Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Instant Film: Reno

An all instant film blog with the Polaroid 450 Land Camera, Sun 660 with Impossible color protection film, and the Fujifilm Instax 210! Enjoy.

At the brewery parking lot:
8 4 6, Sparks, NV, Andrew D. Barron©2/11/13 [Fujifilm Instax 210]
At the corporate parking lot:
Parking lot backhoe scraper blade, Reno, NV, Andrew D. Barron©2/12/13 [Polaroid Automatic Land Camera 450: FP100C]
At the home parking lot:

Laser sailboat rests for the season, Reno, NV, Andrew D. Barron©2/13/13 [Polaroid Sun 600: Impossible color protection]

Went to visit a former band mate in downtown Reno. This was such a long exposure for the 100 speed film. I tried three times to capture the wheel spinning in the back, but it must’ve been more than 1 second exposure. College Cyclery
College Cyclery tools, Reno, NV, Andrew D. Barron©2/13/13 [Polaroid Automatic Land Camera 450: FP100C]
Had lunch at Nick’s Greek Deli. It was good. This was across the street. There should be some interesting Hasseblad shots from this day when I get to the negs.
Vacation Lodge, Reno, NV, Andrew D. Barron©2/14/13 [Fujifilm Instax 210]
I had my reasons for returning to the brewery. It didn’t work as planned, but I did manage to transfer a pack of FP3000B from the Land Camera 100 into the Land Camera 450. For this first one, I inverted the peeled off negative.

There’s always room at the top
Ladder to the top, Sparks, NV, Andrew D. Barron©2/15/13 [Polaroid Automatic Land Camera 450: FP3000B]

Chevy Wagon, Sparks, NV, Andrew D. Barron©2/15/13 [Polaroid Automatic Land Camera 450: FP3000B]

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Some new (old) lenses

I’ve been sitting on these images for a bit too long. A few weeks back I picked up a Zeiss Sonnar 250mm ƒ5.6 lens for Hasselblad; it was very shortly after the 120mm ƒ5.6. I really wanted to see what the 250mm lens could do on my infrared converted digital Nikon.

I also took a trip to Chico and was in the Truckee river canyon near sunset. I pulled over for a shot, just inside the California state line.

Canyon with 120mm:
Truckee River canyon, Andrew D. Barron©1/26/13 [Hasselblad 500c/m; Planar 120mmƒ5.6, Fuji Reala 100 frame 2]
Ridgeline with 250mm. This shot was underexposed and looks better as black and white:
Truckee River canyon ridgeline, Andrew D. Barron©1/26/13 [Hasselblad 500c/m; Sonnar 250mƒ5.6, Fuji Reala 100 frame 3]
Ridge line with 250mm lens on the infrared Nikon.
Truckee River canyon ridgeline, Andrew D. Barron©1/26/13 [Hasselblad Zeiss Sonnar 250mƒ5.6 on infrared converted D5000]
I learned that it is difficult to focus in live view hand held. I was in no place to really set up a tripod, but here is a ‘what if’ shot:
Truckee River canyon ridgeline, Andrew D. Barron©1/26/13 [Hasselblad Zeiss Sonnar 250mƒ5.6 on infrared converted D5000]
Once in Chico, my brother and I repaired an automatic Land Camera 450. I shot the full moon on the back porch. I hoped for more, but this is all the 400mm equivalent lens gets me: a disc 297 pixels wide at 100% crop:
Infrared full moon in Chico, Andrew D. Barron©1/26/13 [Hasselblad Zeiss Sonnar 250mƒ5.6 on infrared converted D5000]
A few days later was a Wednesday; the day that I saw Saturday Night Fever on a big screen in the middle of the day. It was the last of the classic movie series. The film was much more serious that I realized. I learned it was Gene Siskel’s favorite film.

