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Mary's Photo Diary: My Whole Life Is a Darkroom

Like Lydia Deets from the Burton flick, Beetlejuice, Mary Robinson's life can be likened to a darkroom. Read on to see how Mary combines art and photography to yield such stunning film photographs.

About two years ago, I took a darkroom class at one of my favorite camera stores. It was a really relaxed weekly class, with only about 5 people. The only people who kept up with it and attended regularly were teenagers, which our teacher said was unusual. (All of the adults dropped out after a couple of weeks.)

It was the first photography class I ever took and I really loved it. It challenged me to consistently take pictures, if only to have something to develop, and I really think that it made me take film more seriously. Working in the darkroom is like combining art and photography.

Even with just black and white darkrooms, you can still drastically change, edit, and basically have a lot more control over how your pictures would turn out, unlike just handing it over to a photo lab. Just look at Allison Scarpulla photos, her use of the darkroom makes every picture she develops unique and completely her own.

Because color darkrooms are so temperamental and hard to use, I haven’t been able to experiment with them yet, but I’m definitely planning on taking a color darkroom class in college. If you’re interested in expanding your knowledge of film, you should definitely look into taking a darkroom class in your area.

Mary Robinson is a young photographer from Atlanta, Georgia. Follow her film adventures in her very own visual diary series right here in the Analogue Lifestyle section!

written by maryrobinson


  1. socchia


    these are fantastic. the first, second and second to last are my favorites. there's an unused bathroom in my house that I've been thinking of converting into a darkroom...you may have just convinced me...

    over 3 years ago · report as spam
  2. lighttomysoul


    the second is pure brilliance. looks like something right out of a movie and you just want the whole story!

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  3. bulletofmine


    I really wanted to join the darkroom class. :)

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  4. saintempire



    over 3 years ago · report as spam

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This is the original article written in: English. It is also available in: Deutsch & Italiano.