lørdag 30. april 2016

More on paper negatives

As you might know I used some time a few days ago to do a few tests on some B&W darkroom paper, just to have an idea how light sensitive they really are. This is something you just have to test from paper to paper, and also depends a bit on the age of the paper. New RC papers seem to be rather fast, while others are slow as heck. When you got some old RC paper, and also a few boxes of totally unknown baryte paper from eastern europe, the only way to determine light sensitiveness will be to run a simple test. 

Using B&W paper instead of the usual film inside a camera will give you a different result. Paper will not render colors in the same way as the film, just because it's more sensitive to other spectrums of light than film is. Not that there's a huge difference, but it's definitely visible. 
Another thing which is a bit challenging is to manage the contrast you get when using paper instead of film. You will get a high contrast, but some say it's possible to lower it with the use of filters and such. I have not bothered to go down that road, as I'm just doing this for fun sometimes. 
Details seems to be more easily washed out when using paper, and I find it especially to happen in the highlight areas of the photo. Typically dead and white skies, and white areas appear with very low detail levels. In these snaps I measured and exposed to try get details in the shadow areas, and I'm quite happy with the results in that respect. The sky is totally washed out though. In all the snaps from this day. Next time I test paper I will try to see if it's possible to get more details up there, but I must say I doubt I can have both highlights and shadows details inside the same photo, as the ability to record a huge number of EV's (large span) is a lot better on film than on a paper. 
I have done this before, on some old Agfa Brovira paper. The very thin and fine old paper from back in the 70's some time. I got a feeling that paper had a bit more span than the two papers I tested a couple of days ago. I will do a few more tests soon, just to determine if that's actually the case, or if I was a bit more lucky (or maybe exposed a bit different) last time I fumbled around in this area.

And please bear over with me... there's a whole lot of examples here, and they are all just that. Examples taken just outside my doorstep, just because I ran in and out of the darkroom with each and every negative to have them developed just seconds after they were shot. 

Ilford RC paper. Not very impressed with the results I got with these, but a lot of the trouble could be related to scanning issues. The negatives looked quite good, even though they were clearly the ones most prone to high contrast issues. 

Another one on the Ilford RC paper. Not very different to the last one, as you see. The shadow details is not the worst I've ever seen from a paper negative, but the highlight details really suck. 

This is the baryte paper from Fotokemika, the EMAKS 883 kind of thing. Very matte, nice surface on this paper. Grade 2, if you wonder... nice grain I think, and maybe a little bit better than the Ilford paper when it comes to highlight details. 

Another snap from the EMAKS 883 kind of thing. A bit of extreme stuff here in the shadows, as you see. More contrast than the last snap. 

Ilford paper, as you might see. This is not bad, actually. At least if you look a bit away from that very white and boring sky. That said, I have to say that this day did not exactly have the best looking sky to snap. Boring light, as it happens.

The barn next door. Snapped on Ilford RC paper. It's actually quite OK, I think. 

This was just a test to see if I could get some details on them mountains over there. If you look quite closely you can still see the snowy mountain top differ a tiny bit from the sky above. Not by much, but you still can see the line. Else the tones are a bit crappy, me thinks. 

Not that it's anything to put up on the wall or anything, but this one was probably the one I'm most satisfied with of all the test snaps I did this day. The shadows looks great, as it happens, and the highlights are not sticking out like a sour thumb. It's the upper corner of the garden, and a place I got some work to do... as you might see. The last couple of winters has been a bit rough to the infrastructure up there... I think this was Ilford paper, but I will have to check the facts of that when I can get hold of the original negative some time over the weekend.

Nothing much to say about this. Just posted it to have you see the jib boom I have been scraping and sanding the last few days. It belongs to my boat, and are to be re-fitted quite soon, I hope. 

Paper negative test inside the house. Camera supported on the table, snapping towards a few of my Bob Dylan books and stuff. There might be a couple of Rolling Stones books in that pile as well, I would think. Blown highlights, as you see. I think this was the EMAKS 883 paper.

Definitely EMAKS 883 paper from Fotokemika. This is not extremely bad, either. You still see that the highlights are a bit washed out...

torsdag 28. april 2016

ISO value on different papers

So, I got a few different types of darkroom papers, B&W style, as you might know. I'm not exactly collecting stuff like that, but a few packs of these things has been coming my way for a variety of reasons. In most cases you got folks that used to do some work in the dark back in the days. Not exactly back in the dark age, but quite close to it. They usually don't need their old paper anymore, and will happily give it away if they not already have thrown the things away. 

So, today I was a bit curious if some of the paper I got around was still working and if it would be a possible to use them inside some pinhole camera or something else. Just for fun, as I sometimes do things just for fun. Then I thought it would be nice to know roughly what ISO grade I should rate them, these old papers. So I went upstairs and picked two different packs of some old stuff, and went inside the readily made up darkish room. Picked a couple of sheets from each box and cut them to pieces I did. Around 6x7 cm, as it happens. Just to make them fit quite snugly inside the film backs for my Mamiya system. 
Then it was trial and error until I came up with ISO numbers that seems to work quite fine. 
I have not scanned the paper negatives yet, mind you, but with some experience you know when a negative looks fine, and when it looks crap. 
I might even post some of the negatives if they ever dry up.
Contrast is usually the hard stuff to control when using paper negatives, and it looks like this will be the issue of todays test as well. But it's just for fun, as you know. And fun it is! I would really like to test the same thing in a big or huge camera though...

I ran a kind of very unofficial and easy test on these three boxes. Did not discover until a bit later that the two boxes of EMAKS from Fotokemika in Zagreb, Croatia was the exact same paper only in different sizes. Nice paper it is, but it's not of multi contrast type. Well, the results my audience is as follows: Go for ASA 12 on the english stuff as long as the box looks something like this one (bought some time early or mid 90's by yours truly), and measure for ASA 3 on the Emax kind of thing THEN open up or add three steps of exposure. Yes, it's slow as heck, but will give you some nice baryte prints if you only got the time. 

