Downtown Denton

If you catch it in the right light, at the right time, with the right film, you can get a shot of downtown Denton, TX that actually looks like the downtown Denton of my memory, rather than the bright, clean weekend shopping destination for pretty young families that it is today.

I’m not bitter, well, maybe a bit. I’ve been visiting Recycled Records on the square since the early 1990s, through all the years of empty streets, boarded up storefronts and antique shops, and now I barely recognize the place. The antique/junk shop where I bought a Royal Quiet Deluxe for $25 in 1994 or 1995 is gone, replaced by a clothing store, an accessories boutique, and a candy shop, and there are now at least a dozen possibilities for lunch, several ice cream or cupcake shops, and 3-5 places to grab a cup of coffee, plus places to buy fancy clothes and shoes, home furnishings, all the things you’d expect at an outdoor shopping mall, and precious few of the things I expect from a smallish town square in North Texas. All things must pass and all, and it’s a great thing for the town, but still. If I want a quiet downtown stroll, I’ve got to go all the way to Gainesville, now.

Oh well. At least I can get a fried pie while I’m there. Continue reading

Actions are Judged by Intentions

Narrated by Umar bin Al-Khattab, Amir al Muhmineen:

I heard Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) saying, “The (reward of) deeds, depend upon the intentions and every person will get the reward according to what he has intended. So whoever emigrated for the sake of Allah and His Apostle, then his emigration will be considered to be for Allah and His Apostle, and whoever emigrated for the sake of worldly gain or for a woman to marry, then his emigration will be considered to be for what he emigrated for.”

إِنَّمَا الأَعْمَالُ بِالنِّيَّةِ، وَإِنَّمَا لاِمْرِئٍ مَا نَوَى، فَمَنْ كَانَتْ هِجْرَتُهُ إِلَى اللَّهِ وَرَسُولِهِ فَهِجْرَتُهُ إِلَى اللَّهِ وَرَسُولِهِ، وَمَنْ كَانَتْ هِجْرَتُهُ إِلَى دُنْيَا يُصِيبُهَا أَوِ امْرَأَةٍ يَتَزَوَّجُهَا، فَهِجْرَتُهُ إِلَى مَا هَاجَرَ إِلَيْهِ

Alhamdulillah. Continue reading

Pulling the Red Dragon

After my initial disappointment with the Red Dragon, and after my failings with the Psychedelic Redscale, but before I knew how the roll in the One Touch would turn out, I decided to shove a roll into the FE and see how the Red Dragon would do pulled as far as I could manage.

That meant EI 3 (ISO ring set to 12, with +2 on the Exposure Compensation dial), and it took some patience, some stability, and loads of light, but some of it came out nice. Continue reading

God willing

There are things I want to do, but I don’t tend to make resolutions, and I rarely announce future plans any more. For one thing, I don’t want to be a hypocrite, I don’t want to get into the habit of breaking promises. For another, and this is part of Allah’s design: when humans announce projects and plans, we get a little thrill in the brain as if we actually completed it, and this makes us less likely to continue on and succeed. I’ve noticed this in my own life, and when I’ve announced projects or plans in the past, I’ve often quickly abandoned them, or crept along halfheartedly for a bit, before petering out, and may God forgive me, this happens almost any time I announce something before I complete it.

Situations like this call for a dua. Continue reading

Ultrafine “Green Kitten” 320

Yes, Ultrafine Green Kitten 320. Don’t get excited… it’s not a fancy new film stock. In fact, I think it’s really Konica Professional 160 that the good people at Ultrafine reverse rolled to create their Red Dragon 100 film, and that I deredscaled… Why 320? Well, when you redscale film, everyone suggests you shoot it at 2 stops over. Ultrafine rate their Red Dragon at 100, so I reasoned that it came from some 400 film, and since most of the 400 films I’ve shot look a little bit cleaner at 320, I thought that would be a good place to test this out.

I’m going to share a pretty much the whole roll below, so get ready. Again, though, don’t get too excited, it’ll mostly be to point out some issues I have with the Red Dragon film.

Now, I’m not positive the Green Kitten is really Konica 160, but if it is, that would explain 1) why most of the non-fogged shots were underexposed by a stop or more and 2) why Red Dragon 100 is so incredibly dark at 100. There are no edge codes, so only the Ultrafine people could confirm: maybe they’ll read this and let me know. And if I’m right, maybe they’ll reward me with a free 100 feet of it (and a Bobbinquick bulk film roller too, maybe): I think it’s got some real possibilities, and I’d happily shoot 100 feet of it, if it was properly loaded and I knew what to expect from it. Continue reading