Sunday, May 31, 2009

City Kitties Fundraiser Shoot 5/29/09

Images, they are here, just click!

This was one fo those memorable shoots where there was a great crowd, people were really into it and everyone was really on point.

Special thanks to Nicole J. (at above/ left) for helping out.

Monday, May 25, 2009

Ot Azoy! Zut Alors! It's Alive!

Baby Boris is now fully functional and we gave him the first test run shake down. The radiant energy of the hugely powerful light source quickly heated up the test slide made on thin polyester film stock taped to a piece of window glass and started to buckle it! This was something I had not considered.

We then tried sandwiching an Estar based (Kodak trade name for the heavy polyester base they use for their sheet film) transparency between two pieces of glass with no mask. The combination of the thicker film along with the heavy glass on both sides allowed the slide to easily stay in the projector two minutes with no apparent damage and it was cool enough to handle as well. Boris stayed nice and cool at the slide stage; no problems there, although he does heat up the room.

So, the answer is the slides will need to be masked in-camera and then just trimmed into the mount which is a simple sandwich of two pieces of window glass cut to size and carefully taped on the edge. This is actually a more elegant solution and avoids a lot of gunky tape. Additionally, I may need to cycle between two projectors if I want to keep an image up a long length of time. The plot certainly thickens!

The photo is by Frank Siciliano of Steamed Punk and FPS Design. I was there while Frank was making this image. The working method was nothing less than impressive and the resulting image speaks for itself---amazing.

Friday, May 22, 2009

First Glass Test Slide

Slide #1, a true silver image on thin, archival polyester film stock, mounted with archival tape in glass. Good probably for 100+ years and Sunday 05/24 we'll plunk this into Baby Boris and see how it flies. Thanks to Elaine at Frugal Frames for the glass!

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Selected Images

A volunteer designer is currently working on a new site that will include galleries for the lare number of images Tsirkus has shot over the last three years. For now, these are some fun images from the Brookly Indie Market "Grand Chrono'nauts Tea" taken last October. These were resurrected from the instant negatives. The positives were spirited away by the time travelers.

Monday, May 11, 2009

Baby Boris Phase II


Craftsman: Fank Siciliano of Steamed Punk
Concept and Kibitzing: RA Friedman
Original unit: Keystone 3.25 x 4" lantern slide projector, circa 1920, 400 watts.
Lamp: Quartz in mogul base
Wattage: 1KW or 19,000 Lumens
Cooling: Two fans, input and output. Input fan moves forty-five cubic feet of air per minute.
Switch turns lamp on and off while fan remains running during cool-down.
Brass pipes contain power wiring for fans to prevent heat damage/ignition.
Condenser and slide stage remain cool enough to handle comfortably even after unit is running ten minutes.
Intended use: Low tech multimedia show slated for Sept/Oct 2010.

Photos by Frank Siciliano, FPS Design.

Friday, May 8, 2009

Some Experiments

I've been experimenting by stretching my digital files to about 240 inches (20 feet) high and then taking 8 x 10 sections and printing them.

I tried this with various shots including a shot made with my Rolleiflex and a test file from a Nikon D200. All held up remarkably well and probably all would be good enough to be projected. The prints look like nothing up close, but step back about fifteen feet and they read.

The Nikon shot lost the most detail, which makes sense. Remarkably, a shot done on 3000 speed Fuji and shot with a 152mm Ektar on a Graflex Super D and then scanned (paper negative) at 800% can resolve the loops of woven sock taken from about ten feet away--the white area of Mr. Monkey.

So, I think at this point, what I have to do is to some side by side controlled and objective testing and go through the whole process from capture to lantern slide, to projection and really see wherein lie the differences.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Self Assigment

This is the beginnings of a self-assignment I'm working on: Spaces that normally don't get looked into or photographed. Philly has a lot of these--the spaces between close-set buildings. The problem is finding the proper convergence of physical arrangement, light, and of course, one's own state of mind.

Camera: Nikon F100 on Fuji Superia 400 Film

RA Friedman, principal photographer, Tsirkus

Monday, May 4, 2009

No, it's not sock monkey love, but rather a test shot with a Graflex Super-D 4x5 that dates from about 1948. The camera was modified with a Graflok back by Fred Lustig about a year ago, but never worked correctly since the back plate was warped. A very fine mechanic named Bert Saunders recently did an expert repair and it now works beautifully.

The web jpeg doesn't do the level of detail justice. The lens was stopped down to f11 and you can see the individual loops in Mr. Monkey's body. The "noise" odd image quality is due to the scan being from the paper negative, not the positive.

Lens is 190mm Optar, which is a Tessar, 4 element design. Film is 3000 speed Fuji 3.25 x 4.25 pack film. I hope to shoot some full 4x5 sheets in this amazing piece of equipment. This is the file equivalent of shooting with a 60 megapixel camera! Currently, the upper limit for digitals is about 39mp. Oh, and those cameras are about $40K.

Sunday, May 3, 2009

05/02/09 PAWS Publicity/Fundraiser Shoot at The Ethical Society, Rittenhouse Sq.

Well, people not exactly beating down the doors for portraits, but a very nice crowd--lots of dogs, cats, rats, and ferrets too! It's was a great meet and greet. Amber assisted with great skill and panache and for the first time I had fantastic promo. materials to hand out, courtesy of Susan "Miracle Whip" Englert, an absolutely astounding artist working out of Pittsburgh.

These are "quick and dirty" edits which I may return to. They were made by working off of the normally thrown-away Fuji FP3000 instant film paper negative. The sitters walked away with the orginal positives.

Set-up was as follows: Crown Graphic, Xenar 135mm, 400 watt "hot" lighting. Enjoy! RA Friedman, principle photographer, Tsirkus Fotografika

Friday, May 1, 2009