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  1. #1

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    Mistakes You're Fond Of

    Most of my mistakes go in the bin as I'm sure most others' do too. But every now and then I mess up and quite like the result. Maybe you have a photo that was a mistake but you've come to like. Here's one I printed this week. I think the paper got too close to the luminous hands on my darkroom stop clock:


    Fuji Pro400H on Kodak Supra Endura.
    Steve.

  2. #2
    Steve Smith's Avatar
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    Not mistakes in this case - Last week I made a few prints using an old DeVere54 enlarger which I have fitted with an LED light source. I had almost run out of fixer so what was in the fixer tray was very dilute. It didn't matter though as I wasn't making prints to keep, just to look at a few minutes after exposure.

    The last print I made was left in the fixer and started to darken after about half an hour and later became slightly solarised, darker in some areas and lighter in others. I left it in the fix for a few days before I cleaned that tray up and was fascinated by the daily change in the images.

    I wish I hadn't thrown it away now as I could have posted a scan of it here!


    Steve.
    "People who say things won't work are a dime a dozen. People who figure out how to make things work are worth a fortune" - Dave Rat.

  3. #3

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    I remember years ago reading an article by Bob Carlos Clarke in Practical Photography magazine where he'd thrown away a print of a handgun. Later a dustman knocked on the door of his studio asking if he'd sign the print he'd chucked out, Bob looked again at the now screwed up print and rather liked it. He bribed the dustman £50 to get it back, he then flattened it out and photographed the print which he used in his article.
    Steve.

  4. #4

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    Hmmn - I think my life was probably a mistake I quite like But I know what you mean when it comes to photos - I just wish ALL my favourites weren't mistakes !!!

  5. #5
    Dan Henderson's Avatar
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    I made an exposure of a tidal pool in Iceland through a deep red filter, forgetting to account for the filter. I realized my mistake and made another exposure with more time. But when I looked at the contact sheet I liked the very graphic quality of the very dark, underexposed black sand against the bright water. When I posted it here someone commented that it reminded him of a Wynn Bullock, so the picture instantly became one of my all time favorites.


    web site: Dan Henderson, Photographer.com

    blog: https://danhendersonphotographer.wordpress.com/

    I am not anti-digital. I am pro-film.

  6. #6

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    That's a fabulous image! Try to repeat this and your mistake will become a technique.

  7. #7
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    Quite a few years ago I attended a public timber beam demonstration of the reconstruction of Louis Bromfield’s historic Malabar Farm barn that had burnt down. The volunteer timber beam construction workers all wore white safety helmets. And were working on several levels at the same time .I accidentally underexposed my shot by 3 stops and just got the white helmets and highlights of the beams But when I printed with a little more burning of the background it gave me one of the best dramatic shots I ever made.My wife who was an artist said they are called lucky accidents

  8. #8

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    Quote Originally Posted by perkeleellinen View Post
    Most of my mistakes go in the bin as I'm sure most others' do too. But every now and then I mess up and quite like the result. Maybe you have a photo that was a mistake but you've come to like. Here's one I printed this week. I think the paper got too close to the luminous hands on my darkroom stop clock:


    Fuji Pro400H on Kodak Supra Endura.
    That "mistake" goes perfectly well with the expressions on the subjects' faces..."what the hell, man? You've got the clock too close to the paper!"
    Pentax: 6x7 MLU
    Olympus: OM-1n
    Graflex: Miniature (2x3) Speed Graphic

  9. #9
    tac
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    I was playing with the Sabattier Effect on some nudes and I accidentally blocked the re-exposure light with my forearm; result was beautiful- I published the image and then sold it, unfortunately before I copied it, so I now only have the published version. but nice!

  10. #10

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    Attached is the image in question -

    I just finished my first personal darkroom. During a 12 hour stint in there the other day (i have a lot of catching up to do, heh) I decided to play with one of the prints. I wanted to see if i could get some sort of double exposure where i could get the guy centered and have just black all around his body with some sort of mesh imprint or a pattern of some kind over the black.

    All I could find on hand was a handful of leather studs, so i made a print, cut him out of that print, leaving the negative in the exact same position in the enlarger. After cutting him out, I put him on new paper covering where his new body would be, and exposed the hell out of everything around the cut out with the studs sprinkled on top. then i picked up the cut out and exposed that exact area with the proper exposure time for his body.

    Ehh, the results sucked. The studs looked cool but he was pretty much invisible because of me accidently moving the paper during the exposure. waste of 15 minutes, I thought. Damn it was a cool idea though...

    SO.

    I messed up something during the next print. I tossed it in the developer, thinking, well, I'll see what happens. Then I thought, never mind, why waste my time. I pulled it out of the developer and tossed it in the trash.

    This goes somewhere I promise...

    I did a couple more just basic prints of the same negative and didn't like a few, so I tossed them as well.

    A few hours later I was pretty much done for the night. I looked over some test prints and thought, how cute will it be to keep all these little test prints of people crowd surfing and make a little collage on my darkroom wall (i shoot punk rock shows so I have like a million shots of crowd surfers, and their faces are always priceless). So I decided to go back in the trash and pull out a couple good ones.

    AND THERE IT WAS. My failed project had decided to manifest its own self in my trash can. coincidence? I THINK NOT.

    Apparently the developer from the messed up 'developer dipped' paper was somehow involved in mixing itself with the other failed prints... I really have no idea how this happened honestly. But it's exactly what I was going for...
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails ses mistake 2.jpg  

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