Jump to content


  • Content Count

  • Joined

  • Last visited

  • Days Won


Alan7140 last won the day on 22 March

Alan7140 had the most liked content!

Community Reputation

3,519 of my posts have been liked

About Alan7140

  • Rank
    Grandmaster Member
  • Birthday 07/01/1953

Profile Information

  • Gender
  • Location
    Tasmania, Australia
  • Interests
    Photography, Guitar
  • Edit my pics?
    Ask Me
  • Fav. Camera
    Fuji X-T2
  • Fav. Lens
  • Fav. Editor
    Photo Ninja
  1. Alan7140

    Antarctic Sunset

    Spectacular shots.
  2. Alan7140

    Going way back....

    Then there's the added fun of the paper emulsion not only being insensitive to red light, but also having limited sensitivity to yellow and even some greens. Ergo, a still life takes some tomatoes, a jar of tomato relish and one of beetroot and gives them both the appearance and tone of onyx. And just to prove these dark, stoney looking things are tomatoes, here's the setup: A lot of light was needed - 2x 1000w/s monos pushed through softboxes, 6 flash actuations required at full power @f/11. Primary side-light flash tube about 4.5 feet from subject, front fill tube about 6' away.
  3. Alan7140

    Going way back....

    Speaking of which, he "tripod" that came with the camera was basically a collection of sticks each with its separate attachment points, and how the camera wasn't smashed years ago when being dropped as the photographer juggled the legs and camera while trying to get everything attached and the camera stood upright is beyond me. At the moment I'm working to modify one of the rails of a disused Nodal Ninja 3 pano head to attach to one of the original leg's two attachment loops so the rail will sit along the right underside of the baseboard, and then have an Arca plate fitted to the rail's 1/4" tripod screw thread, after which the camera should sit comfortably and securely with the RRS ballhead at the right rear corner of the baseboard (when looked at from the rear of the camera). If I get things right this will have the added benefit of the rail's spirit level protruding behind the camera just below the ground glass, and should cure the other near impossible thing to do with the camera in its current configuration with separate legs and no level indicator - and that's simply getting the horizon straight! Doing things this way will leave the original large central hole in the baseboard so the camera can still be collapsed into its folded-up travelling state with lens attached, something that solid adapters with a central mounting screw prevent altogether without taking the lens off altogether. This might be OK for an as-new camera, but this one is well worn and I'm loathe to be adding more wear to the lens mounting thread and/or camera mount for the lens panel by continually removing and replacing the lens. So yes, the Gitzo tripod will be well off centre, but the camera isn't heavy and should pose no problem for the RRS ballhead and Gizo tripod to keep the thing rock steady, which as the moment is a real cross-your-fingers-and-hope-for-the-best thing - one gust of wind during the exposure and you may as well throw the neg away with the current wobbly tripod legs and precarious mounting system. The hat - well, yes, with Tasmania's overhead ozone hole, and my virtually hairless bald head, the hat has played an important part in my life for a couple of decades now, and not just for photographic ad-lib purposes!
  4. Alan7140

    Going way back....

    - actually that would be physically impossible to do, unless you had an arm with the best OIS ever invented surgically fitted (8 sec exposure, 240mm focal length), and an uncanny ability to imagine what the camera was framing without any form of viewfinder while taking the shot. Then there's the lack of a shutter and having to manipulate a lens cap as the shutter instead. As well there is no facility to hand hold the camera whatsoever.
  5. Alan7140

    Going way back....

