Today’s picture (taken with my Nikon FM, using recently discontinued Fuji Neopan 1600) is an image of perhaps the most comfortable pair of slippers I have ever owned. My mother-in-law knitted them for me many years ago, and as the image below indicates, they are somewhat worn.:-) I just can’t seem to part with them though, as they are so comfortable, and do a great job of keeping my feet warm. I feel the same way about my film cameras, although they are are in much better shape than these old slippers.
Today’s image was originally captured back in the fall of 2010. Originally taken on Ilford XP2+ film, I added the toning and the vignetting in Aperture using the Silver Efex Pro plug-in. I am quite happy with how the image turned out, but since I’ve been doing a lot of film recently, I still can’t help but have some mixed feelings, like I’m using artificial vs. natural flavours. Then there is the fact that using the plug-in is fairly quick; I spent about 20 minutes fiddling with the image, compared with what would have been required in the darkroom: two extra chemical steps, and likely multiple attempts to get the burn-in for the vignetting just right.
Am I cheating?
This is a photograph of a Mycro “HIT” camera, a novelty item produced in post-war Japan. (I took this image with my iPhone, and processed it using the Photocopier App).
I suppose I could try to find (or cut down) film for it just for a lark sometime. As it is, it wins just for the “Cute” factor.
I wonder how many rolls of undeveloped Kodachrome are still out there? Of course they cannot be conventionally developed, but they can still be processed as black and white, since Kodachrome is basically black and white film to which dyes are added in development. (This process of adding dyes in development is what made the process so complicated). I had a couple of exposed rolls that I just never got around to sending to Dwaynes in Kansas City for processing, so after reading about how some other people had done it, I gave it a shot last night.
I used a developer called Rodinal, (dating from 1893!) at a dilution of 100+1, and was thrilled to get usable results, such as the image below. I still have a couple of unexposed rolls of Kodachrome that I can now use; I just won’t get “nice bright colours.”
It is often customary for photographers at the beginning of a calendar year to make photographic resolutions (no pun intended, Rob) for the new year, so here are mine; some are very specific, some are general:
- Do at least one photo session with a hired model.
- Create at least one image that is shocking (in a non-gratuitous manner).
- Finish my Portrait of the Artist series by March 31st, 2011.
- Continue my self-portrait series, but get completely out of my comfort zone.
- Raise the suspicion of at least one authority figure while taking pictures in public.
The picture below is one I made yesterday, and I relate it to the subject of today’s post as follows: At one point, this ruin of rusted metal was a pail, quite capable of being filled with water. Now however years of neglect have allowed entropy to take over, in an inevitable course of decay. Had this pail received attention and care, it would not have gotten to this state. I believe the same can be said for any artistic endeavour; without constant attention and effort, artistry will decay.
D0n’t let 2011 be the year it happens to you.