Welcome to Paul In Russia. My name is Paul Hechtman and I am currently living in Belgorod Russia with my wife Natasha and my daughter Anya. I am a former resident of Northern California. I was born in San Francisco and grew up in Marin County, California.
Since the age of ten I have been interested in photography. I found a Crown Graflex camera stored away in the family garage. One day I was playing with this camera in our front yard and my neighbor Jim noticed me playing with it. He came over to me and proceeded to show me how this camera worked. Jim used to be a photographer for the United States Army and just happened to have a complete darkroom setup in his home. After teaching me how to use the camera he taught me the techniques of developing film and printing photographs with the use of an enlarger. After learning this process I turn one of the bathrooms in our home into a darkroom with the use of my fathers darkroom equipment that had been stored in the garage.
I took photography classes throughout my high school years and again when I was in college. All of the classes that I took during this time were based on the same principles, which I had first learned at age ten. Digital photograph and the use of Adobe Photoshop have taken me away from the darkroom. A part of me misses working in a darkroom, but I do like the fact that I can still enjoy taking photographs without having to mix chemicals and the clean up that is involved after developing and printing in a darkroom.