I thought I swore off these… I’m sure I swore off these… but when Em announced the return of the #FP4Party, I immediately ordered up some film and got excited.

That was January or so, and by the time Shoot Week came around (the first week of March 2020), I wasn’t feeling it. I remembered reading something about pushing FP4, and that sounded good to me, and I had a week-long training meeting scheduled in Atlanta, so I grabbed the Ricoh 500ME and away I went.

I flew out early on a Monday morning, in the rain, and watched the new-ish Joker movie on the way out. (B+/A- though so much for canon… sheesh. The Joker got that way from a radioactive acid bath or something. Everybody knows that. Still… good for a work plane trip.)

The work meeting happened at an office in Midtown Atlanta. Handily, the office is about a block from the Arts Center MARTA station, so I got to ride the train instead of renting a car, so win!

Of course, that also meant we got to walk everywhere, and it rained for almost the whole week, but it was good. The training went well, and I got to take some pictures from up high and grab a quick selfy (or six), so…

Most of my shooting in Atlanta happened in the hotel room, mostly at night, and I actually got a couple of nice ones, or ones I like quite a bit.

And then it was time to go back home, and I was only maybe a third of a roll in… so I shot like a madman on the way to the airport and from the plane.

Back in Texas and with two days to go, I looked at the frame counter and saw I still had a dozen shots to burn through, so I took a drive up to Denton and hit Recycled Records, with the (for me) obligatory shot of the rolls of toilet paper on the windowsill and a first (for me) mirror selfy in the same bathroom. Fun.

And even with that, I still wasn’t done… So another selfy in front of the big painting my mom made back in college. I had some hopes for a new avatar, but 1) I’ve gained some weight; 2) I’m older and balding some; 3) ugh.

And so that was my #FP4Party! Fun!

Eh… Really, I never got much into it. Sure, I shot and all. And, sure, I like some of the pictures from the roll, but I had to force myself to develop it. I went with easy mode on that (a Rodinal stand, ~1:99, 60 minutes with agitation at the beginning and halfway through). I messed around a bit, forgot to agitate at the beginning, closed the Develop! app a few times, and never heard the ding at half time, so…

I gave the first agitation at about minute 2, and was way vigorous with the swizzle stick: back and forth rapidly, violently, for about 15 seconds. I was gentler at about minute 38, but still agitated for more than 10 seconds.

I had some worries about my year-old fixative, but the film leader cleared in about 7 seconds, so I was good to go there, and after scanning, I’m quite pleased with the tones and texture I got out of the FP4 this time. Good stuff, and believe I’ll be doing that again!

Good times.

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