Thursday, June 01, 2006

Out Of The Murky Depths Of The Mind


Powerpoint, digital projection, was something we didn't even dream about in the days when landing a man on the moon (and bringing him back) was the wonder of the day. For audio-visual presentations we used 35mm color slides in 2" square mounts, perhaps a cassette tape recorder for a sound track, and just maybe for cuing the projector to change slides. Some people even used two projectors with fade control so there was always something on screen. We rejoiced that we didn't have to change 3 1/4x4 inch glass mounted slides one at a time in a "lantern slide" projector as our fathers did. The Kodak Carousel projector owned the amateur market and the slightly sturdier built Kodak Ektagraphic had the A-V market sewed up. Kodak RULED!

I often needed to put together slide shows for clients or to illustrate various photo techniques when I taught at Miami-Dade Jr. College (now they've dropped the Jr.). Actually it was just Dade County Jr. College back then, and then it went through a period of substituting Community for Junior. Anyway, since I mostly work in B&W I needed B&W slides and the easiest way to do that was to put the camera on a copy stand, set up a couple of small electronic flash units for illumination, and copy prints onto slide film.

Kodachrome film is noted for its archival qualities, its ability to resist fading and color shift from years of storage. Ektachrome film on the other hand doesn't hold up as well to sitting around for years on end but the dyes are much more resistant to fading from being exposed to repeated bright light while being projected. I mostly chose Ektachrome or Kodachrome for other reasons. If I was in a rush I could get 2 hour processing of the Ektachrome at a lot of labs in Miami. Kodachrome imported from England, and sometimes France, came with prepaid processing for about $3.59 per 36 exp. roll, but then there was the delay of the mail to and from the Atlanta lab.

As I've been sorting through cartons and boxes of old photos I've been running across lots of these B&W slides. I just about always made notes on the negative sleeves and/or the contact sheets but never did on the copy slides. This leaves me with a lot of images that it'd be a royal pain to research what the heck they were. I think, just maybe, that this shot was at an "alternative" private high school that was located at Temple Israel in Miami, sometime in the 1968 to 1971 period. I remember shooting a story about it. Like most everything else from that period it would have been with a Leica M2-R or M4.

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