So, there I was, 12 years old and
the proud owner of a Balda 144-X box-type camera: Fixed focus, fixed exposure
time, fixed aperture, and even a fixed format, since the frame of the 126-type
film was perfectly square! The only slide film available was Agfa CT19.
What could be done with such a camera?
Well, photos like these. Not very sharp,
but good enough to make a 12-year-old mighty proud!
During a youth summer camp at the
Lanalhue lake, each morning a team had to get up before sunrise, boat across
the lake, and walk to the next bus stop to fetch fresh bread for the 300
people at camp. The day I was in the chosen group, I got the chance to
shoot this photo.
Cousins Paul and Alfred
While they played tennis, I played
with my camera. The slow, fixed shutter speed cannot freeze any motion
- which is a good thing! The color rendering of the Agfa CT material
was legendary. Since dropping the CT emulsion with its rather complex processing,
Agfa has never again been able to match it.
For several years I spent most of
summer at a small cottage in a forest. Unfortunately almost every year
we had fires. Powerless to put the flames out, I opted for a desperate
attempt to turn destruction into art. The oil-painting-like appearance
comes from the very coarse grain of the old CT material.
My school choir made a four-day trip
to the farm of a choir member's family, for intensive rehearsal before
a concert. But not all was rehearsing. We did get some play in the fields
too - and some photos. The fuzzy sun, hidden behind the palm tree, does
make the plastic lens flare, but I like this photo anyway. Do you?
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