Flops and Flips

     We've been taking it relatively easy since coming back from that long road trip, but we'll be on the road again this weekend!  In the meantime, I've been pushing myself to shoot and develop more black and white film.  I put my first roll of actual FRESH Tri-X through my Leica, but then managed to botch the processing.  I diluted the stock solution too much, I believe, and also let it develop for too long, so the results were quite grainy and uneven.  I also screwed up the fixer somehow, but don't ask me how.  I shot through this roll last weekend when we went around northwestern Oklahoma exploring a cave and canyon and digging up selenite crystals.  Here are some shots from that adventure...

The girls have really taken to bike riding (yes!), but our youngest is still too tiny to pedal well on her own.  I asked my husband for his belt and came up with this fun little contraption.  He was not pleased, but she sure was and hey, it got us around the block before the sun completely set :-)

The girls have really taken to bike riding (yes!), but our youngest is still too tiny to pedal well on her own.  I asked my husband for his belt and came up with this fun little contraption.  He was not pleased, but she sure was and hey, it got us around the block before the sun completely set :-)

They make these little "nests" all over the house to read.

They make these little "nests" all over the house to read.

Last day of gymnastics.

Last day of gymnastics.

     After scanning in this roll and considering a resulting cry fest, I questioned why I even bother with developing black and white film.  Maybe I should just always shoot color and convert in post like my husband suggests.  It would save me a lot of heartache (and spare myself and family from the stench of chemicals).  Alas, I was forced to load up another roll in a last ditch attempt for a self portrait.  You see, one of my images has been selected for a gallery and the artist's picture is requested to accompany it.  I truly had no image that I felt would be adequate, so I loaded up my Olympus XA (since it's my only camera with a self-timer) with a roll of Delta 3200 that's been sitting in my fridge for months.  I haven't shot it because silly me let it go through the airport x-ray scanners THREE times (anything over ISO 800 shouldn't go through those things).  Therefore, I fully expected this to be a complete and utter disaster as well.

     The funny thing with the tiny Olympus is that you can't control the shutter speed.  All you can set is the ISO (which maxes out at 800) and the aperture.  For these shots, I set the camera up on a stool, clicked the aperture to f4 and maxed out the ISO, and saw that even then, I would only have a shutter speed of 1/8 of a second.  I decided to embrace the inevitable blur and let the girls have a dance party after we took a few serious shots.  Also to be noted, I tried a different style of photography for the ones with my girls; I wanted it to look serious, yet fun and caught on the fly by a stranger.  I think it worked and I want to try more like this.  First up though, was my self-portrait.

I was shocked at how well it came out.  This camera is so tiny and plastic and the film was questionable at best.  I also thanked myself once again for painting our bedroom half black and half white :-p

I was shocked at how well it came out.  This camera is so tiny and plastic and the film was questionable at best.  I also thanked myself once again for painting our bedroom half black and half white :-p

My yin and yang.

My yin and yang.

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     Naturally, after developing this roll (and successfully, woot woot!) and seeing the results after scanning in the negatives, I'm itching to shoot more black and white.  It felt good to just let go and burn through this roll in less than 10 minutes.  I wasn't expecting anything good to come out of it (and actually didn't even shoot the entire roll...), so these were a fun surprise.  My next batch of scans won't come in until the end of the month, so I'll be signing off until then!