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Gia-Gina Across the Pond

So I've decided to follow my husband to his native Italy. Follow our adventures as we eat, drink, travel, adapt to and explore this remarkable country. Part food blog, part photo blog but mostly my rants and raves. After our two years in Italy, we relocated across the Atlantic "pond" and are back in the States.

Sunday, August 21, 2005

The Non-Hostile Darkroom Takeover

I can’t believe I am saying this aloud but one of the reasons I kept dating my husband was to have access to his darkroom. (Bad, Bad Wife!)

Since I got my first camera (an old Vivitar), at age 13 or so I have been taking photos. Mainly they’re shots of my family, boyfriends, pets, flora and fauna and after moving to the U.S., architecture and landmarks. I’m a bit of the family photo historian along with my mom. She saved valuable albums when she and my dad ran away from Vietnam. They came away with no money but a wealth of photos. Maybe this is how I grew to love photos as well as realizing their value.

I digress, back to the darkroom, the one we have set up in the guest room is a temporary one. There is no water supply and no exhaust fan but the room is large; I don’t think I’ll suffocate. I have all the essentials, an enlarger, safe light, timer, trays, chemicals, paper and of course my negatives. There are still a few items I need to buy but I’m in no hurry. I’ve got all the time in the world to collect darkroom accessories. All the photography books say “just get out there and shoot”; this is one thing I have not been doing as much as I should.

Just to get my feet wet and to test the waters a bit, I submitted 11 photos to a photography website, only to have 10 rejected. They accepted an “okay” photo, so I was a bit surprised and defeated. My “okay” photo was immediately ranked by the other members of the site; so far it is doing well. The photo editors, in their disclaimer, stated that the photos were being edited and chosen by a panel and not to send them angry e-mails if your photos were not accepted. An angry e-mail I did not send. I sent an inquiry as to the possibility of some constructive feedback as to why my photos were not accepted. No answer yet. I did however log onto the discussion forum linked to this site to see what other members were experiencing. Another photographer, with many nice photos on this site, wrote back to me and gave me a few pointers. He also told me which photos he liked and thought I should submit. His “likes” were rejected by the site; he then encouraged me to submit them again.

Part of me takes photos for the purely creative of capturing an image on film. Most of the time I give them away as gifts to people who I think will enjoy them. Or I show them to others so they can share in the sad, happy, outrageous, happenstance moment with me. To possibly work part-time as a photographer and sell my work is an avenue I am beginning to pursue.


At 12:28 AM, Anonymous Sabrina said...

Nice to have a dark room at home...

What is the photography web site where you submitted your pictures? I am interested... I usually check some photography web site and sometimes buy magazines to learn how to improve my pictures.


At 12:53 AM, Blogger H. (aka. NC_State_Gal) said...

You are in the PERFECT place to shoot photos of flora and fauna! I look at the photos that you have taken in Italy and just turn green with envy :). My best friend is going to school for photography and is becoming quite the professional photojournalist, I think that if you have the eye and the creativity, then the rest will follow with practice and time. Keep it up :).

At 1:23 AM, Anonymous trench said...

Staying with your husband to use his darkroom? That doesn't sound too bad depending on what you've done in there... haha I would have laughed. thats like dating someone cause they have a car and you dont! LMAO

At 12:11 PM, Anonymous mr m. said...

if you are not happy with the site you sent your photos to, you may want to give a look at:


there is no winner, but a lot of people ready to give comments and feedbacks.

and if you happens to see my website (still in Italian) comments on my photos are more than welcome... consider that I am a broke grad student with no money for equipment :-)

At 12:52 AM, Blogger Gia-Gina said...

Mr. M, what are you shooting with?

At 9:44 AM, Anonymous mr. m. said...

Hi, I have a second hand Nikon Coolpix 995, with a scratch on the lens (you can see the two small red lens-flares). Sometime, when my brother is looking somewhere else, I steal his Nikon D70. It is another story but it will be over soon since he's moving away. What about you?



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