Part 1 — My process in recovering and re-purposing old images


One of my goals this year was to minimize. Get rid of the crap, trim the fat. So, I decided it was the time to target “those boxes”, you know the ones. The dusty old boxes in the garage or storage area that have moved with you over the years, contents long forgotten. Most end up holding junk, but sometimes, if you’re lucky, they may hold little trinkets that spark forgotten memories.

Long Lost 35mm film negatives

As I went through boxes throwing junk out, I came across a binder of 35mm negatives from the late 80’s. Holding them up to the light I could see they were from various concerts.

My teenage and early adult years were filled with Arena concerts, Festivals, and Punk Rock gigs with friends. It’s what my group did. Even back then it was pretty common to see me lugging a camera around, even when friends gave me shit about it.

Today, everyone has a camera in their pocket, back then I was a FREAK!

35mm negatives — Color and B&W

Things to Keep in Mind — Caveman Cameras

The thing to remember is this is pre-digital.

No Auto Focus — No Stabilization — ISO based on the film

Not many fancy automatic electronics. Today, you can fire off bursts of shots in a second. Back then you had to advance each frame manually, unless you had an auto winder and even then it was a good 10 seconds between shots.

My Canon A1 35mm film camera with and without winder

A normal roll of 35mm film has 12, 24 or 36 shots per roll. Then it would be days before you saw actual processed images, unless you had a dedicated darkroom and a supply toxic chemicals to process the film yourself, which I did not. This made every single press of the camera shutter precious. In comparison, when I recently photographed Anthrax for Behind the Lens: 6 Degrees of Anthrax, I fired off over 700 shots during the first 3 songs in the pit!

Scott Ian of Anthrax — 2018 — Behind the Lens: 6 Degrees of Anthrax

Canon A1

Please keep in mind that I did not have a professional photo pass for these shows. Literally just a kid smuggling in a Canon A1 with a preloaded roll of film and my friend shoving a lens down his pants.… seriously. No really,…seriously! “That’s some bulge you have there!” Bottom line.. not the best quality, but not bad for a kid!

Yes, I still have the Canon A1 and a couple of lens today. Here it is side by side with one of my newer DSLR’s, Canon’s 6d Mark II.

Today’s Canon 6D Mark II with Battery Grip- vs Then Canon A1 with Film Winder “grip”

Retrieving the Images

I used an Epson Perfection 370 Photo scanner. Used standard settings to transfer the transparency negatives to digital files. I’ll be publishing these in lower dpi and without much correction or blemish fixes. Just the raw scans.

Epson Perfection 370

To be Continued …

Next On — Behind the Lens “35mm Blast from the Past — Part II”

Ozzy Osbourne’s — Ultimate Sin Tour

June 13, 1986 — Long Beach Arena — Long Beach, Ca

Image taken on Canon A1 35mm

Photos By: Michael Young

See ya on the road — — Safe Travels!

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