Closing darkroom a loss for college

The spring semester is almost over and what a wild semester it’s been, but this semester a class has changed something about myself… I’ve found out that I enjoy film photography. Film photography obviously uses a darkroom to develop film.

Film photography (for those who live under a rock) is what I like to call the “old school” way of shooting photos pre-digital. It’s where you take pictures from a film camera and develop and print the photos yourself in a darkroom.

The darkroom is a completely blacked-out room that has all sorts of equipment to develop film. With film photography, you have to be in complete dark to take film out of the camera and move it into a canister where you use different chemicals for the image to appear on the strip of film. If the film were exposed to the light, it would completely ruin all of the photos.

The process of developing the film is mixing different chemicals for the strip of film to develop. The images on the strip appear “negative” where the shadows are actually brighter and the lighter parts of the film are darker. The next step is taking the negative film strips and making them into a positive picture.

I won’t get too much more into it, but that’s the basics of film photography.

I’m currently enrolled in the Intro to Photography class;  it seemed interesting since my daily job involves directing, film editing, and taking still photography. Now that I’ve taken the class, I love it and would love to do more with it. That was until I found out that at the end of this semester the college will no longer have a darkroom at all after the renovations for the Fine Arts building.

Now, I don’t want to sound like the kid that got his favorite toy taken away, but I can’t help but feel discouraged about the change that LCCC is doing with the darkroom. With building renovations starting this summer, there isn’t going to be a place to put a darkroom back in Fine Arts.

I don’t think it should be left out of the renovated building.

I do have an idea on how we could change the way we look at classes being offered at LCCC. The administration should let the students vote on what classes should stay and what classes should go.

To me, it makes sense because we are paying to be a part of this college and we are paying for every class that we sign up for. I feel like we should have a say in what we get to choose for our electives.

If I had never taken film photography, I would have never fallen in love with this style of photography. It has truly made me a better photographer and I would have never known the beauty of film if I never gave this class a chance.

  1. O’Brien is the teacher for my photography class. This man has made me a better photographer (and I promise you I’m not saying that so I can get my B in his class up to an A unless he’s reading this).

O’Brien has also shown me my weaknesses and what I need to improve in the class and he does it in a way that really motivates me to become a well-rounded photographer and not be afraid of getting the shots that I want. I wouldn’t have  been able to get the training that I have now without film photography offered at LCCC.

Letting students vote on classes offered would give LCCC the ultimate advantage of free advertisement from word of mouth. It gives the students who enjoyed the class extra motivation and drive to protect the classes they truly enjoy and it could increase the number of students wanting to attend that class. It could also help LCCC see what programs work and what programs don’t work, and most of all it keeps the hard-working students happy. That’s what matters at the end of the day, if the students are happy and getting an education and graduating, everyone wins.

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