On the very last shoot day of January 2019’s FP4 Party, I went with my family to the nearby city of Gaillac. Knowing Gaillac’s lantern festival was in full swing, I loaded up some FP4 PLUS into my negative carriers, packed up the large format gear, and threw it in the trunk next to the stroller.
Since the popularity of my earlier dungeon in a latte photo, I had intended to revisit the idea of images in hot beverages. Putting Chinese festival lanterns in Chinese special gunpowder tea felt appropriate, if not entirely derivative.
When we arrived at the festival, it was raining, it was cold, and we were wrangling both a three-year-old and a 6-month-old. Also, I realized I had forgotten my loupe for focusing. So, all things considered, it wasn’t ideal for shooting. (Also, taking off your jacket in the rain to use as a dark cloth solicits stares.) Fortunately, I was shooting at f/22 (affording me some focusing forgiveness), and my wife was willing to distract the kids long enough for me to photograph two different subjects — a dragon and a rather sad monkey.
For each subject, I took two shots — one on each side of the negative carrier — for a total of four negatives. When I returned home I made some tea.
So, here are those four shots: Special Gunpowder: Dragon & The Sad Monkey (and their b-sides). For those wondering, each a separate double exposure shot in-camera, using splitting masks over the lens.
The film is ILFORD FP4 PLUS in 4×5 shot at EI 500 (my favorite speed for the film). And, despite the inaccuracy of other analogies between analog audio and film photography, these are indeed “B-sides” as they come from the other side of the same negative carrier.
Don’t @ me 😉
Share your knowledge, story or project
The transfer of knowledge across the film photography community is the heart of EMULSIVE. You can add your support by contributing your thoughts, work, experiences and ideas to inspire the hundreds of thousands of people who read these pages each month. Check out the submission guide here.
If you like what you're reading you can also help this passion project by heading over to the EMULSIVE Patreon page and contributing as little as a dollar a month. There's also print and apparel over at Society 6, currently showcasing over two dozen t-shirt designs and over a dozen unique photographs available for purchase.