Category Archives: Photography

Rope photography

Princess is getting better every day. She can walk better, stand longer but still suffers from intense pain during the night.

Blinded by rope.
Nikon D2h with 35-70 lens and 1 softbox.

Yesterday, January 17, I decided to do some rope bondage photography. Princess loved the idea.
So I set up a little studio in our living room and used one studio flash with a 70 x 70 cm soft-box and a huge reflector.

We had a great evening. Having fun, talking, enjoying the pleasure of rope.

Princess, Box-tie.
Nikon D2h with 35-70 lens and 1 softbox.

I did a few different scenes and took about 100 images. I enjoyed every bit of it. Obviously I am still evolving in the art of rope but finally it is about having fun.

The images can also be found on our image website, nsfw.hopto.org.

I hope we’ll be able to do some more shooting very soon.

Princess.
Nikon D2h with 35-70 lens and 1 softbox.

Our BDSM Photography

Princess would love me to make more kinky photographs with her as my model. When we do Princess changes, I see that look in her eyes, a different pose, stuff telling me she has transformed into somebody else.

Over time we made some stuff but when we play I don’t think of grabbing my camera. I am way to concentrated when we do a scene.

Also there is so much stuff on the Net already. I think it is very hard to find an original angle.

Rope is different because than I can pause, take a step back and look at what I have created.

I promised Princess I would do my best and use an evening a month or so for rope and photography.

These past few days I spend making a website and adding a few photographs I like. Over time the content of the site will change so come and visit use on a regular basis.

Let’s overview the technical details real quickly.  If you are interested and wish more in-depth information feel free to contact me.

I use Koken. It is a free content management and web site publishing tool for photographers. You can add stuff like a web shop and more but those plugins are not free. For a basic, yet powerful and slick portfolio, the basic software is already more than you need.

I installed it on my hosted website, the one where this blog is running on. I found it to be very slow and needed another solution.

I have a few Raspberry Pi 3. They cost about 40 bucks, run Linux and are rather powerful. I use one as my multimedia center at home, running web content, my movies and music using Kodi.

So I grabbed a Raspberry and installed it with a minimal Linux configuration.
Installed a web-server and everything that goes with it like PHP and MySql with a few commands. Downloaded and installed Koken. Installed a firewall and secured the system.

Created a free account on No-IP. It is a service that links a dynamic IP-address to an Internet Link. Opened up a port on my router at home for the No-IP service and installed a client on the Raspberry.

That’s is, well, almost.

So when you visit my photography website on the Internet you are basically visiting a very small, lightweight computer that is running at my home and made accessible on the Internet.

I am not expecting hundreds of visitors per hour so this is a perfect solution for a blog or a portfolio that does not get that many visitors. I would not recommend this as web shop solution either.

If my computer breaks down everything is gone, if the power drops, the site is not accessible. I have a backup running on another computer though.

But for this purpose I do think this is an elegant solution.

So without further ado you can check out the Princess and I photography website by clicking this Princess & I Photography

Variation on the double column tie

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Two projects

Princess is still suffering from her hip.

Obviously this means no impact play and there are moments where walking or standing still is an ordeal for Princess.

It isn’t the best mindset for intense BDSM-play either.
Yes, we do miss playing very much.

One of Princesses’ wishes is to be photographed. When we play I am so focused on what is going on that I forget or don’t feel like grabbing my camera.

On the other hand one of my resolutions is to create more own imagery for our blog. After all I am a photographer and I have enough studio equipment and toys and tools to create interesting images.

Yesterday, Saturday, January 7, I dedicated some time and set up a small studio in our living room. I expected Princess to arrive somewhere between 19:30 and 20:00 or maybe even a little later.
We would do some rope bondage and I would make photographs.

Princess texted me at 17:20 telling me she would be at my place at 6 because she had to drop her youngest daughter at the nearby train station.

