Kodak Brownie Bulls-Eye Test Roll

Brownie BullseyeI picked up the Brownie Bullseye at a garage sale at the Old West End Festival a couple of years back for $3 or $4, boxed, with the flash attachment. After letting it sit in its box on top of my camera display shelf for a year or two, I finally got around to running a test roll through it this past May.

The Bullseye takes 620 film, and doesn’t accept 120 spools, so this was my first attempt at respooling 120 film onto a 620 spool. Honestly, it’s not that big of a deal: I sat on my basement stairs in the dark and wound the film onto one 620 spool, then back onto another 620 spool. I’m sure I’ll get quicker at it once I develop the muscle memory.

Surprisingly, I only had a couple of very minor streaks and light leaks thanks to my respooling attempt; for the most part, I really liked the pictures that came from this test roll.

At the Park


Diana Mini Test Roll #2

Before this past April, the only time I’d used the Diana Mini that my husband gifted me was immediately afterward, when I took it to the family Christmas gathering and took some square photos. Those were mostly indoors, long exposures steadied against a table, and they came out well enough for a toy camera.

I decided to run another roll through the Diana Mini this past April, to try out some different conditions and to use the half-frame feature, since I took square photos last time.

World Tai Chi Day 2015

[Taken 25 April 2015 | f/cloudy | ISO 400]

General impressions: It’s a plastic novelty camera. To expect anything more of it is unreasonable. It’s super cute, hides in a pocket, and is the perfect size for my four-year-old to play with (sans film). It doesn’t have a very sharp focus even in the best of situations, and creates some fascinating lens flare effects in the right (or wrong) light.  (more…)

Canon AE-1 Test Roll

This camera had been on-deck and forgotten for probably a year when the photography bug bit me again. I just needed some new batteries for it, which I ordered from Amazon (not because they were hard-to-find, but for the sake of convenience). The day the batteries arrived, I loaded it up and started shooting.

[Taken 27 March 2015]


Aaron With Iced Coffee and iPhone

Aaron With Iced Coffee and iPhone
[Taken 9 July 2011 | exposure unrecorded | ISO 200 | 50mm]

I took some test photos with my new-to-me Praktica Super TL1000 during the beginning of July. Thanks to a massive (read: not artistic in the slightest) light leak that rendered many of the photos unusable, this was one of the best images that came out of the 24 exposures. I suspect that it had something to do with the failing sealant foam; I may try some camera surgery in the future to see if I can manage the light leak without resorting to mummifying the camera in gaffer’s tape, a la my Holgamod.

Apart from the light leak, I really do like the look of the photos that come from this camera. I seem to have cleaned the camera well enough, despite feeling super sketchy (almost naughty, even) about actually touching its interior. After scanning the images, I couldn’t tell what dust was from the camera and what was from my scanner, which tells me I must have done OK. (Hope I didn’t cause the light leak during cleaning…!)

My Praktica will definitely stay in the collection for a while — someday I’ll come back to it and fix its light leak(s) and take it for another spin.

Update: I found a topic in the Praktica group on Flickr that details where the light leak is coming from. I was right: I did inadvertently cause it (or make it worse) during cleaning, when I scraped some old foam off of the back hinge. Once I replace that foam, my East German axe should be right as rain.

The Anthony Wayne Bridge

Anthony Wayne Bridge
[Taken 24 Feb 2011 | ISO 400 | 50mm | Kodak 110 film]

A.K.A. The “High-Level Bridge,” downtown Toledo. Another shot from my Pentax Auto 110.

While researching this camera online, I’ve learned something important: since the manufacture of 110 film cartridges was never standardized, film manufacturers could choose whether or not to remove a notch on the cartridge that some cameras (including this one) used to identify film speed. Since the camera misreads the 400 speed that I use, and exposes it like 100 speed, all my photos are slightly overexposed.

When I test my wide-angle lens, I plan to manually remove the notch on the film cartridge and see if that makes a difference in the exposure.

Starbucks Product

Starbucks Product
[Taken 30 January 2011]

This was the first outing for the Ricoh 35FM, and I enjoyed photographing with it. I ended up with some good photos, but no really amazing ones. That was partially on purpose; I tend to avoid taking unique shots on a test roll, just because I’m not sure if anything will even come out. I should probably rethink my philosophy there…

Overall thoughts: This camera is very automatic, except for the focus and film speed. I might take it places where I’d be hesitant to take my Lomo LC-A (since it’s getting older and slightly fragile), but not if it involved very low-light situations. Indoors by a window = OK. Indoors by lamplight = not OK.