Goin’ large.

shen-hao-lamp-1080.jpg

But not quite 4 x 5. Yet.

I’m fiddlin’ ’round with large format photography again.

I broke out my Shen-Hao 4×5 field camera with the Rodenstock 150mm lens, the Polaroid 405 film back, and an expired pack of Fuji FP100c – 12/2011 vintage.

The Polaroid back comes with a mask, but it’s just a little bit off. I’m drawing one in Illustrator that’ll be more accurate for the Fuji 3.25 x 4.25 size.

The first shot was a success, a straight-on photo of the night stand in the war room, with the front standard tilted forward slightly. The point of focus is the lamp switch. It’s just a little fuzzy, I know. My choice of tripod is the cause.

I have an older Calumet tripod with a 3-way head that I should’ve used. I used a Giotto with a hefty ball head that’s hard to manage with the Shen-Hao sittin’ on top of it.

Not bad for the first shot and the film seems to be okay. I’m saving the negatives for reclaiming later on.

More to come.

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Rusty shutters #4.

000-polaroid-spectra-af

Polaroid Spectra System AF.

I haven’t used this camera a whole lot. Finding useable film on eBay wasn’t an issue when I first got this camera back in 2006, and I only went through a few packs using this cool shooter.

I’d like to use it again, but the time just isn’t right. Polaroid Originals stopped producing film for this camera for a short while, apparently because of issues with the film jamming at ejection, so I’m reluctant to spend any money on what amounts to an experiment with their pricy film.

First released in 1986 and simple enough to use, a majority of the Spectra AF’s controls are located at the back of the camera. Among them, switches for autofocus off/on, flash off/on, and exposure compensation. The sonar auto focus could be tricky at times.

The viewfinder is positioned at the back of the camera on the left side and the shutter release is located top right, just above the picture counter.

The right side of the camera has an adjustable hand strap that makes it easy and secure to hold the camera and access the shutter release.

I like the images I made with this camera, and although I haven’t used it in quite a while, the Spectra AF is still in my collection.

Image size – 3.6in x 2.8in
Film size – 4in x 4.1in
ISO: 640
Shutter Speeds: 2.8 sec – 1/250 sec
Aperture: ƒ/10
Focal Length: 125mm
Dimensions: 5.3in x 3.7in x 6.8in

 

‘Roid Week Spring 2019

Instant fun, revisited.

Torri and me have been adding a lot of color to the backyard this Spring, so it made sense that a majority of my shots for ‘Roid Week would end up being botanical in nature.

I even managed to get in a few shots from one of the local nurseries we visited.

I’ve gotta’ use up some of the Fuji peel-apart film in my stash next time around.

Here are my 12 contributions for ‘Roid Week Spring 2019, April 21-26…

Clearly, not thinking.

thermometer.jpg

Starting all over again.

When Torri and I committed to retiring and leaving California, I made a decision about photography that, at the time, seemed sound.

After a few choppy years of on-again-off-again picking up the cameras – totally ignoring my film camera collection – I gave a bunch of my black and white film developing stuff to one of the student interns working in the office, a young lady who was pretty much just starting out as a film shooter.

She got my Paterson tank and extra reels, a dark bag, my notebook with dev charts and notes, all the little accessories that made for loading magic in that little black bag, and the plastic bucket that held it all.

I gave a bunch of my black and white film developing stuff to one of the student interns working in the office.

So, now I’m retired. And after 4 years, we’re settled into our new Texas life. I have plenty of time on my hands. I also have a decent stash of expired 120 and 35mm film, along with a bunch of old Fuji peel apart and some random other bits of film that needs to be used up.

Turns out that was definitely a hasty decision. I’m about to rebuild my film developing set-up.

Digging around in my “archive” I found an old article I snagged from the Web back in July 2006 by Justin Ouellette of (now defunct) chromogenic.net fame that explained all things required to develop black and white film for a reasonable $49.38. Step-by-step in a conversational voice.

Justin’s post was really good and it got me quickly up to speed, seeing as I hadn’t developed black and white since 1969-70!

Here’s his 2006 shopping list…

  • Kodak D-76 Developer (powder, makes 1 gallon) – $5.49
  • Kodak Fixer (powder, makes 1 gallon) – $5.19
  • Kodak Photo-Flo 200 (4 oz. bottle) – $3.95
  • Omega Universal Developing Tank w/ 2 adjustable reels – $16.95
  • Kalt Stainless Steel Film Clips (set of 2) – $3.95
  • (2) Delta Datatainer One-Gallon Chemical Storage Bottles – $2.95 each
  • Delta Datatainer 32 oz. Chemical Storage Bottle – $1.95
  • 16 oz. Funnel – $1.50
  • 20 oz. Graduated Beaker – $4.50

By comparison, here’s what these same – or close to same – items go for today, with a few things added that’ll fit my specific needs, each linked to their source…

It totals up to $192.29 – naturally, some of the items cost quite a bit more than they did in 2006!

It’s likely this list will grow…

The real deal.

Pipe and glasses

A grey (and blue) morning @ ISO 400.

It’s been a while since I’ve shot film – I don’t mean Polaroid, Fuji peel-apart, or even Instax instant stuff. I’m talkin’ real-deal film. You know, 35mm or 120 – so it felt pretty good to get some shots earlier this month to post this week for the Shitty Camera Challenge.

As mentioned in a previous post, Battleground 1863 was a pretty nifty event and I had a great time wandering around the camp. The weather was semi-cooperative, with temps in the low 50s accompanied by a misty fog. Great for ISO 400 film.

That little Argus 520 did an admirable job, all things considered. Plus it was a great conversation starter with the guys dressed in uniform for the reenactment and many of them shared stories about old cameras and camera collections.

Here are nine shots from that 24 exposure roll of XP2 Super that I’m kinda’ partial to…

 

Vintage camera ads.

Surprise finds.

I’ve been playing with art a bunch this winter. Paintings, collages, and even a little monotype. You can see my efforts on Instagram.

One of my fave resources for collage material is magazines.

There’s a store in Cedar Park that sells used books, and back in the corner of the store they have a set of shelves with all kinds of magazines. Mostly newer publications, but there’s a handful of cubbies with National Geographic mags, some dating back to the 1960s.

I picked up a few issues – a range of years – a coupla’ weeks ago, and while I was in my studio I started flipping through the 60s issues and noticed a few ads for cameras.

Pretty cool. Check ’em out…

Olympus Pen F - Vol. 126, No. 1 / June 1965

Olympus Pen F – Vol. 126, No. 1 / June 1965

Hasselblad - National Geographic Vol. 128, No. 3 / September 1965

Hasselblad – National Geographic Vol. 128, No. 3 / September 1965

Kodak Instamatic 800 - National Geographic Vol. 126, No. 1 / July 1964

Kodak Instamatic 800 – National Geographic Vol. 126, No. 1 / July 1964

Olympus Pen - National Geographic Vol. 126, No. 1 / July 1964

Olympus Pen – National Geographic Vol. 126, No. 1 / July 1964

Honeywell Pentax & Konica Auto-S - National Geographic Vol. 127 No. 6 / June 1965

Honeywell Pentax & Konica Auto-S – National Geographic Vol. 127 No. 6 / June 1965