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College Photography!

Niamh Turfitt – Level 3 Student

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Introduction to Photography!

My 35mm Film Outcomes!

When developing my photographs on my film, I had many good pictures and some that turned out not so well. Luckily, for next time, I know how to fix the problem that I had done in my first attempt of photography with 35mm film. Photos that I captured include:

  • College Campus,
  • The Market Streets,
  • An Alleyway,
  • The Fountain,
  • College Car Park,
  • Buildings,

For the photos on college campus, they turned out to be a mixture of detail and good exposure in each photo. I was happy with how my film turned out. I managed to capture some really good detail in most of my images and so when this would could to me enlarging these images, the detail would stand out more and so from this, I was happy with my 35mm film results.

I really enjoy using 35mm film cameras as they are something different to what most people use today and they are more challenging when capturing images. For example, when using a digital camera and the image comes out in a poor quality, you can delete the image from the memory and retake the image, but with a 35mm camera that is completely different. With a 35mm camera, if you take a photo, you do not know what the result will be like until you have developed it. I think that 35mm cameras are better to use because its very technical and digital cameras are not that technical as they pretty much do the different settings for you. Below, is my contact sheet of all of my 35mm film results:

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My Pinhole Photography Outcomes!

I took many Pinhole Photos and some came out terribly, some were not that bad, some came out quite good.

Not-So-Good Pinhole Photos:

For this image, I timed it at 30 seconds as that was the recommended maximum time to reveal light into my pinhole camera so I decided to try it at this first. I then took it to be developed and this was my result. Unfortuantly, it didn’t come out very well. However, I believe that the wobbly line towards the middle of the image shows where the light is from where i was taking the photo which was out of a window. The lighter part of the image could show how the image was where hardly light was getting to it and this could be because of my positioning of the Pinhole camera. The darker part of the camera could show how the light was getting to the camera but the fact it came out like this shows that there was enough light but too much time of the light being exposed.

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For this image, it was pretty much the same as the previous image. However, I did change what I did. When taking this image, I was in a dimmer location than pointing the camera out of the window. Instead, I was pointing it towards a window but was stood in the middle of a corridor. This was the result. I believe that this was the result because, although I had it facing the window from a certain distance. The light was obviously was exposed too much and so the outcome was this. Yet again, I took the image for 30 seconds so I knew that for my next images, I was to shorten the timing of the taking of the photo to around 20 seconds and then see the outcome from that before making another decision.

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A-Little-Better Pinhole Photos:

For this image, I took it at 20 seconds and this was just a few steps away from a window so I was still quite close to it. The outcome below was not bad but was still exposed too much. However, within this image you can still see where the edge of the window is and where the actual glass pane is. From this, I knew that if taking this image again then i would know to do it for a lower time due to the fact that it would have a less exposure of light therefore, capturing the image at a correct exposure.

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For this image, I was taking a photo of a corridor but I was facing away from the window . I remember a pair of double doors. Each with a window on them. I focused the camera on those doors for 20 seconds and got this result. I was happy with the fact that I had captured a better shape of an object and this also helped me to understand the different time periods of light in different lighted areas. Another thing which it showed me was that I would need more balance and to use some sort of tripod to help balance the camera. Without the tripod holding the camera still the photo would come out like this. Although I believe this, I am still happy with the result of this image. img_2964

 

Best Pinhole Photography Photos:

For this image, I took this on the stairs outside my classroom and I think that it is a better result than my previous image. I took it for 10 seconds and so this is why the windows (which are shown as black) are more visible than anything else. Also, around the windows you can see the frames which are just marked slightly. This image helped me to understand my timings but it also showed me that I need to manage the lighting of the images I’m taking. For example, make sure the lighting and timing work well together. Overall, I believe that this is one of the best pinhole photographs that I have captured.

