During the course of this module, Landscape photography, I have been looking at pastoral as well as the urban environment. Setting up and using the 5 x 4 camera seemed unnerving at first, but working together with other students was to a great advantage as we were able to learn what worked and help one another. Hartlepool being the location the photographs had to be captured, I decided to study Hartlepool further. I was mainly interested in places I usually walk by around Hartlepool, and started shooting the streets in my attempts to capture an urban landscape. Before loading the camera with 5” x 4” film, ISO 400, paper test shots were used instead so they would be easily developed in the darkroom. From using the shots captured on paper I had confidence to start loading the dark slides with film and start shooting.
When loading the film into the dark slide, I had to remember to make sure that the rigid part of the film was at the bottom left corner. When out shooting, it was easy to forget which side of the dark slide had been used, so it was crucial to remember what side had already been shot. Using the chemicals to developing the negatives for the first time, I realised that some of my film had developed too dark, meaning that I had overexposed the film while capturing the shot.
When I first started shooting, I didn't have an initial idea of what I wanted to capture so I decided to just start shooting mainly photographs in the streets. Buildings became my focal point and I became drawn to capture the architecture. Throughout this module, while capturing buildings, I have captured photographs of churches. I find the architecture and design of the churches very interesting and aesthetically pleasing. My other interests was capturing trees, particularly cherry blossom trees as they were mainly in full bloom throughout the duration of this module. I was able to capture nature from the trees that dressed the streets of Hartlepool. When capturing the shot, it was always better when the sky was slightly cloudy, rather than having a clear sky. I feel that having a cloudy sky gave the photograph an authentic outcome.
When developing the film in the darkroom, creating contact sheets let me know the exposure of my film and if it was underexposed or over exposed. Creating prints using the enlarger in the darkroom became easier overtime as I was able to expose my photograph just right after creating test strips. Using the machine, sometimes the machine would print out the dust onto my print; therefore I had to further use more paper to get the perfect shot. Dodging and burning seemed difficult to create mainly in the sky depending on what was shot in the frame. Overall, from shooting with 5 x 4 films, I had totalled in creating 26 films using 5 x 4 film with the large format camera. I am pleased with my 5 final shots.