Closing Down :-(

Panasonic LX1, f4, 1/500 sec, ISO 80, 28mm equivalent (click to enlarge)

It’s sad to see so many people affected by the mess that is our economy. I know individuals and families in my parish who have lost their jobs, businesses that have closed and people who only a short time ago were comfortably off now struggling to make ends meet.

This reality has hit us all on many different levels. Last week, my favourite place to get films developed put up a ‘closing down’ sign. I’m sad most of all for the kind, knowledgeable and helpful lady there who is losing her job. The service was brilliant – I would drop off a film and within the hour it would be ready – simple and efficient. If I didn’t want prints but just the negatives developed, no problem, she would do it in fifteen minutes and only charge me €2! “Sure I’ll just run it through the machine and it will be ready”, she would say.

The thing is I don’t know of anywhere else that will do this. I reckon I’ll have to wait days in other places and be charged considerably more. Shooting film will now be less of a joy and more of a hassle. Of course it has been on the back of my mind to set up a mini darkroom at home. I did a bit of black and white developing and printing at school and then when I was a student I worked nights in a photo lab (those were loooong nights, in the dark and breathing in the fumes of nasty chemicals).

All I would need would be a small developing tank, developer and fixer etc. and I could use a dark bag rather than take over a whole room. Hmm maybe I’ll give that some further thought, I wonder if Father Christmas is accepting letters yet?

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