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For this image, I took it in the same place as the previous image. This time, I made sure that I had considered the timing and lighting of the image to get it correct. Although it does look similar to the previous image. One thing I am proud of is the fact that I have managed to capture the bars on the windows and because of this, this is my best image eve thought I only managed to capture the window within the image. However, when I do pinhole photography next time, I will try different areas and try to capture images of better scenery such as outside the building.

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Studio Safety!

When working in the Studio, it may seem all fun and exciting but there are certain health and safety and rules and regulations that you need to follow. These are mainly about the use of cameras, tripods and lighting equipment.

Health and Safety: Tripod and Camera

Sometimes when photographing in a Studio, photographers use the assistance of a tripod. A tripod is basically a stand which a camera can balance on whilst in use. However, this stand must be checked properly otherwise it could cause damage to the camera and to the tripod itself. The height of the tripod can be changed to suit the photographers need. However, if the height of the stand is not tightened and secured in place then this could cause the stand to fall in height and once reaching the bottom limit then it could jolt the camera out of place and off of the stand, therefore causing it to fall on the floor and break.

Also with the tripod, you can adjust the legs so suit the balance of the camera when it is on the tripod. These legs of the tripod can be a serious hazard in many ways. Firstly, because they are a trip hazard. If they are stuck out they could trip people over and therefore could also cause the tripod to fall over and break and also break the camera if it is on the tripod at the time. Always make sure that the tripod has enough space to walk around so it becomes less of a trip hazard.

Another problem that the legs of the tripod could case is that if they are all not set to an equal length and the balance is off then it could be difficult to take photographs with and in some cases could collapse and break. Just like when you adjust the height of the tripod, with the legs, when you adjust them then you would have to tighten and secure the legs in place to ensure that it will not collapse and cause itself or the camera to break.

 

Health and Safety: Lighting

When using the lighting equipment, it is important that you use it carefully and that you know what you are doing when handling the equipment. One major health and safety point you have to be careful of is when you are unplugging the cables from the light. If you unplug them and the light is still switched on at the electric mains then you could risk being electrocuted. It may sound and seem very unlikely but it could happen as these lights would have hundreds of volts powering through to work them at studio standard. Maker sure they are switched off at the mains before unplugging any cables from the light.

Another health and safety issue to do with the studio lights is that the bulb will be very hot after being used. On many occasions, photographers moving the lighting equipment have placed their hands on the light bulb and this has caused them to burn their skin. When you have finished using the lighting, you must leave it for a minimum of 10 minutes once switched off so that it can cool down and then be easily put away.

Photograms!

What are Photograms?

When taking pictures by the method of Photograms, the image comes out similar to how a pinhole photograph comes out. Black and white but in incredible detail. It goes through all the same development process as pinhole photography and but uses light from a light box which leaves shapes on the photographic paper which block the light from getting onto it.

How do you produce Photograms?

Photograms are created with a enlarger light box, photographic paper and objects that you want to capture. Firstly, you want to find the correct time to have the light on as it captures you image. For this, you should do a few tester images by setting the timer to different times and seeing how they come out when you develop them.

Taking Photograms:

It is important that you know how to use the enlarger so that you can capture

  1. Choose your objects to photogram.
  2. Place them on your photographic paper anywhere you want but do it carefully so you do not scratch the paper.
  3. Set your timer to up anything up to 10 seconds (you can change this during your practice)
  4. Once you have developed your practice photograms, you can keep the timer at your chosen time for your official photograms.
  5. Repeat this until you have as many photograms as you wish.

Developing Photograms:

  1. Like most darkroom-based photography, photograms have to be developed correctly to get a good image.
  2. Firstly, you have to put it through the developer. This is usually up to two minutes. As soon as you get a a black background and sharp and bold shape from your objects then this is when you take it out of the developer and straight into the stopper.
  3. Usually the stopper process is only for a maximum of 30 seconds as it is only to stop the chemicals from the developer from developing any further.
  4. After the stopper, the photograms should go through the fixer. It should spend a minimum of 5 minutes in the stopper. This would ensure that it would not go pink and still stay white.
  5. Once you have left the photogram in the fixer bath for 5 minutes or more you can take it out into the light and see how it has turned out.
  6. Afterwards, you must leave it in the wash bath for a minimum of 20 minutes. This is to ensure that all of the chemicals have been washed away.
  7. After these 20 minutes, you can put it through the dryer and then you will have your Photograms.

