Saturday, 28 March 2009


What does an archaeologist do when she is out of action? Pick up a camera...or normally anyway. At the moment I am well and truly out of action having damaged the muscles in my middle back a week ago. Me being me I still went off to London for a digging job but found myself unable to do anything more than watch a machine and do paperwork, while getting grumpy with frustration!
Having now returned from London I am under orders to take it easy, so no long walks with a heavy camera. Even more annoying was the fact that I was up in Hampton Court Palace and didn't find the time to take a single shot! Grrrrrr....
As an archaeologist you learn not to take your back for granted but this was the silliest injury, not even sure how I did it, it just started getting grumpy one night after work and got steadily more annoying till a trip to the quacks was forcibly suggested by my work mates.
Now I am on ibruprofen for however long and unable to do much apart from walk around the flat being grumpy. I hope to catch up with some film scanning at least next week but for now I mostly catch up on sleep I dont get at night and bumble about the place.
So, heres a tip for anyone who spents a lot of time bent over, as told to me by the back specialist I talked to...reverse bend!!! Yep, every five or ten minutes straighten up and bend backwards a few times. Apparently its the one thing us archaeologists don't do enough of...untill now that is.

Sunday, 8 March 2009

More Pentax shots also came back in this load of film, though I have only had a chance to scan this one so far. I spent a couple of hours today working out the optimum height to hold negatives away from the glass on my scanner, sounds geeky but its amazing the difference just half a mm makes to the sharpness of the scan. Eventually I worked out that the thickness of a dvd case cut up to hold a single negative was perfect so I made my own neg holder and it seemed to work fine!
The bridge is one of Bristols iconic views, a bit of a cliche but I tried to take it from a more unusuall angle. That and the beauty of the 6x7 negatives made for an image I am happy with.
At some point this week I will try to find time to scan some more...theres an interesting shot of a twisted tree I want to work on!
Watch this space!

Realising an idea

At last. I took this photo last year while working around the ruins of a mediaeval abbey church. I used my digital camera to take loads of shots, all focusing on this wall and the old kettle that was left lying around the grounds. I was never happy with the digital shots though as they didn't capture what I 'saw'...the image as I wanted it to be. Then this week I had a load of film developed including one from my little Holga and this gem was on it. I had forgotten I took the Holga with me, I was waiting to use up the film and so hadn't processed it untill now.
Funny isn't it that the sophisticated digital camera, all bells and whistles, just couldn't capture the atmosphere I wanted yet the plastic medium format film camera with no controls managed it perfectly.
I wonder what that says for my photography. I love the old fashioned look of this shot, caught out of time in an image that could have come from any era.