Recommended reading

‘Cause it’s a good day for payin’ your bills
And it’s a good day for curin’ your ills,
So take a deep breath and throw away your pills
‘Cause it’s a good day from mornin’ till night

iiiiiiice cream

πŸ“· Olli Thompson introduces us to the work of photographer Lu Nan, through a review of his book, Trilogy. Read Photobook — Lu Nan, Trilogy

πŸ“· Kosmo Foto Mono film is now out in 120. I have three rolls waiting for a good day to start shooting. Shaun Nelson beat me to it and gives a good preview of this film’s capabilities. Read Kosmo Foto Mono 120

πŸ’» Even though he’s a Trump supporter, Jeff Minch doesn’t agree that journalism is the enemy of the people. Indeed, he supports journalism, especially when it brings down someone who does bad things. Read When Journalists Do Their Job


Recommended reading

It’s a good day for shinin’ your shoes,
And it’s a good day for losin’ the blues
Ev’rything to gain and nothin’ to lose,
‘Cause it’s a good day from mornin’ till night

πŸ’» The ever cynical Philip Greenspun asks why Pete Buttigieg isn’t the Democratic front-runner for president. He just might mean it. Read Why isn’t Pete Buttigieg the front-runner among Democrats?

Bank of Indianapolis

πŸ’» M. B. Henry visits Seattle’s famous gum wall — and says you smell it before you see it. Read The Seattle Gum Wall — A Sticky Situation

πŸ’» Arte Johnson died this week. If you grew up in the ’70s as I did, you remember him, as he was always on TV. Mark Evanier watched him in rehearsals for the show Laugh-In and remembers him as a sharp, versatile performer. Read Arte Johnson, R.I.P.

πŸ“· Mike Connealy makes some truly lovely photographs of a famous church in Taos, New Mexico. He rose early to get the best light play. Read The Church of Ansel

πŸ“· Kurt Munger shares some family Kodachromes from 1958 at a horse race. All the men in hats! All the old cars! Read Kodak Moment #15: off to the races at Rialto Park


Recommended reading

While we wait for July to get here, enjoy the most interesting reads I found around the Internet this week.

πŸ’» Can you imagine driving a 1950 Cadillac every day? Paul Niedermeyer found one that gets daily duty, and tells its story. Read Curbside Classic: 1950 Cadillac Series 61 Coupe – The Ultimate Curbside Classic

Square hindquarters

πŸ’» Have you heard about Facebook’s play in cryptocurrency, called Libra? Jeff Minch breaks it down for you — why it’s not a good thing, and why it’s not going to go as planned. Read Facebank and Libra

πŸ’» Have you ever wondered what it’s like to drive a modern Corvette? Tom Halter rented one and files a full report for Curbside Classic. The verdict: like a puppy that always wants to play. Read Rental Car Review: 2017 Chevrolet Corvette — Stranger in a Strange Land

πŸ’» Seth Godin reminds us that debt is slavery, especially credit-card and car-loan debt. Read The tyranny of small debts, compounded

πŸ“· Have you ever seen a solar-powered film camera? Canon made one, the Sure Shot del Sol, and Mike Eckman gives one his usual thorough treatment. Read Canon Sure Shot del Sol

πŸ“· Charlotte Davis did some lovely work on Kodak T-Max P3200. Read A love letter to Kodak T-Max P3200

πŸ“· Peggy Anne got some great shots from an old Konica S II on Acros. Read Konica S II

πŸ“· This is a long Recommended Reading, but there were a lot of great posts this week. Jeb Inge, writing for Casual Photophile, goes home again — to where he grew up in Pennsylvania, using the camera and film of his youth: a Nikon N65 and Kodak Gold 200. Read Searching for Heimat with Kodak Film and a Nikon N60


Through the magic of networked computers you will find your people

Back in Feburary on this blog’s 12th anniversary, I wrung my hands here over feeling dissatisfied that this blog hasn’t been more popular.

tl;dr: I like to think that I’m doing this for my pleasure, and for the pleasure of people like you. But during this blog’s life I’ve watched other film-photography blogs launch, greatly surpass mine in pageviews, and become darlings of the film-photography community. It bugs me. A lot. I’m more competitive than I like to admit.

