Natchitoches Parish, LA

I went up to Natchitoches the Saturday after Thanksgiving to go to a local crafts show at the events center. I didn’t find anything I really felt the desire to spend money on–for some reason, it seemed like half the vendors were selling handmade bath bombs, which is… kind of a dated trend?–but I don’t count it as a wasted trip, as there were some things in the parish I’ve been wanting to photograph. (I’ve already photographed the town). As always, these are cell phone shots and film shots will follow when I finish shooting the roll and get them developed.

Slave cabins at Magnolia Plantation:

Magnolia Plantation

Magnolia Plantation

Magnolia Plantation

St. Augustine, which was built by free black planters who sat in the front pews ahead of white parishioners (decades before the Civil War):

St. Augustine

Bay Springs Cemetery, which had another grave house:

Bay Springs Cemetery

Bay Springs Cemetery

Please consider supporting my work via Patreon

St. Leo chapel-in-the-woods, Roberts Cove, LA

This was on the beginning of the black and white roll I shot in Galveston, I had forgotten about it until I got the photos back.

St. Leo chapel in the woods

St. Leo chapel in the woods

St. Leo chapel in the woods

Please consider supporting me on Patreon

Fuji Neopan (1 of 3)

I shot a lot of black and white towards the end of my “shooting season”–I don’t like to shoot during summer, I’m not a native southerner and I simply can’t withstand the heat and humidity. I had 3 rolls of Neopan (all shot in the Wide & Slim) that I sent to Dwayne’s  at once; I’m ready to move on from Neopan but the rolls I have are all expired and I want to finish them first. I have Tri-X, Ilford, and Lomography Earl Gray in the fridge and I’m eager to make some comparisons.

Harlem Plantation in Plaquemines Parish:

Harlem Plantation

Harlem Plantation

Harlem Plantation

Holy Rosary Cemetery in St. Charles Parish (look for the chemical plants in the background):

Holy Rosary Cemetery

Holy Rosary Cemetery

A fragment of the de la Ronde Ruins in St. Bernard Parish:

de la Ronde Ruins

A cane field… somewhere. I think it was Iberville Parish:

Cane field

In other photography news, I’ll have a new camera whenever I’m ready to go back out. A pen friend of mine said he wanted to send me his wife’s old camera and I said sure, I’ll give it a good home. It turned out to be a Minox 35, arguably the smallest full-frame 35mm camera ever made. It’s an EL, the very first model; production started on that model the year before I was born. I just have to find a replacement battery for it, it takes a 5.6v and those fractional volts can be hard to find.

If you like my work and would like to help me create more, please consider supporting me on Patreon.

Harlem Plantation, Plaquemines Parish, LA

I found out about this house while Googling for things to photograph in Plaquemines Parish. There isn’t much information on the internet other than that it was built in 1840 and is considered architecturally significant as an example of the shift from French Colonial to Classical architecture in south Louisiana. I have no idea who owns it now, but it obviously hasn’t been lived in in decades. Sad to say, but I think this one is beyond saving. I wasn’t even 100% sure it would still be there when I set out, the most recent photo I was able to find was the Google Street View for that stretch of Louisiana Highway 15, dated October of 2013. But it was right where the GPS coordinates said it would be.

I didn’t have very good light, it was midday on a totally cloudless day so it was very hard. These are just my cell phone shots, I also shot some B&W in my Viv and Ektar in my Argus C3—haven’t taken that one out in a while. I forgot what a satisfying “ping!” the shutter on that one makes.

Harlem Plantation

Harlem Plantation

Harlem Plantation

Harlem Plantation

Harlem Plantation

Please consider supporting me on Patreon

Fuji Neopan (expired) in Wide & Slim

This has been one of my favorite film/camera combos for a while now. I only have a few rolls of Neopan left, but I feel like I’ve progressed through all the stages of grief and I’m ready to start trying other options. (Don’t talk to me about pack film yet, though. Too soon.)

