Kevin Bjorke
Kevin Bjorke
1 min read

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Film Photography for the Impatient

I’m not going to pay $2000 for a drying cabinet but $23 for a 9x12” USB-powered LED light panel seems okay. I’ve gotten into the habit of connecting it to a spare phone battery: I can then use it as handheld light source to preview wet negatives fresh out of the wash. Snap a view from my phone and flip it in Snapseed and boom, super-trashy, super-quick, scans.

Normally these would be for my personal quick-check, or on occasion a text message. This morning’s a bit different if only due to my excitement: there’s a little carnival set up in the fairgrounds parking lot, the first open public gathering I’ve seen in our town since March of last year.

Can’t wait to post a couple of snaps:

Same as above, reversed.

These were shot on old Neopan 1600 again – this time processed in D-76 1+1. Frankly, I’ll be glad to be rid of this old film, it’s starting to wear on me. A fresh roll of Ilford awaits space in the bulk loader.

Not Exactly Crowds

While the little carnival opened to the public last night, there weren’t really many people about… yet! The few who were wandering tended to be families with very hyped-up small children. I like hyped-up small children, but I try not to photograph them unless I know their parents.

Instead I went for an obviously-rusty attempt at shooting over any kids, walking around with a 35mm lens held at abdomen level and aimed upwards. Too far upwards, I’m realizing by looking at a few of these quickie phone scans.

What We Learned Today

  • The world is coming back.
  • Practice, practice, practice. Exposure. Framing. Framing.
  • The usable space on a hacky phone scan is usually less than 2K pixels across. Often a lot less. There's curl and twisting and perspective of the neg. There are all sorts of streaks and blobs that are probably reflections or water droplets. I'll call it "a unique look" and look forward to "real" scans later on.

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