Friday, February 25, 2011

Please like us on Facebook

The deal with Facebook is that we need to get 25 people to like us to have a page like the one you will see if you click on "New55" on the right. Once we reach the magic 25 something happens, angels sing or some features become available, more likely.

Eventually there will be more content and chatter there, and links to other related projects. Right now it is just a few placeholders.

So if you have a moment, please click on that and click "like". If it turns out later you don't like it you can always click unlike. Also I believe you can like it, and then ignore it, so postings from Facebook's New55 page don't intrude upon your network socializing.

I see that FB is trying to add a high res gallery option, and at the same time I don't see Flickr well supported by FB - oh well that doesn't matter.


Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Thanks for the clips

So much fun to get a nice, well packaged collection of used but useful T55 sleeves and clips. Very much appreciated.

1010 Analog Photo Collectif

Someone at 1010 contacted me to ask about rejuvenating dried out T55. Apparently, they have a couple of old boxes.  Believe it or not, once, I used the pod (don't try this, and if you do, do this at your own risk, and only if you are qualified) from FP-100B45 and used it with the 55 materials. The negative will not be the same if you do, and you obviously have to perform this swap in total darkness. I copied and pasted links from their website above, and I look forward to exploring them.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

20X24 Studio

If you haven't taken a close look yet at 20X24 Studio's LARGE format instant images you should check it out here. Also here is a link to their Facebook page.

20X24 Studio Executive Director John Reuter has been managing the operation of this camera and others like it for decades, and the list of famous names who have used and continue to make images on the 20X24 camera seen here, is almost embarrassingly long, and has contracted the Mammoth Camera Company to make two new ones.  Here is the link to their facebook page.

The 20X24 Studio technical crew has been helping the embryonic New55 effort, and even made the introduction to The Impossible Project's Doc Kaps, who visited the New55 lab recently.

20X24 Studio is "The Home of Large Format Instant Photography".

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Old Film Find - T-Max 400 in a Yashica TLR

Just processed in R3, this found image was in a Yashica 635 that I picked up at a flea market a while back.  It is always a thrill to uncover a latent image.  I think the film was in the camera for a long while, and there was a lot of edge fogging, odd curling, and completely fogged sections.

The Yashica 635 twin lens reflex camera is a dual-format camera and as the number suggests, accommodates both 120 and 35mm film, with an adapter. Used often at waist level, the TLR takes that point of view and looks up at most subjects while the photographer looks down at the camera

Who are these people, and who owned this camera? A mystery.

Industrial supply/source metrics

While we are looking for a supply of 0.2-0.3mm (0.010") or thereabouts black, waterproof plastic, stiff and highly opaque.  Vinyl, acetate, HDPE, polycarbonate, PEEK, etc. Also, we need to find a similarly sized paper or fiber product, and that got me thinking:

You have to wonder about the metric system in photography. The earliest days of Daguerre and Fox Talbot were full, half and quarters - fractions of plates. The 4x5 and 8x10, 20X24 and more are all English. 35mm is obviously metric. (is it, really? You might be surprised) 6x6 and 2/14x21/4 coexist peacefully, if inexactly. When we say 6X7 we know that means cm and when we say 4x5 we know that means inches.

The inch, foot and mile are based on human scale. The Who "I can see for miles", Shakespeare's "pound of flesh" and the runflat tires on all new BMWs and Mercedes are permanently and immovably entrenched in the so-called Imperial system, which many loathe. Photography the art is cultural. Photography the science is industrial and technical. Our little corner of the art is perhaps even a bit historical, having an affinity with the past, being analog, and we might even say human scaled, as we are apparently not digital (base 2) beings. One could extend the analogy to the metric system, with its rigors of base ten, convenient, yes, but then consider: Does it apply itself as well to us, and what draws us to the analog in art, and in music?

