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Toronto!

It’s been a few weeks since my last post and plenty has happened in the meanwhile. I already mentioned in my last post that we found ourselves a house in East York of the GTA (Greater Toronto Area) and we’re setteling in nicely. The neighbours are all very friendly and we’ve been donated plenty of super useful things.

The hardest part so far has been unpacking; all of our stuff had been re-packed by the moving company so we don’t know which box holds what. Apart from that, we got rid of almost all of our furniture in the UK, so we’ve been on more than one hunt to find replacements. And there was a ton of paperwork to do: for our house lease, energy bills, health care applications, changing over my drivers licence, applications to mailing systems, re-energising my Etsy shop…..and the compulsory hiccups. TV and Internet being fickle. Not being able to find anything. A washing machine flood in the basement and blocked water pipes for 12 hours. Our banking cards not having Visa. Our visa card having a stupid low limit. Transit lines being interrupted. Being caught out in the seasonal downpours. The heat. The humidity!

The best part has been all the space we have to put things in. I’m especially loving the garage and I’m finally getting round to more than one DIY project. We’ve already repaired our antique fan, I’m currently still stripping our media unit (which turned out to be a very nice English Walnut) and refurbing an old pidgeonhole cabinet to go into my office space. There are still a pair of rusty folding chairs, a camera with studio stand, a black chipboard cabinet and a white kitchen cabinet to attend to. The latter two were free curbside finds and will be part of my darkroom outfit.

I’ve also gotten round to ordering my wetplate chemicals from two Canadian sources. Initially I thought getting this stuff in Canada would be very difficult and truth be told, the pricing of some of the ingredients (silver nitrate- $95 for 50 grams – GULP! Lucky I brought some with me!) would make me think twice if I wasn’t into wetplating already.

Now I still need a decent enlarger and to set up my scanner somewhere to process all of that film I shot in previous months. And then there is still more film to develop! So much work to be done!

 

Summer, downtown Toronto

Summer, downtown Toronto

It had to be done

It had to be done

Horrid black paint - stripping

Stripping paint

Mid-century look

Mid-century look with a brand new sofa, antique fan and curb-find box

The office, still barren

The office, still barren

 

Image update

I’d like to take a moment and greet everyone that’s recently signed up for the news feed or the newsletter – ever since I’ve started the Large Format Project, we’ve grown from around 200 to nearly 600! So: Hellooo! I hope my blog and/ or website will bring some inspiration or entertainment value to your life!

It seems I’ll be having some extra time on my hands now that my friend Georgiana has left Germany to move back to her home country Romania, to find work. She had trouble learning the language and it’s hard to find a job in Germany without that skill and sad as her departure may be, I do very much hope she’ll have more luck in Bucharest. I already envy her friends that get to see her on a regular basis!

Now, in today’s post, I will not be whining any more about my sad, sad loss. Instead, I’ll be catching up on some images I have promised in some previous blog write-ups, but never actually shared, and some images of an event I never even mentioned.

 

JAPAN DAY

A good number of weeks ago, we went to Dusseldorf’s Japan Day. You can read the original post here. I took some images on my Uber cool but highly fickle Hanimex Electra II using Kodak Ektra 100 film (35 mm color with 36 exposures). The film had been loaded since we lived in Sydney, and I already shot half the film at our local Bondi Beach. Unlucky as I was this time, the film had not loaded correctly, and must have slipped inside the camera. All exposures came out doubled up! Even though it does nothing to detract from the nice quality of the film, or the vintage feel the camera seems to lend to the images, or even the fact that it looks quite cool – I think it’s a shame I don’t have a ‘back-up’ of the images I had taken. But I suppose that’s the risk you take when shooting film….

 

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WET PLATE PHOTOGRAPHY

In the last session on wet-plate photography, I shot some images of Taz, that came out very well – and some of Angela, where I had more than one technical hick-up. I have since then scanned and given them their images and feel it would be only right to share a few of them here as well. I have taken some samples from the original scans and will be putting them into a separate troubleshooting section on the site, possibly within this week.

 

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SOEST MEDIEVAL FAIR

At the start of August, we went to Soest to visit their yearly medieval event. We were recommended this fair by a couple that attended the medieval fair at Xanten a few months earlier. They stated that ‘it was the biggest and best around and each year they were looking forward to it’. This obviously sounded great so we looked up the fair, planned and booked our trip. We had no car, so had to go by train, taking us nearly 2 hours to get there and when we finally did – it was such a downer! There was hardly any signposting and the stands and performances were dotted through the town center. Not that it’s huge, but searching for the next stall? That takes all the fun out of it! We were lucky enough to be at the right place when the parade hit the main street and I got a few nice shots of it too.

The main event was taking place between the inner and outer defensive walls, charging 2 euros per person to walk along a few stands and people sweating their pants off in re-enactment gear, having lunch. Truth be told, we COULD have stuck around till the evening, when they would be re-enacting the battle, but we were knackered and fed up and too cheap to pay the 20 euros to sit on an uncomfortable stadium stand! Needless to say, we were not impressed…..

I shot 3 rolls of film this day and managed to ruin one of them by not following the manual (what do you mean, I cannot stand develop kodak?!? Let’s just see about that shall we??__ please note: you cannot stand develop Kodak Tmax 100 in Rodinal -_-)

 

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