Notes From The Top Left Corner

Discussion in 'Competitions, Themes & Blogs' started by Chris Bennett, Apr 13, 2019.

  1. Rhonda Smith

    Rhonda Smith Active Member

    Been busy caring for my clients. Just trying to rest in my spare time. Off thios week waiting for my test result, so thought I would catch up with all of you.
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  2. Chris Bennett

    Chris Bennett Well-Known Member

    Just one shot from the test roll with the Autocord. The object was not to achieve artistic perfection, but just to make sure that the thing worked! Despite that, I quite like this one.
    HP5 / f/3.5 / 0.5 seconds / lights out. Developed in Rodinal

    Autocord f3.5 0.5 sec lights out.JPG
  3. Rhonda Smith

    Rhonda Smith Active Member

    Looks like it worked just fine
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  4. Dave Farnes

    Dave Farnes Well-Known Member

    I like that one, has an air of mystery about it.
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  5. Chris Bennett

    Chris Bennett Well-Known Member

    Up on top of the Bowland Fells yesterday, playing in the fog with the Autocord and a new lens. The colour roll (Portra 400) I took with the Autocord is now in the post and so, in the meantime, here's one I took with the Tamron Adaptall 24mm f/2.5 stuck onto a Sony digital.

    Foggy coos.JPG
    Last edited: Nov 30, 2020
  6. Pete Askew

    Pete Askew Admin

    Now there's a damn fine looking beast!

    The things that go through an animal's mind eh! ;)
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  7. Chris Bennett

    Chris Bennett Well-Known Member

    Cheeky git.
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  8. Chris Bennett

    Chris Bennett Well-Known Member

    Things have been a bit slow on the photography front here of late, but I've been using the Autocord TLR a bit, with the chance to reacquaint myself with Sunny 16. I've been amused a couple of times while using it when walking with the finder hood open, the big and bright screen has caught my eye and the thought has gone through my mind that I ought to turn that off to save the batteries. Idiot!

    One interesting turn of events has been the chance to try out colour developing for the first time. I was given a CineStill C41 kit for Christmas and was able to use it for a roll of 120 from the Autocord and a roll of 35mm from the Pentax P30.
    Here are some of the results...

    Flood Defence.JPG

    Flood Defence, Garstang.

    Castle Garstang.JPG

    Castle, Garstang.

    Both of the above were taken with the TLR, though the second on is cropped because of a bad smear at the top of the frame. Not sure what happened there.

    Stone Pier.JPG

    Stone Pier and Lighthouse, Morecambe.


    Lifeboat Launch Ramp, Morecambe.

    A walk one frosty afternoon on one of those rare days when there is not a breath of wind in the coast. Great sunset, lighting up the flat sea in pink stripes. I love the minimal look of this one.

    Flat Bay.JPG

    One last one of the scene in the opposite direction and towards the sun...

    West Bay.JPG
  9. Pete Askew

    Pete Askew Admin

    Well it worked a treat, Chris. A damn fine set indeed. And you even managed to capture the Loch Ness Monster - and no-one can accuse of digital jiggery pokery either! ;)
  10. Chris Bennett

    Chris Bennett Well-Known Member

    Thanks Pete.
    The second to last image is a bit stripey. There were a few like that on the 35mm roll. I think it's due to me having to use a spindle to agitate for the first time ever because the lid of the tank was leaking when I started doing my usual inversion technique. I only twistled in one direction - I think maybe I should have twistled and untwistled!
  11. Chris Bennett

    Chris Bennett Well-Known Member

    The C41 kit was great to use and very much more simple than I imagined it might be. Certainly no more daunting than developing black and white. The trickiest part was getting the temperatures of the two solutions to be correct at their respective appropriate times. A double sink would help but an insulated cool box acting as a water bath will probably be the way I will do it in future.
  12. Dave Farnes

    Dave Farnes Well-Known Member

    That worked very well, great set of images. Some fine views there.

    Flat grey skies here, with rain / drizzle almost every day. Enthusiasm is lacking!
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  13. Chris Bennett

    Chris Bennett Well-Known Member

    Well, things have been really quiet here lately!
    I thought it might be nice to get myself a cheap, old 35mm rangefinder. I have that FED 4 that I posted here about a while back, but I'm wary of using it too much because the viewfinders of these camera have a bit of a reputation as being good at scratching spectacles, something which I'm not so keen about.
    So, I did a little research and decided that I'm probably a Minolta 7s kind of a bloke.

    I found a nice looking example on Ebay and made an offer that was swiftly accepted. Great!

    Here's where the fun began.
    The seller notified me that it had been sent via Hermes as a signed for delivery.
    So, I waited.
    ...and waited...and waited.

    Nothing happened for 8 days, so I contacted the seller and he said that he had received confirmation that it had been delivered last Monday. That was a bit odd, as Mischa and I are both working from home and we had a smooth delivery from Hermes that day, but it wasn't a camera.

    On contacting the vendor, he sent me a screenshot of the confirmation of delivery of the parcel. This explained a lot. Yes, the parcel had been delivered to a house. And yes, amazingly, it was our house.
    Small problem - we haven't lived in that particular house for 12 years!

    That's a bit odd. I've had literally hundreds of items bought on Ebay and delivered here without issue.

    We do still own the house, however, but it's currently unoccupied and on the other side of the country. My daughter and son in law were living there until recently and have now bought their own place in the next village. So they went to see if they could find the package. There was no sign of it and none of the neighbours they spoke to knew anything about it.

