Some of you may know that I majored (as much as one can major in anything where I went to school) in photography in college. I pulled on a lot of that experience when writing Aimee in Dark Rooms. That monologue about how much she loves being able to hide in the darkroom, the feels and the smells? Yeah, she and I have that in common.
Once, at an old job, I was on a plant tour. This plant had a black-and-white darkroom set up to develop X-Rays for quality control purposes. I WENT IN THERE AND HUFFED THE SMELLS LIKE IT WAS MY JOB. I missed them. I still miss them. Digital photography and I are never going to be cozy bedfellows. There's nothing to touch. No scents. No humming color print machine or soft ticking of the timer switching off the exposure lamp.
Aimee is not me, and I am not Aimee. But it's funny the way life sneaks in. Or barges its way in until you're twelve pages down the rabbit hole of different methods of mixing film developing solution. And for you, dear readers, a glimpse at what I used to do. I'd get up on Friday morning (hungover, as often as not, let's be real) and trundle to the darkroom as soon as it opened so I could work blessedly alone with the sounds and smells. I could spend hours making tiny adjustments to get an image right. And sometimes, I'd make magic.