[Street Box Experience #1] Morocco & Mali
Going back to the roots was what I wanted.
During my second trip in West Africa, beside my main project in digital, I took several days to shoot only with this home made wooden box equipped with an enlarger lens and an included laboratory. Pictures were taken on Harman Direct + sensible 9x13 paper. Shooting with this strange box was really different from a normal digital camera. Framing and developing takes more time, you have no photocell to help you to choose the aperture, the shutter speed is fully manual as you are doing it with a lid in front of the lens, you have to deal with chemistries and the local temperature...
Beside all these constraint, a lot of satisfaction. The relation you have with the population is unique, as you always provoke astonishment, surprise, excitation, wherever you are.
During these 2 seconds of exposure, they give you a lot of themselves.
Moments shared are simple and human. You find back your humility behind this big box, rather than behind costly equipment.
The result is also a great pleasure when you discover it inside the box and when it has worked well. With low ISO and slow shutter speed (about 2 seconds) the black & white "craft" rendering is always unique and typical with this special camera.
Nowadays, I think it's also very important for us, in our career path, to make it up with photographic roots.
Far away from technic and perfection, those slice of life made me realize the social role the photographer has to play in his environment.