Archive for the 'past' Category

Before a bath

‍‍כ״ט שבט ה׳ תשע״ג - Friday, February 8th, 2013

What then is the value of a dialectic of intertextual reference?  Pretension, maybe, certainly true at times, but usually a charge from the illiterate egoist.  Validation, (either or both) establishing the credentials (of entry, consideration, engagement) of the author and a guarded gate in the name of esotericism – only the chapter headings, and not before anyone save the rare meritorious ear.  Perhaps it is the popular version of the latter; a method of revered scholars as emulated by followers, granted prestige as dialect, but stripped of its mysterious functionality, or at least lowered to code switching of a sort – putatively “Number 34″; “You didn’t tell it right” or conversely(!), a popular register – “at Tanagra” – that the cautious scholar imbued with new functionality to suit his exclusionary purpose.  In all of these, it could merely be the value of time vs. space, the efficacy of a cultural lookup table, or (perhaps as exactly here) where there is no common understanding as drawing upon diversity in basic references from often mutually exclusive groupings.  If then, if me(?), then a smattering of all, and Google and critical notes and if kind and of a popular mindset, href, remedies much.

Pasted aside

‍‍י״א תשרי ה׳ תשע״ב - Sunday, October 9th, 2011

Ok, this just got blurted out in my write up of the Koni Omega Rapid M, but it grew to the point that it ruins the flow of that text. Also, I’d like to keep the format comparable between the “reviews” and not distinguish it from the other camera/system writeups. So -unsnip- here be pasted my problem with film photography retronyms:

I have a penchant for asides, but given the writeups ahead of me, I have to get this out now.  I may have even written a line or two about it before. Don’t care.  It bears repeating. 

Analog photography.  Analogue Photography.  Analog/ue Film Photography.  Spare me.  First of all, cameras are pretty much the same.  Yeah, there are sciencey differences at the image plane which actually have ramifications in the act of photography, but spare me.  Light doesn’t come in digital or analog.  I mean, analog film photography – I get it, analog corresponds to the “photo-” while “film” is obviously the -graphy, so analog film photography treats light as a wave only; it must be that photons are for digital pixel geeks only.  Right.

I suppose if you were doing “analog” photography where you used both film and glass plate, you’d have a point.  And I’d shut up.  And I’d apologize.  And I’d tell you to keep on rockin’ in the free world.

You’re not doing glass plate work.

A friend once described them as the same but different – digital is dry and film is wet photography.  I assure you, this man is well aware of wet plate photography and was making a poiginant historical reference.  If you do wet plate, please don’t be offended.  We love you and your tintypes.  No one is trying to steal your name.  I still haven’t had the chance, but I promise, as soon as budget and space allows.

But please, if you don’t know what a dark slide is, what ortho film is, what shoulder and toe has to do with any of this – I’m glad you’re interested.  Please keep learning.  I hope your interest can keep the remaining film stocks alive (Astia, please don’t go).  But know that it’s nothing special to shoot film, especially roll film.  Enjoy it, learn it.  But analogue film photography sounds like you’re trying to hammer home how different you are.  If you can buy film at Urban Outfitters (i.e. 120 and 35mm) you aren’t.

And finally, stop protesting technology changes and refinements in photography.  Stop for a minute and think how stupid that is, especially in comparison to visual arts which go back millenia.  Digital doesn’t have soul.  It’s not supposed to have it.  You are. (Maybe.)

Film photography. 
Better yet, Medium Format.  Or Large Format.  Or 35mm. 
Best, “I like 6×9.  645 feels like half frame.”  Or “4×5 is great for versatility, but you need to be at 5×7 or better to make a decent contact print.”

The first tells me what you don’t do.  The second tells me what you do. The third tells me you might actually know what you’re doing.
Analogue Film Photography tells me that you don’t.

Up all night redux

‍‍ג׳ תשרי ה׳ תשע״ב - Friday, September 30th, 2011

It’s 6am, so a quick note.  The photo section is in flux.  The “same as printed” portfolio is fine; the idea is to provide an online equivalent to a set I use as such, both in content (plus one added image) and experience.   Consequently, images are bordered as they are in print, vertical sets appear together, the two page panoramic composite (50+ MP) shares the same three border opposing approach.  In essence, every webpage is equivalent to a print. 

The rest, however, are not so lucky.  I have a bit of an upload going on; “retrospeculum” (formerly, “Start Here”) will be changing a bit.  Too much overlap with other sections.  “Destilled” will be getting, well, destilled, as soon as I figure out what belongs there.  I know there are things that don’t belong there right now, and they will go.

Oh, the bio, which was boring and stupid was rewritten.  A lot fewer details and a lot more informative.  I did remove my ICQ account listing.  It kills me.  It was six digits, and I had the thing since (cringe) high school.

Moving along, that stuff will sort itself out.  More important is what is coming to this section.  Since my trip to Miami this past March, I’ve been shooting a fair amount of film, mostly MF (6×7 and 6×9 in particular), but also a little 4×5 and 35mm.  I just took possession of – god help me – an 8×10, but nothing is happening there until I build, buy, or steal a new bellows.

