Friday, October 21, 2016

Jazz Vinyl Record Collection Continues To Grow

Well my Jazz record collection continues to grow, both in vinyl LPs and Cds (mostly records). I am concentrating on the sax players. John Coltrane, Dexter Gordon, Lester Young, Curtis Amy, Sonny Rollins, Stan Getz and of course the great great Charlie Parker. So much sublime, challenging, moving and truly beautiful music. The rest of my darkroom years, printing my lifetime of negs will be filled with the wonderful sounds these musicians created. You got to love how joyous and emotional their lyrical music life was. With what and how did they create this jazz? I hope someday to be able to make a tiny fraction, a bit of slightly comparable sounds with my alto sax.

A Drone For Documentary Film?

I have been thinking of getting a drone to use in my upcoming documentary film attempt.  This is the drone I might purchase. It is compact, small, very stable and can do 4K video.

Cambo Reflex Hood For My Speed Graphic And Ektar Aero Lens

I got an adapted reflex back made up for me by Procameraus in Charlottesville, VA, USA. I used the same people that Dave Burnett used for his camera. The cost is $269 USD for back, the adaption work and the shipping to Canada. They purchased the Cambo hood for me off Ebay then did the adaption before shipping the unit to me in Canada. This allowed to save on shipping and duty, tax costs. Will posts a picture of the unit later on this blog. I also need to send a thank you message to Mr. Burnett.

I hope to use this gear my next trip to the dump to do 4x5 portraits. Everything will be shot at f2.5.

Here is a link to the camera repair shop that did the work:

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

The Last 7 Days?

While looking over a book of Renaissance painting I came up with an idea of which dad negs to use in the AGSA exhibition. In the book there were lots of dead and dying Christ imagery. Christ laying and held this way and that, reclining in the arms of his mother, slouched in the dirt and on the cross. The paintings are filled with emotion and anguish.

I am required to make up 6 or 7 20x24 prints for my group show. My idea was to choose all 7 negs from the last week of dads life. I would probably need to include 1 or 2 photos after dad passed. Seven connected graphic moving pictures from this last phase of dads life should work very effectively to tell our story. It would also fit the theme of the show, how artists deal with loss through their work. How could I have gotten through that last week with dad if I did not have my cameras, my photography to concentrate on and distract me?

I think I might go with this last week idea. I need to make a strong statement with this show, both to tell dads story and to help raise awareness about other work that needs to be seen ("Forgotten Laughter"). I plan on having a several promotional books of photographs at the gallery. Hopefully this exhibition will help lead to others. I desperately want to get a solo show for the Familes in the Mae Sot Dump work.

Getting Through The BS Stage

You know what the hardest part of learning anything creative? Getting through the technique BS stages. Learning the saxophone is like that. I want to jump forward, to create musicl to play jazz but it will take years of commitment, years of learning the tech things. Playing scales, sore lips, hurt ears, clumsy fingers and the like. Would it not be cool just to jump to the creative phase of things!!!? Gosh I guess you got to earn that right, it is part of this game. Still all the years of mundane practise and boring music before you can finally make some exciting unique stuff yourself is tough.

Tonight I compared my struggles playing my first song "When the Saints Go Marching In" to last nights joyful creativity in the darkroom. When I am doing photo things I can jump right to the creative stuff, most of the tech learning (at least for standard photo making) I basically have down. There are no scales or childrens beginner songs in the darkroom. I enter the dark and jump right into the creativity.

Guess I just need to pay my dues with music as I did with the photography. Step by sometimes painful step should eventually lead me to a creative level with the saxophone. Now back to my G Major scales! Gosh my lips do hurt!

Monday, October 17, 2016

Quote: David Carradine

"If you cannot be a poet, be the poem."

A Harsher Print Look

Been doing lots of tests of the "My Fathers Last Days" pain photograph. I want to give the image a contrasty, harsher more difficult expressive feel to it. Here are some shots from those tests. I will complete the 20x24 final version of this negative early the week of the 17th (after my security guard work week).

 The steps for these test prints include:

- Ilford warm tone  20x24 inch FB
- Dectol 1/1
- 50mm El-Nikkor lens at its widest setting of F2.8
- Base exposure 150 seconds at Filter 3.5
- Dodge the face 100 seconds
- Burn the blanket and left corner +80 at Filter 1
- Flash burn black with a flashlight the upper right corner to burn in neg damage (film accidentally exposed). 3 quick burns blending the edge to best effect.
- Extensive bleaching to create pure white bursting contrasty highlights on face.

Note* While doing the final test print bleaching with brush I accidentally used hot water in my rinse hose. The hot water seemed to accelerate-intensify the beaching. Something to possibly intentionally do in the future? Water temp, added fixer, bleach concentration and time seem to all be variables in this technique.

Some GoPro 2 shots of the various test strips.

Quote: William Shakespeare

"The fool doth think he is wise, but the wise man knows himself to be a fool."

Saturday, October 15, 2016

Quote: Imogen Cunningham, Ansel Adams, John Sexton

When asked what their favorite photograph is.

"The one I am going to make tomorrow."

Workshop Went Well

Had a good, fun view camera workshop yesterday. My student a professor at the University of Calgary risked life and limb driving North up a icy and dangerous highway 2 to Edmonton. He stayed at a local hotel overnight and will return to Calgary today Hopefully the roads will be safe and he will have a safe quiet drive home. The $150 earned will go directly back into my photography. I can use the money to pay part of the cost of the photo paper used to print the dad pics for the August 2017 Art Gallery of Saint Albert exhibition.

Note* Not sure if it will happen but a student from Montreal contacted me again (there was also contact several months back) about doing 2 darkroom workshops. It would be a long way to come and it might well not happen but she is checking flight costs etc.

You got to love how devoted some folks are to their photography. Imagine if she comes from Montreal to Edmonton, costs would include, air fare, hotel, meals, car rental and my workshop price times 2 (darkroom). That is a hell of a lot of money to be spending. Gosh I had better do a first rate job of teaching. If this ever happened I would want to make sure she got her moneys worth.

Got to love photography and the people who have a passion for it.