First Darkroom Experience–And Some Tips!

Happy Tuesday everyone!

Although I missed my classmates and photography dearly this past Saturday, I will admit that it was a treat to be able to sleep in on Saturday morning. Spring Break Forever! Today I’m going to talk to you guys about last week’s class, and what I learned from my first time developing film in a darkroom.

I came into the city with my close friend Anna who also takes a class at FIT, and we met her friend from her class, Fiona, on the train. On our way to class we stopped at Gregory’s Coffee and Fresh&Co and spent some time catching up and chatting (I ordered a cappuccino and some green juice for during class—Anna got herself a little bottle of watermelon juice, and it matched her nails perfectly!). When we got to school we parted ways, me making my way into Pomerantz, and my friends heading to Business.

I came into this photography class with some experience in digital photography (all self taught) and absolutely no prior knowledge with film. 2 classes ago we spent about 2 hours walking around the city, specifically the flat iron district, snapping photos on film. Last class we spent the entire time developing our photos and learning the art of the darkroom—spoiler: it is not as easy as you would think. I had to leave class about an hour an a half early to make it home in time for my sister’s Confirmation, but I did have a chance to occupy the darkroom with 2 other classmates, and use the chemistry to develop my photos (my professor picked up where I left off—she dried and completed my development).

So the darkroom is A LOT darker than I was expecting—I thought my eyes would eventually adjust to the lack of light and I would maybe see the outline of what I was doing, but nope! Pitch black the entire time, which is probably better considering my claustrophobia would’ve kicked once I realized how enclosed and small the space I was in was. I shared my darkroom with 2 other girls, and we took turns cutting, rolling, and enclosing our film in our cages and tanks—thank God one of them has had experience with the darkroom before, because I could not open my film container with the can opener in the dark for the life of me. After a few attempts, we were all finally successful, and we triumphantly left the dark room after about 20 minutes—pretty good for our first time if you ask me. I then spent the rest of my class using chemicals to develop my film, and I left class with chemical stains all over my shirt and ID (if you close up on the picture of my outfit you’ll notice the stains). I put together a few tips to keep in mind while using the dark room to make your experience run smoother, especially if it’s your first time:

  • Wear practical footwear!! Seriously—I know it’s the Fashion Institute of Technology and outfits are a big part of peoples’ self expression and identity, but open toed shoes and heels in a dark room are just an accident waiting to happen—trust me. A girl in my class wears heels a lot, so she brings a pair of slippers with her to wear when working in the darkroom. If your outfit must include hazardous shoes, bring something to change into—and remember, the dark room is dark, so no one will even see your feet anyway!
  • Wear dark clothing—and nothing too fancy. This class is one that is interactive and artistic, which means that you are bound to stain something on yourself at least once during the class. The chemicals splash easily, and you usually won’t notice it on yourself until it dries. Don’t worry, it’ll wash out, but dark clothing is more ideal to hide the stain anyway.
  • If you have glasses, wear them! Goggles are mandatory when working with the chemicals, so it’s better to have perfect vision and eye protection, rather than having to wear goggles.
  • Bring your own scissors and portable can openers—It’s just easier to have your own set of tools rather than having to spend time in the dark room taking turns using the devices, while also blindly searching for them—and you’re pretty much hopeless if you drop something on the floor. Also, the can openers that I have used were not the newest or sharpest, making it harder for me to try to prod open my film case. Using a newer one can cut some time out of your darkroom use, which will make everything faster.

Next class, we will be reviewing our photos and discussing our final projects—something that I should really get started on. Let me know about your first dark room experience in the comments below!

Until next class,

~Francesca

Fresh juice aesthetics ft. Anna’s smirk

Some cappuccino love

A quick #OOTD–close up on my top to see some lovely chemical stains from photo developing

Take a Look Inside My House

FIT Precollege Blog 1

As pictured from left to right: CJ Criscione (the infamous little brother), Christine Criscione (mia madre)

I bet you thought I was actually showing you a drawing of my house, as an Adobe Illustrator student. I was just metaphorically speaking. (Sorry for my terrible sense of humor.)

Growing up, most of the time, it was just me, my mom, and my little brother. We live, work, eat, laugh, and support each other through whatever hardships we may face together. As family always do, we work through everything and make sure we are always there for each other. From the time I was little, I was always the odd one out of us three, coming up with some bizarre method to do ordinary tasks. My mom noticed my creative spark and has always pushed me to achieve my dreams, and still does to this day. She’s my best friend.

From invitations, to banners, to custom drawings, my mother continually bugs me to spit out graphics like a machine.

March News Banner

As pictured above: custom news banners for my mom’s school site.

Ordinarily, I don’t mind, though. However, she watched my ability to produce quality work increase as I got older and always pushed me to be my best. Since the start of my Precollege classes at FIT, learning and grasping new concepts has been easier than ever before. While there is a lot of drawing involved in Adobe Illustrator (more than I expected, at least,) getting the hang of a new program and transitioning from my comfortable home of Photoshop could not have been accomplished without the guidance of my professor and peers learning along with me.

