All on the Line

代々木 IR

A slightly off kilter Infrared 代々木 (Yoyogi) crossing shot from 2009. Rails on the busy lines (this is yamanote or saikyo-sen… maybe) are a lot more curved than you might imagine. If i can find this negative it’s one of the ones that would be nice to hang in the house. Düster!

Starting to think that 2009 was a very creative year. Quite where the time came from to shoot and develop all this film remains a mystery.

Giza (not Ginza) by the Bay

Tokyo Big Sight

While working on my shots for the second Fragments of Tokyo there were a lot of attempts that simply wouldn’t work out. These mostly got posted on flickr under the monicker “Various Failures” (shamelessly stolen from The Swans album of the same name), which mostly prompted people to tell me to that they liked them, and that it wasn’t a failure.

What i was really trying to get across was that the shots were a failure in the context of what i wanted to show in the exhibition. Some simply happened too late, others didn’t really fit in with the general feeling, other needed to be re-attempted.

That exhibition was the first time that i’d really worked with a vision of what should be on the walls firmly fixed in my head. The process was in turn endlessly enjoyable, frustrating, and exhausting.

Tokyo Big Sight was an attempt to see a little differently through perspective and bring the pyramids to Tokyo Bay. As you can see above it didn’t really work out. There is definitely a time of day, a focal length where it could have been made to work… but that never coincided with any of my attempts to have it happen! There are, of course, numerous others that will never see the light of day.

One day i’ll go back and get it right… shame it’s such a pain in the arse to get to!

Pink Negatives

I’ve been developing quite a lot of Kodak T-Max 400 recently. One of the problems with the negatives is that they have a purple-ish / pink tint after being fixed. The Kodak support page says the following:

Important: Your fixer will be exhausted more rapidly with these films than with other films. If your negatives show a magenta (pink) stain after fixing, your fixer may be near exhaustion, or you may not have used a long enough time. If the stain is slight, it will not affect image stability, negative contrast, or printing times. You can remove a slight pink stain with KODAK Hypo Clearing Agent. However, if the stain is pronounced and irregular over the film surface, refix the film in fresh fixer.

which suggests to me that the fixing time for Fuji Super Fix is probably longer than the 6mins that i’ve been using… or the fix is close to used up. The latter doesn’t seem likely to me, as the last couple of rolls of Neopan that i developed came out perfectly grey. Although, it does warn that it uses up developer faster than usual film, and the rolls that Manny processed were fine. All very confusing.

It could also be that there is some important difference between the Fuji QuikWash and the Kodak Hypo Clearing Agent… but that doesn’t seem very likely.

The next rolls of T-Max that i process can sit in the Fixer for a good ten minutes! If that doesn’t sort it, it can go in a fresh batch, and at least i’ll know.

Soulless Technology

flower-macro-2604I’ve been stuck around the house all week (taking time off to be ill… quality!) and consequently messing around with cameras.

That shot is 1sec at f/32 ISO100. The point being that i didn’t screw up the sensor of the 10D cleaning it with fujifilm lens solution and a cotton bud. Someone once told me that the hardness of the sensors was such that you’d have a hard time scratching it… as long as you blow the dust off first. Looks like they were right!

The problem with that shot is that it’s so … flat. Loads of detail, even though the focus is sloppy, and the light on stamens is dull, it just doesn’t do anything for me. It looks exactly like what it is – a picture of flower that i picked up off the street.

The film version, taken with the Hasselblad, on instant film, is a complete mess… no depth of field, blown highlights (probably), and no point of focus worth a mention… but i love it! It falls apart and fails so elegantly.

Maybe i should get some extension tubes for the 10D, and try the same trick with a wide angle lens… i’m not convinced it would be any better.

Update:  Guess i should make an effort… not that i had to with the film shot, which was metered by eye, scanned, and posted with no processing…

In order f/2.8, f/4, f/8, f/32, f/32 all sharpened, and exposure adjusted to the same degree.