Parking lot tree with 120mm:
Reno parking lot tree, Andrew D. Barron©1/30/13 [Hasselblad 500c/m; Planar 120mmƒ5.6, Fuji Reala 100 frame 6]

Then I went down to the ditch on game day, a Sunday. This was the day I posted some Polaroid shots from my land camera 450 in my last blog. Ditch with 120mm:
Engineered channel, Andrew D. Barron©2/3/13 [Hasselblad 500c/m; Planar 120mmƒ5.6, Fuji Reala 100 frame 7]
I have come to the conclusion that nearly every shot with the 120mm lens is more beautiful than real life.

I did some hand held stuff with the 250mm. Unfortunately, I loaded the roll incorrectly and ended up with only 8.5 frames. Here is the last 1/2:
Cattails with 250mm.
Engineered channel, Andrew D. Barron©2/3/13 [Hasselblad 500c/m; Planar 120mmƒ5.6, Fuji Reala 100 frame 9]
Okay, so here is where I will stop and someday soon post another instant film collection. Sometimes the final tedium of the html stuff for the blog entry gets the better of me; these images have been done for about a week. Some fun stuff coming up!

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Reno and the Land Camera

Hasselblad on Fourth Street, Reno.
Sandman Motel, 4th street Reno, NV, Andrew D. Barron©1/25/13 [Hasselblad 500c/m; Planar 120mm ƒ5.6, Fuji Reala 100 frame 2]
Sandman Motel, 4th street Reno, NV, Andrew D. Barron©1/25/13 [Hasselblad 500c/m; Planar 120mm ƒ5.6, Fuji Reala 100 frame 1]
It has been a quiet week. I am still figuring out what I want to do here in Reno. Yes, even after all of these months. This is outside of a chain brewery:
Landscaping, south reno, NV, Andrew D. Barron©1/30/13 [iphone 4s, 645Pro]
Sometimes you feel like this:
Costco carts, Sparks, NV, Andrew D. Barron©1/30/13 [iphone 4s, 645Pro]
As in one of million shopping carts. But then there is always this counterpoint. A cup of fresh Peets Blend 101 on a herringbone Martin guitar coaster and a beat to hell 1947 Argus C3:
Coffee and camera, Andrew D. Barron©2/1/13 [iphone 4s, Hipstamatic 261]
This camera was picked up only a few days before I left Gold Beach in June. I have a couple of shots of it propped precariously over the Rogue on the edge of the Patterson Bridge. I may add them here later. I usually have to find out later if a thrift store find was worth it. In this case, the $5 camera is worth just about that. And similar to the shopping carts, it is one of millions floating around.

The Polaroid 450 is pretty much a cross between a 100 and a 330. I like it fine, though the images look much like the 330’s. I wonder if the battery is dying, because I have it set at ASA150, and the exposure dial nearly all the way to lighten. Well, not at first. At first, at ASA75 and the dial in the middle. There is usually a process of finding out where the sweet spot is using any different automatic Land Camera.

