Category Archives: Social Commentary

Frugal Film Project Roll #4: and the Light Meter Failed……

I had been debating a camera change for my official membership in the 2020 Frugal Film Project.  But as I worked my way through the August #camerachallenge, the light meter on the Canonet failed, and it’s not worth fixing.  So in a future post I will be proposing three possible camera replacements for Frugal Film 2020, and I’ll have you vote for your favorite in November………

For now, here are six favorites from the #camerachallenge which I shot with the Canonet and planned to use for both projects this month:

 

 

 

Exploring Expired Film

Recently I’ve had developed some expired film ‘given’ to me by a neighbor.  Here’s the backstory, they were moving and knew that I had an interest in film cameras.  I was given two cameras that contained partially exposed rolls of film:  A Canon Sure Shot point and shoot and a Fujica ST-705.

I told them that I would finish exposing the rolls and have them developed.  To preserve their privacy I will only share the images that I exposed to complete the rolls.  It was also at least 30 year old film not stored under the best conditions. Kudos to Old School Photo Lab for pulling these images out of very dense negatives through scanning.  The images were almost impossible to discern even using the brightest light table.

Interesting results.  First the Canon Sure Shot:  All of the Kodak GC 400 film shifted blue, but many images were salvageable when converted to B&W.  I bumped up the contrast 100-200%:

Below a comparison of the original to the B&W:

 

Next the Fujica ST-705.  Really a neat camera; lightweight and easy to figure out.  This contained some version of Kodacolor film which somewhat maintained it’s color but became very grainy and dark:

 

So where Am I going with Expired film?  It never really interested me before.  I was always in pursuit of the sharp, crisp image.  But lately I’ve drifted into pinholes and a renewed interest in plastic cameras,  which offer very different photographic characteristics.  Also recently a friend gave us a treasure trove of expired films:

Expired_Films

I gave some away to my Emulsive Secret Santa last year, who expressed an interest in expired films.  But I kept the more interesting ones….I was also given a Minox “Spy” Camera with an expired roll that I am shooting now:

Spy_Camera_Gear

In another twist I was reorganizing my 35 mm camera storage and found my Minolta SRT-202 with half a roll of unexposed T-MAX.  When did I last use  THAT camera? 4-5 years ago?  Certainly expired now.  So I have Expired films to play with…….more coming on the horizon.

Frugal Film Project: Roll #3

HearseCon 2019:

 

Sort of a Middle-Aged Goth Experience………..

Instagram censored and blurred out the second image with the pick axe.  Tooo Disturbing?

Father’s Day 2019: Homage to My Father’s J33 Land Camera

 

Polaroid_J33_posted

My Father’s camera was the J33, a smaller version of the J66.  We traditionally had at least an annual Ester Parade Photo taken on our front steps……This one from 1962…Me 2 years old, brother Kevin on the left and Wesley on the right.  Seems like only Kevin was cheery that day.

Easter_1962_059

Below, my favorite photo of 2 year old me…..with my stuffed animals.

Me_1962

Front yard, back yard and on vacation in 1965…………Shown also was our first dog, Tessie.

My mom in 1959 soon after she found out I was on the way………a Pre-baby photo, with Mister the Cat.

My Brother Wesley holding baby Me.  Needs some restoration.

Wesley_BabyKathy058

 

 

 

 

Inspired By: Kim Weston

Let’s start with a Weston Interview Quote:

“…..If you use a film long enough, you get to know its characteristics. I don’t use a meter, I just know the light…..”

I love the quote because I rarely use my spot meter…….

Now, what inspires me?  If you check out his website….he exclusively does nude photography.  Although tastefully done, it’s not my thing (although there is one image I do love: Nude in Cactus).  And this is as far as I go into Nudes:

Johnson_KE_Illuminate_4

What Inspires Me? First I am inspired by His warm and welcoming attitude towards film students and film enthusiasts in the Monterey Bay Region.    I met Kim Weston when he welcomed our Monterey Peninsula College Class to Wildcat Hill.  At that time he was making predominantly platinum prints and we were an Alternative Processes class.  So he demonstrated the printing method for us.  He also discussed his artistic philosophy, and let us see his famous grandfather, Edward Weston’s, simple but beautiful darkroom. Imagine yourself making fabulous 8X10 contact prints like pepper #39 using an incandescent light bulb.