 

I enjoyed doing Photograms as you could use many different objects and make them seem as crazy and obscure as you wanted. From this, I came out with some really unique Photograms and hope to make more but with complicated and unusual objects.

 

My Photogram Outcomes!

Top 3 Images:

For this image, I like how it is presented because it shows many shapes and sizes within it. However, the reason why the objects are not entirely white, is because of the fact that I didn’t allow the light to shine on the photographic (light se
sensitive) paper so it didn’t manage to capture the image properly.

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For this image, I like how it is set out and also how it shows the different lighting’s within the image. The leaf in the middle is mainly brighter and more highlighted around the edges whereas the keys are much brighter and much more high-lighted which gives the image a good look. However, some of the keys have not got as much brightness as others and so this could be changed by upping the time of light onto the paper. Although I think this, this image is my favourite of all of the others.

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Practice:

When we started doing photograms, we got the chance to take practice photograms so we knew what we set should our timer to so we could find the correct time to set our light to go on for and to help us catch a good and detailed photogram. Below are the photograms we took as practice shots:

 

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Starting Image:For this image, we started at 7 seconds but unfortunately, that time was too long and so the image didn’t come through properly.
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This was also a mess-around image and with this it was to test the light and also how long to develop it for. We set the timer to 2 seconds and developed it a little shorter in time than the previous image. This is because as soon as we got an outline of this image we took it out so it wouldn’t develop further.
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This image is one of the worst ones I captured. Even though it was a practice photogram, it was poor quality as the pencil we were trying to capture somehow didn’t transfer onto the photographic paper therefore, capturing this image which looks like only half a pencil and a diamond further into the middle of the image.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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For this image, there were many things wrong with it such as the finger print which you can clearly see over the bristles of the paintbrush and the fact that it was not shown the light for long enough. Especially around the peg. Also, the positioning of the paper and the light combined was off and therefore also puts another disadvantage onto this image.
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In this image, you can clearly tell what the object is (a brush) and this is a reasonably good image because the light was at a correct time to be on so it could clearly capture all of the brush. This may not be one of the better images I have from my Photograms, but it shows how practice helped me get those good quality Photograms.

Basic Principles of Photography!

Camera Obscura translates from Latin to “Dark Room”.

A Timeline of Camera Obscura:

400 BC – Mo Ti is the first to mention the concept of Pinhole Photography.

350 BC – Aristotle is the first to use the principles of Pinhole Photography when observing an eclipse by observing the gaps between the leaves and trees.

1000AD – An English monk and scientist Roger Bacon  mention the concept of Pinhole Photography. Also, the reverse image formed by a tiny hole is studied.

1050AD – Shen Ku experimented with camera obscura and was the first to apply geometrical and quantitive attributes.

1200AD  Roger Bacon describes the use of pinhole cameras as a way to safely observe solar eclipses.

1485AD – Leonardo Di Vinci provides the first detailed description of a pinhole camera in the Codex Atlanticus.

1604 – The term “camera obscura” was first used by the German astronomer Johannes Kepler.

1685 – Johannes Kepler publishes a book which contains descriptions and diagrams of the camera obscura theory (Pinhole Photography).

1827 – Joseph Niepce is the first to capture an image on bitumen-coated metal using a pinhole camera to capture this image. Louis Daguerre then took the image and fumed it in sulphur so it wasn’t light sensitive and could be presented in daylight.

