Allow Me to Share My Nightmares with You

I’m not a lucid dreamer. But, I am a writer turned photographer, and when I wake up from a dream that I remember, I rush to write it all down. However, I’ve discovered a trend to this method- I don’t write down my good dreams. I only record my nightmares.

Nightmares were and still are a huge deal to me. I had terrible night terrors when I was kid. I was hysterical frequently, either because I saw something “scary” and didn’t want to see it again in my dreams, or from waking up from a particularly bad dream. They barely made sense, they seem silly when talked about, but for me, they were horrific. Nowadays when I have a nightmare, I usually wake up, realize I had a nightmare, and then fall back asleep. Because I’m overtired awesome like that.

When we recall dreams, they are like snapshots. Bits and pieces. So, with B&W film, I decided to recreate some of the snippets I saw when nightmare-ing. Don’t judge.

They probably don’t make sense to you. Because they’re from my head. Just statin’ the obvious, unless I have a mind-twin somewhere and we share the same dreams… but other than that, these are mine. It’s a personal series that I alone know the story for each image. I’ve been thinking a lot about narrative lately, wondering if there is something beyond being able to look at an image and get a story. My nightmare snapshots could be narrative images, but the narrative will never match mine, unless I reveal the terror behind each and every image.

But where’s the fun in that?

I had a blast with the view camera, tilting it and moving it in certain ways to get a blur or a distorted effect… It was so so so great, and I can’t wait to shoot more. And, the images are gorgeous in tonality. I’m in love. There will be 20 images total in my nightmare series, so keep an eye out.

Also, that black space beneath the “black white black…” photo is the result of not taking your dark slide completely out of the camera before exposed. Whoopsies.

Oh, and I developed film for the first time today. About time.

Happy Shooting!

Une journée à Versailles

Today is a good day. I got my prints and negatives from the shoot I did in the gardens at Versailles:

The first image was an accident. Whoops. The other two, not so much. My Voigtlander Brillant v6 did exactly what I wanted it to do, which was create a foggy, dreamlike effect. I think I found a good use for this camera.

Some unfortunate things did happen. I had two potentially AWESOME photographs, but… I somehow accidentally double exposed them? I have NO IDEA how I accomplished this on my ancient camera, but whatever. That’s why I shot in digital, too.

I tried emulating the dream-like effect that my medium format camera wielded, but I didn’t get close at all. I do like what I ended up with though- the feeling I wanted is still there.

Originally, this shoot was going to have at least six or seven girls in it, but plans got all mixed up and our group all didn’t end up going to Versailles on the same day. It was for the best though, because it was difficult enough arranging three girls in an unknown place- I can’t imagine trying to do that with six or seven girls! Though, hopefully one day I can get a chance.

So, yeah, another international shoot under my belt. I have one more set of photos I’m waiting on that features a model, so keep an eye out. Until then, you know what to do: Happy Shooting!

 

Brill[i]ant, Simply Brill[i]ant!

I mentioned in my post about my trip to Stratford-upon-Avon that I bought a Twin Lens Reflex camera. It’s a Voigtlander Brillant v6, and it took me two hours and a migraine to figure out how to use it. I bought film for it, I filled the film, I got the roll developed, and now I have the scans!

The fact that photographs actually turned out of this thing is a thrill for me. One, it’s a hella old camera so I was worried photos wouldn’t even turn out at all. Two, it’s the most complicated camera I have ever used, so there was that. I’m really diggin’ the hazy quality of the images, and the light leaks in the last two pictures are awesome. I love those.

For some reason I thought it would be a good idea to take it out for night photography, and I surprisingly got a few good images from that spontaneous and not-well-thought-out event. I guess learning how to meter without a light meter is really paying off, since I’m getting good enough to guess exposures at night time with an ancient camera. Kudos to my professors and friends and Google who taught me all the things.

I’m taking it out for a spin when I go to Paris next weekend. I’m doing a photo shoot at Versailles with a few girls from my program, so that should be fun. The softness and the colors I have my models wearing and the location will all fit together nicely.

But, that’s pretty much it for now. If you shoot medium format film, leave a link in the comments to your work- I want to see!

Happy shooting!