Photographs by Frank

19 January 2021

Farm Trees

Filed under: Landscapes,Monadnock Region,Winter — Tags: — Frank @ 6:00 PM

That is “Farm Trees” not “Tree Farms”! Signs, bearing the latter being a common sight in this neck of the woods.

I had been eyeing the two apple trees near the house at the Bass Farm for some time. They are situated at the cusp of a rise in the field. In my mind, I envisioned a photo of the bare branches against the sky made with my camera obscura.

Late yesterday morning, I headed out to see if I could create what I had in mind. The skies were mostly cloudy, but I was hoping for just enough sun to make things interesting. While I was there, I explored similar photos of a number of other trees on the grounds.

After I finished at the Bass Farm, I headed to a farm field in Hancock with an interesting old (dead) elm in the middle. It is too far away from the field’s edge to use the camera obscura and the field is surrounded by an electric fence precluding a closer approach*. Thus, I made a photograph (the last one in this series) using a short telephoto on my ‘normal’ camera.

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Bass Farm Tree #1
Bass Farm Tree #1
Bass Farm Tree #2
Bass Farm Tree #2
Bass Farm Tree #3
Bass Farm Tree #3
Bass Farm Tree #4
Bass Farm Tree #4
Bass Farm Tree #5
Bass Farm Tree #5
Bass Farm Tree #6
Bass Farm Tree #6
Dead Elm (Hancock)
Dead Elm (Hancock)

* I am contemplating approaching the owners of this field/tree to see if I can get permission enter the field so I can get close enough to use the camera obscura. If that happens, you’ll see the result here… I promise!

5 January 2021

Mid-day Visitor

Filed under: Monadnock Region,Wildlife,Winter — Tags: — Frank @ 12:28 PM

Late this morning Joan was talking to her cousin on the phone when she began to wildly gesticulate in the direction of the French doors to our deck. I meander over to see what was up and observed this porcupine climbing a small beech tree.

It took me a few minutes to find the tripod, put Big Bertha (my 600 mm lens) on the camera and mount both to said tripod. I made my first exposure at 11:51 AM and made eighteen exposures total before heading back inside. There just is not a lot of action when a porcupine decides to “have a sit” up a tree!

Here it is 12:20 as I write this. I’ll be pushing the “publish” button shortly. Thirty minutes from start to finish… ain’t technology wonderful!!!

As I learned from an old newspaper photographer, always give them a horizontal and a vertical), so here are two photos.

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Porcupine (hor.)
Porcupine (hor.)
Porcupine (vert.)
Porcupine (vert.)

1 January 2021

Adams Dozen — 2020

Filed under: Adams Dozen — Frank @ 2:30 PM

As has been my longstanding habit*, here is my “Adams Dozen” for 2020… the year of the pandemic.

Being retired and living a generally quiet life in the New Hampshire woods, our life has not been changed nearly as much as many others have. We made no big trips this year, but I still got out in the neighborhood regularly to make photographs**.

One of the highlights of this year was the successful nesting of a pair of loons on Gregg lake; the first in living memory. I spent many enjoyable hours back in May and June watching (and photographing) the nesting adults and then the pair of chicks, that joined them. Both juveniles successfully fledged this fall and headed to the ocean.

You will be glad to know that I have included only one loon photo and a single dragonfly photo among the dozen… there are many, many more of each subject in this year’s collection!

Additionally, I used some of my “home time” this summer to start making cyanotypes again (after a twelve year hiatus). This fall I also experimented with hand coloring black and white prints. I intend to keep making both type of prints in the future.

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Barns (hand-colored inkjet print)
Barns (hand-colored inkjet print)
Hillsborough Center, NH (hand-colored inkjet print)
Hillsborough Center, NH (hand-colored inkjet print)
Mill Building, Harrisville, NH (cyanotype)
Mill Building, Harrisville, NH (cyanotype)
The Great Stone Dwelling (Enfield Shaker Village)
The Great Stone Dwelling (Enfield Shaker Village)
Handpump
Handpump
Apple Trees & Crotched Mountain
Apple Trees & Crotched Mountain
Meetinghouse, Lempster, NH
Meetinghouse, Lempster, NH
Church Detail (W Deering, NH)
Church Detail (W Deering, NH)
Loos with Chick
Loos with Chick
Blue Dasher (female)
Blue Dasher (female)
Autumn Leaves
Autumn Leaves
Foggy Sunrise, Gregg Lake
Foggy Sunrise, Gregg Lake

* The first edition (from 2011) explains the genesis of this tradition and here is last year’s edition.