The upshot of all this is that I have a significant range of film cameras, many of which are system cameras, and have developed approaches to using and specific purposes to each.  I mean everything from a Mamiya C330S to a Graflex 4×5 R.B. (with factory Graflok!) sporting a 8″/2.9 slapped in front with gaffer tape, epoxy, and a steel lensboard from an unknown system.  All of these systems have reviews online: none of these are new cameras and lots of people have things to say.  I do not intend to duplicate that.  I just want to give my notes on these tools, especially since I have a pretty good cross section of MF offerings (thought LF and 35mm will get some notes).  Systems include Mamiya TLR, Mamiya RB67 and RZ67, Mamiya Universal, Koni Omega, Pentax 67, Horseman 970, Kiev 60, Hasselblad 500 series, and more.  I think the first up will be the Koni, representing one of the best price/performance ratios in film cameras, which is remarkable given the current prices of systems like the RZ67 and the Fuji GX680.

But for now, I sleep.

Very strong and very cold.

‍‍כ״ה אדר ב' ה׳ תשס״ט - Friday, March 20th, 2009

Is the right way to drink gin. To wit,  an (obvious) martini variant I made up the other week:

The Brandon

2 oz Gin
1 oz Cranberry Schnapps
4 dashes Peychaud’s Bitters
2 dashes Regan’s Orange Bitters

Pour the schnapps into a chilled cocktail glass, coat the insides
Pour out the cocktail glass into the mixing glass.
Add Gin, Bitters, stir, double strain.
Garnish with a large orange slice or cherry.

Nothing brilliant here – other than the taste – it just restores the bitters from the classic Martini recipe, replaces sweet vermouth with cranberry schnapps, and uses the Peychaud’s to add contrast in the finish. Some things to note – since quality kosher vermouth is hard to find (Stock, Cinzano, and Martini & Rossi only have hechshers in Israel, the US Kedem vermouth it not good enough to burn, let alone drink) – this allows a nice kosher alternative to the traditional Sweet Martini.

Since neither Peychaud nor Regan carry hechshers, they do need to be substituted.  I added the (considerable amount of) Peychaud’s to give the drink an anise flavor, so perhaps a teaspoon or less of such that flavor in a  red or clear liqour might stand in – arak or ouzo should work; Sambuca is probably too sweet.  As for the Regan’s,  one or two dashes of Angostura mixed with orange oil or zest could stand in.  If you grate rather than twisting the oil from the zest, double strain with a mesh strainer.  Hell, do that anyway.  Ice fragments ruin this drink.

Don’t use more than 3 oz Gin or the drink will lose its particular charm.  If the cocktail is poured to the lip of the glass, the in and out (coating) is pointless.

Finally, since it seems I’m posting odd news stories today:
Man shoots and wounds his daughter after she pours out his gin

I shot a man in Reno, cause he spilled my rye.

Really late. I know.

‍‍ט״ז כסלו ה׳ תשס״ח - Sunday, November 25th, 2007

But I wanted to finally close this tab.

Bedspread line named ‘Nazi Collection’ outrages Indian Jews –

At least they weren’t planning to include lampshades and soap in their home furnishings line.

As an aside, I wonder what basis the Jewish community has to sue / seek an injunction (as mentioned in the article). I wouldn’t be surprised, given its history, that India has laws prohibiting the defamation of religion or some such.

Zionist Haram Animal Plot

‍‍ח׳ אב ה׳ תשס״ז - Sunday, July 22nd, 2007

Clearly, the Zionist Plot proceeds apace.

  • From the Washington Post (via the BBC): “A few weeks ago, 14 squirrels equipped with espionage systems of foreign intelligence services were captured by [Iranian] intelligence forces along the country’s borders. These trained squirrels, each of which weighed just over 700 grams, were released on the borders of the country for intelligence and espionage purposes. According to the announcement made by Iranian intelligence officials, alert police officials caught these squirrels before they could carry out any task.”
  • Directly from the BBC: “British blamed for Basra badgers – …UK military spokesman Major Mike Shearer said: “We can categorically state that we have not released man-eating badgers into the area… …One housewife, Suad Hassan, 30, claimed she had been attacked by one of the badgers as she slept. ‘My husband hurried to shoot it but it was as swift as a deer,” she said. “It is the size of a dog but his head is like a monkey,’ she told AFP.”

I think this proves the great diversity now afforded by the West. After all, for too long, following the doctrine espoused by the infamous Judeo-Christian World Zionist Plot, by Big and Little Americas (aka, Satan) – an ancient document dating back to the early 3rd grade – only Zionist dogs and Zionist swine were permitted in the Western ranks. The inevitable children produced by the mixture of the noble legions were also allowed: the valued zionistische Schweinhünde. It brings joy to the heart to see the opportunities of Western decadence offered to an wider array of members of the powerful Phylum Chordata. In turn, this will secure dominance in the air, on land, and sea. Still, in light of these news reports, two things are clear.

  • Iranians are better hunters than Iraqis. After all, the Iranians managed to catch squirrels alive, while the Iraqi could not manage to hit a 30 lb. dog-monkey. Come on guys, can’t Juma give you some shooting tips?