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A level photography students had an "unforgettable" day at Plymouth University's photography department thanks to the Widening Participation programme.

 "Lecturer and photographer Oliver Udy met us in the department and we were given a tour of the amazing facilities by two current students," said Photography teacher Mr Henley.

"With state-of-the-art Mac editing suites, traditional darkrooms and studio space the department had everything a photographer could dream of using.

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"We were shown into one of the studio spaces where lights, background and a large 5x4 plate camera were all set up for us.

"The camera used a large plate filled with photographic paper and over the next two hours our 12 students used the equipment to create beautiful portraits.

"The camera was like nothing the students had used before - it had to be focused, loaded and then the film developed by hand, a refreshing departure from the ease of the digital SLR cameras we have become so used to using.

Plymouth University - School of Art and Media

"In the darkroom our students gathered around the trays of developer to watch as their portraits slowly revealed themselves under the red light.

"Once the processing was complete it was back to the Macs to make final adjustments and more importantly reverse the negative.

"By slowing down the process of taking a portrait from a split second to nearly an hour, the students were rewarded by incredible detail and tone and an experience they will never forget."


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