Dugas Cemetery

Abandoned house

Talbert-Pierson Cemetery

Fort Macomb

Luling Mansion

In other news, I’ve gone back to my old idea of trying to find a ghost town in southern Louisiana. I did dome research on it about 4 years ago but gave up because websites were always mentioning “ghost towns” that no longer existed. They would turn out to have been washed away by the river when it changed course, or totally demolished to build a section of highway, or wiped off the earth by hurricanes. One website claims Bayou Goula is a ghost town, to which all I can say is that those are some pretty lively ghosts.

Morrisonville in Iberville Parish seemed like a good bet, it was small community on the River Road that had to be abandoned in the mid-90s when Dow Chemical spilled vinyl chloride. There’s nothing left but the cemetery but I thought it might make some interesting photos anyway, with all the pipes and industrial crap in the background. However, the Dow facility has grown around the site of the town in the intervening years, and the cemetery is now on private property. It’s theoretically accessible by the public, and a security guard gave me a phone number to call, but no one ever answered. So that was a big, fat goose egg.

Back to the drawing board. If you know of anything, please leave a comment.

If you like my work and would like to help me create more, please consider supporting me on Patreon

Terrebonne Parish, Smena 8M

Pointe-aux-Chenes

Pointe-aux-Chenes

Pointe-aux-Chenes

Abandoned house/cemetery double exposure

Tezcuco Plantation

Okay, that last one was actually Tezcuco Plantation.

I have some money coming to me, and although I’m being #fiscallyresponsible and using most of it to open a checking account (I’ve only had a savings since I moved to Louisiana), I did use a little of it to buy a couple of wishlist items. A new fountain pen, of course, specifically a limited edition Sailor Sapporo Four Seasons (the Meigetsu or Autumn Moon pen). Got a good deal on eBay, about $20-$30 less than American distributors are selling it for, and free expedited shipping from Japan. And also this camera:

zorki4

It’s a Zorki-4, the Soviet-made Leica knock-off, and I got it from the same Etsy seller I got my Smena 8M from. He has extremely reasonable prices for cameras guaranteed to work, even with the cost of shipping a hunk of metal all the way from Moscow (about 1/3 of the overall price). This model was released for the 50th anniversary of the 1917 revolution, hence all the Soviet bling. Lots of these cameras were commemorative releases.

Dosvedanya, comrades!

If you like my work and would like to help me make more of it, please consider supporting me on Patreon.

Adventures off the beaten path in NOLA

Earlier this month, a friend of mine realized a long-deferred dream and moved from Wisconsin to New Orleans. We had Good Friday off from work, and I drove to the city to both take her to a “welcome to Louisiana” lunch and to photograph a couple of things on my list.

Fort Macomb is in the Venetian Isles neighborhood, and although it looks like the country it is in fact within the city limits. (You may remember it from the last episode of the first season of True Detective, where it stood in for Carcosa, the mystical/cursed city of the King in Yellow.) I’ve been there before, but only shot the outside from the adjacent marina dock. While I was able to get around a couple of chain link fences this time, alas, the front entrance had been padlocked and it would take someone a lot more athletic than I to actually get inside.

Fort Macomb

Fort Macomb

Fort Macomb

Fort Macomb

It probably doesn’t look much different inside than Fort Pike, which is only a couple of miles away. More overgrown, probably. I was fortunate enough to get inside of Pike during one of the brief periods it was open to the public—it’s always getting shut down due to hurricane damage and/or budget cuts. It’s the only Third System fort in Louisiana that’s even sometimes open to the public, and a perfect example of one of the things that makes me deeply angry about this state: they view “lock it up to keep out anyone who might be interested and then ignore it” as the depth of their responsibility to the historic places in their care.

ANYWAY. So then we went to the Luling Mansion, built for a cotton merchant just after the Civil War and somehow managing to survive into the present day, the former grounds surrounded by modern development and the house itself carved up into apartments inside.

Luling Mansion

Luling Mansion

Luling Mansion

Oh, and we also made a quick stop at the St. Roch shrine, because that place is awesome.

St. Roch chapel

If you like my work, please consider supporting more of it.

Previous Older Entries