photograph is one I've had sitting around on my computer for ages and hadn't really considered. Having come back to it recently though, I really like the absence of defined eyes and mouth. It makes the photograph much creepier than it would otherwise be. I like street shots which turn out unexpectedly.