Link: http://www.obscurajournal.com/history.php

 

Other Notes:

  • light passing through a small hole produces an inverted image on the opposite wall/canvas.
  • Before a proper pinhole camera was produced, the hole producing the image would be producing it onto a canvas and then the artists would sketch onto the artist and basically trace what was being shown to them. An example of someone who did this was Leonardo Di Vinci.
  • On a pinhole camera, you should use a bigger hole to get more onto the image but to stop the image from going blurry, use a lens to focus it.

Project One: Discovering Creative Professional Photography!

 

What are the different units in this Project?

Unit One: 

  • To understand processes and technical skills used in creative media production.
  • To understand the characteristics and methods of communication within a media context.

Unit Two:

  • To understand design and research tools, methods and skills used in the creative media production.
  • Understand Primary and Secondary research sources.
  • Be able to use design and research tools, methods and skills to inform ideas for creative media production.

Unit Three:

  • To understand progression opportunities within the creative media sector.
  • To understand the skills needed to pursue a career in the creative media sector.
  • To be able to carry out roles and responsibilities consistent with professional practice.

Unit Four:

  • To understand critical perspectives that influence the analysis of creative media production activities.
  • To understand the contexts within which creative media technology and production are positioned.

 

Task 1 – Week 1 to 5: Research, Contextualisation, Professional Practice.

– For Task One, I will be introduced to a range of different Photographic, Research, Contextualisation and Professional Practice skills.

What will be included in my Workshops?

  • The formal elements and composition
  • A darkroom induction (Health & Safety)
  • Camera-less Photography: including Photograms, Pin-hole photography and Camera Obscura.
  • 35mm film photography and darkroom printing.
  • Digital SLR cameras, RAW File processing, File types and storage.
  • Photographic studio induction (Health and Safety)
  • Location photography techniques

Each of these will be researched, contextualised and annotated as I progress throughout this Project.

What do I do when I have completed all of these Workshops?

  • I will have to critically compare a range of communication methods used to convey meaning in creative media production.
  • I will have to critically evaluate a range of working practices and methods.

 

What will happen after that?

The evidence I produce for these tasks should be recorded using my WordPress Blog, in my workbooks, my practical files, my evaluations, blogs, and it will also be further evidenced in my video presentations, audio assignments, group critiques and discussions.

 

Notes:

  • for these different projects, there is no merit or distinction. Only pass or fail. You must all projects to pass the course.
  • Primary research includes other classmates or your teachers. Secondary sources include using the internet (as long as you record all of your links/references to this information) and books.
  • You should NOT use Wikipedia! – if you do find yourself on this page when doing research then scroll to the bottom of the page and follow the links that are present and use these references instead!
  • When doing photography, wherever you see ‘media’, replace it with ‘photography’.
  • SLR stands for “single lens reflex”
  • Location photography techniques is to do with how to work with and use light when out and about taking photography.

Using 35mm Film in Photography!

With a 35mm film camera:

  • you only get so many shots depending on the film and camera,
  • it does not show you the photo you have just taken like on a digital camera,
  • for coloured film, you CAN NOT USE black and white darkroom chemicals!!
  • to open the camera, there is a manual winder to release the spring so you can get to the film,
  • when taking a photo, the camera needs to be set at the same speed as your film.
  • everything should be set to manual when using the camera. If not then you’re pretty much cheating in photography,
  • in the camera there are three lights. There is a red negative, red positive and a green light. This is to tell you if you have the right aperture.

 

 

 

For example, if I wanted all three items in focus in the same image then I would use aperture F8, F11, F16, F22.

If I wanted just the tree close to the camera in focus then I would use an aperture of F3.5.

The higher you go in the ‘F’ number, the less light you are allowing to get to your film.

Any movement on a slow shutter speed will make the image come out blurry.

  • At F3.5 – not a lot in focus but lots of light.
  • At F22 – lots of focus but not a lot of light.

