Thursday, July 19, 2018

I made some sawdust

In my cleaning out drawers and cabinets a few weeks ago...I came across a box of 2.25 x 3.25 film and a handful of film holders.
In order to utilize this cache, I decided to build a simple pinhole box, because you know you can never have enough pinhole boxes right?

The above is the first test shot out of it.

 And this shot is a vertical. I made both of these by sitting the pinhole box on the bumper of my truck...and as you can see I needed to aim upwards a bit. but bumpers being bumpers, there was no such adjustment.

I didn't put a tripod socket in this box and may not...I kind of like having it uber simple.

I'll post some pix of the box tomorrow.

Oh, the film was 100 speed Arista, dunked in caffenol for eight minutes.

Sunday, July 15, 2018

Life and Lemons...

It's been a tough week...
I had two the same time, and only one spare....that was a challenge. All good now!

Then I stubbed my toe and tripped and fell and dinged my knee up pretty bad....I'm hobbling along, but getting better...

And the photo above was made in a neat little Zenit E camera that stopped working after I unloaded the film yesterday. 
(I took a short jaunt out to Tucumcari for a day, so that was a nice treat.)

Plus, I had the ISO set at 400, when in fact the film was 100 speed Agfa I gave it a little push in caffenol to save the day! 

Last Friday was the 13th, and although I'm not the superstitious type, this recent chain of events has caused me to wonder...  

have a great week everyone. Stay cool and thanks for stopping by.

Wednesday, July 4, 2018

the 4th

another year of independence....
this is too deep for me to even write about, so I'll just leave you with a quickie shot made out the window of my truck while cruising around last week...
Vivitar Wide and slim, (in truth, a clone version named Olive San made by Superheadz).
Kodak Tri x dunked in know, my usual...


Sunday, July 1, 2018

Underwater in the Back yard...or how I found Atlantis

a silly somewhat perplexing title don't ya think?

I found an old Polaroid back with some Fuji instant film in it while rummaging through a drawer the other day and this is the end result.

Fuji no longer makes color instant film in this size, and I didn't pay attention to see what shot number this was and set up my pinhole camera in the back yard, put the film back on the camera and made this...
I don't meter, I just pretend to be the emulsion and wait, and watch and listen and wait some more, then when I feel like the emulsion has had enough, I stop the exposure.

When I first pulled the backing paper off and saw the result, and after realizing this was the last shot in the pack, it struck me as looking like it was an under water scene.

Which I like since there's not much water around here.

There are people that live just north and also south, and then east and west of me that haul water because their wells have gone dry, so it's quite a contrary thought of being underwater here....

Friday, June 29, 2018

the practice runs...

They say practice makes perfect.
I'm not sure who "they" are, but sometimes practice will make you crazy.

I've lately been dinking (scientific term for aimlessly experimenting) with artistamp sized pinhole shots.

They're made by hand cutting a piece of photo paper small enough to fit inside a 35mm camera. I have an old wreck of a Pentax k1000 I made a pinhole body cap for to do this.

It's a slow process because, it's load, expose, then unload, reload, expose and so on.  Not a fast process, but pinhole isn't fast so it suits me.
Here are couple of samples:
 This one was a bit overexposed so it solarized...this was on Harman Direct Positive paper, so what you see it what you get right out of the camera after developing. I use caffenol, so it has a slight stain to it.

Here's another one I over exposed and it kind of flipped out. I like it though. It reminds me of some kind of apocalyptic snowstorm.

this one is just a mess, but I'm putting here mainly so I can go back and retry it....

these are all small, just the size of a 35mm film frame.

anyway, a work in be continued.

Wednesday, June 27, 2018

lunacy returns...

the truth is, it never left!

I'm an amateur astronomer and often make photos of the night sky.
In the past, that has meant using my Pentax K1000 on a tripod to make quick snaps of interesting conjunctions of the planets with the Moon or nightscapes.
I've also made countless digital images of the Milky Way and star fields that I like to look at.

For the past few years I've been making what I call "loonies".

