March 23, 1999

Marieke's First Outdoor Session (Long Lake, Nova Scotia)

After the recent successes at Duncan's Cove, I was enthusiastic to do more work, and when this day dawned sunny and bright, I was ecstatic, as Marieke had committed time to work with me in the afternoon. Initially we had planned to work at her apartment, but given the brilliant spring light, we headed off to photograph outdoors.
4"x5" film
Over a period of about 90 minutes, Marieke and I worked in a small circle of woods, exposing 16 sheets of 4"x5" and a full roll of 35mm infra-red. Of that, however, little worked. With the infra-red film, it was simply a matter of insufficient infra-red radiation. Though there was lovely warm sunlight, the air was cool and, when the wind didn't blow, it was pleasant enough. I suspect  it was still early enough in the Spring so that most of the IR radiation was screened out by the angle of the earth. Regardless of the reason, however, it was only the extreme over-exposed frames which had any images on them at all - the best image of the day, to the left, received about sixteen times more light than I usually use for infra-red images.
4"x5" film
Of the 4"x5", not much was successful; due to the chill air, I'd given Marieke my dark-cloth to keep the wind off between the exposures. The dark-cloth is used when focusing the view camera, and I used my sweater instead to shield the ground glass. This worked well for the focus, but failed totally where composition was concerned; almost every image suffered from lack of careful checking, and, while some wouldn't have worked anyway, a few we made with trees are sadly unusable because fingers or elbows were cut off by the edge of the frame.
35mm infrared film
On the whole, while it was disappointing to produce so many images and have so few work, the infra-red image more than makes up for the failures. I am becoming somewhat amused by my affinity for flare.  I have five top of the line Nikon lenses, but my favourite piece of glass to work with on my 35mm camera is a cheap Vivitar 19mm - gotta love the flare!

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