Praktica at Twilight

I have been shooting with my Ilford sportsman recently with the intention to use it in Tokyo to shoot my final pieces, however I thought it would be best to take a back up camera just in case one gets stolen lost or breaks. So I opted for my second favoured film camera, My Praktica, it used to belong to my mum but she gave it to me when I gained an interest in photography. I used it a few times in first year but have rarely used it since.

However to my surprise I found it a lot better to work with, and more realiable that the ilford. Using my iPhone light meter app, I learned from the last 3 shoots I have done and took the reading so the vibrant lights were at level 5. The images and colours are a lot better than the ilford ones, the camera and myself just work better, it is less clunky and has more option for adapting. I also love the light glare it creates, something which the ilford does not.

I will now be using the Praktica as my primary camera and the ilford as my back up. I am also very impressed with the accuracy of the light meter app on my phone but will take a normal light meter to Tokyo as backup.

Gosford @ Twilight

With my research well on its way I decided it’s time to also put myself out there and start producing images as part of my development. I have discussed before how I will be using a 35mm film camera for this project because its vernacular transfers so well to the photographers I have been researching and their use of reality and fantasy. I have been collecting film cameras for a while, just picking them up in charity shops, more for the history of the camera than actually using it. This one is special to me, my parents found it in a charity shop and bought it home for me, when I was looking at the history of the Ilford Sportsman I discovered that this particular model was produced in 1963 the same year as my mum was born. I instantly took a liking to it and have played around with it before, Ideally this will be the camera I use for my final project mainly because I enjoy the process of making images on it and I have a this family connection.

I decided the best thing to do would be practicing with it first, my film camera skills are limited and I need to get myself out of the mind frame of a digital user, I need to be considering each image, and take enough care and have enough confidence in myself to know the images will come out. I decided to shoot at twilight so that I could begin to explore the hyper-reality i’ve been exploring in my research. I also know my final piece is going to be city based and lit only by the twilight sun and the neon lights of advertisements and signs. So I headed for the most fluorescent street in coventry at 6.03pm in the snow and began to shoot.

I am not particularly happy with any of them. The 1st, 2nd and 4th images are getting there in regards to the colours, light and atmosphere it just needs fine tuning and I need to be able to produce better versions of these images on demand so when in Japan I know I will not wast my opportunity out there.

Mistake 1. Not taking a tripod to shoot during twilight.
Mistake 2. Using really cheap film
Mistake 3. Not working to my strengths, I should have taken the image on a digital camera first then taken the readings from that rather than working with a light meter.
Mistake 4. Non-consistant, Some images look as though they were shot at night, others in the day and some during sunset. I need to maintain the right exposure when making my images. They will be a series after all and need to have some similarity.

All these mistakes I hope to work on over the weekend, I will go and shoot 2 more rolls making sure I use a tripod and a digital camera as reference. However I cannot do too much about the film because it’s all I can afford if I am making this many minstakes. I will also start making portraits, and explore taking images inside during twilight too.

#PHOTOGRAPHY Issue 3

Issue 3 is Due for release in December 2012, for the mean time take a look at the cover & don’t forget to submit your work by 20th october.

Image by Beethy – http://beethy.deviantart.com/

www.hashtagphotographymagazine.com

Here’s a list of features and comps you can apply too…

Features:

“Photography Influenced by Art”

Art has influenced photography since its birth,
and although some people regard them as two
completely different mediums, we don’t. That’s why we
want to see your work that is influenced by art, or that
uses the techniques of a specific art movement.

“Toy Camera”

It is our belief that it doesn’t matter how much money
you have or how much your equipment cost you,
a talented photographer can produce interesting and
thought provoking images with even the cheapest of
cameras. So this is our challenge to you, using your toy
camera produce an image/aseries of images which prove
money can’t buy talent.

For anyone who isn’t sure toy cameras are simple
inexpensive film cameras, such as Holga or Lomo.

