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Showing posts from August, 2018

Coffee Stop Fix

This is the first of several posts about a project I am pursuing at the moment. A week ago my father, brother and I had a family and friends gathering in memory of my late mother. I decided to make portraits of all the guests with my TLR Seagull camera loaded with 6x6 120 type film.
The project coincides with me wanting to develop my b&w films at home. I decided that the Caffenol method suited me. It's cheap and more friendly to the environment than regular developers.
Caffenol developer consists of a mix of instant coffee, pure vitamin c and pure soda. The stop bath and fixer are the conventional ones.
You mix the ingredients in normal temperature and no special arrangements are necessary.
I use a dark bag to load the film onto the spool which is then sealed inside the Paterson developing tank.
You can find the Caffenol recipe on the dedicated website.

My first film - one with photographs that aren't dear to me - came out a bit dark. But reading on forums that seems norm…

Prakticalities

I took the Cosina/Praktica CX-1 for a test run a while ago. It's a viewfinder/zone focus camera with auto-exposure or shutter priority option. The camera model is the template for the original Russian Lomo camera which started the whole Lomography craze some years ago.



I don't know what I expected, when I set out to try it, but I'm a tad disappointed at the poor focus. It really appears to be a Lomography camera, even before it was pirated into the Lomo LC-A. With that in mind, the camera is good for capturing scenes from 3 to ten meters or so. The automatic exposure gives even results, even given very different light situations.



The camera is as small as an Olympus XA, but is otherwise not comparable to it. If you end up choosing between the two - choose the XA (or XA2)! It has focus (where and when you want it), a great lens, great exposure, backlight compensation...




Should you want to buy the Praktica/Cosina it's available in my Etsy camera shop!

Projected Portraits

Yesterday I began a project. Friends and relatives of my mother's came to visit at my father's place. I made portraits of most of the guests with my middle format TLR Seagull camera. My intention is to develop the films at home and then send the portraits as postcards to the guests.


I made something like 20 exposures on two films. The first is a Portra 160 - i. e. a colour film. The other one is a b&w Ilford 125. Both will be developed in Caffenol - a process I have yet to try. The Portra will in the process turn into a b&w negative.
The following step is to scan the negatives and turn them into printable png files.
I will document the process and publish it here on the blog.