And that was todays photo related stuff done, and not even a single frame of film has been wasted. Not yet, anyway. I had a kind of plan to finish the film inside the rangefinder M6 black type of thing I got somewhere inside one of them bags more or less full of cameras. Don't know if that will happen today, but I could get some spare time a bit later in the evening. 

Very quick one!

Just to tell you I've used this fine day in a number of ways. 
Scanning a few films, hauled out the very long jib boom or whatever you call it in the foreign language, scared away a few cats (and neighbours probably) with a small quad drone I won at the christmas lottery on board the ship, walked around the too big garden checking what's next should we get some nice temperature soon. Probably a few more things as well, but I will leave that for another day. Oh, and I made another camera. Pinhole one, as you do when you feel the need for one coming up. Small cardboard box this time. Square kind of thing. I used the best part of three or four minutes making the thing up, so nothing fancy at all mind you. 
Tomorrow is another day, and I got things to do it seems. 

Me and the younger daughter went for a walk a few days ago. She carried the Diana F+ camera, while I was struggling to empty the roll inside that old Kodak Colorsnap 35 thing. The film had been sitting there for almost a year, and I was quite keen to see if there was anything on it at all. Well, it was, but you will have to wait to see anything of it. They were over exposed, most of the frames anyway. Still you will get the idea, I hope. It's kind of cool, actually. 
Well, the daughter found a few sheep down by the sea, and jumped over the fence to see if they were kind of tame enough to fasten on the old ORWO NP22 film from the old East German kind of country, or republic as it happen. Other side of the old heavy curtain, as you remember. Made in the 70's some time, but still seems to be fresh enough to make sheep render nice enough don't you think?

She managed to make all three of them stick inside the small frame of that Diana F+, the daughter. Must have been lucky, or she's got some kind of talent for it. I don't know. What I do know is that she went away with the camera, after her father had put a fresh film inside after this walk, and I have not seen it since. It's probably either left at some party, or the film is not finished off yet. I bet I get the film in return when it's due to be developed though... and maybe even the camera on a good day. 

tirsdag 26. april 2016

Warm tone papers

So, you thought that the Ilford Warm Tone paper had a warm tone inside, did you? Well it does, of course, but nothing extreme.
Ever tried the Fomatone Nature MG532 II paper? It's so warm you'll burn your fingers should you touch the thing. No toner needed kind of paper, if you see what I mean?
The surface of this thing is nothing less than beautiful, but it got this very warm tone making it quite special, and useful maybe only for certain and a small handful of prints. It's not an everyday paper, to put it that way. But yes, it's nice. The people over in The Czech Republic sure knows what it takes to make some fine darkroom papers. I got a few of their other papers as well. Stay tuned for a few more examples during the time to come. 

The lighthouse you should know quite well by now. Out there on the small skerry of Ona, on this very coastline. Or outside it, to speak the truth. Printed on the mentioned Foma paper, scanned and posted. Seems like the scan is lacking a tiny bit of contrast compared to the original, and maybe the paper is a bit more brownish than my monitor seems to draw. Anyway, you might get the idea... More info: Mamiya RZ67 camera, 50mm Sekor lens and some film I can't remember right now. Could be Fomapan 100. Nice film, by the way.

Another long night

At least finished off before 5 in the morning this time. Not to bad, everything taken into account. I have used the time well, by the way. Developed something like 6 films, believe it or not. 3 of each size. 
I was up early as well, because I had to drive my wife to work this morning. Tomorrow will be early again, because I got work to do outside the house. Cutting things, as it happens. Nope, it's not the lawn yet as that one only barely became free of snow this afternoon. We got this hedge, you see. With very long branches and stuff on the plants. They would need some cutting, I have been told... 

Same pub as yesterday. You remember the place they wanted to buy all my best cameras and such... Luckily I got away just after this fox was duly snapped up. It all went inside the rangefinder and stayed there until I came home. 

I did a few pinhole snaps today as well, you should know. All the ones from yesterday were ruined bigtime. I recon my improvised darkroom at the cottage was not that dark anyway. Well, I knew it was not, but I found myself with no other option as for yesterday. Today I made a different approach and ended up with a couple of useful frames. Nothing less.
I found a few boxes of that thin and very nice Agfa Brovira paper in one of my drawers upstairs which I immediately put into some good use. I might need to cut a few of them to make a nice paper negative or two. I like paper negatives, at least to a certain degree. At least when I put them inside one of the Mamiya cameras, or something else useful.

This? Nah, nothing to worry too much about. It's just the captain. Still over three weeks until I see them again. A bit strange, but good as well. As long as it's not for a too long period of time, at least. Same camera as above. Different film though.

I should pull myself together and get to bed, actually. I can feel I'm a bit past 25 when it comes to this part of the day. Late nights and such, you know. 

søndag 24. april 2016

It was pinhole day 2016, today

Sure! Maybe you were not aware of that certain fact? 
Last Sunday in April, every year it's Worldwide Pinhole Photography Day. You know what I'm talking about, right? The kind of photographic method where you use any light tightish box with only a very small hole to use instead of your usual way too expensive lens? You put inside any light sensitive material, position your "camera", pulls away your finger or tape or whatever you use to cover up the hole in the front, and then count to whatever you feel might be quite close to right, before you cover the thing up again and bring it into a darkish place to change "film". Then you repeat until you're satisfied, or tired of the whole thing. 
I did not get tired, and I don't know if I can call myself satisfied either. I made four very quick test exposures on the stairs back home before I ventured off to get the real pictures done. You know, you got to post them as well, on the dedicated World Pinhole Day site. I will do so, when or if I got something to post. Some time tomorrow, hopefully.
I will post a couple for you, of them tests just outside the front door. I still need to run into the darkroom for a quick developing of the five or six last exposures I did. 

