Red Background

A note to myself: Get a red background for portraits in black and white film. Makes a wonderful gray color for portraits. Maybe paint a wall red.

This may lead me to build a small wall on wheels. Just so I can paint it red.

While it could be much simpler to find red backdrop paper… my desire to overbuild may override such practicality. “Overbuild” a real theme in my work that has lead to more than one disaster…

Hiroh Kikai

Wonderful portrait by Hiroh Kikai. Thanks to The Phoblographer for introducing me to his work.

I really appreciate the concept of being very careful who you take a picture of. Being intentional has a certain grace and beauty to it. It’s kinda the oposite of street portraits where you grab whatever pic you can of whomever walks by.

Super inspirational stuff.

Izzy’s Mask

Nikon F3, Nikkor 28mm-85mm 1:3.5-4.5, Artista Edu 400, Rodinal (1+100)

This photos is really growing on me. When I first saw it I lamented the lack of focus in the foreground. But the composition of the girl looking at my son in the foreground really makes it. The counter balance of the blurry and grainy bokeh in the top right helps a lot.

I’m reminded that many awesome pictures I love aren’t very sharp. New technology that captures perfect sharpness automatically isn’t necessarily required to make a artful picture. And after all my goal is to make art.

A real pic by this tumblr’s owner.


From Tricia V at

Here you go folks… Here is the Caffenol Recipe I use.. I have made some slight changes to the one I was given. The original had a temp of 70 degrees and also used tap water. I do mine at 20c or 68 degrees and use distilled.

500 mls distilled water @ 20 Degrees C
4 tsp. arm and hammer washing soda (not baking soda)
1&1/2 tsp vitamin C powder
1/2 tsp iodized salt (mortons)
5 rounded tsp cheap instant coffee (the cheaper the better
and not decaffeinated)

Add and Mix in that exact order and let sit for 5 min.
(tip..mix after each ingredient is added. especially the soda. works better I found out)
pre-soak film for 5 min in 20 c deg. distilled water
develop for 11 min
agitate for the first 30 sec. then a couple inversions every 30
sec. till done

For 100 or lower speed films (do not use with film above 100)

I hope it works for you. I think the key is to make sure it is thoroughly mixed. And to make sure the temp is at 20 c. I start out with water that is slightly colder then 20c .. After I put in the soda I stir it thoroughly until it is dissolved. I also recheck the temp at this time. The soda usually raises the water temp by a couple of degrees. Just keep checking those temps.. 🙂

Good Luck!!