Monday, January 16, 2017

Refining pinhole

Motion blur is a funny thing. Too much--which is what happened on these images--and your subject disappears in a mist. Not enough and it just looks like unintentional blur. In either case you lose the effect you're going for. 

When you're locked in to an ISO and aperture number, your only choice to adjust shutter speed (further than a stop, anyway) is to adjust in development. These images below suffer from far too much motion blur, so shooting Tri-x at 1600 instead of 400 ISO would make a big difference. When accounting for reciprocity failure, An 18 minute exposure theoretically turns into two minutes.

I say 'theoretically' because of the incredibly wide latitude that is inherent in Tri-x. Even at more conventional shutter speeds, underexposing by a stop doesn't result in significantly less exposure on the final negative. So, all things equal, that original exposure of 18 minutes could be as little as five with no adjustment in development time. 

Or heck, throw in another 30 seconds in the tank just because you can. There are lotsa variables here when it comes to long exposures and film. My takeaway is don't be afraid to close that shutter after you've captured what you need to. 

18 minutes. Too, too much motion blur. 

Picking up trains

Four year old playing with trains 
Self portrait


Backyard under moonlight. Funny, I don't remember shooting this.

Getting the spooks in the house to do a few dishes. 


Getting ready in the morning

Saturday, January 14, 2017

2017 Directions

A few thoughts for the new year, some of which are somewhat random:
  • I have intentionally reduced the amount of portrait photography I do over this past year. Once I'm done with this current group of seniors, I just might cut it out completely altogether.
  • Some other priorities and considerations prevented me from getting up to the Palouse last spring. I plan to rectify that in 2017.
  • Has my landscape work gotten appreciably better in 2016? I can't say that it has. My focus for improvement in 2017 will center on composition and taking advantage of good lighting conditions. More opportunities to practice should lead to better images, both film and digital.
  • I'm in the market for a really good 645 SLR or RF. Something like one of the Fujis will work just fine, thank you. I might sell off the Mamiya C330 to make it happen. 
  • Speaking of the C330, it's been badly in need of a reseal for the last year or so. That's another project for this winter. Whether I sell it or keep using it, this is a priority that needs to get done.
  • I'm going to pick up a Hoya R72 to do some IR work, in both digi and film. 
  • More black and white in general in 2017. The Fujichrome I shot in 2016 is proving too erratic to process myself. Rather than keep trying and keep failing, I'm going to bite the bullet and send it to somewhere like Blue Moon Camera for processing. I'll limit my consumption of e-6 film in general, the return of Ektachrome notwithstanding. I do have some bulk rolls of Ilford Delta 100 and PanF+ in 35mm format, so I plan on burning that this year. Also, it would be good to get some Eastman Double-x 5222 to bulk load. 
  • Pinhole proficiency. My goal is to use the quirks and characteristics of that format to my advantage. 
  • And even though this is a film blog, I plan on returning to my digital roots for landscapes this year. There's no reason to not shoot both.
That's it for now! I'm looking forward to a fantastic 2017 of film. 

Wednesday, January 4, 2017

Getting the Foreground

I shot these before I read Zeb Andrews' excellent blog post You've been foreshortened, but it's good to see the element of the foreground somewhat under control in my work. Shooting pinhole photography is really helping me see in a new and different way.



All three images: 120 Acros 100 on Zero Image 618 pinhole camera, Red #25 filter. Developed in Rodinal, 1:100 semi-stand.