Kim Weston invited us to drop by, and if he wasn’t busy, we could talk about photography.  One of my friends spoke up.  Luther was having trouble learning to use his 4X5 view camera.  Kim just said, drop by with the camera sometime.  Luther did, and Kim Weston spent the afternoon showing him how to get the most from his 4X5. His support of film photographers, especially students, inspires me.

But Kim Weston eventually took it a step further, starting the Weston Collective, a scholarship program for students in Monterey County that are studying fine art film photography.  And the Collective has taken a step forward in support of fine art photography by opening a darkroom and teaching studio.  Raising the funds and managing the space for the benefit of ‘developing’ film photographers is inspiring.

 

 

 

Inspired By Jim Grey: “Selfies” for My Birthday

Reading Jim Grey’s recent Blog on the subject of Bathroom Mirror Selfies made me think about the ones I have done, and the ones that I want to do soon.  He also mentioned the importance of Photography as Therapy., as any Art form can be.  It certainly has worked that way for me, carrying me through serious illnesses twice now.

I am posting this to Celebrate my Birthday!  Something that wasn’t assured just a few month ago.  And I am going forth with my Series “Facing 60”.  Starting here and now I will post self Portraits from time to time at different ages and stages……

About 10 years ago I was starting a self-portrait project called “Facing 50”.  I had read an article by someone who had documented their life through self portraits taken over 20+ years.  But my Project ended up being derailed by Breast Cancer.  You think I would have learned from that and NOT tried to do a “Facing 60”.  Undaunted, I started on that Series anyway, and it was derailed by a brain tumor that IS NOT Cancer, but nevertheless a problem.  Having anything growing in your Brain that doesn’t belong there is a problem.

As you can see below I started the original Project on Ash Wednesday in 2010.  In this case I was experimenting with my 20 ft cable release and my M645.  A little soft focused because I had to ‘guestimate’ the distance.  I featured one of my favorite images……

 

 

So, I had taken a few photos of myself before the current events. My husband had taken quite a few photos of me to post on my “Through the Glass”  blog posts.  To Summarize “Facing 60” will contain a variety of “Self-Portraits” and evolve into a Project Page.

So this is where I started 9 years ago when my Cancer treatment had ended, I was on the road to recovery and starting a new career:

 

And now for some Mirror-Selfies: One full-frame showing all the lovely bathroominess and the rest cropped Rollei TLR 6X6 to remove as much of the Bathroom as possible.  I’m going to do a reshoot in this mirror when I get home.  Next time I will not have the shower curtain line going through my head!

Good Friday: The Photo Story

Good_Friday

From the Riverside Cemetery, Denver, Colorado.

This post IS for Good Friday.  But there is also a Story to be told.  This was my second visit to the Riverside Cemetery in Denver.  Dragging around my Mamiya 645 in its rolling case.  The Riverside Cemetery is a place to go for History Addicts, as it is the oldest Denver Cemetery.  It needs some love, but is now being managed by The Friends of Historic Riverside Cemetery.

But things aren’t as they seem, when I scanned the film from my second visit I reversed the negative.  And on my first visit I had taken the Long View. The original perspective and correct orientation is below.  What do You Think?

Cemetary_Jesus

Notice the lovely Oil Refinery in the background, which is why on my second visit, I  moved in closer to “crop in the camera”, and show the face of Mary.  I also had better light on the second go around.

 

A Quiet Tribute

As  student of Art History, and a practicing religious person, I was devastated by the Fire at Notre Dame.  No, I’m not Catholic, but I revere ALL sacred places of ALL Religions.

I’m not at home, so I don’t have much that I can post at this moment.  But I Love Gothic Architecture.  When I had a chance to live in England, I visited all the famous Cathedrals that I could get to during my short stay.  So I post a Quiet Tribute from Wells Cathedral.  A gem that you should try to see if you are in western England

Wells_NotreDame_Tribute

And what I am going to do this summer is scan all of my best English Cathedral images (Old ECN-II Transparencies) and Post Them!