120 Ektachrome & VPS expired film, 2018 copyright Douglas Stockdale
This was a good week for expired 120 film donations for me. I was starting to run a bit thin in my expired film inventory while working on my project Gardening for Ordnance and starting to get a little stingy in my film use. My idea is that while working on a memory project that dates back to WWII (1940’s) that using old expired film might add another dimension to my narrative. Especially if there are any serendipitous visual effects that occur.
So far I am not seeing a lot color variation in the final processed film results for the expired film I have been principally using which was Fujichrome that expired about 2006. This next batch of 120 film might provide a little more variation as the expiration date for the Ektachrome is 1996, 1997 and 1988. During the week I have already used a couple of rolls of the ’96 vintage, so it will be interesting to see what comes out of the soup next week.
I also received a small donation of some expired 120 black & white roll film that is even older going back to a 1984 expiration date, which means it was probably made about 1982, thus almost 35 years old. Very cool! I do not have a specific project in mind for the black & white film yet, but now that I have this film in hand, I will be a bit more receptive to my artistic muse.
Of course if you have some expired 120 film laying about that you would like to get rid of, message me ;- D
Sandstone Creek, Vail, February 2018 copyright Douglas Stockdale
This past week was a holiday vacation for a bit of skiing in Colorado, which was a ton of fun. We had great skiing conditions as well as some “braille” skiing in almost white-out conditions, which was a bit tough when I choose the wrong trail and we ended up on a black diamond with mogul bumps in 4 inches of fresh powder. That was my bad, in more ways than one. Have done this run before, it is a lot more fun if you can see the mogul contours in advance and choose your fall line.
Nevertheless, there is one small creek that is near our place call Sandstone Creek that I have been photographing for the past 20+ years. So one afternoon near the end of the week after we choose to end the day early due to the near white-out conditions I went over to see how the creek was flowing and what else might be of interest. I thought the flat lighting might help with reducing the shadow contrasts and bright reflections.
The photograph posted above is a good indication what I now find of interest and how my photographic vision has evolved over the years; not exactly a photograph of cold running water. I was intrigued by the way the snow was slowly concealing this fallen branch, the fact there was still some color retained in the fall leaves and that this was almost monochromatic, which provided some metaphoric potential. I could also pre-visualize this in the more abstract black & white version (below) I know was going to drive me crazy as to which version I was going to really like best. Slightly different composition and framing with the black & white as well.
Very happy now with both versions.
Untitled (Arroyo Trabuco Trail) December* 2017 copyright Douglas Stockdale
Today I am posting the sixth day of my current Black & White Challenge. This image was created more in line with my experimentation/fun paradigm. First part is the photograph I made on the trail during my walk (hint, the still water was providing too accurate of a reflection of the tree), then some immediate black & white conversion with Snapseed and the final tweaking of the image later in the studio, which included a 180 degree inversion of the image.
For me the resulting image is a combination of surrealism with a dash of reality that might be considered semi-abstract. One of my more ambiguous images for this challenge. I am also enjoying the darker tonal range of this image, also a bit out of my norm. So now see what I might cook-up for the final challenge image for tomorrow’s post.
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* Limited time print offer: a 7 x 7″ black & white print is available for 24 hours after this post for a special price of $150 USD plus shipping. This black & white print size regularly sells for $300 USD. Archival pigment print on Hahnemuhle Photo Rag Matte (305 gsm), paper size is 8-1/2 x 11″, Edition size of 10 and the print will be signed and numbered in pencil. email me: firstname.lastname@example.org for details.
Hasselblad, prism, 150mm lens with extension tubes copyright 2016 Douglas Stockdale
In my recent post about my walks off the grid and the potential start of a new photographic project, I had stated that I need to start carrying my Hasselblad film rig with me to continue this exploration. Which meant that I needed to remove the 150mm lens with the two extension tubes (above) that I am using for my Memory Pods project and then mount my 80mm lens.
Uh oh, the lens did not want to come off this morning and as I quickly feared, I was hit with the dreaded & infamous Hasselblad lens jam. Oh jamnation.
Fear not, I have been down this path before, so I quickly removed the film back and using a small tool, manually cocked the shutter and presto, the lens came off. Very nice.
Uh oh, the 80mm lens will not mount on the 500 C/M body. First check to make sure the 80mm lens shutter was cocked; check. Then make sure the body was also in the same phase; check. Then what the heck was going on? Cotton picking Hasselbad jamnation!!