    No batteries either, Mike. Oh, and not to mention a requirement that you know and understand what you are doing, as there is no cpu/processor/programmer's code to have the camera help you out in even the smallest possible way. If only I could post something that actually looks like the paper neg does under magnification, but the technology doesn't exist to do that, as any monitor is woefully inadequate compared to the resolution of that paper's emulsion, never mind the inadequacies of the digital capture device. Given the impracticality of contact printing the paper neg (which shows both the paper fibres and has the resin-coated matte backing spread the illuminating light), the only way I could make a hard print of this appearance and resolution these days would be to get involved with the collodion wet plate process, and I really couldn't be bothered taking things to that extreme. I'm thinking that this will end up being more than just a passing experiment, though, as having spent 37 years of my career involved with dealing with the copy and restoration of original photos from earlier eras I',m finding that this has been the nearest I've got to duplicating the look and feel of those images, something I've previously failed to achieve with more modern processes and cameras.
  6. Alan7140

    Going way back....

    Now it's a circa 1908 Thornton Pickard half plate camera, using Ilford Multigrade IV print paper as the negative, today I photographed the old #1 Railway Bridge over the Derwent river at Plenty, Tasmania, using the original Thornton Pickard Rapid-Rectilinear f/8 lens. In open sunlight the exposure was 8 seconds at f/45. Two versions are posted of the photo, both with an added effect to mimic the appearance of a gold-toned albumen print still common when this camera was first used. Unfortunately the original Thornton Pickard behind-lens roller blind shutter is no longer serviceable (a common enough situation with these things) and was removed from the camera a long time ago, so method of exposure is via good old lens cap remove/replace while timing the seconds on a stop watch. Brings back memories of my early studio days when we used incandescent light for set-up photography, although we did use proper Copal shutters with a more friendly "B" setting. The first photo is a more-or less straight rendition after copying with a Sigma sd Quattro-H camera and reversing the result to positive, the second was after applying a "equalise" command in Photoshop and demonstrates just how much detail actually exists in a paper negative - the paper of course being orthochromatic at best and therefore insensitive to blue light. What was also very apparent is that the camera was completely outclassed by the detail in the ultra-fine grain paper emulsion and lost a lot of fine detail particularly after downsizing for Internet. The last is a 100% screen capture to give an idea of the detail that was captured, as well as that marvelous atmospheric softness rendered by that old, uncoated glass (the "grain" is from the copy camera's sensor, the image is perfectly grainless even under the strongest magnifier I have here). I was also amused by the shadow play on the pylons which made them look like they were leaning heavily to the right, which of course they weren't as is evidenced by the vertical lines of rivets in the upper structure. ...and the camera in question, at its first test location The shot I took on that occasion to establish the ISO of the paper (3 ISO, by the way) made for an interesting tone-dropout:
  7. Alan7140

    Hans Hansson. The Lemaire Channel

    +1 for being jealous. Nice photos as well, particularly the second one. Such a small boat as well in such a vast place.
  8. Alan7140

    Back to the beginning

    Thanks, Luc & Mike. There will be more of this as time goes on.
  9. Alan7140

    Back to the beginning

    Thanks, Dallas - just one shot as well (my last sheet of 5x7 paper). Absolutely zero grain doing things this way - scan lines become visible before there's so much as a hint of grain, just like a collodion negative produces. Blue-sensitive emulsion as well, can be trimmed to half-plate size and processed under yellow-orange safelights, although it's not kind to any subject matter that is red or orange, which helps for rugged looking skin results, but not good for general portraits.
  10. Alan7140

    Back to the beginning

    Teekay. Tasmania, 27th February, 2019. Paper negative (2004 expired Ilfospeed 1.1M paper), Neue Görlitzer Camera Werke half-plate studio camera (c.1920-25), Voigtländer Heliar 4,5/240 lens @ f6.3, total 2,250 joules with three flash heads, softboxes & brolly. (Spots, edge fog and other paper-ageing artefacts left on image for effect.)
  11. Alan7140

