Russar 20mm + Lens from Lomography

Recently I was given the privilege of testing the 20mm Russar Lens from lomography.  For such a wide angle lens it takes a lot of discipline for street photography, but it's been great fun to use.  At first I was nervous using so wide an angle lens to get close to people, my usual go to lens 90% of the time is a 35mm.  I felt like I was starting photography all over again, but that feeling soon dissipated, often times I was so close people thought I was shooting over their shoulder.  

It's a lovely compact lens, very sturdy.  With the high depth of field it turns the m6 into an almost point and shoot, for example at F8 it's DOF is 60 cm to infinity.  

Russar 20mm Leica m6
Leica M6 Russar 20mm

Also it was the first time I used bulk loader to make my own film, with a 100ft roll of RPX 400.

RPX 400 Bulk Load
35mm Bulk Loader

From now on, I will bulk load all my 35mm, it really does save a fortune.  

Below are more than 60 photos, shot on RPX 400 self made, all shot with the Russar 20mm lens.

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Vape in strong sunlight.

Vape in strong sunlight.

I decided to brave Temple Bar on Saint Patricks day.  

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Passion of the Christ recreation on Good Friday on Dublins Northside.

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Mayday march May 1st.

May 1st

May 1st

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More Easter weekend procession shots.

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Republican march Easter Monday outside the GPO O'Connell Street.

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Altogether it's a great Lens, really a lot of fun with excellent image quality.

Interview on Adorama TV

Recently I did an interview for Adorama TV to talk about my personal projects and street photography in part one, then processing techniques and stereoscopic 3D in part two.  It's a great format and they edited it really well. I'm happy how it turned out, but the state of my voice.   I was nervous at the time but it turned out fine.  

Part two processing techniques.  

It's great Adorama TV give attention to Irish photographers, although I think there are better photographers more deserving of the format, but I'm very thankful they did an interview with me.  Thanks Adorama and Ruthless Imagery.  

2016 captured with 1916 cameras exhibition.

So finally after much preparation and a years worth of negatives to sort through, I've put together an exhibition.  It's a mix of framed prints taken on folding bellows cameras and box brownies from 1914 to 1916, and 3D stereoscopic images from a French army camera from the first world war.  

The wall space with the framed silver gelatin darkroom prints and the stereoscopic images.  

1916 Centenary military flyover the spire O'Connell street, Easter Sunday 2016. Shot on a box brownie from 1916.

1916 Centenary military flyover the spire O'Connell street, Easter Sunday 2016. Shot on a box brownie from 1916.

Sepia Toned Silver Geletin print, framed 16x12.  April 24th 2016, the 100th anniversary of the 1916 rising.  Shot on a Kodak 1A bellows from 1916.  

Sepia Toned Silver Geletin print, framed 16x12.  April 24th 2016, the 100th anniversary of the 1916 rising.  Shot on a Kodak 1A bellows from 1916.  

Beside the proclamation mural Smithfield march 2016,  Shot on a Kodak 1A bellows from 1916.

Beside the proclamation mural Smithfield march 2016,  Shot on a Kodak 1A bellows from 1916.

I had some prints hanging in the Green Kitchen cafe in Walkinstown as a trail run.  But for the stereoscopic exhibition rather than use a location off premises I decided to use my own studio, as I need to keep tabs on the 3D glasses I will be handing out to people, and to show them how to use the stereoscopic viewer.

Light box with Nikon D800 turned into a DIY neg scanner.

Light box with Nikon D800 turned into a DIY neg scanner.

For stereoscopic viewing cards which would be printed 7x3.5 inches the most popular size in the 1910's, I used a DIY neg scanner set up (pictured above).  Because the film for the stereoscopic which I had to hand make and cut to size myself has been discontinued over 90 years ago.  Originally I was doing darkroom prints from the stereoscopic negs but it was taking over 90 mins to make one viewing card.  Since I had over 50 stereoscopes to make the digital option was the only way time wise.  

Although for the framed prints I did keep it authentic to 1916 and printed and toned them in the darkroom.

Testing the stereoscopes with 3D glasses and trimming them with the guillotine.  

Save Moore street protest, outside the GPO.

Save Moore street protest, outside the GPO.

Arbour Hill 1916 commemoration.

Arbour Hill 1916 commemoration.

The Mendicity institute plaque ceremony, with the lord mayor of Dublin.

The Mendicity institute plaque ceremony, with the lord mayor of Dublin.

Richmond barracks recreation.  

Richmond barracks recreation.  

Irish police in riot gear, O'Connell street, February 2016, shot on a stereoscopic camera from 1913.  

Irish police in riot gear, O'Connell street, February 2016, shot on a stereoscopic camera from 1913.  

Pegida protest O'Connel street, February 2016, shot on a stereoscopic camera from 1913.  

Pegida protest O'Connel street, February 2016, shot on a stereoscopic camera from 1913.  

Since I've only one stereoscopic viewer, I decided to buy a few pairs of 3D stereoscopic glasses so several people can view at the one time.  

Testing stereoscopic prints, nineteenth century virtual reality

Testing stereoscopic prints, nineteenth century virtual reality

Exhibition opening night.

