The Writings

Adventures in Film, Roll #4


As I mentioned in a blog post last week, film was supposed to be all about fun. However, I was finding it more and more difficult to finish a roll and send it off to get developed. That's all I wanted: to see how good/bad I did on my shots! But I also mentioned in a blog post last week - the same one, in fact - that maybe I needed a bit more of a mission and a challenge to myself. After figuring out how to do double exposures with my Canon AE-1 and a trip to Philadelphia, perhaps I was finally onto something to help churn out these photos and finally finish a roll.

I was in town to see a show later that night, but Noe and I took the opportunity to have a mini photowalk of sorts as we headed to a restaurant where we were to meet her friends. Naturally, I couldn't JUST take double exposure photos, but the ones that weren't were more so my attempts at some street photography with some shots from DC thrown in.

And then, the double exposures started happening. On the Canon AE-1, it's ridiculously easy to do. I'm not quite sure how I missed out on this when I was trying to figure it out with the last roll. On my camera, I simply press the shutter to take the photo, press the film rewind button at the bottom of the camera, then "advance" the film and snap again. See, that easy. Therefore, the following are the resulting double exposure frames I managed.


So, there are the resulting images. I'm trying to figure out if my camera favors the first shot ahead of the second one, or if I'm doing something particularly different with my exposures that is causing the results I'm getting. Much like with all of my photography, I'd much prefer to not achieve results by happenstance, and it's not to say I'm displeased with what developed; I would just like to be more knowledgable and know a little more of the technical side and the science behind it so I have more control over my experiment with double exposures.

Despite going about this a bit haphazardly, I still like what came out of this roll. I liked the bustle of the streets and the scenery, so... I decided to combine them both. Philadelphia has such a unique cast of characters residing amongst it that it wasn't very hard to find something to photograph. Add to it the surrealist nature of double exposure and it's easy to see how I've fallen in love with it. The main problem with trying to finish this roll is that, well, you're essentially shooting double the amount of photographs per roll. But as long as I'm having fun along the way, honestly, I could give a shit.

I also noticed the stark contrast between the buildings being finished or touched up within a block or so of an abandoned building and couldn't help but attempt a double exposure of this. I think if my technique was more practiced and refined, I'd have been better able to achieve what I saw. Ultimately, I'm still happy that this experiment is coming along.

One other note, which friend Robb Hohmann happened to observe as well, is that the scans on these guys are just... blah. I'm unsure why, but all of the scans are coming back with a TON of noise. Extremely dislike. I'm also wondering if Lightroom 4 is playing a part in that when it does its adorable auto-adjustments that annoy the piss out of me. Either way, I suppose these shots could be worse, right? And thanks to Robb offering the scanner at his place, I might just take him up on that before I punch Penn Camera Calumet Photo in their collective genitals.

I'm currently working on a roll of color film and have another roll of Ilford HP5 black and white film awaiting development. Who knows what's on those rolls, but it's definitely something I'm highly anticipating to see how I'm doing!

Until next time,

- Patrick