I hand trim a piece of Harmon Direct positive photo paper to fit in a 35mm film camera, then hold it up to the eyepiece of my telescope and make a lunar portrait.
They are each one of a kind since the Moon is an always changing dynamic body.
Harmon Direct Positive makes as you see below, a positive print. It's a favorite of pinhole photographers because it's a slow emulsion and eliminates the step of making a contact print. 

Load, expose, develop, and viola, a print as you see here.

When the Moon is near full, like it was last night, the exposure is one second long.
When it is full, the exposure will be 1/2 second.

Last night I made this one.

I like it. To flatten them after drying I stick them in heavy books, and sometimes forget one, so it's a great surprise to serendipitously have one fall out in my lap when I open one of those books and find a forgotten "loonie".
Life is good.!

Monday, June 25, 2018

Vivitar Ultra Wide and Slim...again and again, I just like the little things...

So here I sit going through files and files of photos on my computer and realize that the Vivitar Wide and Slim is probably my most used camera along with various pinholes, Holgas, and of course my much loved disposables.

It's a simple little plastic box, with a single speed shutter and an uber wide 22mm lens. No controls, just point, compose, click, and you are done.
I like that! The photo above was made from the passenger seat.
Many of my shots are done this way because I like the feeling of the road passing by and making occasional snaps when I get the urge. 

Here's another snap made at a recent car show. For such a small piece of plastic wonder, the camera has a relatively sharp lens.

Another shot made from the passenger seat. This was one of those days I wished I'd loaded color, but black and white is my habit, and since I use home-brew caffenol to develop my films, it's likely to remain my first choice. 

Occasionally I get a shot that kind of makes me shake my head because it looks like it might have been made with a better camera than a simple box with a single speed shutter and no aperture control lens.

I could go on and on and load pages of photos made with the little Vivitar, but you get the idea. It's easy to love a camera that  needs no batteries and is ready at a moments notice to hit the road!

Sunday, June 24, 2018


If you've spent any time at all reading this blog, then you know I love trees. I may not talk about them much, but they are an integral part of my photography.

I grew up in the piney woods of East Texas and spent countless hours walking, camping or riding horses in the woods there. 

We have beautiful forests here in New Mexico, but they are currently closed due to the extreme fire danger. It's the pits because I'm overdue for a good long walk in the woods.

In the meantime, here's a pinhole photo of some trees I know back home in Texas. 

Reality So Subtle Pinhole
Pan F film dunked in caffenol

Friday, June 22, 2018

First Days of Summer and a Black Sun

It's officially Summer, even though it's felt like summer for a few weeks...meaning it's been hot.
Summer is the perfect time for pinhole, lot's of good light and strong sunlight means stark contrast, and solarized suns like above.  

Photography rule books usually say to avoid noon time photography because the light is harsh, but since there are always exceptions and rules need to be broken, pinhole is just fine at noontime. Try it!
The above image was made with a Reality So Subtle pinhole camera in 6 x 6 format on some old Pan F film.
I really like this camera. It was made in France by aupremierplan on a CNC machine which I think is uber cool because it meshes a very old type of photography with an ultra modern way of making things.

It was developed in a homemade caffenol developer Delta recipe for 8 minutes.  

Saturday, June 16, 2018

more disposable fun

This is the closest thing to a selfie I make... like most photographers, I don't really like being in front of the camera.

This was made at Prada, Marfa near Valentine. Texas.

 This is a funky art's not a walk in store.

Behind the store is a wire panel fence that passersby have put locks on.

Maybe this should just be filed under strange things seen in the desert....these were hanging on the fence on the south side of the Prada building...when I passed by here a week later they were gone.

 Valentine, Texas is quite the metropolis....maybe for Roadrunners and horned lizards perhaps...not so much for people.

all photos made with a Rollei disposable camera I reloaded with Arista Premium 400 film and then sloshed about in caffenol for 8 minutes.

Tuesday, June 12, 2018

There Be Aliens in these parts...

It's always a pleasure to come upon random art out in the middle of nowhere....


Wednesday, June 6, 2018

Respectfully quiet and serene

Holga Wide pinhole with Fuji Acros 100
This old cemetery on a hill in nearby Cerrillos is one I think is typical of what an old wild west cemetery should look like, It's tucked away off the main road and overlooks miles and miles of New Mexico mountains. It's a nice day trip from Albuquerque if you like this sort of thing..

