A series of events that almost ruined a photo project. Read on to find out how my 'a photo, a month' resulted to a near tragedy.
Around this time last year, I wrote a blog post about my poor under loved Holga. I had decided that I would load her with a roll and take one picture a month. 12 frames on the roll twelve months in the year. Clever.
I had recently bought a box of Kodak Portra 400 which had unbeknownst to me been opened. This was the first step in the near tragedy. I grabbed the roll and hurriedly loaded the camera only realizing after the fact that this was 100 speed film. Never mind I thought it will still do the trick.
I placed my Holga on the shelf ready for the experiment. The days went by and I faithfully shot one photo per month. Not once did I forget. I was so proud of myself. I used colour gels on my flash. This was going to be a great roll!
Finally December came. I took my last shot on the roll and wound it up. I couldn’t wait to get it to the lab. I was so excited. I opened the camera and to my surprise, not only was it not Kodak Portra 400, it wasn’t even colour film. All those beautiful colour flashes wasted. I stifled a tear and moved on.
I do all my B&W developing at home. One day I hope to start colour developing at home but it is very tricky to get the chemicals here in Canada for some reason.
Then disaster struck. For some reason I still cannot explain, I could not for the life of me load the film into my film reel. I struggled for almost an hour with my hands in my darkroom bag fighting to load the reel. My children heard some very creative cursing that day. My hands were cramping and my blood was boiling. I was seriously losing it.
By this time, the film was bent and ripped and sweat was pouring freely from my hands. I had been at it over an hour when I finally decided to just chuck the roll into the canister and hope for the best. I developed as normal and here are the results. All the months showed up, I only lost half of the December frame and most of the shots were undamaged.
Needless to say, I’m not trying it again this year.