Cities have a very special atmosphere, a particular charm and their own culture – the urban has fascinated me for a long time and therefore city trips are always at the top of my to-do list. Of course, combined with my other passion, the experimental photography on film, a lot of photos are created on these trips.
Today, in the context of our current monthly challenge #urbansplendors, I take you on a short tour through the archive of my personal interpretation of urban splendors. And in addition, I’ll tell you something about the techniques used to create the images.
Be curious about 100% analogue photography.
Frankfurt, sometimes called the Manhattan of Germany – Mainhatten – has a distinctive skyline of skyscrapers, but also beautiful old buildings, as seen here on the Kaiserstraße in front of the Frankfurt Central Station.
A look in the other direction reveals a seemingly endless network of railways.
I shot these pictures with an old Soviet 35mm camera, a Zenit E from 1966. The interesting monochrome tones are due to the film – the Lomochrome Turquoise XR 100-400 from Lomography, a color negative film with a special emulsion, an interpretation of the famous Kodak Aerochrome.
Panorma on film – and even on expired film? Yes, that works and looks wonderful, as this panorma of the Jubilee Synagogue in Prague shows.
This picture I made with the Russian Zenit Horizon 202. The film is a slide film that expired in 2004, the Agfa CT precisa 100, which I developed as a negative instead of using the positive development process planned for it – a so-called cross development. This often causes color shifts and strong tones.
Prague is a more than magnificent city – there are so many things here: historic architecture, a river, Charles Bridge, an interesting nightlife and penguins.
I created this experimental picture through a so-called film soup. Film soup? Yeah, it sounds weird, but it exists and is relatively simple. Just mix a few absolutely unusual ingredients, such as Mouthwash, juice, spices, fabric softener or anything else, boil it with water, put the film cartridge in, simmer gently for 2-3 minutes. Then rinse the film cartridge in a container with water, dry it, place in a bowl of rice and after a few days the whole thing is done – ready to shoot or develop. I then photographed with a Soviet Lomo LC-A from 1987.
All the splendor of a city or at least a part of it, because the city is just too big for one picture – Moscow. Here with a glimpse of the famous Luzhniki Olympic Stadium – a landmark of urban (Soviet) splendor.
The effect with the flower lights is due to a double exposure, the same film section is exposed twice. With some cameras, this is directly possible – in my case, I had to trick something on my Zenit 11 and rewind the film.
Likewise, the many Orthodox churches belong to the urban splendor of Moscow – they shape the entire cityscape, as well as the many overhead lines of trolley buses and trams.
Shop windows can also be a mirror of urban splendor.
Double exposures have always fascinated me and are one of my favorite methods of photography on film, because it allows to create completely new images and the imagination has no limits, whatever you mix together – everything is possible. I have double-exposed this image with my Lomo Lubitel from 1953 on Kodak Portra 160.
Viktoria or affectionately called “Goldelse”, the crowning statue on the top of the Berlin Victory Column.
Where do the holes come from – the so-called sprocket holes? I got them into the picture by having a 35mm film inserted into a medium format camera – in this case, an expired Italian Ferrania Solaris 200 film in my Pentacon Six TL. Due to the smaller film together with the actual bigger image size of the camera, one can photograph beyond the sprocket holes (which serve for film transport in a 35mm camera).
Thanks to 3D printers, there are now many inexpensive adapters to use a 35mm film in a medium format camera.
Oberbaumbrücke, U-Bahn and S-Bahn railways – three symbols of Berlin’s urban splendor united in one image.
I made this double exposure with my 1953 Lomo Lubitel. The unusual colors are caused by the fact that I have developed the Lomochrome Purple XR 100-400 not in the usual color negative process, but as a positive film, a slide film. Also a so-called cross-development.
Of course, Berlin has a lot of modern architecture to offer, such as the nhow hotel, located directly on the Spree.
This interesting picture came about to happen because I wanted to overlay the lines and structures of modern buildings with my own new lines. In order to produce the effect which is seen here, I stuck thin transparent tape into the space between the lens and the film of my camera. The result is more than interesting and quite experimental.
Finally, I dismiss you now with a cross-development photo of a slide film into the autumn season which meanwhile has arrived.
This was my alternative #urbansplendors tour and an insight into some of the effects and techniques of my photos.
If you’re interested in seeing more of my pictures, just drop by Instagram @_baunovart_ .