…and in with the reliable. Just look at that old piece of crap: my mom bought me this officially-branded Chicago Blackhawks duffel bag when I was about ten years old, so I’ve had it more than two-thirds of my life. It carried my clothes to sleepovers way back when, to film festivals in Colorado, and housesitting jobs as recently as last month; it got a lot of love along the way. After 20+ years it’s finally getting retired in favor of a BAD Bags #3 duffel/backpack hybrid.
It’s a pretty important investment for me because I’m flying to Ohio towards the end of March and I’m sick of borrowing my mom’s luggage. I certainly couldn’t take the Blackhawks bag with holes everywhere and no working zipper…
I was helping my mom rearrange some things in her house and came across a roll of film that had been in a basket just lying around the house. I thought it might have been a roll that I shot when I first moved to Colorado, maybe a good 7-8 years old now, as I still have one roll unaccounted for. It turned out to be something much more precious:
This was our home in Ohio which we had to sell back in 2002 which means that these pics are at least 15 years old, and judging by the way my brother looks, are probably closer to 20. While mostly different angles of the front of our house, I also managed to capture our dog Pinto that my mom brought out to Colorado, and who sadly didn’t survive long after that. Also in the background is a straw barn that we spent many an afternoon playing in back in the day. These were taken by me, with my Kodak Cameo Focus Free point & shoot camera, picked up at a thrift store at some point and probably still in my top drawer in the chest at my dad’s.
I bumped up the contrast a bit but that was all, and am pretty impressed with how good the images held up, even if they do now look a bit vintage. Knowing from experience how reluctant people are to drop off old film at a camera store these days, I recently had a single-use camera processed for a friend of mine and they were at least this usable. If people you know have film lying around undeveloped, please encourage them to make a trip to their local camera store, or barring that, offer to do it for them: it’s a nice favor and can bring back some great memories.
The main event. A much more joyous occasion than two years ago, we met in Manassas, VA for my cousin’s wedding. He’s the last cousin to get married, which probably means my brother’s and my days are numbered…
At least we’ll be able to put them through a long plane flight like the ones I’ve had to endure the last few years!
The trial and error continues. Since last spring I’ve made it a point to shoot and get the hang of Ektar 100…it still hasn’t happened yet. Maybe it’s the lack of sunlight that skews the color temperature, or the fact that with a manual camera I’m not getting a proper exposure, or that I didn’t perform a whole lot of color correction in post. Whatever the reason, the unsatisfying results are just one more reason that I’ll shoot keep shooting the consumer-variety films.
Down in the San Luis Valley on SR17 between Moffatt and Hooper, is a center for extraterrestrial enthusiasts, a place that has a reputation for being frequented by UFOs. People flock from all over America, perhaps the world, to sit on the observation deck at night looking for spacecraft.
According to the lady that runs it, Spanish conquistadors wrote in their diaries about witnessing UFOs landing on the plain when they were first traveling through this area in the 16th century. I have not corroborated this claim, but just pass it along. There is a garden that psychics say contains powerful energy spots, and it is traditional to leave something behind after visiting. Walking the garden is said to heal you of diseases.
I stopped there after attending the Southern Colorado Film Festival, as a good place to use up two rolls of Fuji Reala (expired 1993) that were kindly given to me by a lady in a thrift store in Alamosa, CO. I thought that in keeping with the always grainy, out of focus and generally crappy images of supposed flying saucers, 25-year-old film would be a good choice. The only saucers I saw though, were grounded.