Photographer Stories #1: Rhys Allen 31/07/14

Hi. This is the first episode of Photographer Stories. Yesterday I talked to one of my friends/Flickr buddies Rhys Allen aka Serge Marx. We talked about the early days of Flickr, the Melbourne Silver Mine, Unsensored and lots of other shit. Also starring Oscar. This was my first time recording someone, I don’t know a thing about recording sound or interviewing people, but I think I went ok. I’m sure they’ll improve over time. Enjoy! Cheers, MRJ.


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6 observations on “Photographer Stories #1: Rhys Allen 31/07/14
  1. James

    I don’t normally go in for podcasts, but I had a session ahead of me this arvo making 8×10 unsharp masks in the darkroom ahead of me, it’s a fairly slow and steady process so some background entertainment was required. You guys didn’t disappoint – enjoyed the casual and conversational style. Look forward to another instalment for another darkroom day.

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  3. Donald Christian

    I have practiced law for 25 years and although at times financially rewarding, and the complex problems I face are often intellectually challenging and stimulating; something about “me” requires a more creative outlet. As a child my dad shot black & white, developed and printed in his tiny little darkroom and so I recall that from my early days (although he never took any interest in showing me) and in the 1980s I received a Canon AE-1 as a gift. I shot lots of film (not very well) and particularly enjoyed shooting 25 asa Kodachrome. Fast forward to marriage and children and arrival of the digital age. The AE-1 and lenses were sold on ebay for a pittance and I fully embraced the digital revolution, albeit only on a “family” basis.

    Many years ago I drafted a will for a very peculiar bachelor engineer. He was a friend of an uncle’s and so I know very little about him except that he had no family and wanted me to be his executor. A few years ago he died and a friend contacted me to begin the process. I discovered upon entering his assisted care apartment a stash of cameras, modern digital slr’s but also old film and even a Hasselblad camera and lenses. It was my job to care for the equipment until it was given out to the heirs named in his will.

    I was curious about the Hasselblad, bought a light meter, a roll or two of expired film and dropped the exposed rolls at Walmart to be sent off for developing. (yes they still do that and rather cheaply I might add) I was I suppose astonished to find that not only were the images properly exposed, but they were also very nice.

    Soon thereafter I realized how cheaply one could buy old high end 35mm and even medium format cameras and so I went on a buying spree. First there was a Nikon F3, then a Pentax 645, then a Nikon F5 and so on. Next were the ebay auctions for expired film and then the desire to at least develop my own black and white film. Surprised again, that worked too ! Next came an Epson v700 scanner and the rest is history as they say. And of course the spare refrigerator nearly filled with hoarded, expired film and most recently a 35mm bulk loader.

    I often carry (when temps permit) a loaded film camera in my vehicle and stop at a very large 19th century cemetery near my office to take photos. My moods shift from transparency, to black and white, from 35mm to 120 but a camera of some sort is always with me. I am a bit of a perfectionist and as one can never have a perfect image, it has been a continual challenge creatively for me, and I enjoy that. I scan my negatives, sometimes tweak them a bit, post a few on flickr or tumblr, occasionally draw a compliment or two and find the whole process creatively fulfilling. I do sometimes wonder what my children will do with the 3 ring binders filled with carefully sleeved negatives and transparencies. Will they I wonder end up at Goodwill as so many do ? Will they be appreciated as historical records of the time ? Who knows.

    I tried writing, and I enjoy that, because as a Southerner we love telling stories, but I found photography more effectively scratches my creative itch.

  4. Fred Stillings

    Wow! that was entertaining….bonus points for being introduced to Flickr via stalking a girl! and “fake it til ya make it” is one of my favorite expressions to bark at my kids….keep’em coming


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