Exhibition opening night.

The exhibition will be part of PhotoIreland and will continue to mid August.  It's on at Travers photography 5 Upper Clanbrassil Street, Leonard's Corner Dublin8.  Hope to see there.  

For more info Like on Facebook. https://www.facebook.com/Seamustraversphoto/

https://www.facebook.com/TraversPhotographyDublin/

Twitter:  https://twitter.com/seamus_travers

Shakespeare and the Easter Rising

Recently myself and Chris Fitzpatrick both Co-Directed a short video about the 400th anniversary of Shakespeare's death  and the 1916 Easter Rising.  

Shakespeare died on the 23rd April 1616, and the Easter Rising took place the day after his 300th anniversary on the 24th April 1916.

The Lines in the poem are spoken by Prospero in Shakespeares final play the Tempest, which Chris thought were very appropriate to the 1916 Rising.

Stereoscopic 3D Photography

When doing research on the types photography, as part of the ongoing 1916 project I'm working on, of capturing Ireland today on cameras from a century ago.   The genre which most surprised me in popularity but seldom used in stills today, is Stereoscopic photography.  In recent years 3D movie viewing by the principle of stereopsis has made a huge comeback, now nearly every block buster comes with the 3D option, no longer is it associated with the B movies of the 80's.  But I had no idea that in the past picture postcards, sold with a viewer similar to the effect of 3D glasses was so popular.  

Stereoscopic photography, the process and illusion of 3D and depth in images, first became popular in the 1860's.  It involves two images of the same scene taken a slight distance apart, preferably 60-65mm apart the same distance as the human eye.  When the two images are placed side by side and viewed through a stereoscopic prism the illusion of depth is created.  

Many a upper middle class family was not without a stereoscopic viewer and sets of postcards, the biggest sellers were travel and erotic images.  

Particularly just after World War One, sales of stereoscopic viewers and images went up in demand.  Many company's began selling sets of WW1 related images, due to the lifting of censorship on photography from the front line, images could be published posthumously to a media and public that were left starved of images. 

Jules Richard Le Glyphoscope camera.

One of the biggest sellers of Stereoscopic cameras was the Jules Richard Paris company, a genius in optical engineering.  I recently bought a display model that I was told had not been used in over a hundred years, this one is from 1910. 

Le Glyphoscope shutter and lens detached. 

Whats brilliant about this camera is the front camera elements can detach, and then the body and lens can be used, as a stereoscopic viewer for your slides and negatives. 

The same double lens, then doubles up as a viewer (pardon the lame pun).   

The slide viewer pops into the film section, and the same device used to expose the film is then used to view the negatives.  It's hard to believe back in 1910 such a simple camera was this innovative.

Father Mathew Hall Smithfield. 

The double image 65mm apart, produced onto a single negative.

Inside the viewer. 

Parnell Monument, stereoscopic effect.  #savemoorestreet rally.

To best illustrate the effect of a stereoscopic viewer, I've over lapped the two images onto an animated Gif. 

I will be shooting the sites and events around the 1916 rising centenary, to produce as a series of stereoscopic cards.  For an exhibition people can view through a stereoscopic viewer, rather than prints on a wall,  as was the fashion a century ago where people would put a coin into a machine to view images of either war, travel, or erotica. 

The magazine holders originally sold in packs of 12 that came with the camera. 

The big problem with using these cameras, is the film is long extinct.  The film magazines which the Jules Richard cameras take are similar to a 4x5 neg holder, but for 45mm by 105mm negatives, long discontinued.  

The guillotine with sizes marked. 

The way I've figured out to get around this, is you need to cut a sheet of 4x5 film down to 45mm x 105mm size.  IN THE DARK!!!

As this is done with a guillotine in complete darkness it's very important you don't cut your fingers off. 

If you do this at home I assume no responsibility.

Out of a single 4x5 sheet of film you can load two magazines with film. 

First you turn off the lights, then as you would with large format photography you feel for the emulsion side up by the rim cut in the lower right of the film.  Then using a guillotine with markings measured at the sizes 45mm and 105mm you cut the film.  I use tape to know where the measurement is to feel in the blackness. 

Also very important, with the first incision you cut off the emulsion side marker, so you must be aware which side of the film is emulsion side up, as you've no guide to go back to once you cut the first millimeters off.  If you load the film into the magazine emulsion side the wrong way down, you go through all that trouble for nothing. 

College of Surgeons in Dublin today.  A key sight in 1916

When viewed normally the double image appears as this, but when viewed through a stereoscopic viewer or certain 3D glasses the effect is below. 

College of Surgeons stereoscopic view.

Four Courts.  Dublin. 

Samuel Beckett Bridge.

Sean Heuston Bridge. 

Save Moore Street Rally.  #savemoorestreet

The recent save Moore street protests have been very interesting to shoot on the 1916 era cameras. 

Heuston Station stereoscopic image.

With just a little work these 1916 cameras can get up and working again.  The optic lens quality from this stereoscopic camera, that is back from the dead like lazarus is really surprising. 

The next step is printing the images onto 5x7 prints in the darkroom, and then try find a venue to host an exhibition.