Deep Summer Slideshow - Bruno Long

Aug 22, 2013
by Bruno Long  
I chose a Spectra System camera for the many features but also for their wide angle images.

More than a week since my Deep Summer Photo Challenge experience, I've had some time to reflect upon the entire experience, some of which I'd like to share with everyone. I've been asked about my theme/concept quite a bit since my show was projected onto the big screen along with 5 other amazing photographers during Crankworx. Getting invited to an event such as this is a huge honour and an opportunity to showcase your work in front of a crowd of fans but also your fellow peers, whom I respect so much. Knowing the stacked field that I would be up against, I felt that I needed to step up my game and do something drastic to make an impression. Considering that fact that it was the 10th Anniversary of Crankwork, I wanted to take people back to the past and reflect upon how much has changed in the biking and photography world not just in the past decade, but as far back as 40-50 years ago. When it comes to biking and photography, I'm one of those 'in betweeners', having ridden an old Kona hardtail and shooting film for a few years before dual suspension and digital images took over and left the 'analog' world behind. My connection with the past is very real but I was never as entrenched in it as some of the legends of the industry, who spent years shooting film and developing their own images in broom closet darkrooms. At Bike Magazine's 20th Anniversary party, I even spoke to a few legends who discussed having one fridge for food and another one just for film, which is a far cry from today's 'spray and pray' digital world. Using this idea as the base for my concept, I dove in head first and started formulating a plan. But first, I needed some cameras......

Instant Radification - Deep Summer 2013 - Bruno Long from Long Exposures on Vimeo.

Even the lenses themsleves are all plastic of which I had three. A 75mm 38mm Super-Wide and a 20mm Fisheye.
  All plastic camera, including the lenses....the lightest camera setup I've ever had.

Life in plastic it s fantastic Everything except the film itself in the Diana is made of cheap plastic.
  Shooting with the Diana+ isn't an exact science, which is part of it's beauty and appeal.

No one can deny the fact that Instagram has become a huge influence in today's photography world. Almost everyone has a camera phone and access to the Internet in the palm of their hands. Everyone and their dog has an Instagram account these days (seriously, I know dogs who have accounts). Digital images are also being manipulated these days to have that 'old-school' feel and just about every camera phone app for editing your 'Insta-banger' has a filter named 'Lomo' or 'Diana'. You can also find a frame to put around your image that has film strips around the edges or makes it look like you shot it with a Polaroid. And yet, most people have no idea what Lomography is, have never seen a Diana+ camera, and still think that shaking a Polaroid image makes it develop faster (it doesn't, as I found out for myself). Wanting to bridge the gap between the old school mediums while still staying in touch with today's world, I decided to shoot my Deep Summer show using a Diana+ medium format camera, which uses 120 film that gives the image a square Instagram look, a Polaroid Image Spectra camera that shoots 'wide' images with sonar autofocus, and my trusty Nikon D3s. I knew it would be a risky endeavour to try something so different but sometimes you need to risk it all in an effort to make something memorable.

Sonar autofocus. Self-Timer. Exposure compensation. Flash control. Multiple exposure. You get all the gadgets you need with an 11 investment.
  Sonar autofocus, flash control, exposure compensation and a self-timer....all for $11.

Autofocus On a Polaroid I had no idea until I started researching for this project.
  I chose this Polaroid camera for all its features, especially the autofocus. Worth every penny of the investment.

In the months leading up to the competition, I could only practice using the two film cameras so much, with film and developing being expensive. Just to put it into perspective, I bought my Polaroid camera for $11 on ebay. I also bought a macro attachment for it, also $11 online. Pretty cheap right? Except now I needed film for it. With only one place in the world to get film for Polaroids now, you have no choice but to buy from them. One package of film, with only 8 shots per pack, costs around $25. That's over $3 per image! Screwing up an image or wasting film is not an option. At least with the Polaroids, I knew within a few minutes if I had gotten the shot I needed. On the other hand, with the Diana+ film, I could only hope that I was getting the images I needed to convey the feeling I was looking to portray in my slideshow. With a midnight run to Vancouver in the middle of the competition to drop off the film to get developed and scanned at The Lab Vancouver, I worried that if the images didn't pan out that my show would be an epic fail. And while it was a very stressful time, it also gave me some insight and perspective into the history of photography. We rarely, if ever, get the feeling of excitement and anticipation that comes with shooting film and not knowing what we will come of it. I can only imagine what it was like doing commercials shoots in the past where you only had a certain amount of film and developing budget to get what your employer wanted out of you. The stress and skill involved with photography in the past is what really makes the older generation of photographer truly legendary. I have an incredible amount of respect for you all.

Figured I should throw in one last Polaroid this time of my trusty digi camera a Nikon D3S.
  After all this, I'll still trust my Nikon to the bitter end.

In the end, I was lucky enough to have everything work out very well. Sure, there are some things I would change about the show now in retrospect, but hindsight is always 20/20. I am very proud of what I put together and I think that my vision/message came across more or less how I wanted it to. Big thanks for all my athletes for being patient while I scrambled around trying to make things work the way I hoped. Huge props to my assistant Jeff, who did everything I asked of him and so much more. And to my slideshow editor, Anthony Bonello, I never would have been able to pull this off with you. You deserve as much praise as anyone else for this project. I'd also like to thank the Crankworx organizers for putting on such a great event and doing everything in their power to make things as easy as possible for all the teams. Cheers to you all!

Photography/Story: Bruno Long

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Member since Nov 4, 2006
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  • 5 1
 This is my favourite so far. Some of these fotos where one of the best i've ever seen. Especially the compositions on some where so perfekt and creative... just wow!
Would like to buy a book with all of these. Best with all the other entrys as well. Big Grin Would be killer!
  • 5 3
 Awesome Slideshow! Often, slideshows are pretty boring if you weren't part of the event or in some of the pictures. This one is actually fun to watch. On another note. Those helmets are so useless. I'm glad they fell out of favor. They just look ridiculously funny.
  • 4 0
 Well wasn't that a #throwbackthursday
  • 1 0
 Awesome vid! Great project - wicked to see the retro gear in action!

and here's the original ~1994 mcphails team jersey in action back in the day in rossland :
  • 2 0
 This was an awesome time, thanks for the show Bruno! We had a great team and all had a ton of fun!
  • 2 0
 What an awesome slide show. Loved seeing the Proflex...too funny!
  • 1 0
 That was a lot of film yumminess! It has inspired me to take my spectra and impossible project film, original Diana and nikon fm out for a spin. Tomorrow!
  • 2 0
 It will be posted with the blog when it goes online
  • 1 0
 Where can I watch the slideshow? I'm so curious to see it now.
  • 1 0
 Very cool, and very well done. Congrats.
  • 1 0
 I was wondering why we hadn't seen your entry. Quite original der guy!
  • 1 0
 what an awesome show! loved the song choice
  • 1 0
 Awesome work - very inspiring! Looked like a lot of fun also
  • 1 0
 Photographer @I_B_Long nice...
  • 1 0
 i like it!!!
  • 1 0
 Awesome, Bruno!
  • 1 0
 nice one bruno!
  • 1 0
 That was rad.
  • 1 0
 Film all the way!

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