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.
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.
Yet more in my series of everyday objects. This time, it’s a lamppost, a safety cone (I’m not calling it a traffic cone because in this context, it’s being used to warn pedestrians of an uneven paver), parking meters again, and a police call box. You may have wondered at seeing some of my images with a black border and others without. I generally try to compose full-frame, and I like including the black border to show that. I also feel that in some cases, the black border helps define the image especially if the background is predominantly bright. I don’t ever add one to make it look as if what you see is full frame if in fact it is cropped, or to make you think it was made in a different format than presented. The images I post online for the most part are scanned from the negative, and given the nature of film, sometimes the backing paper leaks light along the edge, or other things happen during processing that require me to crop a little. Sometimes, I have to crop a lot because the composition just wasn’t right in the full square of the 120 image size. In those cases, I leave the edges alone and don’t put a black border on.