Excitement In Virtual SolitudeFriday, August 10, 2012
|Yuliya Kate & yours truly at Focal Point, NIkon FM-2 Kodak Tri-X
By now some of those who read here might have noticed a pattern that includes photographs of persons posing for my camera who are wearing a red Mexican rebozo. At my last count I had 25 souls. The idea is to have people I know who represent all kinds of professions pose for me while wearing a red Rebozo that my mother obtained in Mexico City in 1952 and which she brought to Buenos Aires where we were living at the time.
|Scanned Fuji Instant Print negative peel & reversed
The project, provisionally ( I am not sure of the name) is Me&My Project and there are several restrictions in how I go about it so as to standardize the pictures. But there is some leeway for my subjects to make it personal within the stiff constraints.
I use a medium format Mamiya RB-67 Pro-SD loaded with Ektachrome 100G transparency film (slide film). I take an average of five photographs with a 140mm lens but in some situations I have opted for my 90mm. I use a gray seamless background that I set up between my living room and the dining room at the entrance to my house.
One of the photographs looked different because my subject, Yuliya Kate, the professional dominatrix, refused to come to my house. I took my stuff to hers and used her wall as my background. To make it all worse she felt very ill with a terrible cold.
In recent weeks she made it known that she wanted a re take and that she was willing to come over. I thought about it and initially I thought that a re-shoot was not quite right. But then the prospect of having Yuliya pose for me again (and willingly) was most attractive.
|Scanned Fuji Instant Film
I will bore some of you with my experiments as I took some additional pictures of Yuliya who was a in an uncharacteristic mellow and pleasant mood. Consider that while I have sometimes suspected that she may be a vampire she and I sat in the sunny garden and sipped on very good Italian Moscato and chomped on iced cold watermelon.
I have to reveal here a paradox. I feel extremely excited (almost how I felt when I discovered new photographic techniques or experimented with new equipment when I was in my 30s. I am excited about working with Fuji’s colour instant film (I use my Polaroid back that I attach to my Mamiya and get 7 by 7 cm images) and its super fast 3000 ISO Instant b+w film. What is particularly exciting is that the colour Fuji provides me with a way of bleaching out the negative peel and get (hard if not impossible to fully colour correct it) an unusual colour negative I can play with. But even more exciting is the results of scanning the b+w negative peel of the b+w instant film. I first have to dry it with a hair dryer to make sure the negative is bone dry and that it will not stick to my scanner’s glass plate.
My results would have warranted instant assignment from excited art directors of local and national magazines. Unfortunately those magazines are gone and their art directors, too.
Most of my photographers friends have disappeared and a couple will not return my calls. What this means is that I must experience my photographic excitement in virtual solitude.
In a present world of photo apps and the ubiquitous presence of one click Instagram some might say why I bother. I would counter that with the fact that I begin with a good image that does not need improving or fixing up.
In a few days I will be 70 years old. I feel astoundingly happy in knowing that I have many more good photographs to take and that the possibilities are not restricted even though Me&My Project imposes many.
|Fuji 1600 ISO colour negative film , Nikon FM-2 35mm lens
Yuliya Kate - Dominatrix
She demanded a command performance
Yuliya at the computer again
Finding comfort in a dominatrix
An unromantic interpretation of a woman in bed
Not a portrait
A Canon Pellix
Yuliya in the garden
self portrait in Burnaby