** For those keeping track, I made 6651 exposures in 2020 (about two-thirds of what I made in 2019) and processed 1037 of these (about 15% of the total) which is about average.

29 December 2020

Apples – No Silicon Involved

Filed under: Still Life — Frank @ 6:45 PM

We have had a bag containing the last of the season’s apples on the counter for the past few days. Just before Joan began turning the apples into applesauce, I convinced a few of the more interesting heirloom apples to sit for their portraits. Somehow, a lone pear also found its way into the mix.

These heirloom apples might not look particularly appetizing, but looks can be deceiving.

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Apples
Apples
Apple #1
Apple #1
Apple #2
Apple #2
Apple #4
Apple #4
Apple #5
Apple #5
This Is Not An Apple
This Is Not An Apple

28 December 2020

Failure / Ice Abstracts

Filed under: Landscapes,Monadnock Region,Winter — Frank @ 10:00 PM

This morning I took the new camera on my walk down the road to the lake with the following results.

The new camera is so small and light one barely knows it is there. Having a fairly wide and fixed lens is going to be an adjustment!

The experiment continues…

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Failure (Holiday Bud)
Failure (Holiday Bud)
Failure (Power, Averted)
Failure (Power, Averted)
Failure (Maple)
Failure (Maple)
Failure (Postal)
Failure (Postal)
Failure (Santa)
Failure (Santa)
Ice Abstract #1
Ice Abstract #1
Ice Abstract #2
Ice Abstract #2
Ice Abstract #3
Ice Abstract #3
Ice Abstract #4
Ice Abstract #4

First Photos

Filed under: Landscapes,Monadnock Region,Winter — Frank @ 9:45 PM

I bought myself a new camera* as an experiment in creativity. It works very differently from the cameras I am used to and is probably best suited for street photography, a genre that I have not really explored.

It is going to be interesting to see where this camera leads.

On Saturday afternoon I made the rounds of some of my favorite nearby “photo spots”and made photos more to familiarize myself with the camera than anything else.

The results are not at all different from my usual photographs… not yet, at least!

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Gregg Lake - Winter
Gregg Lake - Winter
Riverine Field in Flood
Riverine Field in Flood
Farm Pond
Farm Pond
Church #1 (Hillsborough Center)
Church #1 (Hillsborough Center)
Church #2 (Hillsborough Center)
Church #2 (Hillsborough Center)

* Photographer talk ahead, proceed at your own risk! The new camera is a Fujifilm X100F and is very different from the dSLR s I have been using for the past sixteen years. The X100F is styled like and works similarly to an old-fashioned rangefinder film camera. Its an interesting mix of old (with actual dials for shutter speed, aperture and ISO) and new (it has menus galore and all of the bells and whistles that Fuijfilm cameras are know for). It also has a fixed (i.e. unchangeable) wide angle lens. The camera is small, unobtrusive and light… an ideal street photography camera.

20 December 2020

My Father’s Train

Filed under: Uncategorized — Frank @ 6:21 AM

Electric trains were a holiday tradition in our house when I was young. The trains came down from the attic with the Christmas decorations in mid-December and went back up in early January.

There were two sets of trains. A “modern” set that my brother and I got for Christmas one year in the early 60s and to which a new car or two was added on each subsequent year. The second set was one that my father had when he was young. It probably dates from about 1940.

Both sets ran on the same tracks and we played with both. My father’s set consisted of a very sleek engine and two passenger cars. I seem to remember that the were somewhat balky in their operation. Not surprising, given their age. The “modern” set, consisting of freight cars including a missile launcher car (this was after all, the cold war!) made for more interesting play.

I have no idea what has become of “my” set. However, my father’s set recently came into my possession. When we moved my Mom to assisted living this Fall one of the boxes that ended up at our house contained the train set. When I got the box home, I stowed it in our garage and did not think much about it until last week.

