Preservation, Road Trips

Residential architecture of New Harmony

I’ll admit straight out that I know only a little bit about New Harmony’s history. Like every lifelong Hoosier I learned in the fourth grade about the 1810s-20s utopian experiments here. The first experiment, the Harmony Society communal religious sect, founded the town in 1814. Robert Owen bought the town in 1825 and tried again to build utopia around cooperative principles but after just two years he threw in the towel.

Around New Harmony

I suppose these log cabins represent the Harmony Society era. I have no idea if these are original or not but I’d guess not.

Lenz house property

Several brick and frame houses of the Harmonist and Owenite eras do survive. This white house, the c.1822 Lenz house, is from the Harmonist period. I thought surely I’d photographed it in good light, but this sunset photo is the only one I appear to have. Part of the very modern New Harmony Welcome Center is in the photo at left.

Sunset over the Lenz House

It’s not clear to me at all which brick buildings are Harmonist and which are Owenite, but the downtown district is full of them.

Around New Harmony

I wish I’d backed way up to bring the building below entirely into the frame, because I believe now this was one of the Owenite adult dormitories.

Around New Harmony

I gather that in the post-Owenite years, New Harmony tried to continue to lead in social and scientific concerns. It’s all fascinating, really, but more than I intend to cover here — check out the town’s Wikipedia page for a thumbnail.

I just want to show you pretty house pictures. I love an old house! This is the one we stayed in, the c. 1860 Orchard House, part of the New Harmony Inn. We had the place to ourselves for our long weekend. I’ll share interior photos in an upcoming post.

The Orchard House

Of all the other older houses in New Harmony this one’s facade appeals to me most. I love its porch!

New Harmony home

Many of the older homes are typical of other Indiana places.

Around New Harmony

I’m drawn to Victorians as I pass them on the street, but I’m not sure I’d want to live in one. They’re too fussy for me to look at every day.

New Harmony home

I couldn’t tell you the first thing about this house’s architectural style, but it sure has lots of interesting details.

New Harmony home

Finally, a Federal style house.

New Harmony home

As we pedaled our bikes around New Harmony we did see some newer homes, primarily in styles popular in the 1950s and 1960s. On the main drag I noticed at least one house that was probably no older than 1980. But for the most part, living in New Harmony means living in an older home.

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All this week I’m sharing single-subject photo series I’ve made.

The very first series I made was of an office building in which I used to work. It was just like any other office building anywhere. But it was the one I walked into every day, and I often had an old camera with me, so I shot it frequently.

I was very happy working here until the big company bought us and ruined everything.

Sunrise across the anonymous office building

Palm Pre

Anonymous Office Building

Polaroid Big Swinger 3000, Fujifilm FP-3000B

Anonymous office building

Olympus Trip 500, Fujifilm Superia X-tra 400

Anonymous office building

Olympus Trip 500, Fujifilm Superia X-tra 400

Anonymous office building

Yashica Electro 35 GSN, Fujicolor 200

Anonymous office building

Pentax K1000, 50mm f/2 SMC Pentax-M, Fujicolor 200

Anonymous office building double exposure

Kodak Tourist, Kodak Plus-X

Anonymous office building

Minolta Hi-Matic 7, Fujicolor 200

Anonymous office building

Agfa Optima, Fujicolor 200

Anonymous office building

Kodak Pony 135, Fujicolor 200

Anonymous office building

Kodak Pony 135, Fujicolor 200

Anonymous Office Building

Canon AF35ML, Fujicolor 200

Double exposure

Argus A2B, Fujifilm Neopan 100 Acros

Anonymous office building

Kodak Retina IIa, Fujicolor 200

Anonymous office building

Pentax ME, 55mm f/1.8 SMC Pentax, Kodak T-Max 400

Anonymous office building

Kodak Brownie Starmatic, Kodak Portra 160

Anonymous office building

Olympus XA, Fujicolor 200

Anonymous office building

Minolta 110 Zoom SLR, Fujifilm Superia 200 (expired 12/2003)

Anonymous office building

Olympus Stylus Epic Zoom 80, Kodak T-Max 400

Anonymous office building

Nikon N65, 28-80 mm f/3.3-5.6 AF Nikkor, Fujicolor 200

Psychedelic anonymous office building

Argus Matchmatic C3, Fujicolor 200

Anonymous office building

Polaroid Automatic 250, Fujifilm FP3000-B

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Photography

Anonymous office building

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Photography

When the camera is just a tool

I got out my Pentax K10D because I was running behind on the blog and wanted some fresh photos to share. I had two film SLRs loaded, but I wouldn’t get the film processed and scanned fast enough. Shooting digital, I can use the photos almost immediately.