My guitar player buddy Jim and I met for pizza near my house. It was getting dark so we asked the guy if we could play inside. So we played some bluegrass and people were applauding and into it. A woman approached us who owns a bookstore and offered us a gig there so were going to follow up with a bluegrass brother duet thing in the near future.
Pizza place and Mount Rose sunset, Andrew D. Barron©2/1/13 [Polaroid 450: FP100C]
I wandered out on Saturday. I saw a sign that I thought would look neat on long exposure illuminated by headlights.
Roscoe's BBQ, Andrew D. Barron©2/2/13 [Polaroid 450: FP100C]
Then I fumbled the next pack of film when I loaded it. Shredded the dark slide, then ripped off the first tab. I lost three frames. That seems to be the way it goes with pack film at times. If only I were more patient and it wasn’t dark, there would be hope of saving a pack that gets off on the wrong foot. I am going to throw in a frame from last week first. Mini-golf dragon. Raaawwrrrr!
Mini-golf dragon, Reno, NV, Andrew D. Barron©1/25/13 [Hasselblad 500c/m; Planar 120mm ƒ5.6, Fuji Reala 100 frame 7]
This is back at Roscoe's Oakland-style BBQ, which did not fare well in Reno (from reading Yelp reviews)and closed some time in 2012. It is always questionable if meat animals should be depicted with a character. Seems like I recall a commercial done in bad taste; something about chickens. Well, this ain’t so bad, and I like the way if goes with the dragons.
Roscoe's BBQ, Andrew D. Barron©2/2/13 [Polaroid 450: FP100C]
I went out on the big game day to figure out the 450. This is what I was getting set to small aperture, asa75, max lighten.
Burned up fence, Andrew D. Barron©2/3/13 [Polaroid 450: FP100C]
Near the old house that is gone, there is a small brick driveway marker. I was going for a shallow depth of field, nearly into the sun. The result is okay, but the scale is all thrown off. I had the camera set to closest focus and laid down in the dirt. The brick wall is only inches tall, and maybe 9 inches wide.
Driveway bricks, south reno, Andrew D. Barron©2/3/13 [Polaroid 450: FP100C]
Nearby, there is an engineered channel that goes under the highway to Virginia City. The light was nice, so I spent an hour or so shooting with the Hasselblad. On the way out, I saw this with the iphone:
Channel veg, Andrew D. Barron©2/3/13 [iphone 4s, Hipstamatic 261]
After, I went out to Barron Way and Reno Corporate drive. There is a good 45 minute walk that I knew I could handle in the dark. Here is the 450 on a tripod while I held the button for what seemed like 30 seconds. I have noticed with pack film cameras you can get a decent long exposure even without a remote trigger (tripod is necessary). I would still like to find one though.
Uphill powerlines, Huffaker Hills, Andrew D. Barron©2/3/13 [Polaroid 450: FP100C]
One frustrating thing about the iphone is the fixed wide aperture camera makes for disorienting, ‘everything in focus’ images. This looks across a small ravine, where the critter trails fork into this branch-like pattern on the uphill slope.
Channel veg, Andrew D. Barron©2/3/13 [iphone 4s, Hipstamatic 261]
So on the one hand, frustrated by the iphone, then a success. It like many other point and shoot cameras in this regard: inconsistent. There were some nice crepuscular rays that night.
Crepuscular rays over the Sierras above reno, Andrew D. Barron©2/3/13 [iphone 4s, 645 PRO]
It is a neat sunset view of Reno from this spot. Some time ago, I did a bokeh test there with the Sumittar ƒ2 on the Leica IIIf:
After sunset above Reno, Andrew D. Barron©8/9/2012

Sunday, February 3, 2013

A roll from the Leica

Contrails over the house, Reno NV, Andrew D. Barron©October 2012 [Leica IIIf, Sumitar 50mm ƒ2.0, Portra 400]
I didn’t remember that my Leica was loaded with film. The early part of the roll had some shots from when we tracked the album in late September. At some point, I showed other people the quietness of the IIIf’s shutter. So when I went to load it this year and there was film in there, I was bummed. But like I said I distinctly remembered about six or seven blank frames prior to opening the bottom, so I was pretty sure that the real exposures on there were rolled up and safe. I finished it out the roll with mostly junk shots, as it turns out. After so much work with 120 film lately, it is hard to go back to these 35mm images. So here is the very incoherent bunch of negatives I scanned tonight. It is also problematic that the sprocket holes seem to intrude into the image space.

