Friday, July 31

North Atlantic 1972

Jack, Maine, August, 1972

Irresistible versus immovable.

They were boxed in the attic closet. Thousands of slides along with color and B&W negatives. First time I'd brought them into the light in maybe twenty years. I need the room so I've got to toss the stuff that's tumbled into the black hole of obsolescence. So many dozen Kodak carousels. Each holding 140 slides. I pulled out an E-Z view illuminated slide sorter. You know, a slanted plastic sheet that holds about a 36 shot roll of slides in front of a light? 

So I went to B&Hs website and found the Wolverine, F2D Super Plas Film to Digital Converter... $99 delivered. The wolverine will convert slides mounted or unmounted, B&W or color negatives, and 16mm or Super 8 film to JPGs on either a flash card or through USB onto my hard drive.Problem is the Wolverine F2D takes the film one frame at a time - manually. 

The monitor on the F2D is about the size of the a camera's LCD, and it's very contrasty. However it has the ability to vary the exposure of a copy by ±2 stops, with s similar ability to vary the exposure of each of the RGB channels by the same about. Since color film seems to fade into either magenta, or blue... these controls allow me to restore (or enhance) some of the original color dynamics during the copying process. A scan takes three seconds. 

Back then I shot either a Nikon FTn or a Nikormat FTn through one or another of seven lenses capped with the dozens of filters I owned.  Unfortunately I have no idea which of the possible combinations went into the recipe that cooked up any image... Like this one.

My friend Jack Ricard was right up against the cliff face that stopped the massive waves. Judging by the slides around this image, this was a stormy morning with the winds coming ashore behind the slabs of water. 

Looking at this instant I've recalled the way the ground shuddered as the wave's fist slammed into those rocks. Jack, some forty years ago was roiled by both the explosion of froth and the gale. 

I've not talked with Jack in over thirty years. Jobs and moves have done what the North Atlantic couldn't  - swept us apart. But here's this memory from a box sealed by obsolescence. A window back to a morning when we were young friends. Now we're neither. 

Some memories though are irresistible and immovable. 


Cedric Canard said...

Good story Ted and dramatic picture. Good for you to take the time to convert your film to digital. I have a few boxes of slides that my wife won't let me throw out but unlike you I don't have the drive to convert them. I'm sure there'd be some memories in them though.

Ted said...

Thanks for your thoughts Cedric. As you can see from the post succeeding this one, I'm not so sure about the memory-thing hidden in those old boxes. I know the adages about memory dimming.. but it's humbling to find so many holes in the thing. I'm thinking that it's not that they are random tears in the fabric, but rather they turn memory into a rich Spanish lace. It is as if I am visiting a lot of these photo-facts for the first time after 30, 40 or even more years. It's simultaneously fun AND scary.

It's as if I have a photographic memory with the lens cap glued on.

Ted said...
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Cedric Canard said...

As I've often pointed out in my own blog, I'm not one to trust memories either but sometimes it's fun to pretend they're real :)