Saturday, September 12, 2015

“f8 and B&B there”

When asked how he got such great images, Arthur “Weegee” Fellig replied, “Simple, f/8 and be there.” This is both a technical and a philosophical statement and kind of what I did here to get these pictures.

I recently experienced the Bed & Breakfast phenomenon for the very first time. I have no explanation as to why I had to wait so long except to say that over the years most of my travel has been for business rather than pleasure. As such I have come to appreciate the easy convenience of high quality hotels and motels that cater to road warriors with full schedules. The Bed & Breakfast routine seems to be more compatible with the casual schedules of tourists and vacationers.

The photograph above taken with my Pentax K-1 on a lazy afternoon shows the Deveraux Shields House which is the main building of the B&B we stayed at in Natchez, Mississippi.  Our suite was actually in Aunt Clara’s Cottage, another building just down the street shown in the photo below.
I confess the whole B&B experience was delightful and I enjoyed it thoroughly. As a photographer of course, the fact that the B&B and surrounding Natchez area offered ample photo opportunities was an important part of the success of the trip. Not only was I able to capture some great digital images but shot a number of great film images as well.

My July 18th blog post showing my very first pinhole portrait is an example of the kind of film work that resulted from my B&B vacation weekend. As time permits I will share others.

Ron & Eleanor, our B&B host and hostess for our 30th anniversary weekend in Natchez were great. The gourmet breakfast every morning was an excellent way to start the day and the helpful hints they and their staff gave as to where to go and what to do made the weekend a guaranteed success.

I am thinking that having local hospitality experts like Ron and Eleanor helping to guide your vacation experiences is one of the greatest advantages to going the B&B route. Plus at breakfast and the “Happy Hour” gatherings it is really kind of nice to get to meet your fellow travelers and share experiences.  

Sunday, September 6, 2015

Love that Tri-X

Black & White film photography is a growth industry! Yep, that’s the consensus from a number of sources and although there a number of excellent choices for black & white film stocks my favorite has always been Kodak Tri-X.

Here is a really creepy shot taken in a local cemetery. I guess it would look okay in color but black & white film really creates a whole “other take” on the subject. And yes, I know that digital cameras can also produce black & white images but they do not have the “character” of the images taken on film.

I guess cemeteries and black & white film just kind of go together.

This is another photograph taken with the Beacon 225 medium format camera I blogged about back on May 17th. A beautiful marvel of the early 20th century camera manufacturing art, this camera is really a high class version of a simple box camera that looks like more because of its exotic shape and durable features. The simple glass lens produces excellent and reasonably sharp images on 120 film transferred to 620 film spools. Its kind of like shooting with a Holga but with better results and clearly this 60+ year old camera has already outlasted several Holgas.