Aug 27, 2011

In Atmospheric Light

This week I had some minutes left between two meetings in the city and so I strolled into the bookshop. There I discovered a book with wonderful photos on the discount table. The title is "In Atmospheric Light : Pictorialism in Dutch Photography 1890 - 1925". It was published on occasion of an exhibition in 2010.
The book starts with an introduction on pictorialism, a movement around 1900 that tried to establish photography as art with a capital A. Then it continues with about 100 photographs of 12 Dutch photographers, like Hernri Berssenbrugge, Bernard Eilers and Johan Huijsen. One of my favorites is a 1909 bromoil print by Bernard Eilers, called Trafalgar Square.

Also I have been experimenting with the embedding in my website of my videos on YouTube. I had it working in this blog to show them in a continuous loop, but I couldn't get it to work in my website. At last I copied the HTML part from the blogpage to the website and then it worked. But... only in Internet Explorer. I can't get it to work in Firefox or Google Chrome. Well, the videos didn't run in a loop before with these browsers, so I leave it to that. The only thing I can do with new videos is to repeate a video twice, so that the camera makes two turnes on the table.

There's not much going on at eBay, but one camera is rather special. It is a pink No. 2A Beau Brownie, with case and instruction booklet. The set is extremely rare. Price at the moment is US $ 375 and still 4 days to go. If you want one of these, go for it now.

Aug 21, 2011

Photohistorisch Tijdschrift & No. 4 Bullet Special Model '98

This week issue # 3 of the PHT (Photohistorisch Tijdschrift), the Dutch photographica collectors magazine, dropped on the door mat. In it a number of interesting stories about Goerz AG, Pierre Angenieux, AGFA and Zeiss Ikon films. Also in it my Scheimpflug article, part 1. For the first time the magazine printed a QR code. When you scan it with a smart phone or webcam, and if you have a QR code reader installed, it takes you to Flickr, where I have gathered more than 40 photographs about Scheimpflug. The idea is that if you are reading the article and want to find out more, you simple can scan the code and get additional information. It works with a computer with webcam, but QR codes are used primarily with smart phones. I wonder how many view I get on Flickr.

This week I changed the home page of my website so that it is not so static. I used to tell about the importance of George Eastman and what you could find on my site, but that hardly changes, so I dumped it all and replaced it with a video and a few words on the newest addition to the site. In this case the Scheimpflug File.
I also added a new camera video to the site. It's about the No. 4 Bullet Special, Model '98. I have had that camera for many years, but for some reason I never had made a video of it.
Until now all the video's are uploaded to my provider, but with the Bullet I tried YouTube. It works well, but I haven't found how I can run the video in a loop, so that the camera seems to turn round and round without ever stopping. I will have to experiment a bit more before I am satisfied, but here it is. You can find the additional text on my site.
Update: I found out how to let it run in a loop. Result below:

Aug 15, 2011

My first movie production

I've been very busy with lots of things lately: my job (which costs many leisure hours), writing some chapters of my new Alix Janvier detective novel, and making a film. Well, don't take that too serious, but nevertheless it did cost quite a bit of time. The film of nearly 6 minutes is a kind of 'artists impression' of the life and time of Theodor Scheimpflug. It started as a little experiment to put some photos together with Windows Movie Maker and transform them into a old silent movie. But the new version of Windows Live Movie Maker doesn't have the 'old film' filter anymore, so I had to install the old version on my new computer. On the other hand the old version does not have the nice zoom and pan functions of the new version. So I ended up zooming and panning the photos in one version, save them as a fragment of film, import them in the old version and make them look like an 'old movie' there.
Then I had the idea to search for original snippets of old film on the internet. There's a lot out there, so I used some footage of blimps, balloons and street life in my own film. It was much fun doing all this, and I also found some very nice sources of old movies on the internet.
But enough about all that. Of course you can't wait to see my moving picture. Polish up your German, because to stay in tune with the language of Scheimpflug I made the text between the fragments in that language.
So, turn on the gas in the projector, open the stage curtains and watch the screen!

Aug 7, 2011

Old movies

While I was experimenting with Windows Live Movie Maker to make an 'artists impression' of the life and times of Theodor Scheimpflug, I came across the Internet Archive. This is a remarkable library of online content, a real treasure trove of old journals, texts, music, audio recordings and early films. I did know the Archive from my search for Scheimpflug articles, but I didn't know that they had so many early movies. Try this link for a sample of silent films.
The best thing is that you can download the films and save them on your harddisk or use them in a film of your own. I downloaded a 1940's film about the history of aviation and took some scenes from it to use in my Scheimpflug film.
Have a look at the Internet Archive and while you are doing so, see if you can find some old photography magazines. You can read them from cover to cover, download them and search trough them, full text.
Below is a sample of a real old piece of film: Leeds Bridge, filmed by LePrince in 1888.