The Latent Image

This morning, I dropped my film off at the lab. I wrote down my personal information and checked the film handling options on the order slip. “They will be ready for you tomorrow around 11:30a.m.” the young gentleman informed me behind the counter. “Thank you” I replied and walked out towards SOMA on this chilly Tuesday morning.

Although the wait sometimes drives me crazy, I do welcome the time to think through my creative process while the images are in its latent state. I brought my flash and its accessories to New York but left the batteries and cable inside my checked luggage at my sister’s apartment. I forgot to pack them in my camera bag that morning. So, I had to shoot everything by available light. Right now, my mind is reviewing everything in slow motion: the images, the angles, the quality of light and my hand as I adjusted the shutter and aperture combination of my lens.

“Did I get it?” I will know in about 24 hours.

A few years back, I bought a black cap with a handwritten Chinese symbol in front and the word PATIENCE spelled at the back. I wish I was wearing it today.


latent image: an image formed by the changes to the silver halide grains in photographic emulsion on exposure to light. The image is not visible until chemical development takes place.