Flashback Friday: Canterbury Moon

Does anyone else remember Scotchchrome 1000?  I became fascinated with this film back in the mid-1990s, for a number of reasons.  I was carrying three cameras with me on all my travels—one with 100-ISO black and white film for fine monochrome shots, one with Tri-X pushed usually to 800 for fleeting opportunities, and a third for color work, for which I used slide film.  For the latter I usually chose an ISO rating of 100.  At some point, I learned that 3M had come out with a fast (1000-ISO) slide film under the name Scotchchrome 1000, and when I tried it, I was intrigued and delighted to find that, in addition to its ability to allow me to shoot faster under lower light conditions, it had another unique characteristic:  exceptionally large grain.  While this was not highly desirable for conditions requiring a lot of fine detail, it did lend a very artistic, pronounced pointillistic effect to the photographs, that I found could be very interesting.

During one of my early journeys to New Zealand, in March 1996, I traveled from Greymouth on the South Island’s northwest coast across the divide through Arthur’s Pass on my way to Christchurch on the eastern coast.  The sun had set as I left the eastern foothills gradually behind and reached the flatter Canterbury plains, but a full moon was rising.  My route took me close to a fine, even row of Lombardi poplars—very popular for windbreaks—between fields, between the moon and me.  As soon as I got the inspiration, I acted on it immediately, parking the car at the very first opportunity without putting two wheels in a ditch, grabbing my tripod, and sprinting gingerly across very coarsely-plowed ground to put the moon in the position I was envisioning behind the silhouetted trees.  I made a dozen photographs; these two are my favorites.

About krikitarts

Welcome to Krikit Arts! I'm a veterinarian; photographer; finger-style guitarist, composer, instructor, and singer/songwriter; fisherman; and fly-tyer. Please enjoy--and please respect my full rights to all photos on this Website!
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8 Responses to Flashback Friday: Canterbury Moon

    • krikitarts says:

      Do you know the Canterbury plains between Chch and Arthur’s Pass? Whenever I’ve driven through there, except this once, my mind has always been aglow from just having been up through the Pass or in a state of high excitement and expectation, when I was going the other way. This time it was great to stop for Something New!

  1. wolke205 says:

    Wow! Wow! Wow! We have a place close to my hometown which looks exactly like this (okay, without the moon ;) )

    • krikitarts says:

      Triple thanks for the triple wows! It was so much fun to bring these out again and work with the scans and tell the story–I was right back there in my mind, after a wonderful day of adventure going through Arthur’s Pass. Hmmm, reminds me, I must do a post on Arthur’s Pass soon…

  2. Adrian Lewis says:

    I’ve heard of the film, Gary, but never used it >>> your photos here are beautiful, especially the lower one – good work! Adrian

    • krikitarts says:

      One thing about the film–one never knew quite what was going to appear when it was developed. I was really excited about this scene and was ecstatic when they came out the way I’d envisioned them. Thanks, Adrian!

  3. Steve Barnes says:

    These are two wonderful images! Great atmosphere and that unique film quality. Thumbs up!

    • krikitarts says:

      Thanks very much, Steve! I was very sorry indeed when I learned that 3M planned to discontinue the film. In spite of being on a student budget, I bought up all of it that I could find, including two 50-foot rolls so I could load my own. I think I still have a roll or two in the back of the fridge somewhere…

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