Sunday, May 27, 2018

On the Way to Somewhere

Foggy pinhole dash photo.
Pinhole printed Flyer camera.
Fuji Across 100
Sloshed in caffenol for 8 usual poison.


Sunday, May 20, 2018

Alive and Well in the Desert

I'll always be a desert dweller, even though the dryness makes my fingers crack and bleed and my bones's where I like to be.
I made a little trip to big ol' Texas a few weeks ago and spent some time looking far south toward Mexico where the sky is endless and the silence goes on for a hundred miles.

I call these yuccas "witchdoctors" ...they just look so surreal and each one has a personality all its own.
Reality So Subtle 6 x 6 pinhole camera with some 100 speed Ultrafine film sloshed about in caffenol.
It's what the doctors ordered.....

Wednesday, May 16, 2018

The Road to Guadalupe

Besides pinhole and my Holga...I do love a disposable camera! It fits in my pocket, I don't worry about it getting nicked and it just feels right when I'm riding shotgun on a road trip through west Texas.
I don't worry about settings, or fidgeting with dials.
I just point and shoot. Freedom in a plastic box.
Wonder what Mr. Fox Talbot would think?

Saturday, April 28, 2018

Vertical is the new Black

that's a ridiculous thing to say....

I'm in a funky mood, not coughing, feeling a bit of melancholy with the weather being a bit damp, and finding a dead rabbit in the front yard this it's been an odd day. 

Here's a wee photo of an alleyway in Cheyenne, Wyoming from last summer.
Shot with a disposable camera that I had reloaded with some tri x.
I like reloading disposables. it's work, but then no one is going to mug you for a cheapie crap disposable camera when you are out and about looking like a tourist...even when you are not a tourist.

This particular camera is a Rollei. Yeah! Fancy that! It was made in china like all the billions of other disposables out there but badged with a Rollei sticker and originally loaded with bona-fide Rollei film. 
Anyway, I don't judge. I just push the shutter button at things that I like.


Friday, April 27, 2018

Mint Watermelon

I'm not sure how (or why) marketers and makers of tea come up with such uncanny combinations...but it's really no matter since I wanted the tin to make a pinhole camera out of for Sunday, April 29....World Pinhole Day!

I think the tea can be used as part of a developing brew/concoction for the paper negative I plan to use.

I'll test it out tomorrow in hopes of being ready for the big day on Sunday.

The stuff does smell pretty good, I'm almost ashamed to admit. far as the bronchitis is going...I'm on the other side of the fence with it now. Meaning I spend more time breathing like a normal person and not hacking my head off coughing as I have been the past weeks. Thanks for the concern! x

Thursday, April 26, 2018



I'll spare you the gory details and just post a nice little photo of a road i like to travel on. It goes to Mexico and is 54 miles of dirt, fence-lines, antelope, roadrunners, lizards, buzzards and Border patrol...

I made this with one of my old Holgas and some Tri-x and then sloshed it in caffenol. 
As you can see, the camera has a little light leak which I need to make sure I put some gaffer tape on the camera next time I use it to avoid this 'ghost' .

don't forget pinhole day is April 29!

Thursday, April 19, 2018

I Love Grass and grasslands, but the stuff just might undo me!

If you know me at all, then you know how much I love grass and grasslands. Also trees. Trees make me weak at the knees...but also make me weak from coughing tree pollen. Mercy!

This particular spring has been near lethal as far as allergies go. I have coughed in fits for the past two weeks and have seriously considered installing a drip faucet at the bottom of my diaphragm and on the side of my nose...yes, it's that bad! I sleep sitting up and then walk around like a zombie during the day due to sleep deprivation.

I haven't been out with the camera in a week, although I did order some film, and I've watched more than my fair share of daytime television.
Lucky I have streaming and have seen some interesting shows.
Namely one that was about the Camino de Santiago. It's a walk I've always wanted to do and since discovering there's a short version that goes through Portugal up through just might be doable. The show was called "Life in a Walk". The scenery is nice and there's some nice father /son moments.

Enjoy your day! 
Above photo was a Holga shot with some old Kodak Color

Wednesday, April 18, 2018

Simple things...