Competition:

“Story”

We love a good narrative at #PHOTOGRAPHY, for the
issue 3 competition we want you to take a line from your
favourite book and interpret it in an image/short series of
images. Submit your finished image to us along with the
quote it was based on and we’ll choose a winner 20th
October 🙂

Pinhole Day: My Digital Pinhole

Today is worldwide pinhole day, I have attempted pinhole photography before, but only ever in film, as much as I loved the process it took too long and was to stressful for something which is meant to be fun and different. So this time I decided to make a Digital Pinhole camera, without spending any money.

I used my Nikon D40x, cardboard, foil, a pin, scissors and electrical tape.

I cut out a piece of cardboard that would just cover the lens mount, this would be my lens, I then cut a square out from the middle of this lens.

to make it light proof i covered it in black electrical tape. I then cut a small piece of foil which covered the square hole, taped it over and pierced a hole in the centre with the pin. next I used electrical tape to fasten it to the camera, insuring there were no gaps.

I then set my camera to manual and began shooting.

augmentation of the human body

Wikipedia describes this as –

Human enhancement refers to any attempt to temporarily or permanently overcome the current limitations of the human body through natural or artificial means. The term is sometimes applied to the use of technological means to select or alter human characteristics and capacities, whether or not the alteration results in characteristics and capacities that lie beyond the existing human range.

The futurism movement was concerned with this, the human body can be enhanced by technology.

Here are some inspirational images on human enhancement

Believe it or not this is real, ‘Eyeborg’ is a man who has a camera for an eye.

read more about him here
or watch his video…
WARNING THERE AS SOME GRUESOME SCENES IN THIS VIDEO

These images and video have made one thing clear to me, do I take the clinical surreal approach? connoting the surroundings of a futuristic room/ surgery. Or do I take the documentary approach?

the more clinical approach could have a greater impact, but the documentary approach might suggest normality and the clock shows routine which could be a comment on how normal this will be in the future? I think I need to film some stuff and then ask people which one evokes a stronger atmosphere.

Roland Barthes – ‘Camera Lucida’

I purchased Roland Barthes book ‘Camera Lucida’ about 2 years ago, when I was feeling like I needed to know more about photography. I read it, well I say i did but most of it went straight over my head. This essay project is the perfect time to re-read the book and hopefully this time get a greater understanding of what Barthes was saying. I have found many people online during searches regarding self-representation online advising me to read this book as although it was published in 1980 is still relevant to Photography today. I will spend tonight and tomorrow reading the whole book and will constantly update this post with useful quotes, chapters, images and anything else that could apply to social media.

  • “The various distributions we impose upon it (photography) are in fact either empirical (professional/amateurs), or rhetorical (Landscapes/Objects/Portraits/Nudes), or else aesthetic (Realism/Pictorialism)” – chapter 2 – I’m interested in the Rhetorical idea, a profile picture is essentially a Portrait, this confused me to start with so when i found the rhetorical also meant to impress or persuade I realised that this is true of Display Pictures, they are almost like n advertisement of ourselves we put forward in order to impress people or persuade them to be friends with us.
  • “I am not a photographer, not even an amateur photographer: too impatient for that: I must see right away what I have produced”
to be continued…

How to make a pinhole.

After hours of searching and getting many different methods i found an easy to follow guide of how to make a pinhole.

http://www.staffordshire.gov.uk/NR/rdonlyres/350DE0F9-73F9-4EA1-8519-BDC7D589E288/56756/pinholecameraworksheet.pdf

So making my pinhole…

1) Finding an appropriate body
This Twinings tin seems right for my camera body. the metal is bound to be light proof and the casing is black. it will also produce nice sized images, polaroid-like.

2) Make it lightproof inside and out
*Black paint*Black Electrical Tape*

3) Make Pinhole

4) Make shutter. a flap to control the amount of time light is let in. Must be light proof

Add some decorations or whatever you want, and then you have a camera, simple and free.