Mount Archer Safari: Black and White Film

Today was a special day. A Saturday Safari to Mount Archer, a beautiful, cool and peaceful place overlookinng the city of Rockhampton.

“What’s a Saturday Safari?” you ask. Well, it looks a little like this, but somewhat bigger:

The Saturday Safari group

The Safristas and Safaristos.

The Safari is an excellent social/photographic group that meets once a month, and to celebrate the end of the year, we congregated at Mount Archer.

Rockhampton is a hot place. Victorian era novelis Anthony Trolloppe famously referred to Rockhampton as the “city of sin, sweat and sorrow”. While Mt Archer is usually cooler than the town below, summer is beginning to bite, and it was very humid.

Humid day at Mt Archer

I have always loved the rainforest of North Queensland. Some vague notion  to  record some of the small-scale beauty of these places is probably what was behind my initial youthful enthusiasm foor photography, running around with a Zenit 12XP Soviet camera. The eucalypt forests of Central Queensland are trickier  than the rainforests, at least for me. The trees are not as huge, there is not such a strong distinction between canopy and undergrowth.The trees are beautiful, but you can’t isolate their shapes and lines so easily.

Mount Archer view

Mount Archer view

For me, photography is a process involving the environment, my own sensibility and the constraints of the camera. Today I took my Nikon N90S film camera and 50mm prime lens. In a tricky environment like this, I find that limiting my choices can be really helpful. So, arriving typically late (kids) to the outing, I wandered down the walking track.

A couple of years back, Mount Archer suffered from ferocious bushfires. Now, although the forest is a little more sparse, the only obvious sign of the fire is the  bark, burnt black, in stark contrast with he native passionfruit and other  vines that have begun climbing again.

While I have yet to scan two-thirds of the film, I’ll close with one image I really like. When you pull a film out of the developing tank, it is always exciting because you never quite know what you are going to get. In this case, I got exactly the image I wanted, of two natrally interwoven Cycad fronds.

All these photos were shot on Lucky 100 SHD film, developed in 1+100 Rodinal solution for 20 minutes.

The photographers in the group have really interesting and diverse approaches, and take some great shots. Do have a look at the group’s Flickr stream to see what other eyes came up with.


About postdigitalblog

Lecturer in Multimedia at CQUni Wrangler of young kids @ home in Yeppoon Otherwise, photographer and digital media type.
This entry was posted in film, photography and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to Mount Archer Safari: Black and White Film

  1. Stunning collection of images there.
    I am a recent convert to the world of black and white film, as you say, the excitement of watching a roll of film come out of the tank. You just cannot beat that feeling.
    Thanks for sharing

    Dave Kennedy

  2. sashdc says:

    lovely set. And i do believe i like your blog too.

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