Yesterday Walgreens offered free developing and prints from one roll of 35mm film as mentioned in the blog post from yesterday. During my lunch break yesterday I took about 24 abstract out-of-focus photographs in downtown Wheaton. It was a lot of fun. Performing a specific photographic exercise really opens the eyes to see environments in a completely different way.
So what was the tangible result? A large majority of the prints from Walgreens were incredibly contrasty. See sampling above. I wanted much more subtle tones with colors blending graciously. There’s really almost no color blending at all. Scan10006.TIF is closest to what I wanted the series to be. (Side note: My scanner did some weird cropping to Scans 5-8.)
At first I thought Walgreen’s processing machine didn’t know how to handle these non-typical (abstract and blurred) images. But I thought about it some more and I would guess that they put all film through the exact same processing process.
It came down to an underestimation on my part of the basic properties of light and shadow in 35mm film photography. I know exactly what I did to cause the contrasty images. I’ll be better equipped the next time I perform this exercise. These prints will force me to zig instead of zagging. That’s cool. It’s all part of the process.
I scanned in most of the negatives and I began playing with one of the images in Photoshop. The preliminary result is below. It’s a simple edit of Scan10018.TIF in the image above.