Friday, July 13, 2012

Fish-eye Friday

Earlier this week.

I hardly drink milk but treated myself to a Blue Bottle latte one recent early morning.
The city is serene, foggy and quiet before the morning rush begins. The thicker the fog is, the more underwater you feel, so thick that you cannot see past half a block. Those are classic mid-50°sF summer mornings around here.
Thought I'd share the above picture, phone shot.

Similar to the photograph below, taken with my LX5 almost 20 months ago.
When one's life changes so dramatically you reconsider everything. And nothing really matters.
Here I am now and without any strange feelings nor forcing things whatsoever, it started to feel slowly okay to write and post again. I do it because it makes me feel good for the time being, it is a healthy habit and it is a positive aspect in many ways, to share and to reconnect.

37/365 Sun sphere

My friend Richie commented (on the b+w) that it looks like a fish-eye.
The only thing I noticed is the coffee-holding happens on both.

I had not thought of this, however I often find myself looking for creative ways to play with what I have. Some people consider that a limitation of tools but to me sounds more like a limitation of imagination. However, I'm open to experimenting furthermore in the near future with more of these innovative tools.

As an art school student, I worked in the media center because the fact that I could have access to all the media, was beyond amusing. I didn't even have a laptop for the first semester and it was required. Not because I didn't want to, but I couldn't afford an Apple powerbook until after that 1st semester was over. That made me become really good friends with the IT staff that worked late hours in the design computer labs and quickly mastered time management skills like it was my own thesis.

A mentor and Graphic Designer I admire and highly respect here in San Francisco, complimented me on that fact, days before I graduated. His words have stuck with me since. I often revisit many of the things learned in his class. Not sure if he knows this but it is something close to my typographic heart. Amongst his other infamous quotes "Don't be funny with money." ♥Thanks Doug!

I also learned to be proud of my accomplishments not only during school, but within my professional career – and some lessons learned during school continue to resonate with me anytime I hear anyone express they wish/need/want [insert latest gadget here] so the can produce a better outcome and be better at [insert trendy trend here]. Blegh.

A photographer went to a socialite party in New York. As he entered the front door, the host said 'I love your pictures - they're wonderful; you must have a fantastic camera.' He said nothing until dinner was finished, then: 'That was a wonderful dinner; you must hava a terrific stove.'
-Sam Haskins

©Sam Haskins for Japan Vogue 2002

I recently came across this trailer for a Saul Leiter documentary which is not yet released. I'm pretty much in love with his attitude and we can all learn from keeping things simple.
y coffee.
Hope you enjoy the as much as I did, what he says at 1:32 is extremely wise.

In No Great Hurry - 13 Lessons in Life with Saul Leiter TRAILER from Tomas Leach on Vimeo.

“In order to build a career and to be successful, one has to be determined. One has to be ambitious. I much prefer to drink coffee, listen to music and to paint when I feel like it.”
-Saul Leiter
 -via a recent post from Wired
My 35mm camera, a super basic SLR Kalimar w/Minolta lens, was recently fixed from a light leak and caught myself shooting quiet frequently. It took me some time to find a camera shop that would actually tell me they'd fix it. So I headed to the outer sunset and the nice man over at Action Camera on Taraval street/26ave, even asked if he could do a little cleaning past the shutter curtain (if I did it myself, there sure be coffee stains just by looking at it).
Also the only place where I didn't hear "it's not worth it, why don't you just get a nicer one on eBay."
So $40 later, it was good to go. I got emotional attachment to this thing. The shot below even won some small award at a fair in the form of a funnel cake.
Woman in the Getty Museum - student trip to Los Angeles, 1999.
(foto of a foto) Woman in the Getty Museum - student trip to Los Angeles, 1999.

Perhaps revisiting an obsession from over a decade ago and exposing myself to experience once again the limits between 24 and 36 sets, means something. Once I find a bit of time to digitize the negatives, I'll share some of the recently developed b+w photos taken with a roll of film randomly purchased at a Wallgreens on a small road trip to Monterey Bay with Ade late last year.
Uncertain that the film would even come out, after using a number of old colored rolls and certainly not ready to spend much money on nicer developing, the clerk informed me there were only 2-3 locations to develop film left, and that they could just get rid of that service anytime soon. Well.
Dropping it off.

- - -
So on that thought, thanks for reading and all.
Coffee drinking, book reading times ahead.
Have a grand weekend.


  1. Mail me B&W film any time - I'll happily develop it with some of mine in my bathroom. I can even scan the negs. Seriously, you have my address!

    The photos you create with your LX5 and eye and imagination are always inspiring.

    Love this quote: “In order to build a career and to be successful, one has to be determined. One has to be ambitious. I much prefer to drink coffee, listen to music and to paint when I feel like it.” I need to find a way to work that philosophy into my life.

    1. Oh, I just noticed that you used CN film, which cannot be developed with typical B&W chemicals. The good news is any 1-hour photo drug store would be able to develop it. If you use traditional black and white film, then I could develop it. :)

    2. thank you dottie, tat is so kind of you. we'll def. keep the correspondence going :)
      I was more than pleased with that quick fix (of a roll), however I do plan to look into bit more solid rolls soon, I mean even walgreens won't sell average joe rolls anymore (!!)

      something about those old men. charming +so wise

  2. NIce post Meli. I have long believed that imagination drives success more than anything else. Equipment, knowledge are good aids/tools in the design process; they allow us to do things. But, imagination allows us to create things.

    1. very well said Michael.
      thx for your kind note

  3. inspirador. con calma, sin prisas y con café. +a

  4. Love your posts Meli! I am 'discovering' a love and attachment for film that I didn't know I had. I have a cheap but wonderful Praktica and just got myself more rolls to go out and experiment :D long live film! L x

    1. oh i can't wait to see them, you have such the poetic eye.
      baci baci carina xxo

  5. Well, this came with good timing... I've been struggling with photography since early morning and don't have much to show for it. I now realize that my mistake this morning, as Mr. Leiter warns, was in taking it much too seriously. Love his black and white cat--but then I love any cat--especially the beauty from down on the corner who drops by just about every day.

    1. donald that is very nice to hear, yes sometimes we get caught + held and the responsible ones is ourselves. your pictures continue to amaze me. cats make great companions, they are such interesting beings <3 best xxo


with coffee in hand, sincere thanks for your readership ×