Photography Archives, page 3

About cameras and taking photos

The Golden Age of Air Travel

I was wrong. Turns out Virgin America doesn’t need a darkroom onboard for me to post film photos from the air—if they were taken on a previous flight! I’m presently headed to New York for business, but these were shot a few weeks ago en route to Indiana for my grandmother’s 90th birthday celebration.

Black and white photo taken in the air above SFO
In the air above SFO, just after take-off
Black and white photo taken in the air above scattered clouds
Scattered clouds somewhere over middle America

A study of power lines

There are some things I see in black and white that I’m oblivious to in color. I suppose that’s the whole point of this exercise. We’re so accustomed to seeing power lines cut across our fields of vision that the mind subconsciously photoshops them out. In a world of color, these thin black filaments are simply noise. But in a world of black and white, they’re all signal.

I noticed them in my first few analog photos, and found myself more enamored with the patterns and form of the lines than with whatever had been my erstwhile intended subject. Rather than avoid them, I’ve been explicitly seeking them out in my last few rolls of film. I had no idea how tangled the streets of San Francisco were with power lines (and their brethren: telephone and cable tv lines). Here’s a taste.

Birds on wires at 16th and Albion
Birds at 16th and Albion

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Inflight, black and white

I thought this would serve as a nice counterpart to my first and second inflight blog posts. However, until Virgin America provides both a darkroom and a negative scanner (in addition to wifi) on all their flights, I won’t be posting these from the air anytime soon.

Window seat shot taken with Leica M3 and Tri-X
Somewhere over the United States, en route to San Francisco

As an aside, this shot is from the first roll of film (#5) I’ve had developed since the camera and lens were CLA’d by Youxin Ye.

In other words, delayed gratification photography is back!

Leica blues

In the middle of my 3rd roll of film, I noticed a strange aberration showing up among my exposures. Occasionally, the left third of the frame was coming back badly overexposed.

Sample images of problem with Leica M3: left third of the frame gradually exposed
Sample overexposure aberration from roll 3

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Plymouth Valiant

In my past experiments with color-accenting, I started with a color digital photograph and desaturated the background. Given my recent entree into delayed gratification photography, I now have the opportunity to work in the opposite direction: selectively tinting a black and white photo with color. I realize it’s a cheesy gimmick historically reserved for red lips and roses, but it’s one I’ve found particularly compelling for cars and mailboxes.

1960s Plymouth Valiant
Early 60s Plymouth Valiant