I was taught all the basics of photography by my late grandfather, starting in about 1950, when I was 8 - a time when taking the photo was only part of the magic journey aimed at producing a negative, from which a print could be made.
Developing films started in a darkroom - in the dark - feeding the raw negative roll of exposed film into a canister and closing the lid.  Then a dim glow of orange light allowed me to see enough to put the developer chemical into the canister, engage the swizzle stick and start the development process.
After due time had passed, the developer was tipped out, the film was then washed, “fixed”, and finally pegged up on a hook to dry. Were any of the negatives worth printing? First it would be a contact print - and if that passed my grandfather’s critical gaze - then maybe an enlargement.
Enlargement was a really magical time!  The negative was placed in an enlarger and focused onto a suitably-sized photographic paper before the paper was exposed to light for a period of time.  Once the exposure time was up, the paper was immersed into a dish of developer and then, as if by magic, the image started to appear.  The trick was to know when to transfer the print into another dish where the development was “stopped” and the finished print could then be washed and pegged up to dry.  Oh, and by the way, this was all in black and white!
To an 8-year old, my grandfather’s darkroom was a veritable Aladdin’s Cave of magical possibility ……… and I was hooked!!  Fast forward three-quarters of a century and technology has provided a world of really exciting imaging possibilities.
 The boundaries are still being pushed back ……it’s so exciting and I intend to keep riding the wave for as long as I can !
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