Three-four seconds exposure done inside my trusty coffee box with a black lid on top. Something like 0.2 mm pinhole (a guess) done on Ilford paper. Some leftovers from a year or so. I got both the paper and the camera from Ingrid in Orkney, as I forgot to bring either to work last year. She kindly delivered the needed remedies on the quayside just before we went to sea. No chemicals though, as that would require a bit more. I would love to see and hear my crew when transforming my cabin bathroom into a darkroom... so I left the idea quite quick. 

The view from the front door towards the pond, and the neighbor. Same data as above. Both are mobile snaps of the actual paper negative, inverted on some weird app and then tinily adjusted using the "Snapseed" app on my telephone. Then transferred and posted. 

And, we did a walk by the sea today. Nice place around here, on this island called "Vigra" just outside my home town. I brought cameras, as it happens, with film loaded. Managed to end a few of the rolls that has been lingering inside the things for the last few weeks, so will be great to have them developed some day quite soon. I got a few 120 rolls around as well, so there will be more to come quite soon. I hope.
Well... off I go to get the last paper negatives from todays quick round with the coffee box done. 

lørdag 23. april 2016

Short photo safari today

Yup, we went off for a short trip me and my son a bit earlier this afternoon.
And it was great.
First we went over here, to the factory I told you about a bit earlier today just before we left off for todays trip.
I think I might managed to capture a few nice ones, but that's left to see when films will be developed some time next week some time. I mainly used the two german rangefinders and all three lenses. Mostly the 21mm though, with the orange filter attached. That could be great if I was able to sort of adjust the exposures accordingly. It's not always the easiest thing to do on the fly with shadows like the ones we had today. High contrast kind of situations, as the sun actually was shining through huge clouds with some blue sky in between. It might be a success, but could also turn out to be the direct opposite.
I also used the Summicron 35 and 50mm lenses a bit. I'm a bit more confident with those small pieces of glass, as it happens.

From my last trip to sea, about a month ago as we were getting closer to the coastline around northern Shetland. This is just on the northern in-/outlet of Yell Sound. The skerries is called "Ramna Stacks" and consists of 9 individual small skerries. The small island you see to the left in the picture is "Gruney". I would think that this area really boils when the weather is a bit worse than this day when we passed on our way inside the Yell Sound to finish off the survey of the pipeline going into Sullom Voe. I think this was Nikon FM2 with the 105mm Nikkor attached. 

Then, we went off for a small half an hour drive a little bit inland from here. This morning I saw this picture on instagram. I used to hang out with this fellow back when I was like 12, or something like that. Today he's a great artist, and a photographer to look and learn from. He became the norwegian champion in photography (NSFF) in 2014, and further the Photographer of the Year in 2015. And it was quite deserved, as it happens. Anyway, I saw this snap pop up and asked him exactly where he found the lovely building. He explained, and off we went to try find it. And we did, snapped the thing duly up, and left back home. I hardly think this house is going to take another winter, to be fair.
With some luck I might post a few snaps of the thing some time next week. It depends, of course, what the exposures looks like.

You maybe remember I was lurking around the streets of Middlesbrough not to long ago? Anyway, I was there and walked the streets pointing my two rangefinders into most directions. I got a bit thirsty, and went inside this tiny, a bit weird, but great pub. I soon found myself chatting with the guy behind the counter. Great guy, and I was his only customer as it was a bit early in the afternoon. 
They had the strangest collection of fox heads and other dust collectors hanging around the place. While I was sitting there the owner brought in his latest purchase, a couple of swine heads mounted on a wooden plate and some old barometer thing I helped him put into some kind of working condition. It seemed that physics maybe was not his favorite class at school... They did not look too good, the swine heads, to wrap it in carefully. Anyway, suddenly he wanted to buy my cameras as well, as he was a collector and could show off a few nice Agfa Box cameras and something else with a bellow that I'm not too sure what was.  Two german rangefinders with a couple of Cron lenses and a wide angle Elmarit, he wanted to buy... I could probably have payed half the pub with the cameras, so I politely turned his offer down with some kind of idiotic explanation, finished my beer and found my way out of there before someone decided they wanted my cameras anyway. I strolled away, quickly, in some random direction until I was quite sure that none were following me. Then I went back to the hotel.

Tomorrow is another day. No plans as for yet, but I will come up with something. If the weather is good enough I got a few things to do outside, as you might remember.
You see, even though I was due to go to sea thursday I'm still home. And I will stay at home for another month. It's a long story, but it has to do with the reductions all around the offshore market these days. The situation is not good, but at least I still have work to go to. Not as much as I should, but I got something.

Winter, again

Oh yes! Woke up at the cottage this morning, and it was all white outside again. Not that it was any big surprise, but still I don't like it much at this time of year. You know when all you want is nature to come alive, and then the feeling of resignation as you realize it will not happen too soon. Nature just want to play a bit with itself at this time of year. Kicking itself in the foot, for some odd reason. Throw snow into hatching birds nests, cover up those tiny small green sprouts of leafs and what have we all. Making it impossible for me to get the car up to the main road as well, as it happens. I just changed to summer tires, and they are not exactly made for climbing steep hills covered in something like 20 cm of fresh white snow.
Well... I need to give it a try. And if I can't make it I always got the shuffle. 200 meters of road to clear to get up there, so I'll rather just wait and see if the white stuff will stop falling and melt away soon.

This is a road in Scotland. Tiny short single track road, with a nice wall made to hold back the land threatening to slide down and cover the thing. Not that it's great dangers for it to happen right here, I guess, but still. I like the landscape here, and the wall and the other man-made features. And I like the pylon standing there. I even remember which camera I carried at the time, a Nikon FM2. No idea about the lens, but it looks like maybe one of the 24mm ones, or maybe even the 35mm. Printed on Ilford MG FB Classic, 5"x7" sized.

I got a bunch of freshly made prints on the table at the moment. Made over the last few days back home in the bathroom/darkroom. A few of them are quite good, some not so good.
I still got some spot checking to do on them, and then will scan them when I can get to a scanner.
For you to see, of course.
In the meantime you will have to watch the scans of a few prints I did quite a few days ago instead, I'm afraid.