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Artists & Alchemists - The movie

Pacemaker to Anniversary Graphic Adapter

I recently bought one of these adapters on ebay and I like it.  If you have an Anniversary Speed Graphic, it allows you to mount a Pacemaker-styled lensboard on it, provided the lens diameter and its retaining ring are no larger than the hole.  Two chromed metal clips latch down on the metal Pacemaker board and hold it securely.  The tips of the clips do make little scuff marks where they touch the metal lensboard, but they are minor.

It works very well.  I don't know who produced the adapter or if it is still in production.

Lens adapters are numerous and common. There seem to be hundreds of different lens adapters to put Mamiya medium format lenses on Nikons and Canons, and lots of Four-Thirds and Micro Four-Thirds adapters.  Most of the time with these adapters you lose automatic autofocus and aperture controls.  That's not the case with the Speed Graphic and other completely manual cameras.

robert e said...
Hi Bob, It may be helpful to mention that this adapter will also mount on the Burke and James Press, Wisner, some MPP, Graphic View, and indeed any camera that uses 4 inch square (101mm) lens boards and can accomodate the 3.5"x3.6" lip on the inner face. (The lip is around 1/8" thick.) This was produced for the Graphic View II, according to this article:

Saturday, February 5, 2011


...but, though my first attempt at processing the direct positive paper was NG, here is inspiration enough from Susanna Kraus.

From their website, this excerpt:

The camera IMAGO1 1 offers you the opportunity to make your own life-size self-portrait on black and white photo paper in 60x200 cm. If you, your friends or family who are interested, please contact me via email or telephone.

Price for a unique portrait from € 290, - plus 7% VAT

The camera Imago1: 1, built by the physicist Werner Kraus and the goldsmith Erhard Hößle the early 1970s, with their 7/4/3m L / H / B is the largest walk-in camera in the world for portraits in natural size. The visitor enters the camera, closes it behind him and meets his image in the mirror, the right way, like a stranger. By using a special lens and the self-timer, he is from a silver gelatin reversal paper size 60 x 200 cm projected. In the early 1980s had the camera - after a decade of successful work - will be stored as it was not possible to procure the necessary photographic paper. Three decades later, it was the actress and artist Susan Kraus, a producer for the special black and white photographic paper and to win since 2006, the camera operates IMAGO1 1 again.

Has anyone near Berlin checked this out yet? We'd like to hear. Also, if you need some of the paper used in this camera, click here for the details.

Friday, February 4, 2011

Reagent III processing of Efke Direct Positive Paper

Feasible? Yes. Good quality? No, not in this early example.

This is what I got today, exposing an 8x10 sheet of Efke Direct Positive paper, and processing it for 10 minutes in reagent III in a Paterson Orbital Processor at 70F.  I've upped the contrast and flipped the image horizontally.  This 15 second exposure in room light was made with the old Calumet/Speed Graphic chimera, and a ghostly image can be seen on the left for about half the total exposure time.

This paper is cut to fit in a standard 8X10 film holder and slides in easily. It is apparently resin-coated and so dries to a nice smooth glossy finish, slightly warm in tone.  As you can see, I got very uneven development with most of the development occurring in the center, streaks, a spot here and there, and mottling. I don't know if this can be overcome with a single bath process, but it will be fun to try.

Seen L-R: Crowley's ghost, some sort of DSLR, a Speed Graphic with a 150mm Xenotar, and a 4x5 Cambo with a right angle viewing attachment, back-lit in the lab. Just after this shot was processed, a huge chunk of ice and the metal gutter it adhered to came crashing from the second floor down against the bright window visible on the right. It didn't break, but it was close, and it made me jump.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Fun with SX-70s: Mr. Crowley and Dr. Kaps duel

In between the horrible weather we've been having, Dr. Florian Kaps, Founder of The Impossible Project, visited our lab, aided by John Reuter Director of 20X24 Studios and R&D head Ted McClelland also of 20X24. Here seen using their beloved old cameras.  If you look closely, you can see the sleeves and other parts of Engineer Des Fyler design New55 prototype sheet film packs and some debris from experiments in the background.