Water Fountain, U Street

Everyday Objects – Water Fountain

Public drinking fountains are becoming rare creatures. Even rarer are ones that work. They’re kind of like frogs – their disappearance heralds a collapse of public infrastructure the way frogs disappearing are a sign of ecological collapse. When we are no longer willing to provide safe, clean, free drinking water to the public, I think it says something about us as a society, and it’s not complimentary.

Water Fountain, U Street
Water Fountain, U Street

To get photo-geeky for a moment, this was shot with my usual Rolleiflex 2.8E, and to ensure I was getting the extremely narrow depth-of-field I wanted, I used Ilford PanF film, which is a very slow ISO 50, and rated it at ISO 25 for good measure. I like PanF for the extremely fine grain it provides, and it allows me to use large apertures in bright daylight, however it does get very contrasty, more than I normally would like, so processing it is tricky to keep the contrast under control.

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