‘Have you eaten already?’ I texted back.
‘Not really. I’m just grabbing something to bite.’
‘Don’t,’ I replied.
‘Ohhh …’

Seconds later I made a reservation for 2.

Princess arrived at little past 6, we kissed, I gave her two presents. A stretchy face mask with open eyes and mouth and blind fold made of split leather with detachable blinkers and metal buckle on the back side.
They will look great for the bondage photographs I had in mind.

Just before we left I showed her something else I was working on and that Princess liked very much.

Then we went out for dinner. Princess was so happy and excited when it dawned on her we would dine in our favorite Sushi restaurant.

We enjoyed a Sushi Boat, talked about sex, BDSM and the two projects I was working on. I told her back home I would show her our online BDSM photo gallery. I will publicize the link one of these days.

Princess was even more interested in the second project. Everything that is electronic or digital is bound to die. One day you precious CDs or DVDs with family photos won’t be readable anymore. Your external hard disk will fail eventually. Trust me, it happened to me already. Every two years I buy a new external disk in order to backup my photography and to make sure I still got everything. Yet I know I will lose this battle.

Is my data safe at this web-hosting company my blog is running on? My blog will never win a Pulitzer or a Nobel Price but it is our very personal diary. For us, Princess and I, the blog is one of our most important possessions.

Yes, I do make a backup of my blog regularly. But if a major electromagnetic wave hits us everything is lost. The Internet will be erased forever.

So I have been searching the Internet for a software, a service that creates an editable document from a WordPress blog. I found Blogbooker and one can test it for free. It seems simple enough. All you need is a backup of your WordPress blog (they offer services for other blog-services too) and the url to you blog. It accepts a WordPress.com blog or, like mine, a self-hosted one.

You have a few options like adding comments and so on.

The service is free but is limited to a PDF document containing maximum 1 year of blogging or a DOC-format limited to 6 months continuous months of blogging. The file is mailed to you.

It worked fine and I am impressed.

Just before we left for the restaurant I gave Princess a 60 page printout of our blog containing about 3 months of writing.

I will probably download the whole blog and, using a service like Blurb, print it as a single and unique book.
While I am at it I just might turn it into a free and downloadable eBook and put it online.

The food was delicious, the environment cozy and we drank some wine.

When we came back home we felt lazy and a little tipsy so we did not make any photographs. We made love though and then I held Princess in my arms while we dozed of.

Helmut Newton, Self-Portrait with Wife and Models, Vogue Studio, Paris 1981 © Helmut Newton Estate

Our holiday in pictures

We visited so many places during our holiday (September 14 – 19, 2015) at the Normandy Coast in France. Princess and I even drove to Brittany to visit Saint-Malo but we never got to Mont Saint-Michel though.
Our time was fun, intense and unforgettable. This trip is a part of our memory, our story.

Cap Fréhel, Etretat, Saint-Malo, Point du Hoc, Omaha Beach, Arromanches with its remains of Port Winston on Gold Beach. There is so much to tell about, so much to show.

I have compiled a gallery with some of the places Princess and I visited.

You can check it out by clicking Normandy 2015

Enjoy!

 

 

The BDSM Photography Project

Let’s go back to June 2012.
Friday, June 1st to be exact. We are at the Cultural Center of my hometown. The hour is 20:30.
A municipality representative is making a speech. Princess is at my side and she is proud because it is me whom is lauded.

Sparkling wine is served. There is a crowd and lots of noise and babbling. My hand is taken and shaken a zillion times.
I smile and enjoy the moment.

We are at my photography exhibition. Landscapes and naughty macro photography as the reproductive organs of flowers look like vaginas and penises.

Having my work shown here, in the Cultural Center, in my hometown, is an old dream of mine and another item to cross out on my list.
Deep inside me I know this is my 5th and last exposition.

Don’t get me wrong. As an artist I like opening nights. Horney women whom throw themselves at my feet hoping some of my fame will rub off on them. There is of course the buzz, the money, the mentioned sleazy & hot sex and lots of free blow.

