Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Trooper #2 Day 56

"Vintage McGyvered photo gear"

Tomorrow is bring your box camera to work day and this is what I'll be using.

Thanks for watching.

Gerry :)

Monday, February 27, 2012

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Trooper #2 Day 54


IT'S THE DAYTONA 500 ! Pre-race stuff starts at 12 on Fox, race starts at 1pm.

Thanks for watching.

Gerry :)

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Trooper #2 Day 53

"Things are about to go BOOM!"

Thanks for watching.

Gerry :)

Friday, February 24, 2012

Trooper #2 Day 52

"Winter sucks!"

My feelings exactly!

Thanks for watching.

Gerry :)

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Trooper #2 Day 51

"So many tools, so little time!"

Trooper with too many toys!

Thanks for watching.

Gerry :)

Rebuilding a Kodak Brownie No.2 F

Kodak Brownies are the Grand Daddies of point and shoot cameras. They've been around for more than 100 years, they were made in the millions, plenty of them still around and they are cheap. They are also very easy to use. A set focus, shutter speed of 1/50, bulb mode, 3 aperture settings of f22, f16 and f11, that's it.
"1924-30 Kodak Brownie No.2F as found today."
Most of the Brownies I've come across were made for 116 or 620 film. 116 is not available anymore and 620 is a pain to respool from available 120. Today I came across this sad puppy for $5. It was missing its front face plate but it loads on 120 film, I had to get it. It is a No.2 F model built in Toronto Canada between 1924 and 1930.

Down to its bare bones. 4 tiny nails hold this piece of wood on the aluminum body.
The important stuff on the camera is all there. The front face plate is more of a cosmetic element that can easily be fabricated. I started by taking the camera apart in order to clean and lube the shutter but most importantly, clean the lens.

Shutter plates cleaned in between using folded paper sheet and light oil.
Taking this camera apart is a piece of cake. Everything is held down by nails that must carefully be pulled out and a few screws. The shutter was cleaned using some folded paper and lube in order to get between the plates without taking them apart. They are held by a rivet and I would be hard pressed to reproduce the proper pressure between those 2. I re-installed the spring and it was back to original speed.

The next big step is taking out the lens and cleaning it.

See you there.

Gerry :)

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Trooper #2 Day 50

"Let's get cracking!"

Trooper lending a hand with my newest project, a resto/custom job of a 1924 Kodak Brownie 2f. I got it for $5 because it was missing some parts but that's OK, we'll make some.

The project will be documented and posted in black and white to keep it "period" flavored.

Thanks for watching.

Gerry :)

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Truck vs Truck, no winner!

I was on the scene of a nasty crash at work today. 2 Peterbilt trucks hitting each other at an intersection. Like I say, always have a camera with you. Here are some shots.

Nobody got hurt thankfully.

Thanks for watching.

Gerry :)

Trooper #2 Day 49

"I feel something moving around my legs!!!!!!"

Drowning in candy, it can't be that bad?

Thanks for watching.

Gerry :)

Monday, February 20, 2012

Trooper #2 Day 48

"This is so wrong."

Trooper trying out new footwear!

Thanks for watching.

Gerry :)

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Trooper #2 Day 47


I finally took Trooper out on photo safari today.

Thanks for watching.

Gerry :)

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Photo Safari Montreal en Lumière

Last evening was mild for the middle of February so me and my friend decided to go out on safari in downtown Montreal again. There is always stuff to see and do but I was a bit apprehensive since this was our first outing after dark.

I'm always fascinated by people in the Metro.

Turns out that if you look hard enough there are many opportunities to take shots without a flash using available light. No flash was used in any of the shots on this post but a tripod is a must in many cases.

Jali from Belgium in concert outdoors.
Projection on a building of an artsy animation short.
This is a 4 second exposure using 2 ND filters.
Lights pointed at the street made for some interesting shots.

We had a blast shooting around the festival and I'm sure we'll be doing this again.

Thanks for watching.

Gerry :)

Trooper #2 Day 46

"He actually managed to fix this one!"

Yeah I skipped a day but I have a nice post coming up to compensate. See I was out last night on a photo safari downtown. Here's Trooper with my new Kodak Tourist 2 after a clean up and lube job.

Thanks for watching.

Gerry :)

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Trooper #2 Day 45

"Let me out! I'm in the wrong collection..."

While hiding from Girlfriend #2, trooper ends up behind glass.

Thanks for watching.

Gerry :)

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Trooper #2 Day 44

"Hey! Hey! Relax Honey, she means nothing to me. Don't mess around now, you know this armor is worthless!"

Trooper is in a bit of a jam with Girlfriend #2 after yesterday's events.

Thanks for watching.

Gerry :)

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Trooper #2 Day 43

"I love you babe!"

This is one of my favorite shots. Happy Valentine's Day everyone.  :)

Thanks for watching.

Gerry :)

Monday, February 13, 2012

Cheap or Budget Lomography Cameras

So we discussed what is Lomography earlier, according to me anyways and we didn't touch the subject on the actual gear in depth. You can go out and buy a new or vintage plastic lens Diana, Volga or any other 120 camera for that matter. However, Lomography being hip these days some are a bit pricey.

This Minolta Hi-Matic is one of my favorite cameras. Got it for $3 with a dead flash. It's great for outdoor shots. It has automatic everything.

So unless you have one lying around or stumble upon a deal by chance what are your options if you don't want to spend a lot? May I suggest just moving a bit up on the food chain of cameras? Ok, way up compared to toy cameras, a film point and shoot or compact camera.

This Ricoh FF-70 came with the original box and receipt, $359.00. I got it for $5 and it also has automatic everything.
Film compact cameras are still around, plentiful and most importantly  dirt cheap. The market hasn't caught on to them yet and since they were built in the gazillions, they are everywhere. You might already have one in a box somewhere, so that would make it free and free is always good.

