Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Happy 65th Birthday Bob Dylan

These were shot at the Boston Arts Festival in August of 1964. I was still using Leica thread mount cameras back then with Canon glass because I was young and poor and needed to budget money for record albums and smokin' dope so I could get lots of chicks!
The back stage photo was shot with a Leica III-F black dial with a Leicavit (used 'vits were $25 back then) and a chrome 50mm f/1.8 Canon. The tent behind the stage area was esentially unlit inside and I was probably shooting about 1/8 second wide open using Kodak Royal-X Pan Recording film which was only available in 100 foot spools (yes, metal spools for specialty recording cameras) and had a nominal speed of ASA (ISO)1250 but you could push it to 3200 in Acufine, which I did. Joan Baez was on stage and Bob was waiting to be called to join her. She was the big star and he was still a relatively unknown folk singer that she was trying to help out and promote. He was mostly used to playing coffee houses and acted nervous about appearing in front of maybe a thousand people or more.
The other photo was on stage outdoors and poorly lit by today's standards. There was no backdrop, no footlights, just a couple of spotlights, and the shadows were horrendous. Bob played the guitar, Joan sang, and he joined her for harmony. He also sang a few songs himself. The camera was a grey finish (paint and vulcanite) Leica III-CK made for the German Luftwaffe, with a ball bearing shutter, for which I'd paid $40.00! A black late model Canon 135mm f/3.5 lens put the image on Ilford HP3 film which I souped in Diafine at ASA 800.


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