Spring Polaroids

spring polaroids (6)Had the chance to take some instant film this weekend with my Polaroid Super Shot. Me and Victor went to play tennis at a court about 25minutes from our house by bike and we discovered this really cool wall structure a few blocks away. Victor found a plaque talking about how it was the site of an old factory so instead of destroying it completely they left the walls up and built a structure out of metal to stabilize both sides. The building in its original form must have been huge. I love that Montreal does try to preserve its history, even if it’s just the walls.

spring polaroids (5)spring polaroids (7)spring polaroids (3)spring polaroids (10)spring polaroids (1)Tried to capture the moon in the sky but had the light meter on way too dark,  the tiny white dot to the top center is indeed the moon however. Don’t know how the green ripples were created, aliens I guess.

spring polaroids (8)Taking double exposures is always a risk, I’m still in the playing around period of seeing the difference between what works with a Polaroid camera in comparison to what I’m use to on my DSLR (surprising similar it seems). I am also still working on measuring distant by eye as well since I don’t have my measuring counter on the Super Shot like the Polaroid Colorpack has. The above shot is an example of a successful double exposure in my books while below is just a blurry mess.


spring polaroid (11)spring polaroidVictor is still cute even when blurry. I am really glad my new bike basket fits my Polaroid perfectly. Didn’t take many Spring polaroids but have all summer for adventures on the bike with it.

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Vintage Tuesday: Montreal in the 1940s

vintage photography montreal (21) A few weeks ago I showed you some of my growing vintage slide collection so I thought this week I’d share one of my other photography collections – vintage photos from the 1940’s. Last year I went to a big vintage fair in the basement of a church where all these vintage and retro stores had tables set up of various things like cameras, dishes, clothing, jewelry and the like. One table in particular in-between all the retro diner ware had amazing small vintage photos scattered about. I started going through them thinking I could pick up one or two that were interesting but soon found out their appeared to be a whole collection from the same Montreal family in 1940’s to 1950’s taken around the area. The idea of owning all of them for some future project (still haven’t thought of it yet – brewing a few ideas together) really appealed to me so I worked out a deal with the owner of them for purchasing all 120ish of them for $80. I honestly thought it was a bit of rip off until I got home and realized how expensive it is to buy vintage photos and rare to get more than 10 or so from the same time period or family. Definitely something I am going to keep my eye out for in the future because just going through them all and finding a retro album to store them has really been amazing. Sharing a few for now but definitely will share more in the future. I wish I could give more context to these…I like to think they are a mobster family as that is quiet common for Montreal and they look Italian to me and well off.

 

vintage photography montreal (4) vintage photography montreal (6)vintage photography montreal (24)vintage photography montreal (5)vintage photography montreal (3)vintage photography montreal (1)vintage photography montreal (8)vintage photography montreal (20)vintage photography montreal (15)vintage photography montreal (7)vintage photography montreal (25)vintage photography montreal (27)I love this one, sometimes there is just a finger accidently in your photos – it happens

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Let me know what you think in comments, I love to hear your story of this family or even your own experience with vintage photography!

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Vintage Tuesday: The Lost Apple Picking Polaroids

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Okay so the title is a little bit of an extreme but these polaroids definitely had a long journey from being taken to being scanned onto my computer. Mostly because I decided to sleep for 2 hours before getting up super early to go apple picking with Zara and Victor and was a lacking in the brain power to basically function. No only did I manage to lose one of my bag straps (that closes my camera bag) and my triceratops brooch from Hungry Designs….I forgot all the polaroids in Zara’s car. We don’t see each other much so let’s just say it was probably 4 months before I saw them again. Lol. Much to my dismay since these are probably the best instant shots I’ve taken in the last year. I’ve had them for a while but it felt weird sharing photos of sunny skies when it was -30 outside and snowing. A little late is always better than never (that’s my photography slogan by now I think). All of these were taken on a sunny late October day that looked like it would rain at any moment. We walked through a wonderful apple orchard in D’Oka picking apples and eatting them too (until we felt sick). It was a lot of fun and we ended up with a haul of apples and even pumpkins in the end. We also got to pet goats they had there too, that was probably my favourite part! I share some none instant photos of this day back in November so check them out here is you want to more.

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Polaroids: Graffiti & the Abandoned Building

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On Saturday I tagged along with Starchild Stela (check out her blog) as she worked on a Jem and the Holograms piece. I brought with me my Polaroid Super Shooter Plus to capture some instant shots since I haven’t had a proper chance to test it out since picking it up last month . I’ve been so bored of the snow and there wasn’t much happening in March to get excited about and document. I am beyond in love with my new camera though. It’s pretty much identical to my Colorpack IV except it doesn’t have the distance dial (which I do actually miss quite a bit as my sense of distant is abysmal) and it comes with rollers. I love the rollers instead of however you explained the Colorpack’s way of spitting out film. So much smoother – no jams at all in the 2 packs of film I shot on Saturday. The rollers are so much more satisfying when pulling on the film as well.I dare say it’ll be my go to instant camera from now on. I’ll hold off on the full review until I’ve had a chance to use it a whole bunch though. Excited for when shooting will not be so tricky, since it is still cold here I had to walk around with the cold clip under my armpit every time I took a shot to keep it warm. I also had a plastic bag on the ground with all the film scattered on it trying to dry – looked quiet the sight to say the least. I brought with me my Nikon as well so there will be more shots over the next few weeks in various posts of Saturday but I just had to share the Polaroids right away.

