Saturday, 22 March 2014

Dogs Dinner.

Well not quite, a dogs water bowl! There is no chance of it falling in his dinner because his head is in the bowl before it hits the floor. The film was more likely to become a chew.

I noticed that two film containers were sitting on the kitchen table. Thinking they were empty I picked them up to throw away, to discover that they were not. I opened one and out dropped a roll of exposed colour film. Butter fingers here managed to drop the roll of film! The consequence of these finger fumblings, was splash! straight into the dogs water bowl. My wife said that she had not seen me move that fast since my superman days. I need reminding, what superman days?

After a bit of dancing around to shake the water out, it was off to the local supermarket for development. An outlet we had not tried before. The film was also long out of date - nearly a decade. If it had not been for the fact I was on my way out I would have blacked out the darkroom and removed the film for drying. These things always happen when you're short of time.

As it turns out the water had destroyed nearly half the frames on a film of twenty four. The up shot of this was we only had to pay half the normal fee. There was also colour shift on some of the prints. This I put down to the water damage.

Am I disappointed? No! Not really, but I am with myself for the butter fingers, but not with the results we have, as neither of us could remember who, what, when or which camera was used in the first place. The big disappointment is with the quality of the processing and paper used. 

Monday, 10 March 2014

A mistake comes good

Developed normally
In a recent chat I had with another photographer, there was a lamenting the fact that he had not noticed a problem with his new pinhole camera; well not the camera but a bit of kit he was using with it. He is not the only one not to notice the little tell tail signs that things are not going well. I had the same sort of thing with the lith 200 process I was trying out for the first time. It was not until I started to use different makes of paper that the fault struck me. Up to that point I thought it was part of the process. It turned out that the box of Kentmere paper had been light contaminated (fogged),but when I could not remember.  At this realization two things crossed my mind, what a waste of a box of paper and dam! it is not a peculiarity of the process.

lith 200 Kentmere paper
I changed to a different paper and continued to produce prints. Using the
negatives I had selected for the trial with the lith 200. While I was doing this I had the idea that maybe the fogged paper could be used to creative affect. I chose some of the negs that may lend themselves to this and processed them accordingly. As the first result appeared in the developer, I started to question this creative wisdom as it looked rubbish, but then my perception changed when the photograph of the bottles on the window sill appeared. It did not look out of place, in fact it added to it a sort of early twentieth century feel. Maybe my idea wasn't such a bad one after all!.

lith 200 Forma paper
What I'm getting at is just because it has gone wrong there is no need to throw the baby out with the water so to speak! With a little lateral thinking creatively you can turn things round. Some of you may think I'm talking a load of rubbish ( I'm being polite) but it is surprising how often a mistake can come good.
lith 200 Kentmere paper