Tag Archives: Reflections

Armistice 1918-2018: What Have We Learned?

I am Reposting this for Veteran’s Day 2019.  Didn’t quite get the response I had hoped for last year……

Over the past 4 years of the 100th Anniversary of World War I (The War to end all Wars, except that it didn’t).  I had hoped for some thoughtful reflection on the Root Cause of Conflict.  I am aware that some of this occurred Across Europe.  But nothing here in the USA.

WWI History is barely touched upon here.  I know much more than the average America due to an excellent AP European History class I took in High School.  It was taught by one of my most memorable teachers, Mr. Knab, from the perspective of the root cause of conflict and how it directly led to WWII.

An opportunity lost……..

Memorial_Day

So I am Honoring My Father’s WWII Service in a Segregated Army, in Italy.  1st Lt Vernon Johnson.  An Army He later helped to Integrate under orders from President Truman.  He worked in the Army Reserve, ‘helping’ white soldiers get used to taking orders from African America Officers. At the out break of The Korean War, he was like other WWII veterans, exempted from further service because he had a wife and child.  At least back them they did not want to make more Widows and Orphans.

Notably my Father was also a Buffalo Soldier…..And he loved the Bob Marley song.  He felt Appreciated and Respected.

 

 

My Father always talked about the Children he met in Italy………

 

 

And Training at Ft Huachuca, Arizona…….

 

 

 

We’ll end with a Photograph of my Mother.  The one that my Father carried with him through the War. I found it in his old foot locker along with many of the images above:

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Mom is still with us at a Feisty 95……

Frugal Film Project Roll #5: Minolta SRT-202

I was rearranging my 35 mm storage when I found this cameraRolling out images from a more than 2 year old partially exposed roll of Ilford HP5.  I know it’s that old because I found some photo notes.

So We’ll start with three of the older images.  I love this Power Plant and always go there to test new films and new cameras. So I decided to make a photo project to capture images from everywhere the Plant is visible.  I only got this far.  But I will pick this up as a theme for Frugal Film 2020.

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I finished off the roll this Fall with my Zenitar Fisheye lens:

 

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So this camera is one of my two options for the Frugal Film Project 2020.  What do you think?

Lomo Purple Revisited: Lessons Learned Part II

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Lomo Purple is definitely an interesting film.  I had never tried a ‘special effects’ film before.  And surprisingly, I like it.  But there are some caveats that never seem to be mentioned in Lomo Purple posts and promotions,

So this is more of a user’s guide than a film review.  I’ll let you try the film and decide if you like it. FIRST:  the angle of the sun with respect to your image scene is the biggest factor for a successful image.  I’ve discussed in a Lomo Purple is definitely an interesting film.  I had never tried a ‘special effects’ film before.  And surprisingly, I like it.  But there are some caveats that never seem to be mentioned in Lomo Purple posts and promotions, I have touched upon this in previous post and hope to publish a full summary review of my experiences soon.  But note that the ideal sun angle is 90 to 180 degrees from the image scene.  In my most recent Lomo Purple roll shown here, I was careful with the sun angle.

 

I have one more roll of medium format Lomo Purple being developed now.  I also plan on running an exposure time test for the RSS Pinhole.  AND in a few weeks I expect an @35mmc summary article of My Lomo Purple experiences to be published.

Rethinking the “Now Showing” Page, Does it Really Matter?

A quote from Linda Ronstadt:

“You do it for the work.  If you are doing it for the prizes, you are in big trouble”

and a Quote from Cole Thompson:

“In the past I’ve considered those accolades as the evidence of my success, but I now think differently. My success is no longer measured by the length of my resume, but rather by how I feel about the art that I create. While I do enjoy exhibiting, seeing my work published and meeting people who appreciate my art, this is an extra benefit of creating, but not success itself.”

I’ve been through this thought process before.  But this time a different twist.  Now showing will be going dark for a while.  I haven’t deleted it.  Just hidden. As I mentioned before, I always get the sam level of award.  They know I’m good enough to deserve some attention, but my personal style and personal vision are obviously NOT in vogue right now.  So do I stick with what I enjoy or literally ‘shoot for the hip and trendy’?

My husband recently found an interesting blog post on this very subject by Ellen Borggreve. From “Photography is not a Competition”:

“Even though there are photographic competitions, photography itself and art in general is not a competition. In the creative process there is no finish line, no competitors, no comparison. All creative endeavours are in their essence subjective, personal and incomparable. Yet the modern digital reality has created this sense of urgency and competition which I feel is hugely detrimental to art.”

Honestly I wouldn’t know how to shoot for the ‘hip and trendy’ because I do photography to make myself happy.  As Comfort and a personal creative outlet.   I find online activities like the recent #camerachallenge add some spice and allow me to interact with more like-minded photographers.  I will be keeping my Publications Page, because that actually does matter.

If I enter a contest I will still post the results here.  But no more “Now Showing”  because I don’t want THAT to be my focus……..And what people on Twitter, Instagram, Blogspot or WordPress find interesting, may not be what’s interesting TO ME.

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Sacred Datura from my Garden; Kodak T-MAX 400; cropped from a Mamiya 645 frame with 80 mm Macro Lens.

 

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!

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

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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!

My Personal Ilford FP4 Party at the Salt River Bridge

My Emulsive Secret Santa sent me one roll each of 35 mm and 120 size film.  I know about the FP4 Party on Twitter, but had never participated and never shot any of this film before.  This Month I did post my best FP4 35 mm images.

So I was shooting on a drive through the mountains north of Phoenix.  We ended up at Roosevelt Lake (water very low as you can see) and the Salt River Dam and Bridge:

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But my real interest was the Bridge.  So I did a study of it.  First, a panorama made from two images using Photomerge:

SaltRiver_Bridge_Panorama

Remember when making a Panorama your images must overlap by ~30%, as you can see from the parts below:

 

 

And the most wide angle I could get from a single shot using my Minolta X-700 and Tamron 28-200 zoom lens with a nice reflection:

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A slightly different view, with interesting vegetation:

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Read my FP4 Review here.

As my Previous Post suggested, I’ll try the 120 FP4 film that I was given, but I’m probably going to stick with Delta100 or 400 when I want lower contrast than T-MAX 400.

Back in the Saddle Again: At the Artist’s Studio

As usual I get Special Recognition of some kind…………We’ve discussed what that might mean before.

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The Symbol of My Journey

But I like the Light Space and Time Gallery………I think that they are Fair, so I’ll Keep supporting them.  Check it out and consider sending something in.

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Through the Glass: Post Surgery

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After 13 hours of surgery; 90% of my tumor removed (excellent for a brain tumor); and 5 days in the Hospital….All I have to show for it is my Mayo Clinic Mug!   I did get released on New Year’s Eve and had that time with my Family.  One final thing I can say about the surgery is that my brain is functioning differently and my visual and audio perceptions are different;  not reduced or degraded, just different.  I will continue to explore this issue during my recovery.  Although my traumatic brain injury was planned and controlled, there are still ramifications I’ll be dealing with further down the line.  How will this affect my Artistic Vision?

What I have also experienced is the highest level of health care service EVER IN MY LIFE!  I want everyone to have this level of care!!!!!!

On January 23rd I start my Proton Beam Radiation Treatment.  Last year a friend of mine died from Esophageal Cancer.  The Proton Beam treatment was an option for his cancer that was never offered to him, because it wasn’t covered by his insurance.  I AM PISSED that he didn’t at least  have the option.