Saturday, February 28, 2009

Trying, Trying, Trying

I learned something about my photography this morning during a little jaunt out to Joshua Tree. I’m reasonably proficient with the Leica. I’m getting to a point where the Hasselblad and I are getting along. But I wholeheartedly suck with the Chamonix.

It’s actually not surprising considering I’ve probably put 15 hours or so in actual time with the Chamonix. The Leica, on the other hand, sees far more usage and I’ve been shooting 35mm since I was in 7th grade. The Hasselblad is a little more work and it makes me think that I should have stuck with the Mamiya RZ 67. But it needed to go, and all I can say is good riddance, because getting rid of it actually brought me to this point in my photography.

The Chamonix is just a different beast all together. I have to slow down - not my strong point - and I have to work from a fixed point. And I think that’s the hardest thing for me. Trying to see my image has always been difficult for me. I’ve never been very good at pre-visualization. It just doesn’t work for me and my style of photography.

I knew this going into LF after taking a class with Michael E. Gordon prior to investing in the camera. But I’ve not been able to sufficiently shoot enough to see and find the shot. I’ve got some darkroom work to complete after my trip to China and Japan and we’ll see if anything stands out.

I did develop a couple of images from last weekend but I’m not happy with them. Too many mistakes and not enough real vision. I did figure out one of my issues with the Fuji QL holder though. I wasn’t getting the film packet seated after exposing. One problem worked through and solved.

Her is another image from a recent trip up to Seattle. I think it will eventually work out that I have enough stuff I like from hotels to put a small body of work together I’m proud of.

Monday, February 23, 2009

Quotes

On my way to the office on most days I pass an elementary school with the best quotes on a sign just off the school’s parking lot. This morning’s quote - a new one is posted each Monday - was particularly good. It was, “The difference between try and triumph is a little umph.”

I think it is especially good for the current environment and what, not just the US, but the world is facing today. My personal belief is that now is the time to start doing things differently at home, in our jobs, in our communities and certainly in our schools. We are ready to bail out everyone but, it seems, the schools, the students, the teachers. And when I read these quotes I often think of the person, or persons, that find them and put them up for the community to see. It’s a teacher, or someone very intimately involved with the school and it’s student, that finds these quotes and give us all a lesson. Maybe our government should find this person and hire them.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Instantaneous

I’ve spent the last few months thinking about the immediate nature in today’s society. As it relates to my photography, and therefore this blog, I wonder how much instantaneous gratification is really needed. There have been other posts recently on this topic, and they have said it much eloquently than I will be able to accomplish, but I’m going to address is a bit anyway. (Mark Tucker’s comes to mind at the moment.)

I spent the weekend developing my backlog of film. I did it two 35mm rolls at a time, over a period of several days, and finished up with a couple rolls of 120. I’ll be posting over the next few weeks but the process got me to thinking even more about how everything needs to be done “right now.”

Most of this film is several months old and I really had to think about where I was when I shot the images. They have mostly been from business trips, and there are far too many images of the dogs included, but they waited to be developed as we dismantled the office I spoke about in the last post. And despite the fact that I thought most of it would be crap, there are a few images in the mix that I do like. I doubt I would have anything any better had I been shooting digital but I know I would have had more images to sift through and be disgusted with.

So here is the only color roll developed in the last few weeks. It was shot on Kodak E200 on a trip to San Francisco for the day. There were two I like from this roll and that was it. The rest of it didn’t work out too well mostly because I am always in too much of a rush on trips like this. More to come.

Thursday, February 05, 2009

First Post of 2009

The new year is here, it’s February and I still haven’t posted anything here on the blog. There is a ton of film to be processed, the office is in disarray, the garage completely full of stuff from the work finally completed in the house, which is causing the film backlog to grow larger and work is just a complete time sink. (Although I’m happy to say I still have a job unlike some unlucky people I know.)

So here is a link, courtesy of the The Travel Photographer, from a photographer located in India. Nice images — a hassy shooter — of issues in India we here in the States are unlikely to know much about. It’s worth the time to check out and read through.