Working with motion picture film today is both an intimidating prospect as well as an exciting one — prior to this point in history, film was the product of a highly competitive industrial science which rapidly developed from the primal photographic processes of the late 18th century to the multi-layered, monopack films of meticulously engineered silver halide grains produced today. Despite this maturity, however, film was never anything more than a means-to-an-end for an industry which never really cared to understand what film was or what film could be. Given the comparative convenience of digital photography, therefore, both the technological and theoretical development of film has undergone a widespread abandonment among industry figures. However, in the wake of this abandonment, we’ve also been left with perhaps the most intriguing of opportunities: to take this industrial science and build within it a new medium with new ways of speaking, new ways of thinking and new ways of seeing…
In this first part of a series of investigations into photochemical engineering, we will be focusing on preliminary theories concerning emulsion chemistry and it’s practical application in the contemporary darkroom. Topics that will be explored include the history of silver gelatin photographic materials, the theory of emulsification and latent image formation, and the practical experimentation of various techniques for hand making motion picture film. The seminar will culminate in a simple silver gelatin emulsion which we will coat on to pre-existing 35mm cellulose triacetate and then photograph and develop as a negative.
Attending the Workshop
All prospective participants should register via email at firstname.lastname@example.org. Additionally, we will be seeking a 10 dollar registration fee from each participant to help cover the cost of producing the workshop. There are no other requirements for attendance.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: I’ve never worked with motion picture film before. Will that limit my experience?
A: While previous experience with working with motion picture film is not required for attending this workshop, it is highly encouraged that one at least study basic black & white negative processing prior to the workshop. Regardless, we will do everything possible to clarify any questions that you may have before, during or after the workshop.
Q: I have some film I would like to bring into the workshop to work with. Is this okay?
A: Yes, participants are encouraged to bring in previously processed film for use in contact printing. Additionally, participants should consider bringing in objects for photogramming as well.
Q: I would like to travel to attend the workshop, but I’m not certain if I can afford housing accommodations. Do you offer scholarship?
A: We unfortunately do not have any funds to provide scholarships, but we may be able to find volunteers to help you with accommodations. Please send us an inquiry at email@example.com
Q: I missed the opportunity to attend this workshop. Will you be running it again?
A: Since this is a one-off series of seminars, we technically won’t be able to offer this specific workshop again. However, we’re open to trying to organize a similar themed workshop, if the demand exist.