Sounds familiar? I’m happy for you as you must be much more famous than I’ll ever be.

I love making photographs and negotiating for a gig even more and it feels great reading my name in a newspaper, seeing advertising for the show. Being interviewed.
Everybody needs a few moments of your time. For 15 minutes that is.

And after opening night?
You are already forgotten because somebody new is being programmed. It is like that and that is the game and that are the rules. You play or you don’t.
I like everything about it though except loading my car and hauling with heavy frames and being stressed about the parking restrictions near the exposition room.

* * * * *

2015
I have about 3000 BDSM related images on my computer. I like looking at them but it is so abundant I feel I myself, as a photographer, have nothing to add to the genre.

Princess though is not convinced at all.

The Dungeon wants to expand and show fetish and BDSM related art.
And when I told Princess about it sure enough she pushed me into it.

Princess 1
Princess 1

So now Princess and I have a photography project.

I cannot play and take images at the same time though so I need another way in.

Princess has been pushing me and we made a few BDSM photographs and yes, I like them. I believe the way I/we see things is different. It is not entirely staged so it stays genuine.

There is something in it for Princess too. When she prepares, the make-up and so, she transforms into somebody else and I feel she becomes even a better submissive than when we play.

Princess 2
Princess 2

Princess adores playing a role, becoming somebody else and maybe this project will help me, us, bring us even closer to what D/s really means for her, for me.

A few days ago we got mail from The Dungeon. They liked our work a lot but we do not have enough photographs yet for an exposition.

Past Saturday we worked on an idea Princess had developed about peeing. We worked for a few hours, making about 30 shots. Princess’ input is really important. She is not spoiled by 3000 BDSM images and therefore can be model and art director. I create, make it technically possible with the little tools we have and try to add something of myself in our images.

Princess 3
Princess 3

Without any further delay Princess and I present 4 images in this post build around the peeing setup. Please tell us what you like and don’t like. One of these four will be used for the exposition.
Please be honest. Give us critique. Tell us what works, what doesn’t.

What Princess and I are presenting end 2015 or maybe 2016 will we built for a part on your input.

I am looking forward to this exposition.
It is something very private and extremely intimate.
Most of all it is something we, Princess and I, are doing together.
That is enough reason for me to engage in this adventure.

And Princess is a great model.

Princess 4
Princess 4

 

The Last One

This is the last entry I will make for the Thursday’s Photograph. The reason is simple. SirFrancoBolli.org is our erotic diary and tells our story, what makes us tick, what happens in our lives.

I started the Thursday’s Photograph as a way to make me write for this blog every single week. It is in some sort a deadline.
But posting something about photography, my second passion next to Princess, every week soon became not enough.

Recently I decided to take a few steps back and started with analogue black and white photography. Back to my roots as it were.

That too is enough to write about so I decided to start a blog about my adventures with analogue film photography. You can find it at bwfilmdiaries.wordpress.com

It became obvious this weekly post would soon become obsolete. That moment has arrived. This is my last entry about photography on this blog.

I am happy to announce that from 2015 the Thursday’s Photograph will be replaced by a weekly erotic photograph and is a joint venture of Princess and I.

It is Princess’ idea and I support it completely albeit we are not yet on the same track about its contents yet.

For me this new project is about discovering what erotic photography really means to us both. It is about working together, brainstorming and building ideas into photographs. Where Princess was a loose contributor to this blog she now will become much more involved in its contents. I am really looking forward to this new venture and I am curious where it will take us.

Today’s shot symbolizes it all and was taken somewhere between 2007 and 2008 with, I guess, a Nikon F100. The film used a 400 ISO Ilford HP5 Plus.

For those who are interested in my photography and my reflections and ideas, please visit me at bwfilmdiaries.wordpress.com.

As from January 2015 you’ll find a weekly erotic images Princess and I made on this blog.