And hey, I was just outside to snap the last snaps on a roll that has been sitting inside this nice little old camera for a very long time now. It is, in fact, the first roll I ran through it since I picked up the thing for free over in Orkney about a year or so ago. I got it from my friend over there, a reporter in the local newspaper. He gave up film years ago though, as you would when your family needs food on the table and it depends a bit on you getting your photos finished and published in due time. He is a great guy nevertheless.

And I printed this one, from the old wool factory over in Langevågen, a short 15 minutes drive away from home. There's a few nice buildings over there, and I will go again soon to try capture everything using a bit more time. And strange thing is that just as I was going to write this sentence my son called me to ask if we could go for a short safari today, to this very place :) So that's the plan then, to go over and see if we find something to snap. I would like it to be free of cars, so we might need to come back another day. Sunday, or something. We will see. 
This was done with the rangefinder thing, printed on what I think is Ilford MG FB Warmtone paper

I hope you all have a great weekend, with no snow.

torsdag 21. april 2016

Oh, great!!

I mean, it's 5 am and I should go to bed soon, I would think. Been busy, as it happens. In the darkroom, you know. I would never stay up this late, or early, for whatever other reason. 
Not to happy with the results though. A few of them was good enough, but others looks like crap, or something in that direction. 
We need to wait and see, as I will now go straight away to sleep. I might find a snap first... just to have something to show. 
I'm a bit reluctant to post only words and no images, as you should know. 

So, I found this one to please your eyes today. It's from the Ba-game, as you should know by now. Some lady from the spectators side of things suddenly seemed to find the urge to give the pack a push into the right direction. I think she was not very pleased by the way things seemed to go. Neither was I, but I still managed to stay just where I was and just snap a few instead. I think I carried one of them Nikon FM2s this day. Maybe containing some Fomapan 100 or something like that. Could also be some low ASA Ilford for what I know. FP4 or something. Oh yes... it's a simple and bad scan of a not too good negative. 

onsdag 20. april 2016

Another busy day at home, and prints posted

Not that there has been much done worth jumping in joy about, but still I have managed to look quite busy all day since early morning. Started a bit slow, but everything came a bit more into speed throughout the day. Some driving back and forth to get stuff done, and then at last dived into the darkroom where I stayed for quite long. Tomorrow is another day, and I hope to be able to get things done in there again. Should be very possible, since you ask. I will be all alone for a couple of days, which means there will be less chance for any interruptions of any kind. That will suit me quite fine, actually. 
The prints scanned and posted tonight are not from today, mind you. It was something I did a couple of days ago. I can tell, because they seem to be nice and dry now. 
Both todays snaps got something in common, as far as I remember. Both done using the older german rangefinder, and both with summicron type of lenses. One 50mm and the other with the 35mm. It really pleases me to see the prints are great, while the film scans of the same snaps was not really up there. After all, it's the prints setting the standard. 

I just can't do anything about it. I love this snap! I might need to print it bigger than this 5"x7" and take a walk over to this Café and see if they want to buy it to put it on their wall or something. Or maybe not. I like it a lot, anyway. German rangefinder, 35mm V4 Summicron, printed on Ilford Warmtone paper.  They call it the "King of Bokeh" ... You see nothing much proof of that right here, I tell you! It's a pricey thing compared to it's size, though! 

OK! There's nothing fancy here. Just plain prints. 
I got nothing in the business of toning and lith printing and such things to do yet. Need to get on top of the basics first, I think. Therefore you will only get plain, boring B&W prints. At least for the moment. They are quite good though, when you hold them in your hand and look at them. Not that good after being fed through the scanner and schwooped out on the interweb. But you know everything about that from before, so I will let you suffer quietly by your own. 

And yes I do, love this one as well! Both the print and the person, who happens to be my younger daughter. Same M3 german camera, but this time attaching a 50mm "Cron" lens. What is here not to like...? Just saying!

The weather? Well... shite, it is! 

mandag 18. april 2016

Diana F+ prints

A few of the snaps I managed to take around the cathedral of York when we were thereabouts a few months ago could actually be printed. Well, it depends a wee bit on how you look at it, but I'm quite pleased with them after all.
They seem to be dark where they should be dark, and very light where that came naturally. I could very well live without the extremely white light from up front there, but then again theres nothing much I can do about it, it seems. I tried for a short while, but will have to try again and with a different approach. If I bother, that is...

It's from inside that huge cathedral in York. I like this building, I must say. And I quite like this print even though I maybe should wish the light up front to the right was a little less prominent... It was snapped handheld in "B" mode on the Diana F+ plastic toy camera. Oh yes, there's movement inside. But it's OK anyway, me thinks. It was printed on Ilford FB warm tone paper, by the way. 

The weather? Oh, it's wet and grey, since you ask.
Actually, I got some film I could just as well waste on a day like this, so I might go and do just that sometime today. Or I might find other things to do.
I will not go out and do regular work, for sure. That can just as well wait until the weather has settled for a little bit better, I would say. I mean, this decking outside is nothing I must get ready in a day or two, leaving me a little bit calm about the whole thing.

Another one. Same camera, same method of exposure, on the same roll of film and printed onto the same type of paper. They might get hung on some wall, some day. But I don't know...

And I need to pull myself together and post a little more often, maybe?

lørdag 16. april 2016

Printing session, inside the darkroom... as you should

Over here in Ålesund, Norway there's still no cruise ships as for yet. Strange actually, as this fjord is one of the most sought after fjords in Norway to cruise into. But there will soon enough be enough of them big lumps of steel, I would think.
And as always I will probably feel the the urge to bath naked when those big things appear in the fjord with myriads of tourists on board, and flashes flashing my way. I'm quite calm about it though, because they all only got some bad digital zooms anyway.

