Monday, February 17, 2020

Random shots of Old Town

I spent a morning walking around Albuquerque's Old Town with my Nikon F loaded with Ilford HP5+ which I rated at a stop lower than box speed.  I shot both the 50mm and 105mm lenses.

Processing in PMK Pyro showed nicely fine grain as with L110, but I thought the contrast was not as nice.  The action of the F is reassuring.  My only complaint is the shutter release which has a long throw and placement that is a bit far back.  I'm thinking one of those add-on soft releases is probably a good idea.

Monday, February 10, 2020

HP5 Seasoning

I bought a few rolls of Ilford's HP5 to shoot in my Nikon F and processed the first in L110 at 1:31 dilution. I'm impressed with the fine grain, but found adjusting the tonal range to be a little challenging. I'll try some different L110 dilutions, and maybe also some PMK Pyro as that gave me a good result before in my Kodak Monitor.

Nikkor-S-C Auto 1.4/50mm and +4 close-up

I picked up the HP5 partly out of irritation with Kodak and Fuji for their decision to jack up prices on their popular films.  The main result I can see is that the less expensive brands like Kentmere are suddenly hard to find.  It makes me wonder if Kodak and Fuji have misread the market, or if they are pursuing an effort to manipulate it.

Nikkor-P Auto 2.5/105mm

The Nikon F shutter seems to be working fine at all speeds.  I recently saw a complaint about Nikon F shutter/mirror noise, but mine is as quiet as any I have.  That makes me think the camera may have had a tune-up sometime in its sixty year career.  The good performance of this first of the line inspires me to spend some more time with the other three I have as well since the lenses work well on all of them.


Wednesday, February 05, 2020

The Mighty VUWS

The little Vivitar Ultra Wide & Slim has accounted for a disproportionate share of the photographs I have made in the last ten years.  Partly that is because the camera's diminutive size and light weight make it so easy to stuff in a pocket on the way out the door.  Beyond that, however, the radical wide angle lens also encourages more boldness in subject selection.  There is also the satisfaction of getting dramatic results from such a simple-seeming instrument.

Notes to self:
  • Remember to fully rewind the film before opening the camera back.
  • Consider "lemons to lemonade" spin.

Tuesday, February 04, 2020

Don McCullin just keeps on.

There is an extraordinary article featured today at Artnet about the landscape photography of Don McCullin, mostly known to the world as a war photographer.  He has never stopped making images on film, and for the current show of his work "McCullin selected the 70-odd works on view from some 60,000 negatives, and he personally printed all of them in his dark room at home."

The article includes a very good eight-minute interview on video.  Halfway through there is a quick shot of the medium format camera he uses for his landscape work.

(still from video)

McCullin's explanation of how he perceives landscape is inspiring.

Sunday, February 02, 2020

Nikon F

I picked up this Nikon F recently from Craigslist at a price good enough to where I could justify the purchase just for the plain eyelevel finder which I wanted to use on my F2.

As it turns out, the camera is in mechanically perfect condition sixty years after it was made.  I never thought I would have one, so I'm thrilled at the possibility of actually putting it to use.  I ran a quick test roll of Arista.Edu through the camera to verify my initial impressions.

Margaret has always had amazing hair.

Cate has turned eleven.
More to come.