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Through the Viewfinder Kodak Duaflex: Winter Addition

kodak duaflexI’ve been working on my viewfinder photography lately with my Kodak Duaflex and falling in love with it.  These were taken during a walk to Parc La Fontaine while I watching the skaters on the lake. I’ve actually shown a few photographs taken on the same day without using the viewfinder technique with my Nikon if you want to compare. I just find the viewfinder photos to be more whimsical, yet they still have the sharpness and clarity that you would expect from a DSLR camera image. To me it’s the best of both worlds. I did load the camera up with film to shoot as well but it got jammed (again, this camera has a history of jamming on me) so I was a little disappointment. I’ve been trying to do a set where I take a viewfinder photo and a photo with the camera so I can compare scene for scene between the film photo and the viewfinder photo (thought it’d be a neat idea of the blog). When I got home I tried to fix the film jam without exposing the film but I had no luck and had to wreck a roll of 120mm. So I don’t know when I’ll be willing to reload that camera with film as it is a film eater but I am hoping to do a  photo shoot with someone using the viewfinder method as I think that’d be neat.

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Another peak behind the scenes where you can see the whole camera.

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Skating at Parc La Fontaine

montreal skating (3)Skating in Montreal is one of those things that always reminds me of being a kid. It’s just one of those things as an adult you don’t really think about but it’s still super fun to do. Every year I go at least once but this year I hope I end up going a few more times which will be tough since it’s almost the end of February. I went skating a few weeks ago at the Snow Festival (photos up in two week because I took too many and have to trim them down) and it was a blast. I own my own white figure skates that I think are so pretty but they are too skinny and kill my feet. It’s a good thing though because it means when I go skating instead of doing it for hours and hours like I did as a kid, I only do it for 30minutes because my feet hurt so much. The reason that’s a good thing is because Victor sits and watches me since he doesn’t skate and I don’t want him to be bored and frozen. I’ve tried getting Victor to skate, we did it once and he was terrified and held onto me for dear life for a few laps around the ice rink we were at and then decided it wasn’t his thing. Totally understand since he didn’t grow up in Canada so skating for the first time at 30 is probably not the easiest thing to do (it is so fun though, he’s crazy). Parc Lafontaine has the BEST skating and it’s free and I’ve never been. I didn’t even remember it was turned into a skating area when the lake froze until I showed up there on Monday to take photos of the snow. I don’t have my skates right now as I borrowed them to a friend who is out of town until the weekend, but come Sunday I fully intend to do my own skating and not just take photos!

montreal skating (6)kodak jiffymontreal skating (18)(I was taking double exposures and afterwards I realized my setting wasn’t on so I ended up with a upside down photo)

montreal skating (82) montreal skating (85) montreal skating (86)montreal skating (44) kodak jiffyiceI loved the sun reflecting on the ice.

treeskodak duaflexmontreal skating (74) montreal skating (66) montreal skating (63) montreal skating (65)The sun finished setting so I headed home with all my camera, cannot wait to skate there this weekend!

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How To: Battery Conversion for Polaroid

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How To: Battery Conversion for Polaroids

I am very excited about today’s Vintage Tuesday post as it’s my “How To” for converting Polaroid cameras to take AA or AAA batteries instead of the original camera battery. I’ve been waiting a long time to do this modification to my Polaroid Land Camera 210 and as soon as my battery holder arrived in the mail I pounced! Most older Polaroid Land Cameras use a custom 3V or 4V battery type that is hard to find (not impossible mind you if you look online) and relatively expensive.  So it’s ideal to do this simple and cheap conversion and that way you can spend more money on film! Speaking of film, I heard right after doing this mod to my camera about the discontinuations of FP-3000B Fujifilm Black and White instant film. Let’s just say I am very sadden by this news and have signed this petition to have Fujifilm reconsider – highly suggest you sign if you use instant film because this the last and only black and white instant film on the market anymore. Anyways sad news aside below is simple steps for the conversion, it took me no time at all and the only thing I bought was the battery holder for $2. Make sure to click on the photos for the better view of the steps.

What You’ll Need: polaroid battery conversion (1)

  • A Polaroid camera
  • Electrical tape
  • Electronic pliers
  • Battery case holder
    *for AA or AAA batteries (3V bought here)
    *to figure out what voltage you need for each type of Polaroid camera this guide is great!

