Friday, February 20, 2009

Here's for Hoping

Yesterday I received the news that two Hawaii-born rolls of film completed their first journey. They are safe and sound at the home of Peter and Helen in New Plymouth, NZ.

The next step, then, is for Peter and Helen to reload this film into their camera (they're only going to use one) and take 24 shots. I'm not giving them set rules on locations or subjects, so it will be a surprise when this all comes together.

I want this to be about their voices, not just me orchestrating a complicated project in locations I hold dear that I can control from afar. It's a glimpse at journey and time and place, integral parts of the human experience.

Having said that, I am still bombarding the two of them with emails about the finer details of analog/film photography and the lost concepts of aperture, shutter speed, etc. that average Joe's digital point-and-shoot doesn't address. I've said before that it is essential in this project that the negative is underexposed with each shot. Because the camera my dad was using in Hawaii did not have much manual control of settings, I'm a little nervous that by the time the film gets to me the negative will have been too exposed. To increase likelihood that something display-worthy will come out of this project, I'm asking Peter and Helen to pick up another roll of film and shoot over one of my dad's and then on the new one. That way, if the Hawaii film doesn't work, we'll at least have a story of New Zealand, Bellingham, and Abilene.

At least I'm hoping.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

More Than Just Alright

Before I get started with my day, I have to sit down here briefly and show you some of my pictures from my trial roll. Out of the 24 developed, only 6 or so were keepers (i.e. the kind that get me really excited about this project).

I got some great lighting in the four below that makes me wonder if the combination of indoor and outdoor do this. If I were already planning on putting together a series, these four would be it. For more, go take a look at my flickr site.

I'm breathing a sigh of relief as I realize this might work out more than just alright.



Scan1 1

Scan1 4

Thursday, February 12, 2009

On Its Way

I listened to a wonderful voicemail on my windy walk home from painting class yesterday. It was my dad saying that he mailed his rolls of film off to New Zealand! They should get to Peter and Helen in five-ish days.

Tracking the journey of this film, it was first exposed in Kukuihaele, Hawaii, dropped in the mail in Oceanside, California, and is on its way to New Plymouth, New Zealand.

That's approximately 9145 miles/14715 kilometers!

View Larger Map

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Here and Over There

Oh, it's hard to be at this end and let my little project run, but it's also a lot of fun knowing a roll has already been shot on the beautiful (big) island of Hawaii.

At this point I'm still doing some trial runs with rolls loaded and reloaded into my own camera, so it turns out I do have some work to do on this end too.

Just tonight I finished a quadruple exposure on a roll. I broke the whole thing down to 8 double exposed, 8 triple, and 8 quadruple. I probably lost a picture or two at the beginning while cautiously rewinding it just enough to have an end still hanging out to reload. In fact, I stopped by the photo center at the grocery store today to have that little tail pulled back out of the roll so I could continue.

I haven't figured out a sure way to know when to open the back of the camera up, but fortunately this was easy enough. I may have the others rewind the roll entirely and have a "professional" extract the end so that as few images as possible are lost.

So where is the film today?

Well, my father purchased two rolls of (400 ASA speed, 24 exposure, color) film in Hawaii and is hopefully going to mail them off to New Zealand in the next day or two. (I know it's going to be soon because he is moving back to the mainland tonight!)

My roll will be developed by tomorrow, and I'll share the results as soon as I have time.


Wednesday, February 4, 2009

My Cohorts

Let's make some introductions, shall we?

There are specific reasons why I have selected the people and places I have.

Grant in Hawaii. Grant is better known to me as "Dad," and his recent return to the Big Island of Hawaii proved quite convenient for me. I was born in Kona and like to think that my early exposure to the sun (spending most days in just a diaper and baby-size rhinestone earrings) conditioned my skin to tan easily and burn rarely.

Peter and Helen in New Zealand.
Peter and I spent part of our childhood years together in Auckland, New Zealand, and since then he has met a lovely girl named Helen and gotten married. My family moved away from New Zealand when I was eight years old, and though I lost my tinge of a Kiwi accent, my love of vegemite, pavlova, and New Year's Eve in midsummer has not waivered.

Kris in Washington. Kris is my aunt, and she lives in Seattle. She's going to take a trip up to Bellingham (a two hour drive north) to take these pictures, and I'm glad to include her in this wandering film saga. Apart from being family, we share a sweet bond over coffee, baking, photography, and our Norwegian blood.

About Bellingham: It was my next home after Hawaii and New Zealand (with Wisconsin and Lynnwood, Washington, briefly squeezed in there too). After four years had come and gone in Bellingham, I remember wondering if we were going to pick up and move again because I didn't know what it looked like to stay in one spot for an extended amount of time. Now I'm very grateful for the ten years spent there. They spoiled me, really, being cozily tucked between the Cascade Mountains and Puget Sound and within reach of good espresso.

So, these are the people I'll be talking about and uttering endless thank you's to throughout this blog.

Thank you!

Monday, February 2, 2009

What It's All About

Hello. Kia ora. And let's not forget: Aloha.

This is the story of a roll of film that I intend to send through the above lands, finally to arrive in my own. "Hello" is a bit
too broadly used to be a clue as to where it will be traveling, so I'll go ahead and dive into what this blog is all about.

I am doing an independent study in film photography this semester (my final semester of college...just felt like that needed to be mentioned) and am coordinating the shooting and shipping of a single roll of film from New Zealand to Hawaii to Washington State to Abilene, Texas, making for a multiply exposed negative.

My personal process in this project as well as the postal journey of the film will be documented here.

Bon voyage.