26 Instax Packs - #10 - Skyblue Instax Mini Frame in Diana F+ with Lomography Instant Back. Wanting to shoot a pack film, but not knowing what to take photos of, I spent and hour or so at Codorus State Park on a pleasant Saturday afternoon with my Diana camera. I still need to work on getting the right expsosure and composition with this camera, but I do like the photos they look pretty sharp when they're right.
Week 18 - Painting En Plein Air. I had chosen to do this activity during the same week as Digital Collage for a contrast in working styles and also because I could work with one when I couldn't work with the other.
For the first time trying plein air painting, I packed up my French Field Easel which is usually set up as my studio easel, and helped Brenda get set up with another easel of mine. We headed out to Codorus State Park near the Mary Ann Furnace Trail where the overflow parking is located. There is an old barn there that Brenda made a painting of and I painted a distant hill with trees. I used an inexpensive water mixable oil paint set for the first time and found them stiff at first, but added in Acrylic gloss medium and they went on better. The weather was in the mid seventies, with sunny skies and swirly clouds. The sounds of nature and the occasional car passing on the road below with butterflies bouncing among the tall grass in the field, was also quite pleasant.
We had a couple of ladies out walking their dogs briefly stop to check on what we were painting. Nothing too traumatic, but one of my fears while out painting, that I might actually have to talk to a stranger about what I'm doing.
Setting up and taking down my French Field Easel was also problem free, thankfully. The time passed quickly and I thoroughly enjoyed the experience. Brenda had some difficulty painting with the easel I had put together for her, so after watching several plein air painting videos on YouTube and seeing different Pochade Boxes with their fancy straps and drawers, we set about making our own inexpensive Pochade Boxes out of wooden sketching boxes bought from A.C. Moore.
The process involved inserting 1/4 - 20 T-Nuts in the bottom of the boxes allowing them to be mounted on a tripod. We bought inexpensive wooden rulers and used screws to make a brace to keep the lids open while painting and added a bungie cord setup to hold our canvas boards in place while we painted. They fit quite nicely in a backpack with our tripods and other painting essentials. We tried them out on Sunday at another part of Codorus State Park and they worked quite well, though now we feel it is time to invest in better quality paints.
Now that I've experienced Plein Air Painting, it is definitely something I want to do more of this summer and fall. If I continue to enjoy painting en plein air, I may invest in a better quality pochade box, but for now this one is pretty cool.
Next up in Create-A-Thon 2017, a yearlong creativity exploration - Experimenting with Yupo Paper.
Week 11 - Winsor and Newton Pigment markers on Yupo paper. I have to admit I was not very inspired to work on this project this week. I was on vacation, but felt very unmotivated due to the snowy, cold, icy weather. When I scheduled this time off a few weeks ago, I anticipated having springlike weather as we've had in February, with plans of going outdoors for a few sketching trips and photo making. I instead indulged in some much needed down time including numerous naps, reading and watching YouTube and Craftsy videos under the cozy warm blanket on the couch surrounded by cats. Tomorrow I feel I will be able to jump back into my daily commute, full workdays, and evening creative sessions with renewed energy until my next vacation with Brenda coming up in May.
I managed to spend one afternoon working on a pigment marker drawing using a photo I shot last summer as reference. The photo was made at Codorus State Park using an OM10 camera with expired Portra 160NC film. The drawing was made on Yupo paper and that worked okay, but perhaps I'll use the Winsor and Newton Pigment Marker paper that I have at some other time when I feel like working with the markers again.
Next up in Create-A-Thon 2017 - painting with coffee and tea.
Week 10 camera is my newly acquired Nikon EM. I bought this recently from KEH Camera as I wanted to have a small Nikon Film SLR to carry in my bag for upcoming Spring outings to festivals, nature walks, and day hiking. I have a nice Nikon E Series 50mm 1.8 prime lens to use with it, and aside from manual focusing, I should be able to concentrate on framing up my photos instead of fiddling with the settings. The Nikon EM is a battery powered compact film SLR that features aperture priority semi-automatic exposure control. It was designed for beginners wanting to purchase an inexpensive interchangeable lens camera. Though not highly successful in it's time, the Nikon EM and Series E lenses are a good price/performance value in the used market. I purchased this bargain rated camera for $14 from KEH Camera and had previously purchased the Nikon Series E 50mm 1.8 pancake lens for $49 from Ebay. The lens of course, can be used on other Nikon cameras, of which I have two others.
When I pick out a camera for the week, I like to carry it with me and just get random photos of whatever Brenda and I might doing that week. This week was hard, my father passed away and we were having his visitation and memorial services over the weekend. But I needed to try to be doing the things that I enjoy to ease the emotional, exhausting time that our family was going through. Some of these photos will be a reminder of this time when I look at them in the future, as is the case with almost every photo that I take. Most of the photos on this roll were taken on a nature walk at La-Ho trail at Lake Marburg, in Hanover, PA the day after my father's memorial service. It was a beautifully sunny day which was comforting and gave me something to look forward to - the coming warm and sunny weather of Spring and Summer.
