Rock Chapel, Blackwood. A converted church that is now a private residence as well as a B&B, the husband and wife team who own it are big supporters of the Wales International Documentary Festival. The chapel was my base of operations, and the graveyard outside provided much photographic inspiration over the two days of the festival.
As the chapel itself has been renovated and repurposed, so too has the cemetery outside. I’d make a joke about the neighbors being quiet, but actually they weren’t, especially at feeding time in the morning. I never knew sheep could be so excited over breakfast, but what they lack in facial expressions they make up for in the height that they can jump. I thought for sure I had more pictures with the sheep in the graveyard, so maybe they’re there and I’m not looking hard enough…maybe they’re lying in wait, ready to pounce…
I never would have considered traveling to Wales for a film festival if not for some generous offers of funding when I had just learned that Overwhelming Majority had been accepted. Unfortunately that funding fell through and I cancelled my plans, then decided very last minute that the opportunity to go was too good to pass up, even if it meant paying out of pocket for my plane flight. It was a gigantic leap of faith my part and I am currently accepting donations to recoup this expense, as well as help me get to festivals further on down the road.
Though only at the festival in Blackwood for two days, I was able to get to know some cool filmmakers from Britain, Scandinavia, and Belgium, as well as see some interesting documentary films. Probably the best part of the festival though, was being able to share my experiences with the interns, mostly film and journalism students from Cardiff University. They were all cool people and I found that I fit in pretty well there. I hope I’ll be able to get back to the UK before too long.
I brought the Canon 7 and the Olympus Trip 35, loaded with some classic black & white and slide films, shooting 4 rolls total. There is much more to be posted from my first overseas trip.
It seems that each festival I go to is a better experience than the last, but I don’t know that Durango can be topped. They treated the filmmakers so nicely there, and it being 6 hours away from me, I decided to stay for the entire thing, which was definitely worth it. I stayed in the General Palmer Hotel (living in Colorado Springs for so long, I could stay nowhere else) which looked largely untouched by time. There were lots of activities I to do around town (like a trip on the Durango-Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad), plus a special filmmakers only-lounge in the basement of the local Irish pub…assuming you didn’t watch films, and I did try to catch as many programs as I could. The best part though, was that the entire festival took place in the space of two blocks in downtown Durango, making everything nice and easy to get to. I forged some great relationships with people and will definitely be going back in the future.
One of the requirements for the Advanced Photography class was to enter our work in an exhibition. I was so busy that I didn’t even want to think about this for the longest time, and ultimately decided to enter a single picture in the semi-annual Photographers’ Forum Magazine photo contest (you’ve seen it already). Not only did I not have to worry about editing the massive body of work I’d been assembling, but the PF Magazine entry cost me a whole $5 and I was done with that requirement.
Of course now that I’m not nearly as stressed out I feel a bit more like submitting to exhibitions, and this has been an encouraging reminder for me. I’m happy to say it’s one of the 13% that go on to the next round and will be judged by a group of college-level photography instructors.
While that might not mean a whole lot to the rest of you, I’m proud to say that she was my intermediate and advanced photography instructor, and I’m happy that she’s finding success in the photographic world.
Congrats, Stacy! (Also, I see the current editor is named Stacey, is that a job requirement as well?)
I’ve complained about them before. I wondered if my scanner was at fault, if the sensor was dusty. I wondered if it were possibly the film itself. As it turns out though, the most likely culprit is the darkroom’s new film squeegee, which looks an awful lot like this one. At this point, I’d almost wish that it was my scanner. When I wet printed some of these photos below for my exhibition, I could see the marks on the prints and knew then that those marks were on my film and are likely permanent now. Sadly, they can also be seen in Overwhelming Majority as well, though I’m sure it’s not as noticeable as I think it is. But they’re there…
The problem? Over-aggression. I was clamping that squeegee on my film as hard as I could, and I’m told that’s what’s led to those lines (you’ll notice they’re not present in my recent color film which was not developed by me). Live and learn, I suppose.
Completing Advanced Photography and especially the end of the exhibition sort of feels like the end of a chapter. I don’t really know where I’m going next, except now that my photo minor is out of the way, I can concentrate on my minor in film studies, as well as getting around to graduating sooner or later. I had a series of backed-up posts that I’ve strung out as long as I could (since April, in fact), but while I’m still shooting, I haven’t been gotten anything developed recently, so this might be my last post for a month or two. Then again, I might be back in just a couple weeks; nothing has been planned in advance.