One of the reasons I purchased ColorPerfect was to deal with the greenish tint I was getting from Portra 400. The results on 35mm are very comparable to the stock, EpsonScan software. But since it does seem to work a lot better with 120 film scans, I have no regrets (but still greenish Portra 400 in 35mm).
Sycamore leaves, Reno NV, Andrew D. Barron©October 2012 [Leica IIIf, Sumitar 50mm ƒ2.0, Portra 400]
I don’t recall shooting this camera upside-down. The composition is stronger and geometry is more pronounced as is.
Cafe De Thai, Reno NV, Andrew D. Barron©October 2012 [Leica IIIf, Sumitar 50mm ƒ2.0, Portra 400]
For the first time with 35mm I am leaving some of the film edges. I wish the 120 DIGITALIZA scanning mask worked as well for this as the 35mm one. This shot was definitely supposed to be in focus. With the rangefinder, it happens occasionally to forget to focus, or to forget to remove the lens cap, etc., because the viewfinder is not the picture-taking lens. This is the film camera museum shelf at Gordon’s Photo Supply and their supply of film. I can make out the 4x5 boxes, the Instax films, Ektar, and Tri-x. The white boxes are Ilford emulsions. I like to say emulsions nowadays instead of film because it connotes a variation in the actual film, and further separates the word film from motion/video capture. It often seems to people that film is something you do to create movies. Got it. . okay, emulsions. . .
Film at Gordon’s, Reno NV, Andrew D. Barron©January 2013 [Leica IIIf, Sumitar 50mm ƒ2.0, Portra 400]
I really wanted this night shot with the crescent moon to be more interesting. If any, the last frame would look the best at full size.
Crescent moon outside of mexican restaurant, south Reno NV, Andrew D. Barron©January 2013 [Leica IIIf, Sumitar 50mm ƒ2.0, Portra 400]
Like I said, I have become very spoiled using the 60x60mm negative from the Hasselblad, compared to these 24x36mm negs. Here is a shot from my friend’s band, with Jim (far right) and Chad (far left). As everyone knows, it is hard to shoot 400 speed film in a dark bar. If I were to go for a band photography at night thing, I would try to push Portra two stops to iso1600. Or push TriX to 3200. But here, this shot is only successful to frame all four members at once.
Wildhorse Drive at the Red Dog, Virginia City, NV, Andrew D. Barron©1/18/13 [Leica IIIf, Sumitar 50mm ƒ2.0, Portra 400]
It is so hard to believe how much time is consumed dealing with film scans, scan to blog post was four hours.

Friday, February 1, 2013

Land Camera 450

I had recently come to the conclusion that having such a variety of nice film cameras had finally finished my interest in thrift store cameras. There have been several visits with no interesting finds. My Land Camera 100 was nice to find in the South Reno Goodwill last June, but it took me forever to get it up and running. I love it’s look and glass lenses, but it leaks light when using 3000 speed black and and white film. The oak leaves I shot in early December demonstrate that well: they are the last two shots in this entry. Anyway, in cleaning up and sorting out life for a more calm future off the road, I found a stockpile of three packs of color pack film (FP100C). I broke the Land Camera 330’s shutter release cable mechanism a while back (this). In trying to fix it, I maimed my Land Camera 320 as well. And as you all know, my near-mint Land Camera 210 has a nearly useless focusing mechanism (and plastic lenses), so I don’t see the point with it. I still remember the fun I had when I picked that up in Weed, CA (blog entry 7/18/11). I had such silly visions of traipsing around America, digging through random thrift stores for old cameras. It is evidently become quite cool to shoot thrift store cameras (see this thread). It seems that thrift stores are picked through; I had a good run.

There is no good place to put this, but I just received Pat Sansone’s book called 100 Polaroids. I am shocked there were any first editions left to order. It was to spur my interests in publishing a book of my own photographs, and also to see what a touring musician saw ‘out there.’ The scans are of good quality. The book of images is just plain cool.

So Land Camera roll call: 210=sucks, 320=cannibalized for 330=broken, 100= leaks light at iso3000. Thus, I am without a fully functional pack film camera! But I figured, who cares, and returned to my first instant film love, the Fujifilm Instax 210, and the special silver edition I got myself for the holiday. I have a great time with that camera. There was some neat light, and someday soon I will get those remaining Hasselblad street shots up. But I also grabbed a few Instax shots. Let me put up these scans, even though they are out of sequence. Mini Golf Moai
Mini Golf Moai, Reno, NV, Andrew D. Barron©1/25/13 [Fujifilm Instax 210, silver edition]
It’s a decent title, but actually, I had never seen this thing in my nearly 20 years in and out of Reno. It lurks off the interstate on the east side behind a bunch of mini storage buildings. Something about being out shooting random shit last Friday had me in a different space. And even though I have spent most of the last 6 months between Exit 65 and Exit 56 on what is now called I-580, I had never spotted this. I was actually going to try to get some work done in the late afternoon. Headed south, I saw this thing to my left. And so I drove all around finally discovering that it was part of a mini-golf course. Have I played there? Maybe? There was once a mini-golf game in my earliest days of grad school (Fall 2002), but back then, I slept a lot less and drank quite a bit more socially. So I just don’t remember. Maybe Tristan or Kevin do. Would it matter though, because it felt like I was seeing it for the first time.

