Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Not the best day

When I started photo 1, I did well. I don't mean to brag, but I did. My first assignment brought some of my favorite pictures ever- that I've taken, I mean. I didn't have to try, put much effort in. Photo taking came so... easily. Everything flowed seamlessly. 

I don't know what changed between then and now, but it's not easy anymore. It's hard to develop my own stuff. I messed up the film, I mess up my prints... Now I have an assignment I can't even bring myself to complete. I hope this is just a phase, something I need to overcome. I'm so used to everything being easy and I need to actua
lly put some effort in now, so I'm running scared. I can get over it and learn, if that's all this is (which I think is the case). 

Turns out, I meant to post this a very long time ago. I didn't, obviously. Oh well. :)

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Blast from my awesome past.

So, in leu of losing all my photos- the originals, anyway, I set about today taking back pictures from places I'd posted them on the internet. Some facebook albums here, photobucket there, and maybe a live journal or two in between. I also had some on CD's, though not nearly as many as I'd have liked. I found a couple today I took not long ago, though it was before I'd ever taken a class in photography. I really like them, though. Borderline love, actually. 

Oh, and if you were wondering who this little cutie is, her name is Miss Kitty, or that's what I call her, anyway. She's my cousin's kitty (she calls her Dee Dee, but I like my name better). She's the cutest thing since little baby Jesus.

Friday, September 19, 2008

A lesson for you.

No picture today. Why, you ask? Well, I learned an important lesson today. When you have important files, do not, I repeat, do not, trust any single amount of technology to keep them. Back. Them. The. Hell. Up. Seriously. I'm a primarily digital photographer, and most of my stuff wasn't backed up. My computer crashed and it's all... gone. I had folders of categorized photos, special entries I had planned... but they're gone, too. 


I'm in mourning, for a time.

I'll be back soon, though. I have to chronicle my first time developing actual film. Sound terrifying? Oh, well it was. 

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Be strong, Believe.

Knock knock.

"who's there?"

September 11th.

"September 11th who?"

You said you'd never forget.

I don't want to forget. Multiple times today I would have a moment of realization- Oh. Hey. It's 9/11. Damn. This is not a good day. Or rather, not to be remembered as such. One of the most atrocious things that has happened to our nation happened on this day- it happened in my lifetime. I remember where I was, what I was doing, what I was feeling. It was one of the most utterly terrifying moments of my life, and unequivocally more devastating for countless others- others that were hurt, or lost loved ones. The event didn't effect me directly, but it had an impact on me- on every American, I would think. It deserves to be remembered- those people especially, who sacrificed themselves to save others, deserve at least a moment of thought, care, and prayer. A silent thanks, for their immense courage.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Take control of the atmosphere.

It's been a while.

I've recently gotten into black and white photography- and not the easy "take a digital picture with your awesome new DSLR and edit it in iPhoto so it's black and white" way, but the old fashioned "use strictly b&w film in your dad's 30 year old completely manual camera" way. I swore by the first way a year ago but now I'm in love with the old-fashioned way. I have complete control over my shots- I decide how long the shutter stays open, how wide the lens opens- all me.

Today, I got another glimpse at how amazing that control over my photos is. Not only do I control how the image is taken, I can develop it- control how much light reaches the print, how contrasted it is- it's amazing. Today was my first day developing in the lab. I had to check out equipment- an enlarger (number 3 is mine), lens, filters for contrast, and a negative holder, among other things. I focus the image, use a test strip to find out how long I want to expose the paper to light and begin the developing process.

After I've turned on the light and exposed the paper to the image- I take it to the developer, place it in the liquid and give it "constant gentle agitation for 90 seconds." The best part of the 90 seconds happens between the 7th and 9th second- the white sheet of photo paper melts into an image, my image, a photo I took (like the one of Aidan, just above this. One second, nothing, and the next... I can see this one moment in time that I happened to capture on film. Nothing feels like it. I created that. I made it exactly what it is, and I couldn't be prouder.

My day was a little hectic at first. The first image I developed was nearly perfect which surprised me, I didn't think I would get it on the first try- no one else did. I showed my professor and she said I was free to go. We'd been in class for 45 minutes and had a little over 2 hours in the lab left, until the lecture at 5. So I picked up my film and came back to develop my own images. I spent 2 hours in that lab- testing the light, using different filters... creating images of people I love out of nothing at all. After a while, everyone had finished their images and had gone but I stayed. I had my iPod, the gentle tones of Andrew McMahon, Flyleaf, and The Shins to keep me company. I can't explain how wonderful it felt- being alone in a huge lab- I could have developed till I dropped... and I did. And I felt full, accomplished. It was a good day to be alive.