Saturday, November 5, 2016

Bodie window, Nevada red rock cliff

I don't know where the inspiration for this one came from, but i know what i like about it, why it works. It's the juxtaposition of the solid rock wall hundreds of feet high (shot in Red Rock Canyon just east of Las Vegas, NV) against the window (a symbol of openness even though the window ain't open, shot in the ghost town SP of Bodie - every photog. who goes there shoots this window, it never fails.) 
Composition is very important to me - i lined up the middle of the window panes with the top of the rocks, so there were 2 rows of panes above which have some good clouds superimposed and two below that blend into the rock cliff. I did 3 different prints, the difference being in how much the clouds were exposed. 
Let alladin's lamp light the way, let the good times roll.
Darkroom technique-wise? it's really pretty simple - rocks at bottom, dodged out to center, window burned in thru the most incredibly simple darkroom tool of all time, a circular hole in a sheet of black construction paper, it's at the bottom left below.

Sky exposed at top, dodged out in center, and held back in the lower middle.
It works quite well as Black and white:

Hand-coloring poses a challenge - and an opportunity - what kind of a spin can i give this?
Be happy if and when inspiration strikes. It's like lightening - fierce, sometimes scary, but ultimately if you survive (or remember your dreams?) pretty good stuff.

I'm not sure how i came upon the color scheme i did, just glad i did, i like the one pane in the second row/center that has a bit of haphazard curtain that stands out. The hand coloring has become 2 steps lately, the first is water colors, the second is oils. One last step is to scan, and tweak the color a bit more in Photoshop. To tell you the truth, i am not sure which of the two color images here are which.


In the "whatever catches my eye file" this month:

When i was growing up in a small town in Maine in the '50's, my parents always made us go to church & sunday school, plant, water and harvest the garden out back, rake the fall leaves etc etc etc. When that was done, if i were to ask my mom 'what is there to do?' she would point to the back door, as in 'you figure it out'. And we did, all the kids on the street were constantly getting together, football, baseball, sledding in winter, exploring the stretch of wooded land between the blocks, the cave carved in the land, the treehouse my dad built rather impromptu, it would be condemned and destroyed these days - no supervision whatsoever! And we all survived, with a few small injuries on the way. And we learned. Stuff no one can teach you.

Review: These Short Stories Ask, How Does Technology Affect Us?

Books of The Times


“Should you plug into this machine for life,” he asked, “preprogramming your life’s experiences"?
This question reveals a terrible anxiety — that technology may rob us of authentic experience, that it may annihilate our very sense of self — and is central to “Children of the New World,” the seductive debut collection of short stories from Alexander Weinstein.

About an american who comes home after a long time, and finds his homeland is/has been ... rather changed since he left. A Very good read, highly recommended.

The Walls in Our Heads

No 'wall' will ever work - forget about it.

How the Internet Is Loosening Our Grip on the Truth

Whether navigating Facebook, Google or The New York Times’s smartphone app, you are given ultimate control — if you see something you don’t like, you can easily tap away to something more pleasing. 

Some really gorgeous photos!

On U.S. Geological Survey expeditions through the American West in the 1870s, William Henry Jackson took the first photographs of the Yellowstone region’s thermal springs, craters and geysers. Those images helped persuade Congress to protect Yellowstone as a national park — America’s first — in 1872.
He used the photochromic process to colorize his prints.
Merriam Webster:
Definition of photochromic:
• capable of changing color on exposure to radiant energy (as light)
• of or relating to or utilizing the change of color shown by a photo chromic substance

I've read the above link, and a few others - i still have no idea how this works. Let's just be happy it does, or did, as the case may be.

Two last links:

This one is really depressing and a bit scary, why haven't we heard about it more??