Anyway, there was lots of neat stuff to shoot through the ugly god damned fence. The Instax version is interesting, though I wish the red eyes were visible. There are two Hasselblad frames of this Moai, here and here for a more powerful view. Still, it’s not the kind of thing that normal people are drawn to. Or is it? I dunno, there was a recent spate of documentaries about what happened to the people of Easter Island and further speculation about what they were meant to symbolize. I watched those last fall in weekly motel in a Washington lumber town. Life’s been good to me so far, said Joe Walsh. What really blows my mind is that writing this tonight, I find that NOVA just made a new episode about Easter Island (11/1/12), with the DVD being released on 1/13/13.
Shadows, south Reno NV, Andrew D. Barron©1/25/13 [Fujifilm Instax 210, silver edition]

I went to the Goodwill in a rougher part of town, and so it begins. . .
The Pinto, Sparks, NV, Andrew D. Barron©1/25/13 [Fujifilm Instax 210, silver edition]
In the locked shelf that I had peered through at several times in the last few years, under some other crap, was a folded up, black-cased pack film camera. I knew I didn’t need another. Ah hell, it is Zeis IKON viewfinder-equipped Land Camera 450! Looking through that viewfinder for the first time was a ‘holy shit’ moment, for it is way way way better than any of the pack film cameras I have yet seen. So though the battery compartment was a mess and the price was not cheap ($29.99), I bought it. Then I used the 120mm ƒ5.6 lens on the Hasselblad to waste some frames to get the film processed that day. Fuji Reala 100:
Polaroid Land Camera 450, Reno, NV, Andrew D. Barron©1/25/13 [Hasselblad 500c/m; Planar 250mm ƒ5.6, Fuji Reala 100 frame 9]
Portra 400:
Polaroid Land Camera 450, Reno, NV, Andrew D. Barron©1/25/13 [Hasselblad 500c/m; Planar 250mm ƒ5.6, Kodak Portra frame 9]
A beauty! Now, I can’t really get to many shots from it yet. I took it to Chico, where my brother and I beat the roller mechanism into submission with a butter knife. Not really. Someone had previously maimed the lower roller assembly. We were able to bend it back into shape and get those mouse-trap like springs that hold the rollers together to return to their place. I had brought down the soldering iron and film changing bag planning to resurrect this thing. I was able to transfer out the 1/2 pack from the broken 330 and I watched my brother have his first pack film epiphany. The first photograph from the 450 was lamely of the table where we worked on it, but had a great quality to it; the 450 has two aperture settings, so can give nice, smooth out of focus elements. Unfortunately, I left those prints on there. Fact is, I’ve barely shot this camera. I spent most of the day in my storage unit asking myself if I was really going to move to Reno again. Funny, that I would live somewhere for six months before I really consider moving there. And even now, I have my doubts. On the way back to Reno after a nice visit and meal with my mom, I stopped at the Matthews Lane/Woodruff Lane intersection and set the 450 on a tripod. The moon was nearly full. I set the wide aperture and tried to be really still while I held the shutter down. It must’ve been 30 seconds before I gave up, quite sure the result would be way too shaky and dark. Well, here is the first of hopefully many shots to come from the 450. Grain silos in the moonlight.
Grain silos in the moonlight, Andrew D. Barron©1/27/13 [Polaroid 450: FP100C]

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