News & Publications

© Gigi Williams

The Making of Ephemeral Man

Peter Kinchington

I enjoy taking a break from using digital cameras and using my film cameras. There is an old mountain ash tree stump that I often walk past when exploring my local national park in the Dandenong Ranges. Its texture beckoned me to photograph the aged wood with orthochromatic black and white film to give an old style look. I used 8x10 inch x-ray film in my 8x10 inch camera with a 210mm f5.6 lens. I also wanted to show man as a fleeting part of the landscape. To achieve this I closed down the lens to its smallest aperture (around f/90). I then allowed for reciprocity failure and calculated an exposure of about 8 minutes.

I wanted myself to blend into the tree trunk so I set the lens for a time exposure and walked quickly into the frame and stood at a prearranged position where I could lean against the tree trunk for stability for 4 minutes. I then quickly exited the frame and allowed the film to expose the scene for the remainder of the 8 minute exposure.

The exposed 8x10 inch film was developed in 1:100 Rodinal which gives high acutance and extended tonal range. I used stand development at ambient temperature for one hour. The negative was then hung to dry overnight and scanned with my Epson scanner the next day.

Ephemeral Man © Peter Kinchington
Ephemeral Man © Peter Kinchington

This image was exhibited in the View Camera Australia: Online exhibition December 2022

View more of Peters work here.