There Is No Cat

As God as my witness, I thought turkeys could fly

Thursday, July 28, 2016

52@52 Week 52

With this shot, I (successfully) complete my 52 @ 52 project, having shot, developed, scanned, and posted a shot from a unit of film shot in a given week on every Thursday for the past year. I didn’t miss a single week, and in fact posted on Thursday every single week, even when I was out of town or the Internet wasn’t working at my house.

Boats in Harbor

This shot was made with the Pentax 67 I described in last week’s post, this time with the 80mm f/2.8 lens, again on Ilford Pan F Plus developed in Rodinal 1:50 for 11 minutes. I shot this on Sunday when Laura and I went out for breakfast in Avon-by-the-sea, a nearby shore town. I’m pretty happy with this one. I like the composition, and the exposure seems good to me. I’ll be sending the camera off for repairs and a CLA soon so I can make full use of it.

I’m glad to have done this. I’m also glad to be finished.

C’est fini.

Posted at 12:25 AM
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Thursday, July 21, 2016

52@52 Week 51

One of my colleagues in San Francisco is a talented photographer who does professional work, Hamish Reid. I had worked with him on a previous project out of our office in New York, and we had discussed our shared interest in photography back then. We picked up that conversation when I was in San Francisco. He used to shoot medium and large format film, but has moved to digital and doesn’t use his film cameras any more. Knowing that I shoot almost exclusively film, he offered to give me one of his cameras, a Pentax 67 medium format camera, along with three lenses (55mm f/4, 80mm f/2.8, and 165mm f/2.8). I knew there was a reason I left empty room in my suitcase for this trip (and here I thought it was for music or beer...).

Boats in Harbor

The camera needs a bit of work, as the speed selection dial has come off, but I figured out how to figure out what speed the shutter was set to, set it to 1/125 of a second, and went hunting for bear. I put a roll of Ilford Pan F Plus in the camera and visited the harbors on Raritan Bay near my house. I was stunned by the quality and sharpness of the pictures when I developed them. Holy cow, this camera is amazeballs. Sweet lenses. I wanted to know if it was worth sending off to be fixed and for a CLA. “Hell yes!” is the answer I came up with.

This photo was shot with the 55mm lens set to f/8 on the aforementioned Pan F Plus, and developed in my standard, Rodinal 1:50 for 11 minutes. I’m really happy with how this one turned out. There were a couple of other keepers on the 10 image roll I shot as well.

Thanks, Hamish.

Posted at 6:07 AM
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Thursday, July 14, 2016

52@52 Week 50

As I noted last week, I was in San Francisco on a business trip. I brought a few cameras with me, including my Wanderlust Travelwide.

The weather in San Francisco was not wonderful while I was there. It was 55 degrees and foggy most of the time. Thursday afternoon there were a couple of hours where the temperature got up to 63 and you could see blue sky, but I was working during those hours and couldn’t photograph anything at that time. I had arrived in the city on July 4th. There were fireworks on the bay right outside my hotel, but since it was foggy, any fireworks that went above a certain height were attenuated by the fog. I shot some color film, but I wasn’t happy with how any of that turned out. Black and white seemed much more suited for the city of fog.

Fishing (and surfing) at Fort Point in the shadow of the Golden Gate Bridge

I shot this at Fort Point in the Presidio National Monument, right at the foot of the Golden Gate Bridge on Saturday morning as I was heading to the airport to come home. It was so foggy you couldn’t see the bridge, which was what I was hoping to shoot. I’m pretty happy with this shot anyway. This was shot on Tri-X TXP-320, expired in 2008, with the usual Angulon lens, and developed in Rodinal 1:50 for 14 minutes.

Posted at 8:50 AM
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Thursday, July 7, 2016

52@52 Week 49

I’m in San Francisco this week for work. That makes it difficult to develop and scan regular film, so this week, I brought my Doxie Go Wi-Fi with me so I could scan some Impossible Project film shots I took with my I-1 here and not lose my perfect record of posting on time every week for a year in the 49th week.

Cable Car

This is perhaps as hackneyed as a San Francisco shot can get, a Polaroid (well, not Polaroid, but Impossible) snapshot of a cable car. I waited in line for a half hour to ride a cable car from Fisherman’s Wharf, where my hotel (and my company’s office) is, to Union Square, where I went to the new Apple Store to purchase a charger for my Apple Watch, because I forgot my charger at home in New Jersey. It seemed fitting to take the trip to the Apple Store in an archaic form of transport.

It was actually interesting to see how manual the process of running cable cars is. There’s a wooden turntable that the car rolls on to. Then the conductors lean heavily into pipes sticking out of the turntable to turn the car around so it can point in the proper direction. It seemed only right to shoot such an archaic procedure with an archaic technology. It would have also been a good idea to get this shot with my large format Wanderlust Travelwide, but since I’m away, you wouldn’t get to see that shot this week. Maybe I’ll try to get that shot for next week in my remaining days here in the city of cold and fog.

Posted at 1:33 AM
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This site is copyright © 2002-2024, 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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