I've been in the darkroom, as you might know.
I did a few prints, and this series would be one of them. Michael, the chap over in northern Ireland knows how to do this, and I might have learned a few bits from him. Andrea in the darkroom out there on the Outer Hebrides also knows how to do it. Explain how things are done and to make a great looking print, that is. Right now I don't have the time, as usual, to do this properly. Or that could also be some kind of excusion because lack of knowledge and all. I'll try anyway.

First attempt on this one of my wife being snapped with her fists full of stones standing at the entrance of this cave made of the sea was a rather bad one, I have to say.
I printed the thing in one go, and it became very soon quite clear that the contrast in the print was way out on the rough side of things.

Lots of things to not be too pleased with here. The contrasty things going on in the face of my wife would certainly be one of them. It will get better, though! And uh... it was snapped with that old Rolleiflex, by the way. 6x6 thing... you know. This was printed in one go, but I don't remember now to which degree I adjusted the contrasty bits of stuff. 

So I printed the next one, using some variation of split grade printing that I don't know to much about, to be honest.
Anyway, I looked at highlights and shadows and did a kind of mix between them, and it all came out in a quite decent way. The upper right corner would definitely need some attention though, as you might see. The highlights up there are very much whiteish, as it happens.

Oh yes, it's a bit better. Most of it is quite OK, but there's this upper right corner that disturbs be a bit. It lacks about one aperture of light I would say. So I tried to do something about that in that third and last attempt.

So I printed the last one, using the more or less same, or similar settings, but added EV or aperture step to the corner I was just talking about.
It's better, though not exactly perfect. Maybe some day if I really want to do it right, or I feel the urge, it will happen, though.

Final version in this session inside that darkroom. It's not bad at all... but might lack a wee bit anyway. I could have burned in another half step of aperture level I would think. Still I did not. I might try some other time. 

See? These are the things I've been doing the last few days, or so.

torsdag 14. april 2016

A night in the Dark

Finally, yesterday evening I suddenly just got on my feet and into the car. Drove off for home to go visit my enlargers, blind off the bathroom and pour some developer and fix into the small set of containers. I got a large set as well, but I wanted to do various 5x7" things, and the small ones are great for that sort of thing. 
I did only medium format stuff, mind you, because that was the containment of the folder I first pulled out. 
I struggled a lot. Not with all of the negatives, but there was a couple of real tricky ones. I found out later, out of the dark and into the fluorescent light thing in the kitchen, that I will need to revisit a couple of them quite soon. There was something there in the shadows I did not care for, at all. All too muddy, or whatever it was. I will see if I might be able to do some corrections. Saturday, I guess, will be the day. 

A triplet at sea. UK waters, as you might guessed. It's the "Bruce" field, which contains a complex structure of three different reservoirs I have been told. D (drilling) platform in the center, PUC (process, utilities, quarters) to the right, and finally the CR (no idea what that would mean, but it's used for compression of gas) which was added at a later stage. 
This is not one of yesterdays prints, mind you, as they are still back home and in the process of drying right now. Nikon FM2 with a Nikkor lens. Could be the old 50mm f/1.4 thing.

There's a few issues having a darkroom you need to set up, and dismantle, each time you want to use it. As one would know. The issue with time is a big one, but also the fact that there will be tools missing when you need them, and a bunch of different other small annoying things. 
Another one of them annoying thing is that because it's an issue to set it all up, you get a bit rusty between each time you actually pull yourself together and go in there. I also want to make all sorts of notes of things I do on each print. To make it a lot easier to reproduce it at a later stage, should you be lucky enough to make something close to half decent. 

Same rigs, different view. The center D one of the three would be hidden behind the PUC one. They are compact units, don't you think? 

I don't know how you do your prints, because there's a number of ways to get from a white sheet of paper over to an exposed and printed version of the same thing. 
I have been known to choose one grade of contrast level, and print from that. I did that for a few in yesterdays session as well, but went over to try some split grade printing, using only the highest and lowest settings on my enlarger. That's 00 and 5, if anyone like to know. That helped me through one of the tricky negs yesterday, but I did not have the urge to try it for the worst one... as the time was 4 in the morning by this point. So, I need to revisit and see if split grade will be the thing for that neg as as well. Maybe it will, or maybe not. 
We shall see... hopefully some time very late Saturday.

tirsdag 12. april 2016

What would come next??

It's that bright thing lurking around up there in the sky I'm thinking of. The sun, as we know it. It has shone down upon us for several days now, and being from, and living at, the western side of the norwegian piece of stone, that will always worry me a bit. Getting too nice weather for too many days in a row would more or less always mean that something real bad will hit us. 
At least that's the feeling everyone would have whenever an unlikely event like this one comes our way. A day or two, fine! but when the third day with bright sunshine appears you would start to worry instead of enjoying the nice and bright day. Well... that's just the truth of the nature of the people living here. We have seen it all, too many times, as it happens. 

This is not the sun, folks, even though it like to pretend it is at times. It's the torch out on one of the rigs a bit west of Norway, east of Shetland... somewhere in that direction. They need to light up the north sea, as we know. To see what they're doing, or something. It's impressive, but with a limp. I would like to see the gas being used for something else, to be honest. I would not like to see the figures of how much gas they have burned off this way since oil was first discovered. Oh, and it's a longish exposure, done inside one of them Nikon FM2 cameras with some Nikkor lens attached. Looks like it could have been the 105mm or something. And it was night time.

The plan was to continue with some foundation stuff today. I will not touch the quite fresh concrete, though. I want it to cure well enough before I start to disturb it. But there's other things that can be done. Nothing much, but something is far better than none, I have been told a few times. 
The daughter is washing and polishing her motorbike, and I got this car I should have done something similar to. I will wait. The weather will turn to worse one of the next days, probably, and make a pigstie out of the thing again. I think it would be possible to plant potatoes directly onto the side of it now, and bring in a quite nice harvest in a few months time. 