I cross-processed the film in a Unicolor C-41 kit from Film Photography Project and scanned the negatives with an Epson V500 Photo flatbed scanner. I like the amber cast that came through on some of the nature shots and also the coloring on the photos of the abandoned buildings, giving them a sepia antique photo quality. Only minor adjustments were made to the negative scans, using the levels adjustment in Photoshop to pick out the lightest and darkest parts of each scan. I would like to try this camera and lens with the expired Portra 160 NC film that I have and also with black and white film.
I really wanted to get out yesterday and shoot some instant photos with my newest instant camera, the Lomo'Instant Wide. I've haven't shot with it extensively to get a feel for the camera and I thought I could try using the close-up lens and the Lomography Splitzer. I had also packed two other cameras, my Holga WPC 120 and my handy Pentax Q10 mirrorless camera. I spent a good bit of time by the lakeside trying to capture some detailed photos of the shore debris and made a few mistakes, but that's how you learn the camera. I also took a walk out on one of the horse riding trails as there weren't any riders on such a chilly day. There's an area along the trail thick with tall needle-less pine trees that I've wanted to get back to take some photos. Here are a few samples from the afternoon.
A bonus camera for my 52 Cameras project this week - with my birthday cash, I ordered a Holga WPC 120 Camera that I had been wanting to get for a couple of years. I thought I should get one soon as I wasn't sure how long they would still be available at a reasonable price. I bought one from Lomography's online store seeing they still had them in stock at a much lower price than other places where it was still available. I thought I would try another roll of the 2002 expired Kodak Portra 160NC in it and brought it along this past Sunday when we went to Codorus State Park and Glen Rock, PA. The camera is capable of shooting 6x9 or 6x12 photos with two interchangeable masks and has an f/135 pinhole, requiring the use of a tripod and a shutter release cable. I have been very impressed with the ultra wide photos that can be achieved with this camera, with some great examples being found on Flickr. After finally shooting with it myself, I can see that I need to try to come up with more interesting angles and subject matter and get in closer. Next time I will use my old standby, Shanghai GP3 100 Pan film developed in caffenol.
Film developed in Unicolor C-41 Kit purchased from Film Photography Project store and scanned with Epson V500 Photo.
For week six of 52 Cameras - 52 Weeks, I have a camera that's been on my shelf for a very long time, the Imperial Mark XII 620 film camera. It is a plastic camera made in the 1950's by the Herbert-George Co. in Chicago and was made in various colors. It makes 6x6 photographs using a fixed-focus, single shutter speed, single aperture lens. I respooled Lomography Redscale 100 film as, according to a blog post I read on the Film Photography Project website, February is Redscale Film month. I found that shooting with redscale film with this camera requires lots of light, best to shoot with plentiful sunshine to get the best photos. I shot a few of the photos of favorite subjects on my daily commute home from my job in Baltimore, MD. The Prettyboy Dam is not too far off my journey home, I've made a quick side trip there on many occasions to snap photos with other cameras. The daylight was running out on the day I was there, and the photos I shot didn't turn out as well as they could have. I also have a favorite cemetery angel that is along the roadway at a country church that I pass each day, she has been the subject of many camera and film tests over the years.
For the remainder of the photos, Brenda and I packed a backpack picnic and headed out to Codorus State Park on Sunday with the intention of hiking the La Ho Trail around Lake Marburg, but upon arriving we thought the better of it with the muddy conditions from the recent snow melt. We ate our backpack picnic by the lake and then drove out to Glen Rock, PA to grab some photos of the town. There is also a place called Ruins Hall with lots of graffiti that I saw previously when we rode through Glen Rock on the Steam Into History train from New Freedom, PA.
The film was processed using a Unicolor C-41 kit from the Film Photography Project store and scanned with Epson V500 Photo.
I finally went outside to try some outdoor sketching at Lake Marburg over at Codorus State Park on Saturday. I found a picnic table underneath a shade tree by the shore and started creating my sketch. I began with a light pencil drawing and then drew in the basic line art with a Pigmamicron pen. I had my pocket watercolor set with me and decided to try out the new flat waterbrush I had just gotten. I was using a larger sketchbook than I normally carry and thought the wider waterbrush would be better suited for the larger watercolor sketch. Once I started adding the watercolor I had to work fast so that it didn't dry before I could drop in some other colors. I found the waterbrush worked pretty well for me but eventually I want to experiment with tube paints, palettes and larger brushes. I liked the process of creating an outdoor painting, the weather was beautiful and it was very relaxing to focus on the sketch. I want to try more of this to see if I want to invest in a Plein Air setup.