Wednesday, August 25, 2010

cameras have to earn their keep


i already showed this camera on flickr, but i realized i hadn't really written about it. i got it in an awesome little antique mall in tea, south dakota on our holiday. it's so cute with its brown bakelite body, i just couldn't resist it. and that flash, how cool is that? plus, it was only $12 and a couple of days later i saw the exact same one in worse shape for $53 in another antique mall, so it was also a steal. (either that or antique prices are totally arbitrary, which is undoubtedly the subject of another post.)

i have recently instituted a policy that all of the cameras around here need to earn their keep, so i began to scour eBay for some 127 film, which they stopped making in the mid-90s and which hardly anywhere processes anymore (i found a shop in CPH, don't worry). i decided it would be worth it to try it out. and although i loathe eBay for being incredibly amero-centric, i located, bid, sweated, bid some more, and finally won several rolls and they have arrived (i hereby thank the people of wisconsin for hoarding old film in their drawers).


the oldest ones expired in 1949 and the rest are from various dates in the 1960s. and i can't wait to try them out! this is going to be so much fun.

the first camera to have to earn its keep was my 1938 argus AF. i loaded it with 100ISO expired fujichrome film and snapped away in the garden. then, i had it cross processed (for those who might not remember, that means processing slide film in ordinary chemicals for negatives - it can produce some funky colors, especially with expired film). only a few of the photos turned out (i'm not sure why) - i did have some challenges in loading it and i actually broke the film trying to advance it (user error, not the camera).


i scanned the negatives in my photo scanner, but these are untouched otherwise, they're just as they came out of the camera.




i've got it loaded again and this time sabin took most of the roll. it's going to be interesting to see what happens. i can't help but think about all of the photos this camera has taken over the years and the scenes it has seen. and it also has a lovely bakelite body in a bit more of an art deco style (but i know from the serial number that it's from 1938).

all this talk about cameras has me thinking about some of the exciting things kristina and i are planning for across ø/öresund. stay turned for more on that. we've had a summer break and are going to be back soon with loads of new ideas and some really cool pictures from our first film swap film.

14 comments:

heidikins said...

So romantic! I love these!

xox

spudballoo said...

WOW totally amazing!!! Gosh all these photos are stunning, loving the processing on the digi shots but the film ones are precious. Whoop whoop! xx

ballet news said...

fascinating - thankyou so much !

Bee said...

What lovely, dreamy shots.
I recently read (can't remember where) an article about a photographer who said that he's going back to the old cameras because digital is just too "perfect" and too instantaneous.

How many cameras do you have now?

stephanie said...

You are right! I need to put all my cameras in more heavy rotation. Thanks for the inspiration...as always!

Lynn said...

Mymother had a brownie camera for the longest time. I remember seeing it as a girl, but when I asked her the other day about it, she said she had gotten rid of it years ago, not knowing then that I'd ever be interested in photography. But I looked at the cost of them at a page dedicated to brownies, and they say that they are worth between 10 and 20 dollars, so you got yours for about the right price. I'm so tempted to get one, just so I can see what mom was working with, but I'm afraid that I'd never find film, and it would just look good on the shelf. I'm looking forward to seeing what you'll do with yours!

Lynn said...

Me again. Here's a link to some places that sell discontinued film. http://www.brownie-camera.com/buyfilm.shtml Maybe you'll be able to get some closer to home!

Char said...

i don't have film for the brownie. but i've shot through the viewfinder before.

this reminds me that i need to get the pentax back out and load it.

Delena said...

I have a brownie camera also, now I must go look for it in all my storage boxes to see if it like the one you pictured. I got it when I was 12. OMG I hope I still have it somewhere....

Erin Wallace said...

Wow! This makes me want to get some 127 for my Brownie even more! All I've been able to find is B&W film, though, and I LOVE the colors in your photos. Just gorgeous.

xo Erin

Lisa-Marie said...

Beautiful, I love the muted colours, they are like dream pictures!

Husband got me an old anologue Praktica for my birthday, I'm currently using leftover film that is 8 years out of date to see what happens. It also means we can do a swap soon if you like?

Lisa at Lil Fish Studios said...

This is so cool! I have my grandmother's old Brownie camera and a small wind-up movie camera. I have some of the silent movies of my dad and his siblings that had been transferred to VHS back in the day, but the thought of actually using the camera is something that hadn't occurred to me. Now you've got me thinking. To the Ebay!

Sammi said...

I likes... I want to start collecting camera's..

kristina - no penny for them said...

oh, how absolutely wonderful! really, really love them...

p.s.: in case you have a 6x6 medium format camera that doesn't earn its keep in your eyes, let me know, i might buy it off you and give it a chance at my house... ;)