Frugal Film Project – Brian Havican – January

My photos for January, 2019 were taken in downtown Kenosha, Wisconsin. Located in SE WI along Lake Michigan, incorporated in 1850, it is the 4th largest city along the lake. Kenosha is known for being home to numerous automotive manufacturing plants over the years, including Jeffery, Nash, Rambler, Hudson and AMC (all since closed or moved on, but there is a strong collectors car club presence in the area and is present at car shows every year). My father-in-law is an avid car collector/restoration buff, and owns several Hudsons, as well as a Packard and a few others. These classic cards could be a photo theme for one of the FFP summer months…stay tuned…


I stopped by the North Pier Light (or Kenosha Lighthouse) out near Simmons Island, and captured a few images along the pier (half covered with ice from the swelling lake-temps hovered near 20 degrees F with winds blowing due east off the lake). The lighthouse was built in 1906, and is supposed to stand at 50 feet tall. It was purchased by private investors in 2011 and is used as an art gallery.



One photo from the pier shows the lighthouse while looking east, another is a lone tree standing along a walking path paralleling the sandy beaches. I ventured down the beach a ways and took an image looking SE, framing some winter beach grasses, snow fence and the lighthouse along the horizon. Another brave couple showed up, and brought their dog down on the beach, making for a great composition on the barren lakeshore as waves rolled in the background.


Back downtown, I captured the front of the Rhode Center, showing the old marquee sign on the building front. I walked around a few blocks, and grabbed a shot of some people walking along in the cold, as light snow began to fall. A street busker was out jamming on his acoustic guitar, making another good street photo op (I have been trying my hand in more street photography as of 2018). The electric streetcar came buzzing by-it runs in a short loop-so I tried the Argus 75 on a moving target. In two attempts, there turned out to be a fair amount of blur, causing me to wonder about the accuracy of the shutter speed on the old girl (I think it varies somewhat shot to shot…). The next time round, I stood on the tracks (with the streetcar safely stopped a block away) and grabbed one more image, this of the converging tracks and engine lights leaving light trails as she pulled forward. It makes for an interesting composition-one I will try to print again soon!


There were plenty of things to photograph, all within a few blocks of each other. I was in Kenosha to help my daughter set up at the indoor winter farmer market, and had a few hours to wander around. The summer market is a European-style outdoor market, filled with vendors selling various foods, produce, flowers and other arts and craft products. In the winter, the market is moved inside to the Rhode Center of the Arts (est. In 1927). The Kenosha transit electric streetcar passes by both summer and winter markets. There is light rail and a Metra line connecting the area to Chicago, Illinois.


By this time, I was freezing and couldn’t feel my hands. I went back inside the Rhode to check up on my kid, and decided to snap a longer exposure of the interior and guitar player on the stairs (not the same guy as outside-they have live music at all the markets). I had been using my Sekonic light meter to help make sense of the exposure time-this one was about 4 seconds and I had little Argus firmly planted on a vendor table (still was blurred, operator error…).

Speaking of printing, I attempted to print several from this first FFP roll. It was a bit unorthodox, seeing as I do not own a 6×6 negative carrier, and as I did not want to stop to replace the 50mm lens in my Beseler with the 75mm and medium format mixing chamber. The resulting prints had to be highly cropped, and there was significant light drop off around almost all of the edges (I will admit some of the results were kind of neat-this mismatch in the enlarger created a sort of white light vignette effect, giving the prints an aged look and feel, without toning).

Prints were scanned on an Epson V600, and I will include some printing notes if I can remember to write them down. Negatives will be inverted from negative to positive using a digital photo and edit in PhotoShop CS6.

Photos by Brian Havican using an Argus 75 and Fomapan Classic 100






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