“A great deal of art making, process, is about subliminal desire. The hardest thing for aspiring creative people is to learn to trust that kind of feeling, that longing, that instinct, because they are surrounded by ‘who cares about that?’, ‘that’s been done before’ and ‘what is the point of that?’ An artist has to believe in his own sense and experience of wonder. Life is too precious to simply adopt other people’s concerns.”—Richard Rothman
For the film you develop yourself do you make your own prints, do you get them done somewhere else, or do you use a film scanner?
I’ve only made a few prints by hand unfortunately. I enjoyed the process, but it’s time consuming and I’d rather spend more of my time shooting. I had an enlarger, but I gave it to a friend because I never used it.
After developing the negatives I scan them and then have prints made from the digital files, which usually works pretty well for me.
I develop my own black and white film but for e-6 and c-41 I’ve been using Citizen’s photo in Portland, OR. I can’t say enough good things about them. A friend told me about their great prices last summer and since then they’ve processed well over 130 rolls for me without any problems at all. As I said, their prices are great, but most importantly they do consistently excellent work. I feel like they really take care of my film and even though I have to ship it out, it’s usually returned in about a week.
Hello Patrick, nice to see another librarian doing pictures that beautiful :-)
Thanks very much! It does seem that there is a disproportionate amount of creativity among people in the library field. I guess creative people are attracted to libraries and libraries attract creative people… or at least people who try and be creative :)
“This is the way of the post–September 11 world, where whistleblowers and news organizations reveal what would have once been considered illegal and then, years later, find themselves “revealing” it yet again, and then again. So it has been with torture and extrajudicial killing and warrantless wiretapping. We might call these frozen scandals, which begin in revelation and white-hot controversy and end with our learning to live with secret wrongdoing that is in fact no secret at all. This is our new normal…”—from "He Remade Our World" by Mark Danner (New York Review of Books, 4/3/14)
Hello Patrick,Can you tell us a little bit about your Ricohflex and why you use it for street photography ? Thanks !
The Ricohflex is one of my favorite cameras and I’ve posted over 400 pictures from it over the last six years or so. It has some sentimental value, in part, because it was my first medium format camera, but I wouldn’t still be using it if it didn’t have a number of practical advantages. The two best things it has going for it is a sharp lens and a small package (for a medium format camera). The ergonomics aren’t spectacular, but once you get used to them, they’re pretty easy to deal with. Also, the camera is a pretty simple mechanical design, which makes it less likely to break.
When I do street photography I often like to have one medium format and one 35mm camera, I don’t feel like I’m sacrificing much when choosing the Ricohflex over one of my heavier TLRs. Sure, the lens on my Rolleiflex is sharper and the coatings on my Mamiya or Yashica mat are better, but I usually don’t find these things to be the most important when what you’re mostly trying to do is get the focus and composition right.
There are always trade-offs, one of which is the screen on the Ricohflex which, along with other TLRs of that era, is fairly dark, making it difficult to focus in low-light situations. You can also easily make an accidental double exposure with this camera. Still, when people message me about the kind of medium format camera they should buy, I often recommend the Ricohflex, especially if cost is a primary concern.
There are a lot of different Ricohflex models out there, though many of them are pretty similar. I have the “Super” Ricohflex, but you might also check out what other models are out there by checking out the flickr Ricohflex group.