Else... I'm taking a few snaps now and then. Testing a couple of cameras, of course. I seem to always be testing and not snapping much for fun. It's only talk, though. It sounds better when the results are a bit on the rough side if it's just a test rather than an attempt to do a proper photograph, me thinks. That's why I'm testing, all the time. 
Right now it's one of them Nikon F3P cameras, and that forever lasting film inside the Kodak Coloursnap 35 camera thing. I think I will finish that one off some time today. There's not too many frames left now, it seems. I will bring you results if I get any. It's a promise.

I found this on a strip of film

Here she is, the younger daughter in all her beauty. Inside a café, at the table deep into her own thoughts... or probably halfway through the meal. Anyway I used the brilliant Nikon F3P sort of thing, with the lovely 80mm f/1.4 lens. Not that the lens itself is the lovely part of the thing, but what comes through of light is nothing less than great, me thinks. I like the thing, when I'm able to not think of the weight of the package. Heavy as heck, it is!

Snapped at a café some time ago, it was. I remembered it vaguely, but just because of a couple of other frames on the same roll. Done using one of them huge bulky Nikon F3's in the press version, it was. You know the one with that incredibly heavy winder attached. You could easily use this one as a weapon, should you need it some day.

Today I have been filling up the holes I dug the other day. With concrete, as you would on such a nice day. Putting things in the holes has also been done. Steel and stuff, you know. Just to keep everything in place for a few years. I hope everything lined up, sort of. We will see some time tomorrow, I would think.

Did some scanning today as well, and getting slowly towards something that seems like the end of the pile of films developed lately.

søndag 10. april 2016

He threw himself in!

It's a streetsnap from back in York, England. One of the messedupsometimeinthefixbath negatives you might remember from a few days back. Just had to throw this one in, as it was one of the first ones that caught my eye right now. I'm busy scanning new negs, you know!

Today, on the 10th of april, he decided it was due to get himself washed. In sea water, of course. It was my son, mind you. The father decided to stay busy documenting the happening using the sons camera. He has bought himself a new one, as he's been talking about just that for a short while. Nikon D750. Electronic device, naturally. It works, but you would suppose it did having cost something close to a fortune. I did get one or two fine snaps of the white skin of the boy against the white snowy mountains on the other side of the fjord. The shades might melt together... You know a northern mans skin does not look very healthy this time of year.

The day was fantastic, thank you! The weather absolutely brilliant, with blue sky all day and nothing even close to windy or anything. Not exactly warm or anything, but that's not the most important thing over here at this time of year. We had frost yesterday evening. Just saying.

And I have used a few hours of the last couple of days to scan some film. Which is good.
Now I have started on the last batch for now, containing a few 135 size films. I hope to get it all done by tomorrow evening some time. It all is a bit weather dependent, of course, as I do not plan to scan all day if the weather is useful to get things done outside. Priorities, you know. 
We will see tomorrow.

lørdag 9. april 2016

Another day, of the similar kind

Oh yes, been digging a bit today as well. But I have also done some building up. Terrace, deck and stuff, as you should know. 
And, I took off on the five minutes journey back home and had six films developed. All 135 sized stuff. Having just had the chance to have a quick glance at them they look kind of good. 
Right now I've started scanning a few of the 120 rolls I developed a few days ago. I'll post a few in this post, I would think. The other freshly developed 135 films need some drying before they can materialize themselves into scanned images. 

Oh sure, you've seen this scene before at some point. Snapped from the front door at the cottage, as it happens. This time there was a ship flickering about there out in the fjord as well. Trawler, by the looks of the lump of steel. They go in here from time to time to wash their nets and such. Fishery being done at sea a few miles further out west. I played with the Mamiya RZ here... with the 500mm lens attached. 

Tomorrow I'm going to a party. Birthday party, as it happens, for my grandson Rohan. He turned one year of living as I was at sea, as you might remember. Tomorrow we're going to have some kind of celebration. I have not bought his present yet, but I know what to get and will source it up early tomorrow. 
Books. Books are good for small boys in lack of nothing much else. At least that's what I hope, and think. I love to read for children soaking in the words, making their own pictures inside their heads. 
There's a lot of good things in there, in them written words. Very underrated, as it happens. I hope to see to that the small lad will love the written stuff. It's important, as you should know.

Something snapped on the Diana F+ plastic thing I got lurking about. What more can one want, actually? There are mountains, a fjord, a couple of trees and a creosote impregnated wooden telephone pole. And a few wires. It's probably a masterpiece.

Did I ever tell you I got an author cousin? Not? 
Well, I do. Her name is Mette, and she writes well, no kidding! She's a top ranked author over here in Norway having received quite a few of the traditional highest prices and all. I have not read all her books yet, because there's quite a lot of them, mind you, but I'm getting there. Her not very authorized "biography" of Björk, the Iceland singer you know, made quite a storm over here... and also over in Iceland a few years ago. I heard, or read, that Björk herself was not too found of the thing. Not that I know why, because it's a fine book with nothing much bad said. I would think that it has more to do with the fact that Björk herself was not interviewed, as she did not want to. Her father was, though, and quite a few others.
Anyway, it's a good book with some great personal and nature depictions inside. You should read it, but I'm not too sure if it's translated into english. Over here it's called "Bli Björk"
These days she's a lot over here in my home town. Doing some drama work on one of the universities over here. I hope she will have some time soon to go have a meal and a beer. We need to talk, as it happens. You know books call for covers, and covers may contain snaps in one way or another. She want something from either my collection or something special made for something, but I'm not sure what yet. Or it may also be for someone else, as she's heavily into publishing as well these days. 
But hey, we need to wait and see! I'm not taking anything for granted. But fun it would be :))

And hey, it's the son snapped on the Diana F+ as well. You may see him there in the middle of the image if you partly close your left eye and let the other one wander a bit about. It was about a week ago. Over there at Nøringseth where my wife kind of grew up. It's a nice place where you got space and silence to think things over if you need. And if you don't need that, it's a great place anyway!

torsdag 7. april 2016

Diggin' a hole

Or, in fact, I'm diggin' lots of them. Need some good foundation for the deck outside, as you might understand. Not that this is the worst place around here during the winter, but the frost might cause some throwing around of the upper layers of mother earth at times. And we definitely don't want the foundations to be thrown around as well, hence all the diggin' of holes. Concrete to be thrown in at a later stage, as you know. 