 

How to develop your film:

1st tray, developer – Ilford Multigrade

  • always measured 1:9
  • 100ml developer
  • 900ml water

2nd tray, stopper – just water most of the time,

3rd tray, fixer – Rapid Fixer

  • always measured 1:4
  • 100ml rapid fixer
  • 400ml water
  • must be kept at 20 degrees centigrade

4th tray, wash – water flowing through tap constantly

 

Modern Film Photography:

  • the 35mm film is substrate coated and has light sensitive chemicals.
  • 35mm film is the most common format used by photographers.
  • the focus ring is turned on the lens.

 

Shutter Speed – controls how long film or your cameras sensor is exposed for.

Aperture – is the diameter of the lens opening.

  • large aperture = more light, but shallow depth of field.
  • small aperture = less light, but large depth of field.

 

ISO 100 – low sensitivity to light, good for bright conditions, static scenes. Has a wide aperture but a slow shutter.

ISO 1600 – high sensitivity to light, good for low light, dynamic scenes. Has a small aperture but a fast shutter.

 

Camera Modes:

P: Program Mode – camera chooses shutter speed and aperture.

S: Shutter Priority – user sets shutter speed, camera chooses the aperture.

A: Aperture Priority – user sets aperture, camera chooses the shutter speed.

M: Manual Mode – user sets both the shutter speed and aperture.

 

Exposure – the amount of light/shadow in an image.

Shutter – opens and closes to allow light in.

ISO – light sensitivity.

 

Exposure = Correct Aperture + Correct ISO + Correct Shutter Speed

  • In my college course, I have used a 125 ISO and because we were taking still images only, we had our shutter speed set to 125th of a second.

 

Developing my film:

Step 1: Developer

  • 320ml developer
  • 5 mins
  • shake and tap to agitate and to release air bubbles
  • 5 seconds for every 30 seconds
  • pour developer down the sink

Step 2: Stop Bath

  • stop bath is always in the red bucket
  • 320ml water
  • 30 seconds
  • pour back into tub

Step 3: Fix Bath

  • 320ml of fixer
  • 5 mins
  • 5 seconds for every 30 seconds
  • pour back into green tub
  • then 20 mins in the wash bath (just water)

 

Formal Elements in Photography!

Line – strongest, most important and most influential.

  • vertical, horizontal, diagonal and curved lines.
  • without shape there can be no form.

Shape – the second most fundamental element of design in photography.

Form – form is basically a three dimensional shape,

  • the difference between light and shadow from a three dimensional object within the image.

Texture – texture can convey many emotions better than any other formal element,

  • the wrong use of texture can ruin the image you’re taking.

Pattern – we often overlook patterns,

  • life is full of patterns,
  • if you break a pattern you need an object that disrupts the flow,

Colour – you have warm and cool colours which can invade your images.

  • sadness relates to a cool colour such as blue.
  • anger relates to a warm colour such as red.

Space – we use thirds in photography to help us with space in our photography.

  • there can be little space in the photograph or a large amount of space within the photograph/images.

 

I analysed an image and picked out the Formal Elements present in that image. They are as follows:

  • Pattern,
  • Space,
  • Shape,
  • Form,
  • Colour,

In the image, there are many formal elements present within this basic photograph. One formal element present is pattern. This is shown throughout the image with the with the many circles which are presented in lines. This is where shape is involved in the image. This is to do with the shape of the circles which, when are closer to the camera, they seem bigger but when they are further away from the camera, they appear smaller when in all reality, they are the same size as the circles near the front of the camera.

Another formal element present in the image is space. This applies to two areas in the photo. Firstly, at the front of the image where it shows the amount of space in between the circles which are towards the front of the image. Secondly, the space at the back of the image is showing the space past the pattern as it shows how far the pattern goes out.

Another formal element present is form. This is present mainly at the front of the image where the shadows on the circles are more visible. This clearly shows that the circles are three dimensional and therefore posses form within the image.

The last formal element that I recognised in the image is colour. there are only simple and a small array of colours of colours which are black, grey and white. These are mainly all cold colours although white could be seen as a warm colour too, but due to the fact that the white is submerged within the black and grey means that the white becomes a cold colour.

 

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