Highway

Out shooting again! #Thursday’s Photograph #photography

I enjoyed the long weekend taking a day off from work past Monday as Tuesday was a Holiday too and I don’t work on Wednesdays.

For the first time in ages I really went away to shoot images. I drove to Zeeland, just over the border, in The Netherlands. Lots of water, a zillion windmills and lots of nature, most of it protected.
It is difficult to believe it is almost half November. A sunny day it was, the harsh wind not to cold and temperatures around 14°C.

Windmills, Oesterdam, The Netherlands Olympus OM-1n with 35-75mm f4 Zuiko and loaded with lford FP4 Plus.
Windmills, Oesterdam, The Netherlands
Olympus OM-1n with 35-75mm f4 Zuiko and loaded with lford FP4 Plus.

I had a great day and enjoyed shooting and walking and being by myself. Of course I would have been happier sharing these moments with Princess but that is still almost impossible.

I had two camera bags with me. One with the Zenza Bronica ETRSi and 4 lenses and another one with the Olympus OM-1 and a few lenses and to be on the safe side I had also my digital Olympus OM-D M10 with me. I didn’t use that one though but shot two rolls of Ilford FP4 Plus.

 

Not trees, Tholen, The Netherlands Olympus OM-1n with 35-75mm f4 Zuiko and loaded with lford FP4 Plus.
Not trees, Tholen, The Netherlands
Olympus OM-1n with 35-75mm f4 Zuiko and loaded with lford FP4 Plus.

Wow, an afternoon shooting and I only made 70 shots.

Back home I developed them and to be safe I used separate tanks. It took about 2 hours for the film to dry and even more to scan each negative with my aging Minolta Scan Elite 5400.
The Epson V750 is now officially on my wish list.

Going nowhere, Tholen, The Netherlands Olympus OM-1n with 35-75mm f4 Zuiko and loaded with lford FP4 Plus.
Going nowhere, Tholen, The Netherlands
Olympus OM-1n with 35-75mm f4 Zuiko and loaded with lford FP4 Plus.

I still find it difficult to scan the negatives. It is a technique I am not completely acquainted with yet. The Silverfast 8 Se offers so much options and possibilities.

I simply love the gritty look of these black and white images. They are so much more real compared to the ultra sharp, grainless and slick digital captures.

Port of Antwerp, Bath, The Netherlands Long exposure of 10" Olympus OM-1n with 35-75mm f4 Zuiko and loaded with lford FP4 Plus.
Port of Antwerp, Bath, The Netherlands
Long exposure of 10″
Olympus OM-1n with 35-75mm f4 Zuiko and loaded with lford FP4 Plus.

Dreaming in black & white

A few days ago I developed my second b&w film and all went well. Yet today I visited an aquarium shop and bought an aquarium heater and a thermometer.
Yes I know, 19° C of 21° C instead of the required 20° for developer and fixing solutions won’t do any harm to the process. It is not that critical as it would with color film.

Heating unit
I want to do things right, that is a part of the pleasure of developing film.

I like the discrete grain of the Ilford FP4 Plus and its large dynamic range covering a zillion greys between absolute black and absolute white. On screen the results feel much more organic and pure compared to the almost sterile perfectness of a digital image.

Trees

When working in Photoshop one has less latitude with a scanned negative than with a RAW-file but that is a part of the challenge. One has to get it right when making the photograph in the first place and during development in the second place.

I am sure I’m going to have tons of fun playing with black and white film and I hope it will increase my creativity.

Logs

Save

Scanning the past #Thursday’s Photograph #art #photography

I had a brief flirt with analogue photography way back in 2007/2008. I had acquired a Nikon F100 and I liked the camera a lot although it was not fully mechanical. I used a Nikon F4 too by the way and numerous lenses.

I think I shot about 20 films mostly black and white. When the camera suddenly stopped working my love affair with analogue photography died with it.
Now that I am trying to make a fresh start I have been scanning a few of these films. They contain a few pleasant surprises.
I want to share some with you.

