Fourteen Frames Through A Plastic Bag


Shooting through a plastic bag. I've heard photographers mention it, I've seen some example images. Admittedly, when I tried it I didn't understand how it was done. Then my husband said, "I think you poke a hole through it so you can still see." Bless him.

Experiment 1: plastic grocery bag. Verdict: a little too dramatic for my taste, but still visually pleasing to portray a slow family Saturday around the house. Nostalgic and fish-eye-like, but it makes you look insane while shooting. 

Experiment 2: ziplock sandwich bag. Verdict: love at first sight! I like the soft, diffuse, dream-like effect. Quite memory-like, achieving a look freelancing or a lens baby (or a Holga, duh) may give you. Makes you look a little odd while shooting, but not downright questionable. 

For these I used my Canon Elan, 24-105L lens and Ektar 100. It was my first roll of Ektar and as is obvious, I removed it's characteristic color. The tones were okay, but not a good fit for these scenes. I have seen it best used in bright sun with big, joyful emotion and been blown away by its unique color profile. 

Process thoughts? I should probably just use Holga from now on, no? As I move toward exclusive use of polaroid, toy cameras and disposables, my SLR setups are only tolerable when concocted to mimic those forms. Why not make the leap and put down the 5 lb. lens through a plastic bag?

I've become more interested in the square as a form lately. Shooting a lot of SX-70 and polaroid has trained me to think in squares; when I get back to 4x6 it feels like someone has stretched my vision out. I've been thinking about getting a Hasselblad or a Rolleiflex and experiment with an official square phase. I'm intruded by it's simplicity. These felt best square so I cropped them in post; it made them feel memorial in the right way. 

Recently I read a quote from Jonathan Canlas that I'm using as a guide during this creative season: "Say something, then keep saying it. I can't tell you what it is and I can't find it for you. That's your real work in the world." I'm not 100% sure of what I'm saying, but it has something to do with memory. With subjective experience and intimacy. With wonder. And blur, grain and soft focus are ways of getting there. What about you?

Have you tried shooting through a plastic bag? Would you? What do you think of these? Bonus shot: no plastic bag but the sweetest baby hair:


A with love