Friday, September 01, 2017

Projecting Projects

Although I knew about the expected eclipse on August 21 (it was partial here, about 94% coverage) I had not made plans for it due to the inundation of prepping for our travels.  I figured I might pick up viewing glasses at a local store at some point, but didn't write it down, so I didn't get out before the glasses were gone.  As a result, I spent a little time on the 20th creating different eclipse projectors based on the instructions for NASA.

I actually had a fun time playing with boxes, tape, and foil... I made several sizes so that we could test each one and decide which combination of box/hole size worked the best.  I discovered that the smaller the box, the smaller the hole needed to be in order to get a sharp image.  Also, while the largest box made the largest projection, it was also further away from our eyes.  

In the end, the cereal box was everyone's favorite.

We had meandered down to the lake to watch the eclipse and came across some natural eclipse projections along the way.  Also, our neighbors shared their viewing glasses with us, so we were all able to view the eclipse in various ways.  It made for a fun science filled morning.

I've been listening to the Film Photography Project podcast while working, which sometimes will prompt/inspire/instigate me to dig around in my gear and look at my old gear.  My most recent digging brought out my Polaroid Land camera, which uses pack peel-apart film.  I hadn't realized that I still had several boxes of no-longer-manufactured Polaroid film, which can be used for emulsion lifts.  Fuji makes* replacement pack film, but their emulsion lifts like a plastic transparency, rather than a gooey emulsion that adheres the way Polaroid does.
*thinking about emulsion lifts led me down a rabbit hole on the internet where I discovered that Fuji has also stopped making pack film, and the Impossible Project has no plans to re-make pack film, but I found an online darkroom supply store that apparently plans on remaking the pack film.  I wrote to them to ask about it, they say they are "still on it".  So, fingers are crossed that my camera will not become entirely obsolete after I finish my current film packs.

Scrapbooking!  I made progress!  Significant progress!  I'm all the way up to mid-November 2004 in the ephemera album and cruising!

More film photography! 
As I see that we are on the brink of a weather turn, I thought it would be nice to take advantage of the still-warm summer days and have a family outing.  We all needed the fresh air and change of pace, I think.  I did some reading and researching and found a location that was a ferry ride away (which feels like a mini-vacation) had minimal parking and facilities (which means less crowds) and lovely views on Puget Sound.  As I wandered the length of the beach working pinhole scenes, D meandered around taking some photos of his own (and discovering hidden pieces of art along the trail) while G kept herself occupied playing with her own camera and her guitar.  
Shot with my Graflex Pinhole, 3 second exposure, Ilford Delta 100

I came away from the outing with 2 rolls of 120 B&W, 2 rolls of 120 E-6, and one roll of 35mm panoramic B&W.  While I want to concentrate on larger format, I have a drawer full of 35mm film that needs to be used or tossed, and considering the variety of cameras I have to play with... it seems a waste to toss it.  So I've resolved to take a 35mm camera with me just about everywhere I go.
As for my shooting, the B&W looks to be properly exposed and developed, although I'm still getting some strange grains on my film every so often (not every frame, just once in a while)  My E-6 is off to the lab and I will pick that up next week.  My fingers are crossed on that, because although I did calculate the reciprocity correctly this time, my lightmeter was set to 100 instead of 50 for the initial exposures.  However, ISO 50 reading was only about a half second off ISO100, and every exposure was a guesstimate 2-3 seconds, so it's not precisely scientific anyway.  

My super-secret project is coming along, I've made it past a couple of roadblocks and set aside a couple of ideas that are just not panning out.  My plan is to get those completed soon so that I can then concentrate on my Halloween costume.  

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