They are scenes from the French Opal Coast, my Lourdes, my inspiration, my love before I met Princess.

Bunker - view on Digue Carnot, Boulogne-sur-Mer.
Bunker – view on Digue Carnot, Boulogne-sur-Mer.
View from Cap Blanc Nez towards Cap Griz Nez.
View from Cap Blanc Nez toward Cap Griz Nez.
Cap Blanc Nez
Cap Blanc Nez

A poor man’s full frame – Developing and first results #photography #Thursday’s Photograph #art

Yesterday, Wednesday morning, I did something I hadn’t done in years.
I developed a black & white film!

Ready to develop the film

I searched the Internet for the development time of an Ilford Delta using Kodak’s TMax film developer. I had no idea if the film would be exposed correctly so I settled for 8 minutes at 21°C with a 1+4 mixture.
Then I prepared the 300ml of developer, a recipient with 1+1 vinegar and water and 300 ml 1+4 fixing liquid.

35mm film reel

After rinsing the dust covered Paterson film developing tank I set everything ready in the bathroom and gave the tank, scissors and film I had retrieved from the camera a place so I could find everything in the dark.
Out went the light and I started moving the reel to get the film on it. To my big surprise it was easy and I hadn’t forgotten how to do it. After closing the tank I switched on the light and walked to the kitchen.
I set my iPhone’s timer to 8 minutes, filled the developing tank and turned it around every 30 seconds, putting it down with a harsh tap to remove the air bubbles that could have settled on the film.

After 8 minutes I emptied the tank, filled it with the diluted vinegar and after moving the tank for 45″ I replaced the stop bath with the fixing solution.

Six minutes later I drained the tank once again but before starting the rinsing process I wanted to see if the film was well developed.

I felt immensely excited when I opened the tank.

Developed film

 

Wow, at first glance the negatives seemed perfect and well developed and showed a correct density.

I rinsed the film for about 5 minutes and then added a few drops of Agepon wetting agent to prevent water drops staying on the film and create spots while drying.

It is almost noon and the film is drying in the bathroom.

I am still so excited and cannot wait to start scanning the negatives.

Minolta DiMAGE 5400

 

*** *** ***

The bigger part of the afternoon I spend watching The Social Network, a biopic about a Jewish nerd who hates nipples and founded Facebook, Mark Zuckerberg and taking a nap.
Yes, Princess and I are still babysitting and Star woke up at 05:30 this morning. She’ll see things in a different perspective later on when she has to get up early for work after hanging at some bar the evening before.

Electricity

 

I find the negatives a little too dense. Or I overdeveloped the film or it was slightly over-exposed, maybe by about 0,7 EV. The battery could have caused the latter. Originally the Olympus OM-1n took a 1,36 Volt mercury battery but they are banned due to environment issues and there is no replacement except the ones that are sold by Wein on eBay. In my Olympus is a 1,5 Volt battery so that could be the reason why the exposure was a little over the top.

 

Checking the negatives
Checking the negatives

I loaded my second film, an Ilford FP4, and set the light meter to 160 ISO instead of 125 ISO so we’ll see.

It seems there is an issue with the scanner software too. Scanning 6 negs is not a problem but when I eject them and load 6 new ones the preview totally screws up. I’ll try to figure this one out later on before opening a support ticket at Silverfast.com. Note. After rebooting my iMac the problem went away.

Testing the Olympus OM-1n wide open
Testing the Olympus OM-1n wide open

 

I also have the impression that activating the ICE option (dust & scratch removal) does not make the scanner happy albeit it is hardware supported. The final scan resembles nothing and reminds me on how the world looks after enjoying a few magic mushrooms.
Anyway, as the negs are fresh and I take care of them I haven’t a real issue with dust and other imperfections so the lack of ICE is not an issue.

