[52 Rolls] Week 1 – Wet and Dry

This year I am participating in 52rolls.net, a group blog where participants shoot, scan and share a roll of film a week for an entire year. I will be cross-posting my 52 Rolls posts here as well. 

For my first roll, I visited two very different places near my home in Santa Cruz. The first was the lovely and very wet Wadell Creek Beach, just north of Santa Cruz, and the second was the much drier Lincoln Reservoir, just over the mountain in Los Gatos. The contrast between these two places was striking.

Wadell Creek was flowing strong into the ocean, engorged by recent el nino fueled rains. Sitting on that beach it was easy to think that the drought was no longer a problem in this part of California. Just a short drive away, it was clear that a few days of hard rain was not going make much of a difference.

I drive by this reservoir frequently, and over the last five or so years I have observed from the road as the water levels dropped and the creeks feeding it have disappeared. I used this project as an excuse to actually visit in person for the first time, and even knowing that it was low, it was shocking to see the steep barren hills that used to be underwater, and to walk around on dry cracked earth that used to be lake bottom. As my wife said “It’s like walking on the surface of the moon”

As for the pictures, I like a lot of them, but sadly many are marred by long thin scratches. At first I was worried that there was something wrong with my camera, but it turns out this is related to a whole different kind of dryness. I received a film squeegee for Christmas (I was getting occasional water spots), and it seems I was a bit over-enthusiastic using it. The perils of late night film processing.

Canon P, 50mm 1.8, Fomopan 100, Rodinal 1:50

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