It's from York again. The cathedral, as you probably see. We walked by this construction quite a few times, and it was a bit hard to overlook to tell the truth. We were inside of it as well. They knew how to build churches, back in the days. And yes, it's one of those messed up films... again.

I just had a decent hailstorm coming in, but it did not last for long. After that it started to rain quite a bit, and I decided to have a coffee break instead. I don't like to work outside in the rain if I don't have to, and today I don't have to. I'm ahead of schedule, and still lack some materials and stuff anyway. I hope to have this thing finished off some time during next trip home, but you never know. I might find other things to do as well. 

So, it seems I'm in York mode, again. We walked up and down these streets as well a few times. Rainy days, and wet stone. Give you quite nice snaps if you're able to develop the film in a decent way. Obviously I'm not the best of developers. I know how to do it in theory, but I fail more often than not. It's lots of fun, though. 

And that was what I would call a good days work. I am inside the cottage again and wonder what to do tomorrow. Maybe I should go home and get the scanner? Would be great to have that thing over here to scan a few films over the next couple of days. The scanner and some developing tanks, some chemicals and stuff needed for developing films would be nice. I still got a few rolls to work my way through, as you might have guessed. 
Well, I will see tomorrow. Right now I think I will just relax for a couple of hours. I have been digging holes, as you know. Sore muscles and all, but it's good nevertheless. 
And the light is great. I might fetch a camera and take a short walk down to the sea. Snap a few snaps. 

onsdag 6. april 2016

A long day coming to an end

I was up quite early this morning. Had plans to get things done, as it happens. More or less all items ticked off the list now, which is a great feeling. Digging holes outside the cottage, among other stuff. Not the most interesting things, to be honest, but had to be done as I am in the process of building stuff just outside the door. 

Nothing to post, really, but then again I don't have any idea what else to get out there to you right here and now. Hope to get something scanned some time tomorrow or the next day. I need to stock up on stuff to post during my month at sea as well, as it happens. Will make me busy for a few days, I should think.

And not only did I get a few holes done, in addition to some shopping of materials and all, but I also managed to develop quite a few rolls of film. Six 120 films and a couple of 135 sized ones, to be exact. There's some scanning to be done soon, as you might have figured out already. Scanning and darkroom work. Plan was to play around with some proper paper one day soon. 
Can't wait, to be honest! I got a few negs around that looks good enough to shine some light through them, and I hope the owners of the finished products will be pleased with the results. You never know, of course. The negs might be a bit on the bad side after all when it all comes down to the serious business inside that dark room... but we will see, as usual.

Another one from the Pentax Spotmatic. Not the Super Takumar 50mm this time, as you might already have figured out. You see, he also got this very bad 300mm thing for the camera. It used to be a bad lens back in the days, and has not grown to be any better these days. Nah, one should stick to the 50mm on this thing. Or one could get a bit wider one, but still the Super Takumar kind of thing. Properly built things, they are.

Anyway, the films developed today looked quite good. The old bottle of Kodak HC-110 developer still works good enough, it seems. I'm halfway through it now, so it should still last for another while. 

mandag 4. april 2016

The best of days

What more can you possibly wish than the feeling of being on holiday in your own neighborhood? I'm at the cottage again, and it's all quite and nice. Just the way I like it. The only thing I might miss would be the possibility of developing some film while I'm here, but I might find a way. We will see.

Some huge rig on the UK sector of the North Sea. Snapped in the total darkness of the night on the rangefinder. Not the japan made one, mind you. The german one, on long shutter times handheld from the deck of a ship. Cool, huh...? Ah, and the film is not one of them badly fixed ones you have get used to lately. Properly developed and fixed in both Kodak and Ilford products this time.

Was just outside starting a fire in a pan we got down here by the sea. A nice way to get some food heated during the evening. It's the kind of thing you can use for whatever, as it happens. Today I guess something is going on the grill type of thing. We will see when the wife is back from her drive.

Different rig, daylight view. A bit crowded underneath those things, I must say. Risers, legs and what have we all. This could be from the sameish rangefinder with the same lens. 50mm cron-thing.

What else did I do today? Nothing much, as it happens. I was at the post office for a short while, picking up a couple of cameras. Cheap as chips they were, and no wonder at all! Well, the Nikon F3 was nice enough, and both looks, feels and function great. The japanese rangefinder thingy was a bit more suspect, I have to say, as the shutter seems to be totally stuck... in open position. Well, I need to open the thing up and have a good check on it. Could be fixable, or I can find some other way to use the thing. It looks cool, though, so will not be thrown away. It's not a camera for my step daughter though, which was the hope for this one. Or, it might be if I can get that shutter working.
There was a Nikkor 70-210mm zoom lens as well inside the packet. Zoom function stuck, but I have opened stuff like this before and made it work. It might even happen again on a good day. Will bring it along next time at work to have a good look at it over there together with that japanese rangefinder. Need stuff to do when off duty, you know.

Nope! They are not in the process of electing the new pope or something. It's over there at Sullom Voe on Shetland. The place where oily stuff is coming ashore through the pipeline we just did a proper check on. For leaks you know. And to see that it was all steady and good down there at the seabed, of course. As we speak I guess some unlucky soul is going through the whole four weeks 24/7 of video we shot of the thing. I'm quite happy I'm not the one sitting there with sore eyes right now. 

