Here is another discovery I made while sifting through decades of my old slides. I found slides of Milford Sound in New Zealand from a trip in 1989. Rain-drenched mountains rise steeply from the water, with clouds swirling above them and below. How uninteresting these photos would have been if the sun were shining! They would have been ordinary postcard shots. The dyes in many of these slides had partially faded, leaving an uneven magenta or blue cast to them. Since they were almost monochromatic, conversion to black and white seemed the way to go. Four images are in the Milford Sound, NZ gallery on my website.
I began a project this year that I've been meaning to do for a long time. I have begun to scan my archives of 35mm film into my computer and convert them to digital images. I began photography around 1969 and didn't maintain a consistent filing system for negatives or slides. Many slides remained in their original yellow boxes from Kodak. So I knew I was in for a long, slow journey viewing forgotten images.
I have made some amazing discoveries along the way. One wonderful discovery is from slides taken on a 1973 trip to Iceland. For the most part the color quality has remained good, with little or no fading from the old Kodachromes. I find these old images still appealing: buildings situated in remote landscapes; water tumbling over rocks so new they show few signs of erosion; fishing boats in and out of the water.
On this trip, I spent one day at a whaling station in Hvalfjörður, arriving just as a whale was brought in for butchering. The stench was overwhelming, and I could not understand how the workers could do their jobs with such a foul smell constantly in their midst.
I have added eight of these Icelandic photos to the website.
Before digital, making prints from color slides was always a difficult and expensive process for me, with unsatisfying results. I never attempted color printing in the darkroom, but now I can finally make images from slides that brings out their full potential.