Pocket Film and Minolta Weathermatic A

Remember back in forever ago I got my Minotla Weathermatic A? I finally used it in August, when I had a reason to take it off the shelf and learn how to use it properly. The thing with underwater/weather proof cameras is that there are only a few conditions where you can use it. I mean, you can use it whenever, and maybe I’ll use it for non-water-esque purposes in the future, but for now I want to play with it in all the conditions it was made for. Ideally, underwater. So I went to the beach.

In the middle of August I took my camera with me to visit a friend and her family while they were on vacation to Lake Michigan. It was the first time I used my Minolta Weathermatic A, and I was super excited. Everything worked, I had film, and it was a brand-new experience. I was being extremely picky with it though, since the film itself was pricey and I knew getting it processed was going to be expensive as well. So I didn’t fill my roll of 110 film while I was on Lake Michigan, a result of this frugality. Below are my favorites from there.

I knew that pocket film would have a grainy effect, but I didn’t expect it to be so atmospheric. In some photos, the result is almost ethereal and dream like. I love it. I took my camera with me when I met up with my boyfriend on campus at MSU, and I took some pictures by the river. I even took a picture of him, and the result is interesting enough to take note of.

See how his skin glows? I have no idea how that happened, and I kind of wonder if it has something to do with the amount of light reflecting off of his face and bouncing off the lens. I’m also a fan of the random red dot things in the first image, which make appearances in other photos. I don’t know how those ended up there either, but I’m 100% down with these happy accidents!

I finished my roll of film the last day before I went back to school, when a group of friends and I went to the beach to do my couch shoot for my Domestic Series. We figured while we were there we should go swimming and have a good time. Water? Good time? I brought my camera.

The last two are striking because my friends are splashing each other (and me, in the last one,) but you can read the water as light. It makes me wonder if the Minolta Weathermatic A is hyper sensitive to reflective surfaces, which is interesting because it’s a camera made for use near water. I like that about it, it makes for interesting photography.

I got my 110 film from lomography, and I sent it to them to get developed. It took about three weeks total- it was torture. I am not patient, and everyday I was checking my email hoping I got my digital copies. They did a good job and I am very pleased with the results- the wait was worth it, as much as I hate to admit it.

I really want to do an underwater photo shoot with props and a narrative, but the weather is too cold now. Next year it will happen. In the meantime I will prepare for snow fall!

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So I’m in College, Right?

I don’t know if you heard, but I’m a Studio Art student concentrating in photography. This semester I have no photography classes. I’ve been doing my best to continue shooting, but the universe seems to be against me. Here are my failed escapades.

I went to the beach the day before I moved back to school for a shoot that is a part of my Domestic series. It was a great time, and I brought my Minolta Weathermatic A for some fun underwater and splashing shots. It’s 110 film, so I had to mail it off to get it developed. I took the pictures August 18th. I sent them out the day before yesterday. I’m poor and in college- need I say more?

I’m in this thing called a marching band, and we have this thing called pre-season drill. I took pictures of some important events during the ten days I was drenched in sweat. I was rather excited- I got some great shots! So I took my film to Meijer ASAP to get printed. I don’t normally go to Meijer to get my film developed, but I was just too excited to wait. My excitement turned to sadness turned to anger when I went to pick up my prints and they told me my film broke in the machine.

Excuse me? It did what?

So yeah, I was majorly bummed out because there were many shots on that roll that I will never get back- my trip to Lake Michigan was also on that roll. I did get five prints out of it, but I only like two of the five, both of which are from my trip.

I’m getting really good at this whole analog business. And this double exposure business (I’ve been taking double exposures like it’s my job,) so seeing these two images made me excited but all at the same time sad because I lost a lot of shots that had fantastic potential. You win some you lose some, I guess.

The next debacle was weather related. On labor day a group of my friends and I were going to drive three hours up north to a beautiful crystal-clear lake for an underwater shoot. We were going to make a day out of it. Until the infamous fickle Michigan weather changed our plans. You can’t exactly do an underwater photo shoot when it’s 60 degrees outside… It’s just not a fun time.

AND THEN FINALLY- I was out shooting with my friend Claire, who is in an analog photography class. We walked around campus for an hour or so, and while I was showing her how to use her camera I was taking pictures of my own. I’m blessed to live on such a big and beautiful campus, and I filled half my roll with double exposures of it. Really, I’m on a double exposure kick. They’re fun.

Remember that marching band thing I mentioned? Well, I managed to get my camera into the stadium, and I took pictures of the band and the game. SO MANY COOL SHOTS. After the game I took the roll to Meijer to get them developed, because dangit these were going to be great and I was starved for actual negatives and prints and ahhhhhh

I got my film back.

I got the prints.

And they were printed wrong.

My photos turned out really, really well. So that’s good. The film didn’t get destroyed in the machine. So that’s good. I’m looking at the positives here, I really am. But c’mon, can I catch a break here?

I guess the double exposure nature of my roll confused the people behind the counter, because all my images but three were printed like, half-and-half. It’s unfortunate, because I just want to scan the prints in and show you how cool they look. But, alas, I cannot. I’m working on getting a film scanner though, so hopefully I can show you guys soon. Here are two of three images that they didn’t slaughter.

¬†At least I have these going for me, right? So that’s what I’ve been up to lately- lots of trying and not much succeeding. I have a minor project in mind in response to a controversial topic going on at my college recently, so keep an eye out for that. I have so many feelings and opinions about the subject that the only way I can really express it is if I take a photo of it. Y’know what I mean? That’s just one of the many things I love about this medium.

That’s all for now- oh! I have a Flickr account now, so go ahead and check it out when you have a minute.