    Some initial images with X-E3

    While I can't comment on careful reasoning as to individual requirements, if you're talking about a Macro for the Fuji, don't forget that the Zeiss Touit 2,8/50 which was specifically designed for Fuji X (and then Sony E) is available, and it is a superb 1:1 macro. The only drawback is its somewhat antiquated AF setup; it is a bit slow and at times can hunt, but the image quality is superb, it's not a big lens and neither is it heavy. It's literally half the size and weight of the Nikon 105/2.8 VR AFS, and also much smaller and lighter than the 105/2.8 AI-s that I gave up the AFS for before leaving the Nikon system altogether. Lately I've done quite a few focus stacks with the X-T2's firmware-enabled stacking function, and the AF motor is quick enough to accurately shift focus at a rate fast enough to enable hand-held focus stacking, something I could only dream about doing consistently with my Nikons back in their day. The Touit has also been around for long enough now that it is relatively common to see on eBay as a used lens in excellent condition and at very good prices.
  12. Alan7140

    Between a rock and a hard place

  13. Alan7140

    What’s the occasion?

    I'll probably do something like that after the camera arrives and I've used it. No instant return mirror, though, but it does have auto-stop down, so even the operating experience will be similar to its big brother Pentacon Six TL. It also doesn't have a meter, nor the option of one, unlike the Six with its removable/interchangeable viewfinders.
  14. Alan7140

    What’s the occasion?

    I hope I don't start up that old argument of film vs digital again, but.... I just bought a 60 year old SLR to use with film, the stuff the SLR configuration was designed for. Although it wears the Pentacon name (which many think of as communist junk and which did eventually become the rabidly mass-produced Praktica), bear in mind the name Pentacon evolves from PENTAprism and CONtax joined together. The name is in fact the result of a 50's era argument between West vs East German rights to use the Zeiss brand names, which the West won in this instance, and while the new Zeiss factory at Oberkochen continued to make Zeiss-Ikon Contax cameras, the original Zeiss factory in Dresden produced the same camera design with the Pentacon badge. At this stage the two factories still worked together to a degree with both design and staff as the Iron Curtain hadn't fully come down as yet. Take it a step further, and another name fielded at the time was PENTA(prism conta)X, which was bought by Asahi in the early 1960's. So but for the luck of the draw, all the Pentax users these days would be running around with Pentacons, and Pentax would have become Praktica. The Contax camera which brought the Zeiss name into SLR post-war was a mirror-added to the pre-war Contax Rangefinder design, the self same Contax Rangefinder that was the direct pre-war competitor to Leica (and both of which the Russians copied as the Kiev and the Zorki rangefinder cameras after the war). Thankfully the new Zeiss SLR design also brought the 42x1mm lens mount into common use, hence the Pentacon, Contax and later the Pentax cameras all used that mount, which later became almost universal in the '50's and '60's therefore an absolute shipload of excellent used lenses from numerous manufacturers is still available for bargain-basement prices. The thing is that this 60 year-old camera is still in full working order, came with a more modern MC Pentacon 2,8/29 (i.e. Myer-Optik Görlitz) wide angle lens, which is not the best lens on the planet, but for the princely eBay total of AUD$60 (US $43) for the lot, how could I NOT buy it at that price with all that history in its little body? I doubt any DSLR or Mirrorless camera bought this year will still be anywhere other than dead on a museum shelf sixty years from now, let alone being lined up to be actually used. I also couldn't help myself given how many of the design and visual styling features are shared at a different scale with the Pentacon Six TL, which has turned out to be one of the most enjoyable medium format cameras I have ever used. Sorry (not really) to bring a dose of history of photographic equipment into this, but it's relevant. And probably interesting as well.
  15. Alan7140

    Coffee Shop

    So's the Rodinal - as best as I can guess I bought the stuff I used to process this film back in 1996 or maybe even earlier (before they changed the packaging to predominantly orange from the original white with an orange and a green stripe). I'm now onto a "new" bottle bought around 2002. That's the great thing about Rodinal - it lasts indefinitely, even after being opened. It's still being made as R09 by Compard, although only as small 120ml bottles available here at AUD$17 plus P&P. I have two 500ml bottles of the original, though, which might just see me out.

Important Information

By visiting this website you are agreeing to our Terms of Use, Privacy Policy & Guidelines.