Jonathan Fleming's Blog

A Photography Blog

Posts Tagged ‘photobooth

One Last Tintype Session At Photobooth

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We headed to Photobooth San Francisco this week to get what will be our very last tintype portraits made in its studio. Photobooth will be closing at the end of March 2014.

If you’ve been following my blog for the last few years, you know I love this place. Vince Donovan, one of the owners, helped me revive my dad’s old Land Camera on my second visit to the shop. I blame him for getting me hooked on shooting pack film. I discovered quirky cameras like the Lomokino at Photobooth, and connected with some really cool local artists as well. So yeah, I’m pretty bummed that its doors are closing.

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But what better way to say goodbye to this truly unique studio than to have your tintype taken? Bridget had hers done a couple times before, but this is the first time I’ve been immortalized on a metal plate. We walked out with of total of eight tintypes, all brilliantly crafted by the super talented Michael Shindler.

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So long, Photobooth, and thank you!

Written by Jonathan

March 22, 2014 at 7:14 am

Yet Another Visit to Photobooth

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Fuji XPRO-1 +  35mm f/1.4 XF R | 1/50 sec, f/1.4 ISO 1250 

So, one of Bridget’s good friends invited us to go check out a private opening event for the San Francisco Fashion Film festival, which just happened to be at one of my favorite spots in the city: Photobooth! What better place to hang out and snap my first frames with the Fuji XPRO-1.


Fuji XPRO-1 +  35mm f/1.4 XF R | 1/50 sec, f/1.4 ISO 640 

The most fascinating place to be at Photobooth is right at the store’s centerpiece, the tintype portrait studio. I hover there with my camera, taking advantage of the ample exposure value from the modeling lights that falls upon many an interesting face. Chemical reactions on sheets of metal immortalize those faces. I never get tired of observing the process:

Bridget didn’t have her tintype taken this time around (she already has two), but posing her next to the pretty light emanating from the studio made for a pretty nice snap:


Fuji XPRO-1 +  35mm f/1.4 XF R | 1/50 sec, f/1.4 ISO 800 

All images shot with the Fuji XPRO-1 and 35mm f/1.4 Fujinon lens. In-camera processed JPEGs. The XPRO-1 is a-ma-zing. I’m not giving up my X100, but the XPRO is just as fun to use and the image quality is just phenomenal.

Written by Jonathan

April 7, 2012 at 5:00 pm

Another Tintype Portrait

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This is the second tintype portrait Bridget had done at Photobooth, and it’s a stunner. I love how it brought out her beautiful freckles. Look at how razor-sharp the eyes are with everything in the frame immediately behind them just melting out of focus.

This little production shot I took with my iPhone 4s shows photographer Michael Schindler getting all his light modifiers in place before firing off that beautiful 4×5 camera. Now you can see what was responsible for those crazy cool catch lights in Bridget’s eyes!

If you live in or around San Francisco, you’ve got to pay this studio a visit and get yourself immortalized on a steel plate, or at least get some help firing up that old Polaroid camera of yours ;)

Written by Jonathan

March 2, 2012 at 4:50 pm

Coffee, Chocolate, Tintypes and Lomo Gear

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This amazing tintype portrait of my wife was taken by Michael Shindler over at Photobooth SF on Valencia. The folks there were nice enough to send me a digital copy of it (pictured right). The original, of course, is a beautiful photograph forged on a metal plate using early 19th century tech. You can see more examples of this amazing artform on Photobooth’s website.

If you’ve been following my blog lately, you probably know that I frequent this shop. I originally discovered it on opening night, and came back again later to purchase some  film and get schooled on Polaroid photography.

This time, there were a bunch more reasons to return to Photobooth. First of all, a free coffee and Pacari chocolate tasting. Hello! Coffee and Photography are like, my favorite things ever. Favorite-things-ever overload goin’ on here.

Despite the fact that it was raining, we decided to bring Suki. She was looking quite stylish in her silly 70′s coat. The three of us hung out, checked out the new Lomography gear, watched the tintype studio in action, sipped on our (free!) Blue Bottle, and nom’d on some seriously good chocolate. Ok, obviously Suki didn’t eat, but she did meet people, sniff stuff, and made us look cooler than we tend to look without her around ;)

A few more snaps from the event:

That’s what I’m talking about. I normally pay 3-4 bucks a cup for Blue Bottle pour over. Went perfectly with little nibbles of Pacari chocolate.

A tinype of Suki would have been cool right? Impossible. I was told that the exposure time for a tintype is about 4 seconds, requiring the subject to be perfectly still for at least that long. Suki is used to being photographed, but not like that!

Another reason we really wanted to check out Photobooth again was the arrival of the Lomokino Movie Maker, pictured above. Vince, one of the owners, showed me how it worked and let me and Bridget view a finished roll of film shot with this camera. Hmmm, should we get one?

Should we get one!?!??!

We totally got one. I’ll run some film through it and share the details and results in another blog post. Stay tuned!

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Images: Fuji X100

Written by Jonathan

November 19, 2011 at 9:23 pm