Adobe Illustrator Tiles

A tile pattern created on the first day of class

Me: “What do you have to say about my progress at FIT so far?”
Mom: “I know you thought you knew a lot a couple months ago, but every weekend you come home bright in the face and won’t shut up about the new little trick you learned that made your life a hell of a lot easier.”

Very true, and I can’t deny it! I swear – there’s a secret button that does all the work for you. I could spend hours – my family watching my frustrated face – trying to figure something out and then I end up searching the internet for help to no avail. Then suddenly you’re sitting in Manhattan one day and all the answers come to you – it’s a revelation!

Me, moments later: “What do you have to say about my progress at my Precollege class?”
CJ: “Uhh… I don’t know? Where’s the remote?”

Thanks for the inspiring words.

Nonetheless, both my mom and brother, as well as all of my other family members, are supportive of me and what I enjoy doing, and it means the world.

Until next week,
Joey Criscione

Till Next Time!

Hello hello!

Well, the final class has somehow crept up quicker than expected. It feels like just yesterday October started but here we are, days away from 2016.

It’s funny how things work out sometimes. Originally I was registered for a different class than the one I took but due to low registrations, I was recommended to take Magazine Design. I’ve thoroughly enjoyed this class and I’ve learned a lot about the various programs you use in graphic design as well!

As expected of the title of the class, our final projects were our own personal spin on a magazine. I took some pictures of a few of the final pages, mind you I could probably keep working on this forever but this is the final result over the last few weeks!

Depth Magazine

Depth Magazine

I featured both of these pages in a few of my older posts when they were works in progress. As you can see, changes have been made as well as minor tweaks in order to tie in the magazine as one. Throughout the magazine I tried to tie in colors that were featured on the cover; blue, red, black, gold, and white. Gold being the perfect tie in to each page really made the rest of the magazine come together well.

Depth MagazineDepth Magazine

Overall, the magazine is finished but for my own personal standards, I definitely feel I could further strengthen the magazine. I tried my best with the time and sources I had which is all that really matters in the long run I guess!

If you’re interested in designing and graphics as well as putting together a final product, I highly recommend you try Magazine Design. It not only introduces you to more aspects of design, but you’ll get a better understanding of software you’ll more than likely need in any field you go into!

Thank you all so much for reading my posts from week to week, it’s really been awesome getting to write for this blog!

Have a happy holiday and good luck with your future endeavors!

Sincerely,

Emily Kelly

 

Time Flies in Magazine Design

Hi everyone!

My Magazine Cover
Well, believe it or not the Precollege fall courses are about to be up, sadly this Saturday the 19th for me! I’ve made so much progress not only on my magazine, but as well as my computer techniques.

Pictured above is the cover of my magazine titled, Depth. When putting together my thoughts and interests, I wanted to include writings of my own, as well as images I’ve taken. The features of my magazine are pieces I’ve written and the monthly departments consist of fashion and music updates, along with some writing tips.

Descriptive piece featureThe feature pages may not look like your typical magazine spread, but as a feature piece normally is, these pages will focus solely on the stories and creating an visual image for the reader.

This page to the left is one of my favorites. I took the photo during my first week of summer classes at FIT and later wrote about that specific morning during school this year. This story starts out the feature pages then carries on into the next 2 pages which are also descriptive pieces that make you think and feel as if you’re living in that specific moment in time. Descriptive piece featuresAlthough this week is my final class, I still have some more tinkering to do with each page. I’m always getting new ideas to improve each page to better fit the magazine’s aesthetic so it makes it hard to ever come to a final piece. I’m glad I ended up taking this course because it turns out I really enjoy this kind of creative work. Fingers crossed my final piece looks as great as I have it pictured in my head!

Thank you all so much for taking the time to read my posts each week and hopefully you’ve enjoyed reading them as much as I liked writing them!

Have a wonderful day!

Sincerely,

Emily Kelly

 

 

Practice Makes Perfect…Well Almost

Hello hello!

With just 2 classes left our magazines are kicking into full gear. During my class over the weekend we continued to work on spreads within our magazines in order to then do a critique.

Some don’t like to be part of a critique due to the fact they’d rather not hear what others think about their work. The reality of it is, even though you may like your work does not mean the client will. Going into a design based industry, or any industry for that matter, I feel it’s important to be open to any and all criticism. Not only do you benefit from listening to others points of view, but this means there’s always room for you to grow.

Depth Magazine Spread

Pictured above is a spread I’m working on for my magazine which is certainty a work in progress. My class spent time looking over each of our spreads and had a group critique on what we could adjust or what we liked about each persons piece. Personally, I’d like to change a few things but overall the aesthetic of my magazine is coming across how I pictured it.

Your ideas are always going to be changing and evolving. For instance, the cover I originally designed in the beginning of the course still needs to be redone simply because it’s not fitting the overall theme of my magazine. I’ll be honest, this definitely can be a tedious process at times and involves lots of editing but it’s worth it.

I’m excited to see how far I can get with this magazine, fingers crossed it comes out okay!

Thank you all for reading and have a wonderful week!

-Emily Kelly