Indiana War Memorial

The K10D remains a competent enough camera despite being ancient of days: it was introduced in 2006. Thanks to poor performance at ISOs 800 and above, it’s best used outdoors in good light. Many of my old film cameras require the same conditions, so at least I’m used to it.

Iron

Margaret suggested a date night, and not a moment too soon. We took our cameras Downtown (we spell it with a capital D in Indianapolis for some reason) and went for a stroll.

Balconies

I showed her where I work now, a couple blocks from the heart of Downtown. These balconies are the view from one of our conference rooms.

On the circle

The heart of Downtown is Monument Circle. The Columbia Club is on it. The K10D is heavy, at least compared to Margaret’s featherweight Nikon D3200. Seriously, what did they make the K10D out of that it’s so heavy — and the D3200 that it’s so light? But the K10D wasn’t fatiguing on this walk.

On the circle

The monument itself is hard to photograph, as tall as it is. So I tend to go for its details. The 18-55mm lens (that came in a kit with the camera) does a credible enough job. Distortion is fairly well managed, but is of course most noticeable at the wide end.

Wheeler Mission

There’s plenty to photograph around Downtown and the K10D was up to the task, handling the shift from mostly cloudy to mostly sunny with no trouble. I shot JPEG+RAW and with only a couple exceptions where the JPEG was great as is, edited the RAW a little bit to get the look I want. It was easy enough to do. That’s big: if I have to spend more than a few minutes editing a digital photo to get the look I want, I start to think the camera isn’t for me.

Firestone

The Wheeler Mission sign and this Firestone sign are the two neon signs I know about Downtown. Maybe I’ll find others now that I work Downtown and have more time to explore.

Rain

I don’t love using the K10D. I don’t know why exactly. There’s a je ne sais quoi about any camera that puts into the love or don’t-love category for me, and the K10D lacks it. However, it works well enough and returns fine results, thus keeping its place among my cameras. If it didn’t, it’d be gone.

On the circle

At some point during our stroll we realized we were hungry, so we stopped at the Rathskeller, a German restaurant, for some wurst. It was a lovely evening and a tonic for our spirits. It’s nice to have these photos to remember it by.

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Dartmouth Apartments

Dartmouth Apartments
Pentax K10D, 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 SMC Pentax DA AL
2019

We came upon this interesting apartment building as we walked along Michigan Street, which is not to be confused with Michigan Road, in Downtown Indianapolis.

I noticed the texture of the brick and how the sky was reflecting in the windows. I knew there was an interesting composition in here somewhere. But we had a destination in mind, and I didn’t have time to frame this building from a bunch of vantage points to find the best composition.

So I quickly tossed off a shot. Sometimes that’s just the ticket. I’m sure there was a better composition in this scene somewhere, but I might have had to take fifty photographs to find it.

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Film Photography

single frame: Dartmouth Apartments

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Down the alley 1

Boone County Courthouse down an alleyway
Olympus XA
Ilford HP4 Plus
2019

I’ve been out of the photographic mood much more than I’ve been in it lately. Life’s been busy, stress has been high. Yet I know that a good photowalk can cure what ails me.

When Analogue Wonderland (who is sponsoring this post) sent me some films to try it was the boost I needed. They included some Ilford HP4 Plus, a film I’ve long wanted to try. So I spooled it into my little Olympus XA and carried it around with me for a couple weeks.

I had to run an errand up in Lebanon, the seat of Boone County, Indiana, one day after work. Errand done, I parked on the square and walked around hoping interesting compositions would jump out in front of me.

When I walk with a camera, I go places I wouldn’t otherwise, such as down this alleyway on the square. The contrast between the dark alley and the lit courthouse caught my attention. It looks even better on FP4 Plus than it did in real life. I enjoy the tonal range and detail, but I love how the alley’s pavement, damp after a rainshower, looks like silk.

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Film Photography

single frame: Boone County Courthouse down an alleyway

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On the pond in the office park

Office building across the water
Olympus XA
Ilford FP4 Plus
2019

I shared a photo from about the same place a couple weeks ago, one I made with my iPhone. I recently got the chance to try some Ilford FP4 Plus, an ISO 125 black-and-white film, and I decided to try the shot again to see what I got.

I’ll do a more comprehensive review of this film tomorrow, but in short, me likey. The tones are just so, so good.

This is the office building I worked in until last Friday, by the way. My new job’s office is in Downtown Indianapolis. There are no man-made ponds there.

This post is sponsored by Analogue Wonderland, who make film photography fun and accessible for everyone.

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Film Photography

single frame: Office building across the water

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