Friday, 27 July 2012

Ocean Liner

It's a cold morning, 19th January 1940. First Aer Lingus flight was departed from Collinstown Airport as it was called back then. But before...

British newsreel footage of the new airport at Collinstown,
Co Dublin under construction in 1939

...In 1936 Desmond FitzGerald with group of young architects started to work on the project of a new airport. Building influenced by the ideas of Le Corbusier was completed in 1940. Design of new at the time, four-storey terminal with horizontal windows, terraces, an observation and cafe deck is often likened to an ocean liner.
It was also Ireland’s first and the most important modernist structure.

During ‘The Emergency in Republic of Ireland’ as World War 2 was called that time in neutral Ireland, the Airport was mothballed. Also because of war and related to it restrictions project wasn't published until 1945 when war finished and Aer Lingus resumed its service. It was the reason why this Iconic building never got the recognition that it deserves.

External part of the building

The Old Terminal is a listed structure now. Its part still operates as a departure gates which makes this building one of the world’s oldest working airport terminals. The other part is a head office of the Dublin Airport Authority (DAA) and a Met Eireann office.

Last Wednesday I had a chance to photograph this truly unique object. Long awaited moment. Permission was granted for the reception area and external part at the front of the building /photograph on the top/.
Here I would like to thank Ciara from DAA office and Carole, fiend of mine for all help.

Reception Area
In most cases limited access and time forcing me to take a rapid decision what to photograph and how to compose an image. Not easy with large format equipment. I have to add that usually I am visiting my subjects for the first time. Generally there is also not too many photographs available from those places (if at all) which normally could help to plan every trip and make a decisions beforehand.  This is the trickiest part of taking photographs for 'Unfulfilled Dreams'.  Each session however is very emotional and worth all the effort. 

When I entered foyer I knew exactly what I was going to focus on - staircase :)
This element of structure in many buildings is something very special and makes each of them unique.
Reception area itself is a wonderfully sculptured, very clean in its form and full of natural light space. Even fitted with lots of contemporary elements still keeps its genuine character...

Some standard technicalities at the end:
Sinar F2 with Schneider-Kreuznach Symmar-S 150mm 5.6 and Fomapan 4x5 100 developed traditionally in Caffenol-c-m. 

Sunday, 22 July 2012

Direct Positive Paper (part 2)

I am coming back to direct positive paper tests. As you remember almost two months ago a took first few photographs on that medium using studio lighting.
Everything came out really well. You can have a look at the blog post following this link - ‘Direct Positive Paper’.

Last Thursday I decided to give it a go with natural light. I set camera in UCD campus in the middle of fantastic modernist structures photographed by me many times before (‘Forms’ series for example).
With mentioned in previous post slow speed of this paper (about ISO 3) and aperture f=45 it took about 30s to get proper exposure.
Paper was developed in Ilford Multigrade Developer.

Below are first results.

ISO 3, f/45, 30s expo - 20s dev
This is a second photograph out of two I developed. Dev process about 20 seconds (quite fast) gave the best result. Very reach tonal range  and great details.
Here is the same image developed for much longer time 40seconds. Still pretty fast as for paper dev process. As you can see however it is way too dark and also there is loss of details due to high contrast. That's why I gave it ago once more with mentioned 20 sec then.

ISO 3, f/45, 30s expo - 40s dev
I also took the same photograph on negative film for comparison purposes. It was as usually Fomapan 100 developed in Caffenol-c-m.
...the same place, settings, lens and the same camera :)

ISO 100, f/45, 4s expo - 10min dev in Caffenol-c-m

Of course negative is more versatile and with a little bit of time and experience in darkroom printing will give better result. That's for sure. 
We are focusing here however on new great 'instant' medium :)

4x5 prints

After all it is difficult (if possible at all) to judge such photographs seeing scanned images. Only viewing the print can give real feeling of what is happening with such paper. It is truly fantastic! 

Thursday, 5 July 2012

'Close To Closure'

Fantastic opening of our group exhibition 'Close to Closure' last night. Really good selection of photographs. It was great to see you all there! Thank you!
Of course all of you who couldn't make it to the opening, you are more then welcome to visit Back Loft Gallery till 10th of July, the last day of the show.
You can see there my ‘Urban Stories’ series and also other wonderful projects by my friends, very talented photographers: Fiona O’Donnell, Monika Fabijanczyk, Sharon Murphy, Rebecca McGetrick, Calin Ploscar, Jeanette Lowe and Hugh McCabe.
Many thanks to Sean Hillen who opened this show making fantastic introduction, to all my friends photographers and especially Rebecca for organizing everything so perfectly ;)

Roll on PhotoIreland Festival! ;)

opening by Sean Hillen
last minutes