The lack of EXIF-data is something that really troubles me. Obviously information on date, time and camera settings are not available so I have to take notes or say something in my iPhone each time I take an image.

Nikkormat correctly exposed using a Gossen flash-meter. I used one flash-head with a soft-box.
Nikkormat correctly exposed using a Gossen flash-meter. I used one flash-head with a soft-box.

Yes, this is going to trouble me as I keep all my images sorted on date. I do not care that much about the camera settings though, but date and time are very important to me. I guess I’ll have to skip the time notion and I hate the idea. I know Princess is smiling now when she reads this…

The guy who sold me the Olympus also gave me a Vivitar 85-205mm f3,5 zoom lens to test. It is a heavy lens and it is mine for 25 Euro. A no-brainer if you ask me even if I’ll never use it wide-open as I guess it will be way to soft. But at f8 it is a very sharp lens.

So I developed a film.
The first results?
Awesome.
Really, they are incredible.
Wow.
This is real black and white and not some Photoshop (plugin) substitute.

I love the discrete grain, the organic look and its large dynamic range. At the moment I am not looking for Kodak Tri-X or Ilford HP5 high-speed film drama. The 100 ISO suits me well as it slows down everything I want to do.
This is what I want to achieve.

Imagine visiting a new place, landscape or abandoned site, whatever, and walk around being limited to only 36 images. Hell, let us take the battery away from the camera too so you’ll have to work with a hand-held light meter.

Testing the Olympus OM-1n
Testing the Olympus OM-1n

You’ll have to change the way you look and if you find something you want to photograph you’ll have to suck it in before pressing the shutter button. You will have to consider light and other technical aspects because you have only 36 frames. You’ll have to slow down. You’ll have to look and observe.
No shooting like a madman and browsing through 500 shots in the evening. No chimping or, if you are an experienced digital photog, analysing the histogram.

When you press the shutter you must be 100% sure you have it right.

When you drive back home you’ll feel excited and you’ll enjoy the anticipation and pleasure while developing the film, waiting for it to dry before you can scan it and see what you have created.

This is photography in its purest form and a craft forgotten by most of us.

It is something I want to find again, to experience and see as pleasure and art and not as something tedious I had to do so many years ago in order to get my degree in photography.

I want to take my time and see and observer before I take an image. I want to be Zen and in balance with what I see when I press the shutter button.

Shot at f1,8
Shot at f1,8

Also I want to stick to one type of film.

Back in my schooldays my film was Ilford’s HP5. I did not need a light meter to nail the exposure. My eyes looked at a scene and my brain knew what the film needed.
I could develop this film with pee if needed and drunk, stoned or both I knew the exact time and mixtures for almost every mainstream developing product to get 100% perfect negatives.
Yeah, I know, I was a nerd back then.
But guess what, the nerds get the best chicks, albeit I had to wait some 35 years for mine to fall in my bed.

No, I am not going to throw away my digital Olympus and prime lenses. Don’t forget, I am a very lazy person. But my digital micro four thirds Olympus cannot deliver what a full frame can.

At f1,8 the depth of field is very shallow and the bokeh is simply delicious. I paid 40 euro for this kit. A Nikon D600 and a f1,8 lens would set me back at least 1500 euro but it would make taking photographs easy. It would be a no-brainer but one I cannot afford.
Buying a D600 is not a problem. Buying the glass that goes with it is though. And it becomes even more an issue with a Nikon D800 as 36 megapixels needs lenses that can deliver in resolving power. Yet we all fall on our knees when we see, for example, images made by Magnum accredited photographers.
René Burri, my all time favourite Henri Cartier-Bresson, hell even Ansell Adams. Or my even bigger favourite and inventor of the so-called porno chique Helmut Newton did it all with film.

You buy art?
You buy what you like and not because it was made with a 6,000 $ Leica.
Less is more. Art is what the heart feels but not necessarily what the artist wanted to express.

Do I create art? Nah, I just take pictures.

At Stella's place
At Stella’s place