Portland Community College | Portland, Oregon

Course Number:
ART 143B
Course Title:
B&W Photography II (Darkroom)
Credit Hours:
Lecture Hours:
Lecture/Lab Hours:
Lab Hours:
Special Fee:

Course Description

Covers advanced darkroom techniques. Utilizes a broad range of advanced darkroom processes to further develop problem-solving skills and create prints. Includes critiques, discussion and presentations to establish more sophisticated skills to evaluate prints. Requires access to a film, SLR (single-lens-reflex) camera with manual exposure controls. This is the second course of a three-course sequence for second year darkroom photography. Prerequisites: One term of ART143 or ART143A or instructor permission. Audit available.

Addendum to Course Description

The goal of this intermediate-advanced class is for students to achieve a high technical andconceptual level of ability, from which they could begin to build an artistic and expressive portfolioof photographs. It will provide a hands-on experience in all aspects of black-and-whitephotography: advanced techniques involving film development, printing, finishing, and thepresentation of photographic imagery. Particular attention will be paid to the creation of personalphotographic language, based on furthering the students€™ intermediate technical knowledge,graphic principles, exposure to the history of the medium, and the development of conceptualabilities through critical evaluation of photographic images.

Intended Outcomes for the course

Upon successful completion students should be able to:• Understand, interpret and enjoy black and white photography from past to present in a local as well as global context at an intermediate?advanced level.• Ask intermediate?advanced questions about photography informed by complex ideas and issues, with appropriate vocabulary.• Find and develop creative ways to solve artistic and conceptual problems using a variety of environmentally sustainable strategies.• Create advanced photographic work that is personally significant & fulfilling.• Navigate challenges & opportunities of working in a community photographic studio.

Course Activities and Design

• Create prints that incorporate a variety of technical skills with an awareness of the inherentcharacteristics of different print processes.• Generate increasingly sophisticated ideas/concepts with an awareness of the intended contentof the work produced.• Build upon current skill set with the intent of working towards technical proficiency andprofessional quality.• Develop safe studio practices in regards to the handling of tools, chemicals and machinerywithin a communal studio space.• Further expand and utilize the necessary vocabulary specific to advanced black and whitedarkroom photography when participating in class critiques and discussions.• Increase proficiency in assessing and self-critiquing personal work to strategize creativesolutions.• Develop personal work with an awareness of historical and contemporary artists working inblack and white darkroom photography.

Outcome Assessment Strategies

• Complete and present the individual work within a professional studio critique.• Understand and begin to integrate the vocabulary and concepts necessary to engage within astudio environment• Demonstrate appropriate techniques in intermediate printing and studio habits beyond theclassroom studio• Demonstrate ability to meet printing deadlines with proper time management andcraftsmanship.• Prepare portfolios for professional presentation.

Course Content (Themes, Concepts, Issues and Skills)

• Visual awareness and ability to see.• Methodologies for designing and creating a photographic print.• Challenges to visualization inherent in advanced black and white darkroom photography.• Language of photography and the qualities that distinguish it from other photographic, print andgraphic as well as new media.• Photography in history.• Options and possibilities for original work.• Evaluating prints.• Safety.• Environmental concerns related to materials, chemicals, and proper disposal of waste.• Non-traditional media and combined techniques (e.g., alternative developing, processing andprinting techniques)SKILLS AND METHODOLOGIESAdvanced exposure techniques: Discussion of how the light meter works, use of a gray card,exposing for the shadows, and of the relationship between exposure, development, and contrast.Difficult metering situations, and their possible solutions, will be presented. The effects of color andpolarizing filters on black-and-white film, and on exposure, will be covered.Advanced B/W printing methods: Introduce poly-contrast fiber-base paper, and discuss thedifferences from resin-coated paper, in processing steps, tone-response, and color range;introduce methods of adjusting overall and local contrast through use of multiple contrast filters,and split-printing; demonstrate the use of bleach as a contrast/density control; demonstrate howcolor toners (sepia, blue), home-made dyes (tea, coffee, or vegetable), and photographic oils addcolor to black-and-white prints.Print Finishing and Presentation: Review the dry-mounting process; discuss selection ofappropriate mounting surfaces; present alternatives to mounting on matt board, and the conceptualramifications of various forms of presentation, including the sequence, the series, thedyptych/triptych, and the book; familiarize the student with traditional and alternative forms ofprofessional presentation. Developing Visual Literacy: Present photography as a visual language, with its own fluid syntax;familiarize students with critical terms and vocabulary; present historical issues and styles ofphotography; discuss contemporary trends and movements; promote articulation of thoughts andemotional responses to photographs; discuss relevant issues regarding the cross-fertilization ofphotography to other graphic and artistic media.