Monday, April 30, 2012

The Big Day Arrives

Worldwide Pinhole Photography Day finally arrived Sunday and my home made cardboard pinhole camera was ready and waiting for me. I loaded a roll of Kodak Portra 160 into it and started taking pictures.

The above picture is “my rig,” complete with tripod, among the spring flowers. 

Everything seemed to go pretty much as expected except a couple of unexpected events prevented me from going on the “photo safari” I had planned. Instead I was limited to photo subjects I could find around the old homestead.

Hopefully at least a couple of them come out and later in the week I will have something to upload to the WPPD web site and share with you here too.

Saturday, April 28, 2012

Another Photographer Switches to Film!

Street photographer Erick Kim, experiments with film and gets hooked. Visit his web site and read his  informative and entertaining article using the link below.

Pick up a few tips on street photography while you're at it.

Worldwide Pinhole Photography Day!

Here’s a picture of my very own home made pin hole camera just minutes after I completed it.

My adventure into the world of pinhole photography began last year when my son gave me a pinhole camera kit for my birthday.  I had been working on it here and there whenever I had a little time to spare but once I found out about Worldwide Pinhole Photography Day (WWPD) being held this year on April 29th, I decided to finally finish it so I could participate.

This event was organized for the first time back in 2001 and has become an annual world-wide celebration of pinhole photography. All over the world workshops and gatherings are organized to help people build and experiment with pinhole cameras. Pictures taken on the last Sunday in April are submitted to WPPD following the directions on the web site.

This is not a contest. Every picture is a winner and shows a unique composition the photographer thought was special enough to share it with the world.

By using the link below and visiting the web site you can find out more about WWPD and the world of pinhole photography. There are also eleven years (soon to be twelve) of pictures for you to enjoy in the web site galleries.

Soon I hope to have my own pinhole photographs to share with you here and with the world on the WWPD web site.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Portra 127 Lives!

Mark Twain is reported to have said that “the reports of my death have been greatly exaggerated.” Well I suppose the same may be said for Kodak’s Portra 127 film (ISO 160).

Perhaps I jumped the gun on this one blogging that Kodak Portra for 127 was no more when in the same week I got a note from The Darkroom saying they could not process my latest roll and couldn’t find any more film to buy from any of my usual sources. I even checked the Kodak web site and couldn’t find it. Of course, for those of you who have never visited Kodak on the web the organization of their site is somewhat mysterious, to me at least.

Anyway, I am exceedingly happy to report that not only has The Darkroom processed my 127 film but I have found my usual supplier restocked with the stuff! Happy days are here again!

The picture above was taken with my 40+ year old Brownie Bullet shooting Kodak Portra 160. I have only shot a couple comparison rolls in each camera but so far the Brownie 127 which is more like 50+ years seems to take much better pictures than the Bullet. Go figure!

This shot also adds to my “Feet” collection. This one was taken at the pool of the Battleship Inn in Alabama.

Monday, April 23, 2012

Really Long Exposures ( 2-3 years long?)

I have experimented a bit with long exposures but Michael Wesley a German photographer, has everyone beat in this category. This guy has developed techniques and experimented with exposures that last years. He has taken pictures of buildings being built and recorded the entire construction in one exposure.

Check out this fascinating Michael Zhang article about him that I stumbled across on Petapixel with the link below.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

ISO 400 B&W Revisited with HP-5

The above picture was taken with the Promaster 35mm body and the Pentax 135mm lens using Ilford HP-5, ISO 400 black & white film with the lens wide open (f2.8) and a shutter speed of 1/250.

In an earlier blog post I complained that the Kodak 400TX film I used was super grainy and displayed way too much contrast. It was nothing like the “old” Tri-X 400 I used in the last century when I was shooting nothing but film for obvious reasons so I decided to try my second favorite film, Ilford HP-5. This one acquitted itself much better. It’s still a bit grainy but with much better gray tones. This looks more like the old black & white film I used to use back in the 1970’s and 80’s when I shot as much black and white as anything else.

I even had my own darkroom for a while. I eventually decided that I liked taking pictures a lot more than I enjoyed being locked up in a dark chemical laden environment for hours at a time. Besides, for a few bucks I could pay someone else to process my film and prints while I went out in the fresh air and enjoyed taking more pictures.

Anyway, back to the black & white film discussion. I still have some Kodak TX-400 to experiment with some more. I also have some slower ISO 125 and 100 films to play with and I’ll be sure to report my results here.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Is 127 Film Dead?

The picture above was taken with my 50+ year old (ebay special) Brownie 127 camera. It’s amazing that after half a century it still works as good as it ever did, maybe better with the new Kodak Portra 160 film. Imagine my distress when I recently discovered that Kodak has apparently stopped making the film.

Oh you can still get it in 35mm & 120 roll film but there's no more 127 film available. What a tragedy. I guess it's time to go shopping again and see what else it out there. I'm afraid I may be limited to black and white film in my Brownies from now on but I'll let you know what I find out.