From the same roll as my 2020 avatar are these select exposures of 35mm film hacked into a medium format Ansco Rediflex.
What you’re looking at isn’t normal. The Ansco Rediflex is a medium format camera which, when invented in the 1930s, was to be loaded with 620 film stock. 620 film stock is no longer made but is very similar to 120 film stock save for the spool in which it is loaded onto and the length of the film sheet.
This particular Rediflex can be loaded with 120 film stock, albeit it needs to be literally jammed into it. (See the tree image in this post.) It is just a bit too small to accommodate the larger spools so to load it I’ve needed to sand down the spool widths and cut off the excess. Which creates some interesting affects.
But I stumbled across someone loading 35mm film into a medium format camera – vertically – which creates the exposures you see above. There are two characteristics about these photos that I ended up liking. First, the film is loaded vertically so it results is a much larger image than you’d normally get with 35mm film. In fact, the resulting exposure is more than double the surface area as a normal 35×24 mm shot. Second, the film doesn’t quite reach across the focal plane of the camera horizontally. This ends up exposing the full width of the “height” of the film – even over the “sprockets”. I think it looks super cool.
It took a few rolls before I got this to work properly. And there are a few scratches and light leaks that I need to tend to before I try this again. But I’ll be doing this again in the future for fun photo projects and perhaps some portraits.
This being my very first “serious” medium format film exposure using the Ansco Speedex 6.3 – a camera from the 1930s that is fully manual.
I’m extremely happy with this image. Even though I was using Kodak Tri-X 400 film that expired in the early 1980s, the exposure is decent. The number of grays are vast. And the exposure I was looking for is right on.
The interesting thing about the Ansco Speedex is that I have to pace out my subject’s distance from the film’s surface. In other words, I had to walk over to that bench and walk back to the camera and take a guess at how far away it was for focus. For this entire roll, save 1 frame, I got the focus just right.
I’ve now purchased some brand-new Ilford HP5+ for this camera. I couldn’t be more excited to see the results of new black and white film for the first time.
This is a special episode. This is the first time I set out with a specific objective in mind (rather than just exploring or wandering) and I accomplished it!
The animal in the first image is, I’ve now learned more accurately, an American Mink (not a Fisher or Skink as I thought previously). It is in the weasel family and I can’t believe I found him.
Please enjoy this episode. I know I enjoyed recording it.
Edit: In the audio I misidentify this animal several times. I use mink, weasel, skink (which is a lizard) and fisher! Nearly in the same breath! Sorry about that. I had to get back and carefully look through the photos and compare them with what I’ve found online to figure out this was a mink after all.
On my way to the pub with a few friends I stopped by a nearby dam to shoot photos. I was surprised that just above the dam was a small marshy area filled with ducks, geese, beavers and birds. I managed to fire off just a few photos before the light faded.
There is one photo of Keenlake Campground’s adorable tunnel that I quickly stopped by to shoot as the sun was setting through it.