The year my former husband and I lived in Chicago, I took another photography course at the Art Institute. When we moved to Houston in 1967, I bought a small enlarger and used a bathroom in our apartment as a darkroom. Later, I took more courses in Rice's Continuing Studies program and outfitted a real darkoom in a studio apartment with a ten foot fiberglass sink, a 'big' Omega enlarger, lots of lenses and lots of trays and drying racks.
I love taking photographs, making photographs, editing photographs and looking at photographs. My daughters tell me they'll know just what to do if I develop dementia as an old lady. Every day, they will offer me boxes of photos. I can sort them, over and over. It's not a bad idea.
I'm loving it, but it's mind boggling when I come across stacks of negatives and contact sheets that were never filed properly in any folder at all. It is easy to see that I'd print from widely divergent rolls of negatives, then stack them in a pile at the end of day, put them on the shelf and just leave them that way for years and years.
Well, this afternoon I found a large envelope labelled Paris and London, 1981. And the first image on the first contact sheet I pulled from the envelope was of the girls on Monet's bridge. I was stunned.
I'd taken that picture. Of course. I was even more stunned to see two images of four children sitting on those needlepoint stools in the Hall of Mirrors at Versailles. In 1981, those seats weren't roped off. Kids could lounge on them.