Spider Rock, Arizona
Canyon de Chelly
Holga, Tri-x, caffenol

Saturday, April 14, 2018

pinhole day is on the approach

World Wide Pinhole day is on April 29!
That's right, so grab your favorite pinhole and have some fun.

My plan is to use a little tin can I found at the dump and make just one photo. I'm going to use photo paper so the exposure will be fairly slow, which I like because it gives me time to just enjoy the scene while the paper collects the photons.

The photo above was made sometime last year of a nice tree model I met in Oklahoma.

Tuesday, April 10, 2018

Flowers and Color aren't really my thing....

No, flowers and color aren't really my thing...but Spring has sprung and it's time to livin up the place a bit.

This is from a saunter around Old Town Albuquerque last weekend after a little film users get together hosted by  the New Mexico film users group

I had my quirky yet productive Zenit E and a helios 44m-4 lens with some old Kodak Gold 200.

the film could use a little more punch, but it is what it is as they say. 
I've never figured out who "they" are so I'll leave it at that.

Wednesday, April 4, 2018

pecking order

Just playing around with the Zenit E and a Helios lens held up to some old clunker binoculars I found for five dollars.

It's fun to goof around and try different things making photos.
It was more fun to see all these birds perched on each little stick up on this old snag down at the refuge....
It was more interesting to watch the bigger bird perch on the highest point....nature does have its order.

There's still wonder in the world!

Monday, April 2, 2018

Bosque Abstracts

no details on these, just enjoy the scenery....

Right place, right time....

Rarely do I happen to be in the right place at the right time, but my recent foray to the Rio Grande Nature Center in Albuquerque proved to be a lucky day!

Usually when I'm bird watching, or in this case goose watching, I'm too involved looking at birds and not making flying portraits of them.

This is my rare photo of a close up of birds in action!

Zenit E with Industar lens 50-2.  Delta 100 film dunked in caffenol! 



Saturday, March 31, 2018

then this happened...

Yes, this was made while driving down I-40. I wasn't driving, so everything is cool.

This was made with a Zenit E and an Industar  50-2 lens. The camera and the lens are Russian made and quite industrial as has been written before in other blogs.
The thing is I like them both. They are each no nonsense and just get the job done in a no frills way that I rather like. 

The camera came from a fellow filmwasting friend in the UK, and the lens came from Kiev, via the online auction site we all use.

I bought the lens March 9 and it finally arrived yesterday...seems it sat in the Customs bin in Los Angels for two weeks....?
It's a very small lens, that some refer to as pancake...yeah, it's that petite...kinda like a little Disney princess. 

The film was Ilfrod Fp4, which is a dream to use because it is fine grained, develops easy in caffenol, dries, then lays flat in the scanner.  Truly a girls best friend!

The only hiccup with this camera is it has a knuckle busting rewind knob, and if you don't totally disengage the film for rewinding, the camera is notorious for breaking the film.

I only split mine in one place while rewinding so I feel pretty good...and to think this was not my first time using the camera. I'll just have to be more cautious in the future.

Friday, March 30, 2018

Out and About

This is a literal cut and pasted together photo made with three vertical shots from my Ansco Pix panorama camera and Kodak Portra 160.

It's a viewpoint made from Elena Gallegos Open Space just north of Albuquerque. This is looking southwest toward the city. It's a lovely area and one I had never been to before.

 As you can see the day was quite nice with crystal blue skies and ribbons of contrails streaming overhead.

Here's a vertical landscape of the same scene just for fun!

 Finally, a photo with the Sandias in the background. I think this place is well suited to return visits throughout the seasons as the colors will be nice as spring and summer, then fall progress.
Next time I'll use some Kodak Gold or maybe some Ektar as I think that will show a truer color.
I like Portra, but maybe not so much for landscapes...

Wednesday, March 28, 2018

Think Spring...

Here we are in Springtime.
I should have used a bit more saturated color film, but since I was testing a new to me Zenit 122, Kodak Gold 200 was handy, so that's what this is.

The Zenit came from a friend in the UK along with a Pentacon  f/1.8  50mm lens.

The lens doesn't get rave reviews online, but I'm not one to put much stock in reviews because everyone has different ideas of performance and styles of shooting.
For me, if the lens works, has mostly clear, unscratched and anti-fungal glass, I am a happy camper.

