I really like how it looks like the cat is wearing lipstick due to the contrast of the b/w film. I also thought the light was too low to get a good picture but i got suprised again.
Woke up in the middle of the night because of the heavy rain and thunder. I spontaniously tried my luck again to catch some lightning bolts on Polaroid . This time i had the feeling the gods were mocking me. Really beautiful lightnings i slightly missed in my frame or so many of them that it totally overexposured the picture. When the rain stopped and the silence came back with only some sheet lightning very far away i decided to put my camera back, when suddenly i really beautiful lightning appeared with really wide ramifications and arcs.
In the beginning of August i made a daytrip to Eberswalde with the goal to visit the Finower Wasserturm. I never visited the city before, at least i thought so. When i wandered the streets in Finow i had some weird memories flickering up that i was here before as a child. A trip with an old Wartburg car, a pause on a small snack stand, cloudy weather, old patters on buildings… only fleeting pictures without substance.
With the recent storms i tried to get catch a lightning bolt on film; a thing i always wanted to try. There was no real plan or guide behind it and just try and error to get a feel what works with a polaroid and what not (and to be fair i don’t want to become a polaroid storm chaser). It is a bit of a dance with the exposure settings and time though due of the unpredictability of the storm (and the polaroid).
The first half of the year is almost over and so far it’s been a busy year for me. It is still a bit difficult to find the time and energy to post some stuff but i am still eager to give it a try. So i want to use the time over Pentecost to view back and forward for some new plans, where i want to go and evaluate some changes i want to try like new formats, platforms or content.
A new year is here and i hope this will be a better year then the last one. At least it feels a bit like a good moment to continue the plans i made at the end of 2019 (and 2021). Last year i got three new additions to my small camera collection: an soviet AGAT-18, a FED2 and the new Kodak Ektar H35. All will be helpful for some of my plans.
Every day when the sun went down, i see the spot lights and the bright glow of the christmas market near the Frankfurter Allee. It’s like a foreign object that materialized and distorts the area and i am wondering if they chose extra spotlights just because cultural events and folk festivals have an exemption in the EnSikuMaV1. I can totally understand if people who lives directly in front of the market are upset2.
“Why are we here?” was written on the street note and in a way it summed up my feelings during the umverteilen! Demo1 two weeks ago. I had some hopes that enough people would show up to a demonstration that wasn’t organized by the far-right.2 However, the numbers were not that good, whether you take the offical police number of 3000 people or the activist number of 7000; both numbers are just too low while the crisis is still going on.
Two weeks ago, a friend of mine sent me an article1 covering the current exhibition in the Schloss Biesdorf about the works of Jürgen Wittdorf (1932 - 2018), which intrigued me: homoerotic art in the GDR? So we decided to visit the exhibition and for me it was really interesting. It is an retrospective of Jürgen Wittdorfs works and to my suprise i recognized some illustrations. One room later i found out why: he made the book illustrations in the childrens book “Tiere im Zirkus” by Wladimir Durow2.
Sadly, sometimes i discover good street artists too late. Today i stumbled on this Fruit of the Lump tag and i looked up his work1 and i am fascinated. Very interesting projects and i really like the ‘QRWO the Zerwane Films’ (link goes to Facebook)2 murals. The old ORWO style (from the Magneton band cases of the 1970s)3 that was designed by Ernst Schneider as mash up looks really neat as mural.
The last days i had many discussions about the topic of AI image generators and art. With tools like DALL-E, Midjourney or Stable Diffusion i can create images just with a short description and some parameters, although i think AI is a misleading term here. The algorithms are not intelligent or sentient, although they combine content. It feels more like a remix generator feeded from existing knowledge (the training data). Since the beginning of the month i got a Midjourney Subscription to test one of the generators out and i used it pretty often to get a feeling for the process and potential.
Sometimes it has some advantages to get the result from analog film weeks later when an event is long over. In the case of “Rave the Planet” i got time to read all the news and look up some of the artists1. Around 200,000 people are said to visited “Rave the Planet”, the police spoke about 45,000 participants. Whatever the real number was, it still feeled like a lot of people.
It was nice to visit the CSD after so much time and i wanted to take some pics with the Revolog Kolor film to add some rainbowy colors to it. Interestingly this time i got mostly blues but i like the color hue that give the pics a soft tone and mood. The CSD itself though: Well, the mood was nice and all but the CSD really became a Fortune 500 / DAX event.