When I opened the box last week, I found the three trains (engine and two passenger cars) that I remembered (in their original boxes) along with a receipt dated 2005 for their refurbishment. Also in the box are four unopened boxes of brand spanking new train track and a modern power supply. I don’t think that my father ever set them up after getting the trains fixed up.

I was inspired to make a photo of the engine. The box of trains is currently sitting in our house, I should probably set them up and give them some exercise. We’ll see…

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Lionel Model Train Engine
Lionel Model Train Engine

19 December 2020

Steel, Stone and Wood

Filed under: Alternative Processes,Cyanotype — Frank @ 10:00 PM

I haven’t made any cyanotypes in about a month. It has been too cold in my basement “dim room”; about 45 degrees. A few days ago the house was chilly enough that we started the basement stove and suddenly it was warm enough in the basement to work again.

I printed three 4×5 inch negatives from exposures I made several weeks ago, coated some 5×7 inch Rives BFK paper and made these prints.

It is satisfying to be at a place with the cyanotype process that I can get nice prints without much fussing about. I am not sure that I ever got to that point my first “go round” with cyanotype a dozen plus years ago.

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steel-wheel-bfk
steel-wheel-bfk
stone-god-bfk
stone-god-bfk
wood-bench-bfk
wood-bench-bfk

6 December 2020

Friday Dozen

Filed under: Uncategorized — Frank @ 10:00 PM

Friday morning I visited my friends Joe and Diana in Laconia.

I took an indirect route home and stopped to photograph in East Andover and at Potter Place (a historic rail station) in Andover with the following results:

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Church Steeple (East Andover, NH)
Church Steeple (East Andover, NH)
Grange Hall (East Andover) #1
Grange Hall (East Andover) #1
Grange Hall (East Andover) #1
Grange Hall (East Andover) #1
Untitled (East Andover, NH)
Untitled (East Andover, NH)
Hand Truck (Potter Place)
Hand Truck (Potter Place)
Potter Place Depot
Potter Place Depot
Untitled #1 (Potter Place)
Untitled #1 (Potter Place)
Untitled #2 (Potter Place)
Untitled #2 (Potter Place)
Wood God (Potter Place)
Wood God (Potter Place)
Wood Stove (Potter Place)
Wood Stove (Potter Place)
Box Car Detail (Potter Place)
Box Car Detail (Potter Place)
Boston and Maine (Potter Place)
Boston and Maine (Potter Place)

30 November 2020

More Hand-Colored Photos

Filed under: Alternative Processes,Hand-Coloring — Frank @ 11:31 PM

Here are two more hand-colored inkjet prints made in the past couple of days.

Both of these were printed on using Epson’s Advanced Black and White mode on 200 gsm hot press Fabriano Artistico paper. The paper is about as traditional a water color paper as you can find.

The bird houses were colored using Faber Castell water color pencils and blended using, unsurprisingly, water!

The shovels were colored using Prismacolor Premium pencils and blended with a 1:1 mixture of turpentine and vegetable oil as I have mentioned previously.

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Bird Houses
Bird Houses
Shovels ( But No Rakes or Other Implements of Destruction)
Shovels ( But No Rakes or Other Implements of Destruction)

All of the hand-colored images I’ve shown thus far have been printed on 5×7 inch paper. The image size is 4×5 inches or 4.5 inches square. My standard size(s) for small prints. (I’ve cropped away some of the blank paper from the scanned images displayed here.)

I am evolving a method for making this type of print. I start by making one or more “drafts” on an inexpensive paper (Fabriano Studio) in which I experiment with colors and blending. I make notes on the back of these drafts as to the colors used and other details. My intent is to file away the last of these drafts in case I want to go back and make another copy at a later date.

Next, I make an artist’s proof on a nicer paper at the 5×7 inch size. This is an object that I consider finished and worthy of matting and display.

Only at this point do I consider a larger print either on the same paper as the ‘proof’ print, or if I am feeling adventurous on a different paper.

Thus far, I have made copies of the above two photos on 8×10 inch paper. The image size is 7×9 inches, or about three times the area of the smaller prints. These take a lot more time to complete… as one would expect!

I guess that the next step is to consider editioning. Although I am not sure what I would do with even a small edition of a single print.

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