There Is No Cat

Groovy '60s Sounds from the Land of Smile!

Thursday, April 26, 2007

Clickety Clack

Laura and I were browsing through an antique shop in Asbury Park last weekend when I found a new toy camera, an Agfa Clack. The Clack was made in Germany between 1954 and 1965, and it's a sturdy little beast. Typical German engineering means that even this cheap and cheerful little toy feels solid, much more so than my Diana and Holga. The Clack introduces a fourth photo size to my medium format repertoire. The Holga has a choice between shooting a square 6cm × 6cm and a rectangular 6cm × 4.5cm (most people pick the 6 × 6). The Diana shoots an oddball 4cm × 4cm, something that drives the guys at the one hour photo around the corner nuts. The Clack shoots 6cm × 9cm, which is the same aspect ratio as 35mm film (which shoots 24mm × 36mm), but with more than six times the area of a 35mm negative. The larger negative means that I get only eight photos per roll, as opposed to the 12 I get on the 6 × 6 Holga or the 16 I get with the Diana or the 6 × 4.5 Holga. The Clack was made in an era of slower film, too, so it has a relatively slow shutter speed of 1/35 second, compared to the roughly 1/100 second of both the Diana and the Holga. What that means is that I can/must use slower film in the Clack. The Diana and Holga can use 100 ASA film in bright daylight, but 400 ASA is more their stock in trade, and 3200 ASA film can still be too slow for indoor shots with no flash. The Clack, on the other hand, would horribly overexpose 400 ASA film under daylight, but does a reasonable job inside with no flash using 3200 ASA film.

I took the Clack out at lunch time yesterday and drove to Twin Lights lighthouse in Highlands to test how it would work in bright sunshine. I had just gotten a roll of Ilford Pan-F, which is rated at 50 ASA, something that would never work in the Diana or Holga, or at least not very well. In the Clack, it's a gem. There's almost no grain on this film, unlike the 400 ASA HP5+ I've been using in the Diana.

The north light at Twin Lights lighthouse

I shot seven photos at Twin Lights, and on the way home drove past something I've been trying to get a decent photograph of for months, a sign outside a church in Leonardo. I think I've finally got a photo of this that I'm happy with.

No Playing at Anytime

Click on the photo to see it larger so you can read the sign.

I've been having a lot of fun with my toy cameras lately. You can see more of the results over on Flickr where I've been posting them rather than posting them here.

Posted at 9:20 AM
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Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Meet the new boss, same as the old boss

Seen today on an intranet site at work: "This site is best viewed with Mozilla FireFox with a screen resolution of 1024 x 768."

The names change, but the method remains the same.... <sigh>

Posted at 9:08 AM
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Saturday, April 14, 2007

Big and windy

The grocery stores were packed this afternoon as we all rushed out to make sure our pantries were full before The Big Storm hits tomorrow. This is not unusual; April here on the Jersey shore is a big weather month, and Nor'easters are common visitors at this time of the year.

There's one thing that's different about this one from April Nor'easters of the past, though. They would have hit us with 2 feet of snow rather than the 2 inches of rain that are forecast to fall tomorrow.

But hey, not to worry. We'll be alright. FEMA has activated its response team to respond to the Nor'easter. You remember them; they're the people that did a heckuva job getting New Orleans back on its feet....

Posted at 10:20 PM
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Sunday, April 8, 2007

Happy Easter Come Back So

Happy Easter Come Back So

Posted at 3:15 AM
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Friday, April 6, 2007

A couple of recent shots

Sandy Hook Lighthouse

I think this may be my favorite shot of the lighthouse on Sandy Hook so far. As the fresnel lens was rotating, the sun would hit it just right when it hit a certain angle, so it looks like the light is radiating from the lighthouse here. The clouds conspired to kinda sorta look like they're all radiating from the lighthouse too. I shot this a couple of weeks ago with the Holga and developed it last night.

I'm glad I learned how to develop black and white film; I've been having a lot of fun with it lately. I brought the Holga and Diana with me when Laura and I went to see the elephants enter Manhattan last week. I got one shot where you can kinda sorta see one of the elephants as it turns the corner having just come out of the Queens-Midtown Tunnel at about 12:30 in the morning.

A Ringling Brothers elephant on 34th street in the middle of the night

Posted at 1:52 PM
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This site is copyright © 2002-2017, Ralph Brandi. (E-mail address removed due to virus proliferation.)

What do you mean there is no cat?

"You see, wire telegraph is a kind of a very, very long cat. You pull his tail in New York and his head is meowing in Los Angeles. Do you understand this? And radio operates exactly the same way: you send signals here, they receive them there. The only difference is that there is no cat."

- Albert Einstein, explaining radio


There used to be a cat

[ photo of Mischief, a black and white cat ]

Mischief, 1988 - December 20, 2003

[ photo of Sylvester, a black and white cat ]

Sylvester (the Dorito Fiend), who died at Thanksgiving, 2000.


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