In times of the climate catastrophe the words “faster than expected” are just a meme now. I wanted to be optimistic; to have hope that humankind finally find a way to prevent further crisis and destruction of our enviroment. Honestly though, i give up. This is not just doomsaying anymore due to doomscrolling, this is the harsh reality. I think we are beyond fucked and i don’t even know anymore what to do and that makes me sad and depressed to see livehand how everythings goes to shit:
On Sunday i went to a small hidden spot to check if the blackberries were ripe for foraging. It is behind the playing field in the Bornitzstraße and you stumble very quick into dozens of blackberry bushes. No one was there and i started with the foraging until the small thought got bigger and bigger: “Is it safe to eat at this place? This was an industrial area, so aren’t they polluted?
Today begins the routine annual maintenance work on the two lines of the Nord Stream 1 pipeline. Experts expect that Russia will not turn the pipelines on again after the 21st July and that Germany will have empty gas storage tanks in the winter. Together with expected gas shortage, particularly high energy prices in Germany, supply chain problems, inflation, rising grain prices due to drought and war, rising rent prices and the insistence on compliance with the debt brake in 2023 feels like sitting under the sword of Damocles waiting to be strucked.
Yesterday, i went for a little walk in Potsdam and came across some christian missionaries who asked me to write something on their whiteboard about the question “What brings you peace?”. An easy question but what is not that easy to answer right away. Especially at these times this is a good question to ask yourself. I thought about all the sounds we were surrounded with, the cities soundscape to media sounds, and chose the gentle rustling of leaves.
It was nice to visit the Fête de la Musique again during summer solstice after so much time. The planetarium was a host for the first time and i thought that would be a good place to check out, even in case of ’the music is not my taste’.1 It is probably over ten years ago since the last time i visited a planetarium, so it was a good opportunity to see it again.
In the beginnging of the year i wandered through Tegel a bit and visited a piece of russias soil, the russian orthodox cemetery. The whole area has an interesting history and it is the only church of the russian orthodox community in Berlin Tegel.1 The initiative for the cemetery goes back to the “Bruderschaft des heiligen Fürsten Wladimir”, which are still active. They bought the property for 30000 marks in 1892 while the Russian community was growing in Berlin.
Cool street art from deerBLN1 2 https://deerbln.de/ ↩︎ https://urban-nation.com/de/artist/deer-bln/ ↩︎
It is now over 100 days since the war in Ukraine broke out and i think there is a certain war fatigue kicking in. People which are not directly involved in the war seem more concerned with the local inflation now. Which is understandable because not everyone (me included) are able to handle much more global crisis: A war with threats like genocide, nuclear war; pandemic that is still there, climate crisis that gets worse.
As a child, i liked to watch and identify birds. Equipped with my field guide, i looked them up and told my grandma what i found. Not in the professional ornithology way, but still. It changed when i got older and developed other interests. In a way, i rediscovered it during the lockdown and home office because in front of my window is a Norway maple tree and many different birds visit the tree.
Yesterday i read an article about the sands of the sahara which are reaching Berlin via the wind. This meteorlogical effect is pretty rare in the north and i was wondering how orange-reddish the sky would be. So i walked to the Rummelsburger Bucht in anticipation of the dawn but unfortunately it was too foggy and cloudy. There where some interesting colors for a blink moment but i was not fast enough to get a good picture.
Last year i was invited by a friend to visit the Buchstabenmuseum1 in the S-Bahn Arcs of Bellevue. I only knew that it exists but never got the chance to see it. So i was excited to finally see the museum with my own eyes. We even got lucky and had a small tour with Barbara Dechant, one of the founders of the Buchstabenmuseum e. V. And yes, there are Letters everywhere.
I still have some memories of the old Narva tower near Warschauer Straße but i never really explored that area in my childhood. It was interesting to explore the area and check out the changes. The VEB Narva Kombinat Berlin bulb factory was the central manufacturer of light sources, especially light bulbs, in the GDR. In 1992 the production stopped and the HypoVereinsbank changed the buildings to office spaces. During the renovation in 1998 of the Building IV, four ’tuff’1 fountains, designed by Prof.
Yesterday i visited the Dorotheenstädtische Friedhof in the Chausseestraße1. Besides the graves of famous people like Bertolt Brecht, Borsig, Hegel or Christa Wolf, the graveyard has an interesting chapel. It was built from 1927 to 1928, was destroyed in the Second World War and reconstructed during the GDR based on the testimonies of contemporary witnesses. In 2013, the chapel was renovated and an opportunity was taken to contact the light artist James Turrell; one of the key artist of the Light and Space Movement.
I had a nice find from Russia while looking for some photo equipment: the Photo rangefinder DF (the DF probably stands for “Photographic Rangefinder”). It had a good price and it is just the right equipment for my Smena 8M. There was no much information about it except that it seems to be quite rare. According to fotoussr.ru it is a copy of the Smena rangefinder from GOMZ (State Optical and Mechanical Plant) produced at the MMZ (Minsk Mechanical Plant) for probably quite a limited time from 1957-1961.
