That one rock

I think its name my be called Leaning Buddha or something like that.  I can be seen from the road quite well and there are almost always a lot of people on it.  I decided to make a pilgrimage there myself for the first time, in my first couple weeks back this Summer, and wasn’t disappointed: there was a sizeable crowd nearly the entire time.

I’ve been back a few times since, leading hiking tours; it makes a good spot to let tourists snap some pics, there aren’t too many other rocks on which regular tourists are allowed to scramble.

Kodak cowboy diptych

If you ever wondered just what I looked like while I’m taking pictures of all those cowboys and jeeps it would be something like this:

Except we wear vests as well; I took mine off to show off my new shirts.  I’m becoming a bit of an aficionado of well-made clothing (side-effect of owning a few Nikons?) so have started taking a few style shots here and there.

Summer 2021 on Ilford XP2 Super

After not being able to use the UCCS darkroom last year during the pandemic, I decided to patronize my local camera store a bit more, which has included buying/processing color negative film almost exclusively.  One thing I didn’t want was to be stuck with even more rolls of black & white that will either take a lot of money to be developed or will sit in my freezer until I can get back to developing at the university.  I still wanted to try to continue my current photo project for just a little bit longer and for that I decided to go chromogenic black & white.  Here are a few of the shots I took over the Summer:

I shot just a roll or two of BW400CN before Kodak discontinued it and man do I wish that Kodak would bring it back but I’m happy and thankful that Ilford is still here for us.  I would not say that XP2 is a worthy replacement for Tri-X but for what I needed I think it works well.  One thing that I noticed was that it behaved very much like a color negative film in that I think its true speed is not 400 but 200, so I tried to overexpose when I could.  The shadows can fall off really quickly and yet it is so flat when scanned.  That’s mostly good because I have never been thrilled with how black & white is scanned by the lab; it’s usually way too contrasty and if the exposure isn’t exactly perfect you’re losing quite a lot of information.  I prefer to scan myself at low contrast and dial it in on the computer, something that XP2 does nicely even when lab scanned.

I will eventually go back to Tri-X when I can develop it myself but for what it is and what I need right now I’m pretty happy to continue shooting Ilford XP2 Super.

A breakdown

It’s not the first time old Ruby and I have had difficulties together.  In fact I think it’s time #3 if I’m remembering correctly.

One of my passengers had just restored a CJ-7 so he was tinkering around a bit, and a kind fellow stopped to help us as well; what was determined was that the fuel pump gave out and it couldn’t be fixed on the side of the road.  We had to be rescued to finish the tour.  Just Enough Extra Parts indeed.

Shaped

Garden of the Gods is the park everyone (it seems) knows in Colorado Springs.  This is another city park about a mile or two South, called Red Rock Canyon Open Space.  It’s kind of like the little brother but there is actually more land there.  It also, back in the 19th Century, was used for such purposes as landfilling and quarrying.

Thankfully the quarrying was in the past though there are still some industrial things going on there, I assume part of the land reclamation over the old town dump.

On the ground at Garden of the Gods

I spend so much time on the road but wanted to get some shots from inside with a bunch of tourists.  Most of this was just a regular Thursday in the Summer, I missed out on getting 4th of July because it rained a lot of the afternoon.  I’ve been back a few times now but the crowds haven’t been there.

.

Colorado Springs breweries

One of the special tours we did recently, a team-up with a bus tour company and the nicest hotel in the area.  Colorado Springs has almost 25 breweries around town, these half-day tours focused on 3 of the more prominent ones.

I also threw in one that’s close to the office as I go there now and again.  Some of our most interesting spaces are old buildings that have been renovated and repurposed; we have a few breweries around town like that, they used to be hotels, schools, railroad infrastructure, etc.  I’m happy to see these buildings given new life instead of being torn down in the name of progress.