I've been having problems scanning my black and white negatives. The highlights of  the scanned negatives have blown out and the files have been too contrasty. I initially thought that  these problem were caused   by over exposure  then the  overdevelopment of the negatives. This is an example:

No matter what I do with these kind of files,  the whites go muddy. It's hopeless. 

Yesterday, when I was scanning with the  Epson V700  flatbed using the  Epson software upgrade for the Mac's latest  operating system (Mountain Lion)  I decreased the contrast  on a similar negative  making it  flat and grey  to see what difference  this would make.  

The result above  is a file that I am able  to  work on with respect the highlights.  

So my problems were caused by  the  scanning. Before the software upgrade I did not have a reduce contrast option. What was being scanned  was way too contrasty when using the old basic  Epson Scan software  that came with the scanner. 

scoping for large format photography

I walked along the back country roads at Victor Harbor  this morning scoping for a large format shoot. This scene, which I saw on the way back to the car,  looked to have some  possibilities:

I was thinking in terms of making some 4x5 colour and 8x10 black and white   images over the next couple of days. The weather is looking okay. 

6 am

Early morning light--just after the first rays of   the sunlight. 

 I normally make pictures of  rock detail in the  open shade as I find the forms and tones easier to handle. 

I was on my way to a photoshoot west of Kings Head at the foot of the Newland Cliffs, when I saw the light illuminating the cliff face near where I'd parked the car.  So I thought that I'd  take a snap just to see what it would like.  

I am now  more willing to  introduce sunlight into my photographs. 

now on Posthaven

I have successfully migrated  the book blogs that were on Posterous over to Posthaven. Twitter had purchased Posterous for the strength of the talented development team, not for the product itself. Twitter is busy creating billions of dollars in value, and any deviance from that goal --eg., spinning off Posterous---would have been a distraction. Twitter stated that it  closing  Posterous down on April 30th

Once I discovered that Twitter was closing  Posterous closed down a couple of months ago by   I wasn't really sure what I was going to do with  the material that I'd worked up.   I didn't want to lose it. But how to keep it in a form that I could work on easily. So everything has been in limbo. I have been making photos for them books, but I haven't worked on the drafts  for several months.

Now I can begin to start working again on the DIY books. That's a relief.

seaweed abstracts

I've started photographing seaweed on the beach at Encounter Bay when we are down at Victor Harbor. I have been exploring it's abstract qualities  in  both colour and  in black and white.

I started taking them  on the  poodlewalks  in the mornings with Raffi along  the beach when we were down here for the week. I don't have much time to take them after the sun rises and before it becomes too bright. 10-15 minutes at most  if there is no cloud cover.

Here is the colour version for contrast:

I converted the digital colour  file into black and white using the Silver Efex Pro 2 post-processing software.

Posterous closes

Posterous will close on April 30th 2013. So ended my experiment with  that form of  micro-publishing. Tumblr had become vastly more popular than Posterous in the field of short-form publishing or “microblogging.”

It's a pity. . Posterous offered the content and platform that pointed a direction to a more perfectly multi-media future for Twitter, where it could become possible to build a  network around both Posterous and Twitter users, and then allow for the melding of tweets, blogs, photos, and video. However, Twitter were interested in the talent not the product.

Posthaven  emerges? A  working version  by the  former founders of Posterous Garry Tan and Brett Gibson, which  can import Posterous blogs,  will be rolled out in late February. It will cost $5 per month.

This blog will be incorporated into  my poodlewalks weblog on the Wordpress platform.

trunk abstract

The digital suite  of Encounter Studio is now up and running and I'm starting to pick up the photography from where I left off before spending the  week at American River in Kangaroo Island.

Although I had this area in mind I've started simple:--abstracts of the river gums in the reserve cross from the studio. We have an 8 week old  silver standard poodle pup that requires constant attention when he is not asleep.


Posterous to close?

Another example of using the Leica with  slow black and white film:

I'm afraid that the post-Twitter Posterous micro-publishing platform  is going to close down sometime in 2013. It is a pity because Posterous was the ideal no-frills, no time-demands system that displayed photos quite well.

Is Twitter   playing the Microsoft card ---buy out a competing start up and stifle it thereafter until it died a natural but untimely death? Scepticemia puts it this way:

The developers might not close shop outright and instead close new registrations, while keeping the servers running for the existing users. However. they just let the system rot and not address the bugs that inevitably keep arising time and time again. Then, one day, something big goes wrong that requires a lot of resources in terms of money and manpower to fix and instead of fixing that, they go around closing shop, blaming it on the bug.

Twitter has a history of this --eg. Tweetdeck.

I will close this blog. It has done its job. Its the material on the books that I'm working on that represent the problem. Where to shift that material?

Leica snaps

The iMac at Encounter Studio is  now up and running, though it is still disconnected from the network. That connection requires tech support.

I scanned some recent black and negatives (6x6 and 35m)  last night  with the  flatbed Epson V700 scanner. The pictures  were made just before, and on the holiday at America River on Kangaroo Island.

The photo above was made with my  Leica M-4P, a Summicron 50mm lens, Ilford 50 ASA  black and white film. It only has minimal post processing Lightroom 4.

I had bought the 35m film by mistake --I was after 120 for the Rolleiflex---so I was trying it out to use up.  It is 20 years since I've made pictures with 35m black and white film. I'm pretty pleased with the  result--there is a nice tonal range.

Kangaroo Island: salt lake

I've upgraded the operating system of the 27" iMac to Mountain Lion, now that it has a new hard disc courtesy of Apple. I can now connect with my computer in Adelaide.  I've also upgraded  some of the photographic software--Lightroom and Silver Efex Pro--that I regularly use in my digital darkroom.   

This picture  of, what I take to be  a salt lake,  was snapped near D' Estrees Bay on Kangaroo Island. It was next door to   the Cape Gantheaume Conservation Park.  I  had been looking for some salt lakes  with easy acces without much success.  We just stumbled upon this one  on our way back to American River.  

It was the last  afternoon of our holidays on the island. We left for Adelaide the next day.