Near the Arena Berlin are two photo booths and since the pandemic they were barely used at all (at least when i was there). Especially the one right before the gate of the Badeschiff has a weird vibe when no one is around; you only hear the wind and some background noise of the city. Still i had the feeling something will happen to me if i use it. It reminded me of the concept of liminal spaces; places once filled with life but are now devoid of it and “convey a sense of nostalgia, lostness, and uncertainty”1.
I really like the atmosphere of the Arena Berlin in the night. It is also really interesting to see how the general mood changes if the area is shot on a black and white film.
Just some Polaroid Shots i made with my Polaroid SX-70 or Polaroid OneStep+ for the holidays.
Some weeks ago i stumbled upon a note in the super market where someone searched for help for feeding the pigeons at Bahnhof Lichtenberg. I never really thought about the necessity to feed pigeons so curiously i read some articles and papers about pigeons in Berlin and it seems this is a really polarizing topic. It is estimated that Berlin has about 10.000 feral pigeons. A new legal report1 was recently published which examines the legal status of city pigeons as found animals.
The year is almost over and usually it is a good opportunity to look back, evaluate the course i go and set a new one for the next year. This time it hits a bit different as i am feeling like i am stuck in the air, at the brink of a depression, unsure what to do (the pandemic has changed any resolutions anyway). Mostly i can hold a facade and i would consider my (mental) health as not extremly bad but not good either.
Shot on Polaroid i-type Metallic Nights with Polaroid OneStep+
This is one of my early photos (from the digital camera era) which i am really fond of. It is from inside the Trierer Dom. I really love the silhouette of the praying statue which meets the eyes of the angel and the tarot-card like design of the stained glass. It was also the title cover of a small evangelic magazine (unfortunately i don’t know which one).
Panorama shot from the Teufelsberg towards the city with my Vivitar 400mm on Fuji Superia X-tra 400.
The second opportunity i took on the Open Memorial Day was a visit of the Underground Museum1. The Underground museum has been housed in the former signal box of the Olympic Stadium Station since 1997, hence the name “Olympic signal box”. The heart of the museum is the 14-meter-long lever mechanism of the electromechanical signal box of the VES 1913 type2. Commissioned in 1931 as the largest signal box of this type in Europe, the entire operation of the Betriebswerkstatt Grunewald and the Olympia-Stadion station was monitored from here.
This year on the Open Monument Day i took the opportunity to visit the old Stadtbad Lichtenberg. I heard some stories about it, but i never saw it from the inside (i simply was too young). It was designed from the Lichtenberger Magistratsbaurat Otto Weis with two swimming pools for men and woman, showers and bathtubs, gymnastics room with massage rooms, a sauna and sunbathing on the roof as well as medical baths.
This is a relict of a former S-Bahn bridge and an open exhibition about the Hartungsche Säulen. The bridge over the Stadthausstraße was built in 1903 and was replaced by a new one in 2005/2006. The memorial in the Stadthausstraße was placed nearby of the old place of the bridge. A small sign explains the use and the history of the columns. In the wilhelminian period bridges for trains had to be lifted higher so that doppeldeckerbusses and electric trams have enough space for a passage.
Top of the BASF-Building Warschauer Straße. Shot on Kodak Ektar 100. Corrected orientation and mayor dust particles from scan.
“Dwell on the beauty of life. Watch the stars, and see yourself running with them.” ― Marcus Aurelius, Meditations I can’t remember when i first got aware of the milky way and the sheer unimaginable amount of stars in it but there is this hazy image i have as a kid, when i was in a small harbor village in Turkey during a vacation. My mother and I were on a small street promenade with street vendors.
There is a great scene in the movie ‘One Hour Photo’ which I really took to my heart. Sy Parrish, technician in a one hour photo lab and protagonist (greatly played by Robin Williams), is on a flea market where he looks through some old photos and thinks: “I’m sure my customers never think about it… but these snapshots are their little stands against the flow of time. The shutter is clicked… the flash goes off… and they’ve stopped time… if just for the blink of an eye.
Hello, this site is an experiment for me. For many times I tried to blog about different things, but in the end it just landed unattended in the ‘graveyard’ where every project that is no longer supported, obsolete, or has been replaced by something superior has landed. I realized, that I had too much expectations or simply that the passion was missing. So why the resurrection? Well, I would describe myself as a jack-of-all-trades with interest in all sort of things, but there is one thing where I am really passionate about: photography.