So over to my favorite local camera shop who specialize in used camera gear and where I have purchase all of my used Hasselblad equipment. They fiddled and fiddled and came to the same conclusion; the body was jammed and it needs to see a specialist. All of this just before the holidays. Normally a one to two weeks to get a quote from the repair shop but now I am looking at mid-January before I find out the prognoses as well as the cost of the fix. sigh. My oars for the 6×6 and film are temporarily out of the water.
All the while a used Hasselblad 503cx was available at the shop (8+ quality). Nice feature about the newer Hasselblad body’s is the gliding mirror to reduce the mirror slap and it has the TTL for a specialized strobe (thinking it might work with my Norman studio strobes as well). Although tempting, I first need to figure out what’s happening with old 500 C/M body first, then consider replacement options if I need to go down that path. I would rather spend that same amount on a used Hasselblad 60mm CF lens.
So in the meantime I will carry the 5DMk3 with me instead on my walks.
Compass 2017 copy right Douglass Stockdale
A few days ago I was tagged for the 7 Day Black & White Challenge; Seven days. Black and white photos of your life. No people. No explanation. Nominate someone.
I was nominated by Kellie Webb and over the seven days I am to nominate someone else to pass this along.
Since no explanation is required, then not much that I need to say. I sure have enough Black & White photographs to chose from, but I did see that this was an opportunity to experiment and work on something new (to me). So I investigated a couple of personal items to see what I might do with them that could be metaphoric, i.e. the use of the small compass above. Perhaps a little inspired by the arrival of Cig Harvey’s photobook “you an ORCHESTRA you a BOMB” for review, where she frequently isolates and zeros in on some personal objects. I also think of Keith Carter’s photographs, which he investigates similar ideas in Black & White, while Harvey utilizes Color photographs for her investigations.
A kind of fun little exercise and other than the photo of Cooper, bottom that was captured on Halloween, these were all made on the same day. Here are the remainder of my 7 day postings:
Construction Tri-color, San Diego 2017 copyright Douglas Stockdale
While down in San Diego’s North Park region for the Medium Festival, I had a chance to join John Gossage as the two of us did a brief walk-about around the neighborhood near the Lafayette Hotel. We had just finished a rambling hour and half “interview” that I will be publishing shortly in The PhotoBook Journal when he stated that he wanted to get out and try his new X1D Hasselblad rig (paired with the Hasselblad XCD 45mm f/3.5 lens).
FYI; Gossage’s only lament is that he is a “normal” lens guy (e.g. 50 mm on a Canon 5DMk3) and that Hasselblad’s normal focal length for this new mirrorless camera body would not be out until next spring. The 45mm lens was providing a wider view something akin to a 28mm on the 5DMk3, so he just was not sure when he saw something, where to stand.
Interesting to see what Gossage was attracted to, but since I was not looking thru the viewer, not sure what he was actually composing. Nevertheless, I found some interesting things, which seemed to also draw him in as well.
While passing one construction site, I had a recall of all of the urban construction I witnessed while in China as all of the Chinese construction sites were cloaked with these massive cloth “screens”. What had visually interested me then, I found interested me again now; these draped structures were like huge canvases that were unintended abstractions; patterns, shapes, texture and color. Essentially my task was to find the framing that interested me the most.
The resulting photograph is ambiguous as to my subject’s size and location and now ready for contemplation. Mission accomplished!
Compass Dance, OCMA June 2017 copyright Douglas Stockdale
Last weekend I was the event photographer again for the Orange County Museum of Art (OCMA) Family Day held in conjunction with their latest exhibition. Although my intent was to capture the interaction of the attendees with the exhibition, family activities and school concerts, I was able to make a few personal photographs. One of which was my capture of the members of the Compass Dance group, above, which is led by Amanda White.
Their dance style is abstract, interpretive and free flowing with a bit of improvisation, which I think is well suited to a slightly slower shutter speed. As a result I hope that I captured some of the kinetics and energy of their dance. Last year I attempted a similar interpretation of the Re:BorN dance assemble.
I do not consider myself a dance photographer but when provided the opportunity to experiment with a group like this I consider this also a time to have some fun, which of course falls under my experiment/fun photographic category. This was also a chance to experiment with my new 50mm f/1.8 lens that I brought along for the occasion.
Who knows where this might lead to one day?