When I was a kid my dad took up golf. He liked it, he said, because no matter who he shot with he always felt like he was competing primarily with himself. Could he better his last game today?

I want to be happy for the other film-photo bloggers in their achievements, but keep improving my own game because I enjoy it.

It’s also important that I understand what game I’m playing and measure the right things about it. Pageviews are not the right measure. They’re a little depressing this year anyway, as at the current rate I’ll end up with about 25,000 fewer pageviews than last year.

Search just isn’t driving as many views my way as in 2015-2018. Posts of mine that used to be a top-five search result aren’t anymore, because competing posts on more popular blogs have knocked them down. This post about the Kodak Pony 135 camera, for example, used to be ranked third at Google. Now it’s not even on the first page of results. It has been pushed aside by an avalanche of Kodak Pony 135 reviews that didn’t used to exist.

Here’s a measure that shows what’s really happening at Down the Road: comments. If you keep commenting at the rate you have been this year, this blog will gather about 1,100 more comments than last year.

About half of those comments are mine, as it’s my pleasure to respond to nearly every comment. I’m realizing it’s why I blog: to find and cultivate the community of people who share these interests.

When I was a kid with boxes full of old cameras, I had nobody to talk to about it. I would have been thrilled for just one friend who shared this interest even a little. As I rode my bike to yard sales all over town hunting for camera treasure, I would have loved to have had a companion.

I’d like to send a message to that young man: hang on, through the magic of networked computers you will find your people.

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Recommended reading

We’ve had one of the rainiest springs I can remember. Summer started yesterday; here’s hoping with it comes drier weather. If it’s raining where you are today, or even if it isn’t, sip your coffee or tea and enjoy these blog posts I liked from around the Internet this week.

πŸ’» We Americans have a core belief that people are equal, even though we know we’re really not. Carla Akil does a nice job clarifying in what ways we are actually equal, and how this is the foundation of our national core belief. Read The Basis of Political Equality

Slit tail lights

πŸ’» Over at Curbside Classic, Paul Niedermeyer shares some terrific submitted photos of a hot-rod race in Wales. Read On the Beach — Pendine Sands Vintage Hot Rod Races, Wales, UK

πŸ’» J. P. Cavanaugh with the fascinating story of Charlie Christian, who played electric guitar for Benny Goodman back in the day. Read Rose Room By The Benny Goodman Sextet — Meet Charlie Christian And His E-Lectric Guitar

πŸ“· Alex Luyckx writes the best film reviews on the Internet. This time he tackles Kodak Ektar 100. Read Film Review Blog No. 41 — Kodak Ektar 100


Recommended reading

Happy Father’s Day to all you fathers! Tomorrow, I mean. Except that it’s Father’s Day at my house today because this is the day my sons could come over. Here’s some light reading to tide the rest of you over to tomorrow.

πŸ’» Suzanne Lucas is an expat in Switzerland and sometimes she writes about how life works there. This time she wrote about how pharmacies and doctors’ offices work. It’s interesting stuff. Read Swiss Saturday: The Pharmacy

Morris Minor

πŸ’» Susie Trexler visited the building in Springfield, Illinois, where Abraham Lincoln practiced law and brought us pictures. Painted signs on the building’s exterior were recently restored. Read Lincoln’s Law Office: Bringing Ghost Signs Back to Life

πŸ’» Lies, says N. S. Palmer, are different from bullshit. Read Truth, Lies, and Bullsh-t

πŸ“· It’s a camera from the former East Germany — quirky, but well built and a surprisingly good performer. Theo Panagopolous reviews the Prakti. Read Prakti – Early prakticalities

πŸ“· Have you ever seen any of your work stolen on the Internet? Johnny Martyr has some good advice about what to do when it happens. Read Battling Copyright Infringement