Else, not much to report from today. I need to take a short walk, it seems, as I suddenly discovered I must have lost a lens cover for one of those big Mamiya lenses yesterday some time. I know where I strolled, so should be easy enough to repeat the steps.
I might even bring the camera...

søndag 3. april 2016

Things to do at the cottage

Not that there's a lot to do here, besides the load of things which should have been done soon. I got things to build, as you might know, but that's for a little bit later. Need materials and all before I start, so need to make a plan or something. I'm quite good making plans, I have been told.
Well, we're just back from the birthday party. 25 years old youth, you know. And I know my age has crept a wee bit further as we were told that the plan was to have some young people coming a bit later. Party and all, you know. To which we were not invited. Fair enough! Great, actually! Which made me think I'm starting to grow a bit old... ish...

Another Spotmatic snap done out the side window of the car a while ago. Yellow filter attached. I know, I know... not the most interesting of subjects.

Well, I can officially tell you that between all the things to do at the cottage this evening is getting rid of the last fifth of a bottle of splendid 16 yrs. Lagavulin and watch a movie or something simple as that, very high up on my list. 

Last weekend around my parents house. There's still lots of snow around here, as you might see. Pentax Spotmatic, again.

And all of a sudden it's the next day. The whisky was nice, the movie quite good, and the quietness of this place just fantastic. As usual. Two brand new ships doing DP tests in the fjord at the moment, building a nice contrast to the black and white mountains in the background. The weather is good today, after being quite gray the last couple of days.
The youngest daughter came for a short visit yesterday evening. Nice to see she's got her motorbike out of the garage and made ready for a new season. 

OK, being the one I am I post this one as well. A masterpiece of a corner of the parents house. Red filtered and all. Great stuff, huh...?

The plan now is to grab a camera or two, and go for a walk. I think I know where to go, as well. A few miles further on this road, westwards to the point where the narrow road just stops. Then I walk further ahead on an old path of grass and stone until I get to the old croft up there in the mountain side. Used to belong to the grandparents of my wife it did, that old croft. Small place, totally in the middle of nowhere. 
So, that's what I'm off to do, right now. See you later!!

fredag 1. april 2016

The old Spotmatic

As you might remember there was this Pentax Spotmatic that used to belong to my dad during a few years up through the seventies. It went away, but came back to him last christmas. 
As you were told if you ever checked the link, I loaded the thing with a Tri-X a couple of months ago. Snapped a few frames and put it back on the shelf. 
I was up there last weekend, checking what's happening... if they were both well and all, as you obviously do. All good, except the frame counter on that old lovely camera had not moved at all. So I grabbed the thing and finished the film. I am a curious man. At least when it comes to old cameras, and maybe especially old lenses. This one got the great Super Takumar coupled, and I must say I had hopes that it might were able to deliver some good stuff. 
And yes, it does!

Nice start, don't you think? Super Takumar, red filter and a Pentax Spotmatic. I don't know if you recognize the place, but I have snapped stuff around here earlier as well. Back in the 70's as it happens, with the then new Minolta Hi-Matic G camera I still got lurking around. I need to find them on that red hard drive and post them. I think it was the sisters playing with an old sledge or toboggan or whatever you call it. And yes, this was snapped last sunday. There's still snow to melt away around these parts...

I brought the film back home, and had it developed yesterday. I will try not to bore you big time, as there's way too many snaps of relatives and such on the film. But anyway, I post what I got... as you know. Shook it around in some Kodak HC-110 in "B" solution, I did. Don't know why I seem to like that old developer, but it's probably a combination of a few different things. It's versatile, very concentrated, longlife and have a nice colour from the bottle. Add water and it looks like something else, but I will not focus on that here and now. 

Nope! Just could not resist this one! Snapped from the side window of the car when me and my father went to Tingvoll for some milk and bread and things you need to survive. Super Takumar 50mm f/1.4 with yellow filter, and that old Pentax Spotmatic.

My step daughter is 25 tomorrow. They really start to grow up now, I have to say. My son will turn 25 in just a couple of months. He don't know what he wants for birthday, which is OK. He will still get something, I guess. 
My step daughter don't know what she wants either, but my hope is to give her a camera. She borrowed that flimsy plastic Diana F+ camera last time we were over in England, as you might remember. She snapped a couple of nice frames, but the majority of the film turned out totally useless. She still got hooked on film, so she immediately went to get herself her own Diana F+. She also asked me what else to get, meaning a smaller camera with mojo, soul and whatever such a camera would have. She would need a small P&S kind of thing, I guess. I really hope the mail man drops a packet around for me to pick up some time tomorrow. There might be something inside the wrapping she could use. Well, that's what I hope, of course. We all know that buying an old camera on the inter web is not always the wisest thing to do. Still, I have yet to be left totally disappointed about what's coming my way. This was really cheap as well, so will be worth taking the chance. 
Oh, and yes... I will keep you informed. 

Same trip. This was snapped from the side window of the car as well, over there in the small village of Tingvoll. Oh... you might think "Tingvoll" sounds a bit like Dingwall, Thingwall, Tingwall, Tingvellir or something like that? Yup, that's right. Same word, same meaning. The old norse word for a place where great "tings" were held. I was baptised in the church at this place, as it happens. Old thing from back in the time when the earliest churches was built over here in Norway. Long traditions, you see... Built in 1180, made of stone unlike most other churches over here... built to last a few more years. Same Spotmatic, Super Takumar with yellow filter. And Kodak Tri-X sloshed around in Kodak HC-110 for a couple of moments.

I'm at the cottage for the weekend. Left a big bag of photographic equipment outside the door as I arrived. There's this picture I want to take, but I'm waiting for the right kind of light. It will definitely not happen today. That's for sure! First of all the light is not here, at all. Second thing is I forgot to put the good film backs into the bag before I left. I got two bad film backs, and both of them happen to be attached to the back of the two Mamiya RZ67 cameras I got inside the bag for the moment. I mean, what's the odds for that to happen? I got quite a few of them, but still have managed to do this silly thing. OK, I know why I did it, and it has to do with a plan to have them repaired over the weekend. Or at least start to repair them. And I'm still on that plan, but that should not include to forget the good ones back home! 
Oh yes, it's only a five minutes drive to pick up a good back, but having opened a can of beer it won't happen. Easy as that... :))