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Thread: Meditation on house fans

  1. #1

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    Meditation on house fans

    I decided to have some fun with a house fan dating from a time when these things were made in the United States. The skylight in my studio provided the illumination. I used a Zone V! view camera and Tmax 100 developed in Tmax developer. The lens on my camera was a home-made 170mm soft focus design at an aperture of f/9. The hardest part was getting the right amount of blur on the blades, which required a bit of experimentation. I gave the blades a spin with my hand and snapped an exposure of 1/10 second just before the blades came to rest.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails fan3 (2).jpg   fan3.jpg  

  2. #2

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    Re: Meditation on house fans

    Very cool, looks like the perfect amount of spin, and I like the DoF in the 2nd image.

    Quote Originally Posted by bevdig View Post
    home-made 170mm soft focus design
    Would love to learn more about this.

  3. #3
    Eric Woodbury
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    Dec 2003
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    Re: Meditation on house fans

    On the same film try several shorter exposures that add up to 1/10. Example, six exposures of 1/60.
    my picture blog
    ejwoodbury.blogspot.com

  4. #4

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    Re: Meditation on house fans

    My homemade soft focus lens is an achromat pair from Surplus Shed dropped into a disassembled shutter and diaphragm from an old Speed Graphic. I pulled focus in the other image by making a slight swing of the rear standard on the Zone VI camera. I think the key to success with this kind of image is getting precise control of what areas are in sharp focus and what areas are soft.

  5. #5
    Old School Wayne
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    Dec 1999
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    Re: Meditation on house fans

    Quote Originally Posted by bevdig View Post
    I decided to have some fun with a house fan dating from a time when these things were made in the United States. The skylight in my studio provided the illumination. I used a Zone V! view camera and Tmax 100 developed in Tmax developer. The lens on my camera was a home-made 170mm soft focus design at an aperture of f/9. The hardest part was getting the right amount of blur on the blades, which required a bit of experimentation. I gave the blades a spin with my hand and snapped an exposure of 1/10 second just before the blades came to rest.
    Cool old fan made in the good old USA. I still have the scar on my thumb from when I reached for something behind one of those and my thumb went through the grill when I was about 8 years old. And they didn't have plastic blades.

  6. #6

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    Re: Meditation on house fans

    Here is another soft focus effort, this time using my daughter's ballet shoes from a long time ago (she is in her '40's now). The lens this time was a 170mm Fuji SF at f/9 on Tmax 100 developed normally. Lighting is electronic flash with a fill card to the left. I spent a fair amount of time making sure the background tonality was just right--not too dark or light.Click image for larger version. 

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  7. #7

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    Re: Meditation on house fans

    Here is another "meditation" on house fans. This time I used a Linhof Master Technika and 150mm CaltarII MC lens on Tmax 100. Exposure was 1/2 second at f/11 with lighting from two halogen fixtures left and right. I made a slight swing of the front standard in an effort to bring both the fan and the subject into sharp focus, however the fan seems slightly soft, though it doesn't seem to hurt the picture. This image is an interesting combination of "hard" and "soft" elements.Click image for larger version. 

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  8. #8

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    Re: Meditation on house fans

    Here is another meditation on house fans. Tmax 100 using a Linhof Technika and 150mm Caltar II lens. Lighting is from a tungsten Fresnel fixture, f/11 at 1/15 second exposure. The fan was not running; I just gave the blades a spin and waited until they were almost stationary.Click image for larger version. 

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  9. #9

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    Re: Meditation on house fans

    Quote Originally Posted by bevdig View Post
    I decided to have some fun with a house fan dating from a time when these things were made in the United States. The skylight in my studio provided the illumination. I used a Zone V! view camera and Tmax 100 developed in Tmax developer. The lens on my camera was a home-made 170mm soft focus design at an aperture of f/9. The hardest part was getting the right amount of blur on the blades, which required a bit of experimentation. I gave the blades a spin with my hand and snapped an exposure of 1/10 second just before the blades came to rest.
    Nicely done. A bit of a film noir quality to these.

  10. #10

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    Re: Meditation on house fans

    I never thought about your observation that these images have a film noir quality to them. Perhaps it is due to the black and white rendering, and my use of Fresnel spotlights, which were the go-to fixtures used in cinema in the 1940's. In any case, the kudos I have received is encouraging me to do more "meditating" on house fans.

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