This Canon was a gift from a friend. It also has auto everything. It's only problem was some dirty battery contacts.
If not go to any second hand store, flea market or charity store and you will find them sometimes in bins at anywhere between $1 to $5. Not bad for a full frame camera! Some have fine optics if that's what you want, auto focus, motor drive, flash or none of that. Buy a few and it will give you some options.

Taken with the Hi-Matic on expired Fuji film.
Such a camera will give you the chance to try Lomography on a budget and if you don't like it, your out of pocket expense won't have ruined you. You say a camera like that will only take good pictures? Trust me when I say you can still screw up.

Taken with the Ricoh on expired color film processed at home in black and white chemicals.

A film compact will allow you to take good shots if you want. Some street photographers have actually started using them. Don't believe me? Check out street photographer Daido Moriyama's take on compact cameras.

I have to warn you, if you get 3 or more you might get hooked. Photography gear is addictive and the next thing you know you'll have 4 or more cameras lying around with film in them. It's called Gear Acquisition Syndrome or GAS for short.

I'll finish with one shopping tip. Bring some button and AA batteries to test before you buy when you are out hunting for gear. Try to stick with these easy to get batteries as they are plentiful and cheap.

Next post I'll deal with using film on the cheap side. Until then, go hunting.

Thanks for watching.

Gerry :)

Trooper #2 Day 42

"Funny thing happened while you were at work, ha-ha, I started this project and...well..."

I will kill him! Nah, the Konica was already dead, CPR failed.

Thanks for watching.

Gerry :)

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Trooper #2 Day 41

"Man why is the room turning?????"

Trooper is still a bit hung over, he had to sit down.

Thanks for watching.

Gerry :)

What is Lomography?

I don't intend to claim that I have the perfect answer to the question: what is Lomography? However, I have an opinion on the subject and my own definition of it. Let me share.
Light leak or lens flare, I never figured that one out. Taken with an Olympus OM-10 with zoom lens.
The Lomography movement was started in the early 90's in Europe following the realization by a number of folks that the coming of the digital age was taking the challenge out of photography. The fact that you can choose and delete on the spot what images you feel came out right makes everyone a photographer all of a sudden.
This is what happens when the auto rewind stops too soon and you open the camera back with film still exposed! Taken with a Minolta Hi-Matic.
No more surprises of double exposures, light leaks, or other screw ups after the fact when picking up your prints at the photo store. Some of these errors and mistakes actually made some interesting images. I guess the late PBS painter Bob Ross could sum up the definition of Lomography very well, a happy accident.
Here we have the worst possible conditions for picture taking. Expired cheap generic 35mm color film on 620 spool with paper backing. The film was then loaded into an Imperial Mark XII with a plastic lens and no controls whatsoever. See for your self what came out.
The worst the camera, the better the chances of having those happy accidents. The typical lomographer will head straight for the cheapest plastic lens camera with few or no controls on shutter speed or aperture. Cheap is relative here. With all the hype around Lomography, what was once considered junk is now selling for big bucks. The law of supply and demand at work.

This was taken with a 1950's Kodak Brownie Hawkeye. Fixed lens, shutter speed and aperture. Point, shoot and pray!
I have nothing against Lomography, au contraire. It has one big positive impact, it keeps film on the map. Demand for film has increased in the last couple of years. Heck, Kodak, which just filed for bankruptcy protection, has seen a rise in film sales last year in the order of 20%!

Taken with a found disposable camera that expired in 2003. Processed in black and white.
In my opinion, Lomography is the introduction for many into the endless possibility of analog film photography. I'm betting that once a lomographer takes a great picture by accident, it does happen, that person will want to replicate the experience. They will push their art in order to learn more and that's a good thing.

Double exposure. Freak accident where the camera auto re-winded mid roll after being dropped. I decided to have some fun not knowing what would come out. Taken with a Ricoh FF70 point and shoot.
Lomography is a great way to get into film photography as it not only can be done on a budget (I'll have a post on that soon.) but it also removes the requirement or stress of perfect results. Shoot fast, often and have fun. Remember, what ever comes out is a happy accident, we don't make mistakes.

Thanks for watching.

Gerry :)

Part 2 in this series can be found here: cheap lomography cameras

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Trooper #2 Day 40

"What? We skipped a day again? Aren't we Friday today!?!"

No we didn't.

Thanks for watching.

Gerry :)

Friday, February 10, 2012

Trooper #2 Day 39

"I don't know why but I feel like dancing!?!"

Sorry, I skipped a day. Here's our Hero around a pole...

Thanks for watching.

Gerry :)

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Trooper #2 Day 37

"Nice pile of junk for $30!"

Trooper commenting on my most recent haul from bargain hunting.

Thanks for watching.

Gerry :)

Monday, February 6, 2012

Trooper #2 Day 36

"Here we pay before eating because?"

Chilling in Church. I know, I'm going to pay for this at some point!

Thanks for watching.

Gerry :)

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Trooper #2 Day 33, 34 and 35

Well if you think I forgot about Trooper, you're wrong. What we have today is a series of 3 images that I chose to post all at once so that the subject of the series has more impact. Jar Jar Binks takes a beating fulfilling my fantasy of this character getting what he deserves for ruining what could have been a great movie.
"Right hook!"
"Body slam!"
"Now stay down and shut up!"

Thanks for watching.

Gerry :)

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Trooper #2 Day 32

"Come on little Dude, don't short change me."

Captain Scarlet is a bit sensitive when it comes to is height deficiency.

Thanks for watching.

Gerry  :)

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Trooper #2 Day 31

Getting a feel for the blade.

Thanks for watching.

Gerry :)