    After nearly a week of emailing and phoning and so on, I gave up this morning and put in an offer for another camera, as it looked like the process of Hermes reimbursing the vendor was well underway.

    The offer was accepted and although it was for nearly twice the amount of the original camera, this one has been properly confirmed as being in good working order. Good stuff!
  14. Pete Askew

    Pete Askew Admin

    How strange. I wonder if the PayPal transaction picked up your old delivery address. We ended up sending something to Ina's mother some years back as a result of something similar (the last address used - which was a hassle as she lived about 400 km away: we picked it up when we next visited though). Let's hope this one turns up.

    I have been pretty quiet on the photography from of late too (aside from the outing last week and those odd macro shots). However, I did tidy the studio up a bit this afternoon and started setting up the new Mac Mini that will be driving the camera on the microscope and will also, I hope, run the PhaseOne back on the copy stand for live view. So there might be some micrographs / macros on their way in the next week or so. The next job is to tidy the darkroom and think about either some developing and printing and maybe even resurrecting the DIY camera again (I dug it out during the tidy up today).

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  15. Chris Bennett

    Chris Bennett Well-Known Member

    There's more to come from this story!
    The camera that I bought on Sunday was being sold by a guy who I think had an unrealistic notion of its value and I had made an offer that was declined. He had already listed it 4 times previously, without a single bid being made. My first offer was for a tenner below his asking price. I made him one last offer, which I was convinced he would refuse.
    In the meantime, I had spotted a Hi-matic 9 which looked to be in really good condition and I had started a dialogue with that seller over one or two details so I could gain a better insight into the condition.
    When I received images of the lovely clean and uncorroded battery compartment, I decided that I would make an offer on the 9. I put my price into the little box and thought it would be a friendly gesture to add a little note to thank this seller for their patience with my questions. I have never added a note to a seller before in my life, so this was quifte unusual. I typed a little message, which delayed my offer submission by, perhaps ten or so seconds. Just as I was about to hit the send button - the cursor literally millimetres from it, my phone dinged with an email notification. It was the other seller accepting my bid.
    Since offers are binding, I came rather close to being the owner of two Hi-matics.
  16. Chris Bennett

    Chris Bennett Well-Known Member

    And there's more!
    Twenty minutes after I sealed the deal for the camera, my daughter phoned.
    "The missing parcel has turned up!"
    The one neighbour who she was unable to speak to had called her in response to the note she put through his door. He had taken the parcel and since he has a friend called (and you're never going to believe this) Chris Bennett, he thought the sender might have been mistaken about the house number and that, for some reason, his friend had not wanted something delivered to his own home (maybe something he didn't want his wife to know about!)
    So, matey waited for an opportunity to take the parcel for his friend to open it. Obviously, his friend knew nothing about it. That's when Emily pushed the note through his door - she didn't have a pen the first time she went over.

    So now I do have two Hi-matics.
    But it could have been three. And it so nearly was!
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  17. Pete Askew

    Pete Askew Admin

    Looking forward to the stereo images, Chris! :)
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  18. Chris Bennett

    Chris Bennett Well-Known Member

    So here it is - Hi-Matic, the first.

    Hi Matic front.JPG

    Minolta Hi-Matic 7s - front

    As you can see, it has a fixed 45mm f/1.8 lens and is in nice condition for a 1966 camera. It's not small and is (at 0.7kg) heavy with it, being built extremely robustly. The light meter is working fine, as the previous owner had said. It presents the user with the EV of the scene.

    Hi Matic back.JPG

    Minolta Hi-Matic 7s - back

    The viewfinder is nicely clear and the patch is distinct.

    Hi Matic top.JPG

    Minolta Hi-Matic 7s - top

    If you want to go with automatic exposure, you turn the shutter speed and aperture rings to select both of their 'A' positions, leaving you to just deal with focussing. Aperture priority is selected by leaving the shutter speed ring set to 'A' and dialling in your chosen f stop. The opposite is obviously the case for Shutter priority. The number showing in the little cut-out window that you can see to the right of the 'A's on the rings can then be matched to the metered EV reading. Alternatively, you can obviously go fully manual and if you dial in the rings to show the correct EV, you can turn them both together to maintain the correct value in the window. I read that the Hi-Matic was the only true rangefinder to offer all four shooting modes.
    The focussing ring is the matt coloured one - it has a little tab on the underside of the lens and the throw is extremely short - perhaps 45 degrees. Film speed is selected from a slider on the bottom side of the lens. The film advance lever, though, has a huge angle of throw - all the way around and to the front of the unit.

    Well, I made some images (mono recordings only for now, I'm afraid, Pete). I loaded a 12 exposure length of Foma 200 into a cannister and ventured forth. A quick prowl around the house and garden later and we were ready to develop them in Rodinal for 5 minutes.
    Last edited: Mar 4, 2021
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  19. Chris Bennett

    Chris Bennett Well-Known Member

    1 Derek's Perch.JPG

    Derek's Perch

    2 The Neighbours.JPG

    The Neighbours

    3 Pegs and the Shed of Webs.JPG

    Pegs and the Shed of Webs

    4 Tight in to the Shed of Webs.JPG

    Tight in to the Shed of Webs
  20. Pete Askew

    Pete Askew Admin

    Well it works and it works well! And I'm sure I've seen that duck before (and those pegs!). I like the smutty self portrait too. :)
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