the good with the bad

vintage angkor, 2010 © nicole davis

in my last post i showed you some images from kuala lumpur that i just loved. i remember when i got them developed and looked at the film strips and was so excited by what i saw in that tiny 35mm image. when i first scanned them i got excited again and went ‘wow  i love these’. when i was cropping and resizing them the other day again i thought how much i loved them. when i posted them i was so pleased as punch at the way they looked on the blog.

but with these i felt the opposite. they were shot in cambodia just a few days after the ones that i adored.

i hated most of them, thought the grain was awful, i’d had the camera set on the wrong film speed so they were all underexposed (and forgot to tell the lab when i got them developed), opened the back because the film kept slipping, let lots of light in, got flare on heaps of the photos, and thought the colours were almost all hideously green.

how depressing.

but i did see some potential in them – subjects, framing and lighting that had inspired me in the first place. so i did a bit of naughty photoshopping, played with the levels and colour balance somewhat (although as little as possible). i ended up recovering a few, including some i’ve posted previously here and here.

now, many were not salvageable or apparently so. some grew on me. they are not great photos, but as luke skywalker said about  darth vader ‘there’s good in [them] still’. so some of them still spoke to me and i ruminated on all the blogs i’ve read about seemingly terrible photos that grow on us, that we can still see the beauty in despite their initial apparent crapness. some would say this is just an excuse for crap photography. but i think i agree with the former sentiment.

tonight i had a terrible shoot. i’ve been thinking for weeks about shooting the pretty lights & sets of the melbourne international comedy festival. and you know what … i didn’t feel the love. the digital shots were boring, the film shots … who knows. but i wasn’t inspired. anyways, you never know … i may grow to love them!

maybe i shouldn’t be showing my failures here. but i want this blog to be honest … so i am being so.

a lovely bunch of coconuts, siem reap, 2010 © nicole davis

temple entrance, siem reap, 2010 © nicole davis

incense burner, siem reap, 2010 © nicole davis

fallen, siem reap, 2010 © nicole davis

shrine, siem reap, 2010 © nicole davis

flames in angkor, 2010 © nicole davis

sidelight, angkor wat, 2010 © nicole davis

a very naughty monkey, angkor wat, 2010 © nicole davis

flaming chris, angkor wat, 2010 © nicole davis


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