My mother-in-law was visiting us a few weeks ago and we went to a local park to have a picnic with the kids. It’s a lovely park that has lots of grassy areas, a large playground, and a beautiful lake that many a duck and goose call their home. There are also several benches along the lake where one can rest and enjoy the nature, and we have a favorite one right where a lot of the birds like to hang out. My girls love to go down there to feed them.
I had loaded one of my Mamiya backs with a very old Kodak Vericolor III Type-S that expired in 1989 that I had bought on ebay after falling in love with a slightly newer Kodak Vericolor III VPS with the expiration date of 1996. I was excited to see how the older version compared. Of course with purchasing old film on Ebay, you rarely know exactly what you’ll get since the history of storage conditions of the film often are unknown. As it turns out, the rolls that I had were probably not stored in climate controlled area. There is some fogging along both bottom and top edges on all the images and it had lost a lot of contrast, although the latter is more or less expected with any very expired film. Yet, I still like it. I don’t know if I’ve just convinced myself that I love film so much that my brain just makes me like it, whether it’s actually likable or not, but I wouldn’t know, now would I?
I took this photo of my mother-in-law sitting on the bench on mine and the girls’ favorite spot at the park, and, although, it’s just of her back, and you can’t even really see what she is looking at, I’ve loved this image ever since the moment I saw it on the waist-level finder screen, even before I pressed the shutter. I find it really peaceful; just my mother-in-law, seeming to enjoy a moment of solitude. I remembered the image so clearly from the screen that I was somewhat surprised when I saw the developed image – the Mamiya screen shows you a horizontally flipped image and that’s what I had imprinted in my memory, not what I got to see on the developed film.
(Mamiya RZ67 with Sekor Z 250mm 4.5 lens and Kodak Vericolor III Type-S)