I'm going to go out again tomorrow with this setup and try some more intense color....maybe even some cross process slide film for extra pizzazzness. 

No, that's not a real word...but it could be one day.
At least if will have more of a chance once I get the pizzazz color I'm hoping for.

Monday, March 26, 2018

My, what big grain you have.....

I like a bit of grain in my diet.....
This is what I'd call "whole grain".

Kidding aside, this is from a Zero Image 2000 pinhole camera 
(which I like a lot) using a roll of Lucky 120 film that a friend sent me to try out.
Mercy!  She warned me about the grain, but wow.

This was dunked in the Delta caffenol recipe for 7.5 minutes. I'm not sure if conventional developer would have tamed the grain or made it even more "wholesome".

I have a few more shots from the roll to share in a day or so.

Did I mention the emulsion is curlier than Shirley Temple's hair....
It was quite a challenge to get this stuff to behave on the scanner....curling lengthwise and side to side. 
Not fun. I may have said a few curse words...

Thursday, March 22, 2018

Winter to Spring

A pinhole solargraph set out for the three months between Winter solstice and Spring Equinox.

The streaks on the left side of the frame were left behind by the daily Sun tracks.

The mottling and speckles are water marks and bits of debris left by condensation inside the little pinhole camera from being outside for so long. 

Every time I look at this, I see something different.. 
What do you see?

As always, thanks for stopping by.

Tuesday, March 13, 2018

other distractions....

You may have noticed I changed the title of this blog, and added "other distractions" to it.

While I do have a big heart for all things pinhole, I also have a lot of love for many other cameras, especially the Vivitar Wide and slim.
It's a small unpretentious thing and it's usually with me on road trips or just in the truck riding around, just in case. 

With all that, here's another wide and slim photo of an old state boundary line marker.
This one is up in the far northeastern corner of New Mexico where it meets with Oklahoma and Colorado.

Delta 100 film sloshed in home-brew caffenol.
Thanks for stopping by! 


Monday, March 12, 2018

something different....not pinhole

The Railyard in Albuquerque is not open to the public, except for market days on weekends.
It's often used as a movie set and has been used in the Terminator franchise. 
The light is amazing, yet a challenge to get on film with a simple little camera like the Vivitar Wide and Slim that I used for this photo.
The joy of using a simple camera is no one really pays much attention to it, so I was somewhat free to wander about to make a few snaps during my last visit there. 
I want to do pinhole here, but hauling a tripod around draws attention and that's not what I want to any cost.
Perhaps later this summer, I will figure out a way to do pinhole using available things already there to offer a stable "tripod" of sorts for the minutes long exposures needed.
In the meantime, if you happen to be in Albuquerque and have a chance to visit the old Railyards during market days I highly recommend it. 
You will find home baked goods, fresh farm raised produce, hand crafts, art and a Goose that tells fortunes! 

P.S. this was done with Delta 100 film, sloshed about in caffenol.

Sunday, March 11, 2018

something newish...

Yes, it's been a few days since I posted.
I've had an ear thing, ache, infection...but that's no excuse.
Here's a pinhole, made when my ear felt better.

Tuesday, February 20, 2018

a little tree with some miniature ruins...

Found this while looking for something else in my negatives...
This one from a Harman Titan 4 x 5 pinhole.
It's not my favorite camera, but it is nice that it is waterproof and easy and light to carry around.

Paper negative sloshed around in caffenol for a bit, then dried and scanned and reversed and there you have it. 
The ruins are not miniature by any means.
They are at Fort McKavett, Texas-an old frontier fort.

another day, another pinhole

This is a test shot made with a 6 x 6 Reality so Subtle pinhole.
It's a neat camera that has two pinholes on the front, one above the other that makes it possible to shoot normal, and to shoot things that are taller as I have done in the photo above.

This photo was made with the normal setting pinhole so it has more foreground in the frame. The camera was not moved or changed. Only the lower pinhole was used for this.

It's a neat setup and one that can be used to advantage in many scenes depending upon how you want the outcome to turn out.
In the case of trees, it's going to be a handy feature when I want to show some of the height and personality of certain trees.