Of all the things I know
I understand almost nothing

maandag 28 januari 2013

zondag 27 januari 2013


This morning I got up (rather) early to catch the last snow. Yesterday I saw children on the ice, snow everywhere - and twelve hours later I had a walk in spring-warm weather.
But there was worse to come.
I am an analogue man. But this time I very much missed my 250mm Rebel, because in the reed were two bright and healthy kingfishers.
And I only had sixties/seventies PXP in the 1954 Москва-2;
in "Promicrol".

zondag 20 januari 2013

Frozen in time

I got up early today and went to Crow Creek, (that's some nature in my neighbourhood) to check the animals. Well, they were wiser than me, and stayed inside.
At home I looked if I had any fingers left, and then made hot Russian tea and sweet вареники (that's a rather nice combination).
The Turapan is ± 1945 made, the Stierle developer could be older and the KW.Pilot is 1936. (I had a sixties Agfa Y2 on the lens.)

The result - well, this was the first  pic,  made it yesterday.
And the only one, alas.
I cannot tell you what went  wrong, the guillotine did sound all right, the developer did at least something.
Maybe the exposure didn't reach the limit.

dinsdag 15 januari 2013

Second snow

At last I could really test the Tiffen 15Y in the snow. Twenty minutes later disaster struck: the 1977 Linhof 220 shutter caught the cold.
The Stierle developer, at least 30 years older, dìd the job. What does that tell us...?
(On 1990 Orwo NP22)

PS the "first snow" 8 dec 2012 is on the Irkutsk-blog

zondag 13 januari 2013


Vèry nice weather today, to test the Turapan in normal field-work. It has indeed not lost one DIN of the original 17; this pic is 1/25 at 5,6 with the Carl Hansen Gelbscheibe.
And I don't mind all the other problems a film of this age can show.

zaterdag 12 januari 2013


I am speechless.

This is October 1947 Turapan Orthopanchromatisch
in my 1936 KW.Pilot


zondag 6 januari 2013

This year...

...started dark and drizzling, but what the heck. The original Смена-cassettes scratched my foggy 1973 FP3 beyond repair but look how very reliably the interbellum George Murphy Eagle developer performs!
(And look below how that was made...)

dinsdag 1 januari 2013

The 2013 New Year Lecture...

 Working with old developer

This won't be a nice, in-depth tutorial, because it is still very much work in progress, but nevertheless...
You all know by now that I love to use old stuff: cameras and film, but also chemicals. (I use that word because I once had Russian seventies фиксаж... hà!)

Normally I use reliable Rodinal, at the moment "Promicrol" (the q.m. because it's not real Promicrol any more, alas), but if I can get it: Tabloid, Реактив (great stuff!), Montauk - the older the better.

Yes, there are some problems.
Fluids, like Tetenal Neofin, tend to disappear into thin air - and they don't work.

But the powders - the only problem, sometimes, is to get them out of the tube, or the envelope. When that is difficult, I just put everything (yes: developer, activator, glass, paper and stoppers) in the water, wait (leave it covered in the dark) and filter it. Works.

Wòrks? Yes, they work. Young seventies РЕАКТИВ or a century old   
Eastman, they will develop your film. The solution can be clear, cloudy or dark brown - that doesn't matter.

Developing time: I follow the decades old instructions. (! That's not me...)

Mostly I make 500 ml, and use that for let's say 4 or 5 films, but it dies rather suddenly - and in fact I am happy when I get one or two films out of it.

Dating: yes, that ìs a problem. The Ucrainian stamp it on, nice. Sometimes there is a manual with names of film, or the firm still exists. Often it's just educated guessing.

But always: surprise, satisfaction. Admiration, too. FUN.