Steps:

  1. Using pliers snip off the old battery ends as we will not be using them.
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  2. Using the pliers stripe the plastic coating so you have exposed wiring for both black and white.
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    *I did go back and restrip so I had more exposed wiring as this amount was not long enough
  3. The battery holder I am using comes with wiring already and had the ends striped. However you can trim down the length.
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    *it’s been awhile since I’ve done any wiring so I left mine intact in case I made any mistakes.
  4. Now twist the wires, black to black and red to white.
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    *I had to do this a few times as my wires were not that long and the older Polaroid wiring was frayed badly.
  5. Before doing anything else put batteries in the holder and test to make sure the connections are being properly made. There is two ways to see if the shutter is working. First: open up the back of the camera where the film goes and try taking a photo, you should be able to see the light from the open shutter. Second: Fire off the shutter once when there is no batteries in the holder and again when there is and listen for the difference. If the batteries are connected correctly there should be a 2nd distinct click sound when you let go of the shutter that wasn’t there before.
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  6. Take electrical tape and wrap the exposed wires.
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  7. Take pliers (or anything that will work for you) and snap off all the old battery holder plastic to make room for the new case. This step should be #1 but I wasn’t very confident and well I am one of those people who hates doing permanent modes to cameras.
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    *this was actually the hardest part and took me an hour, keep in mind I had to be careful about the wiring so I think it’d be much easier if done as the first step. I also gave up towards the end so my holder just barely fits.
  8. Insert the battery holder with the batteries and close the case.
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    *you can add foam to secure the case so it doesn’t move around however since I didn’t gut the insides out completely it’s tight enough that it doesn’t move.
    *as you can see my wires are very long – would reccomend trimming them however not a big issue.
  9. Take photos!

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Winter Polaroids

polaroid instant film (1) polaroid instant film (2) polaroid instant film (3) polaroid instant film (4) polaroid instant film (5)In January I started exploring doing double exposures with my Polaroid Colorpack and took a few shots from the area around my work in downtown. I love the juxtaposition of the trees with the statues and buildings of the downtown core and the subtle hints of color in the otherwise white color scheme. I’m excited about the exploration of double exposures within instant photography and cannot wait for more opportunism to try it out with different subject matter. It’s thrilling being able to try new things. It makes it just that much harder the idea that Fujifilm will probably soon stop making pack film completely. With the black and white FP-3000B discontinued I don’t have much hope in Fujifilm continuing making the colored version much longer. Film photography is really important to me and it’d be shame to have Polaroid cameras become just relics.  Below is my first double exposure I took with the Colorpack, it is just my balcony but I hope it’s the start of something.

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Ising Pucky and Me

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Self-Portrait Sunday: Ising Pucky and Me

The Ising Pucky I camera was made in Germany around the 1950’s, with a cast aluminium body and a pseudo TLR style viewfinder. It takes 120 film and comes with a custom leather case.  My Ising Pucky I is my favourite vintage camera although not technically my first it’s the camera that inspired me to look into vintage cameras more.  The best fact about my Ising Pucky though is that it’s from Chile.  It still surprises me that this gem found its way into my life. The long journey from Chile to my house in Montreal started with my boyfriend’s best friend’s sister (Victor is Chilean and until 5 years ago lived there). She found the camera in her grandmother’s attic and decided to sell it because she didn’t think it could be used to take photos anymore. I of course found out about it through Facebook and fell in love. So we wired money from Canada to Victor’s dad who lived near to her fashion store so he could go and buy it from her. After that it was in his house for several months until he sent the camera to us by post for a Christmas present. When it arrived I was delighted to find out it used 120 film and was in working condition. It will always be my favourite camera even though it doesn’t take double exposure photos and I still haven’t managed to get it to take a good portrait but it’s exciting to me and I cannot wait to take some color photos with it this summer. I love taking black and white shots during the winter months. These were taken yesterday as I braved the snow. This is what it’s like when you live in Montreal when you are a photographer, 4 months of the year you have to deal with these conditions.

If you want to view photos I’ve taken with it check out my Vintage Tuesday posts: here, here, here, and here!

self portrait ising pucky (8)I had to add the one of me holding the snow because I am a goof.

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Snow Time with Ising Pucky

isingpucky075 (993x1024)Last year in March there was one last snow storm that covered everything in snow before spring officially started.  Snow storms happen to be my favourite weather. There is nothing like being cozy at home and watching the world get covered in whiteness. It creates a bit of silent and stillness that you just don’t have living in the city any other time. These were taken the day during the big snow fall from my window that faced the street and from the sidewalk in front of my house. I stood outside holding a towel over top of the camera and the tripod the whole time I was taking photos to protect them from getting wet. I probably look quiet the sight to the lady walking down the street. I love black and white film photography when it’s snowy because the contrast works perfectly. I am hoping when I run out of 120 film to pick up a different brand as I notice the film is very grainy and I don’t think it’s my home developing techniques but perhaps. This is the last black and white film I had the chance of developing since I ran out of chemicals. I did buy some over the Christmas period and I actually just went recently on a bit of walk with the Ising Pucky so I should have shots from this year to share next month!  This weekend I will have more about my Ising Pucky camera so look out!

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