Au Jardin

fulvue0041Ensign Ful-Vue Super on Ilford FP4+ 120 filed to fit 620 camera and home processed.

The focus is SO hit and miss with this little camera, but I guess that fits with the timeless quality… 🙂

Ensign Ful-Vue Super

This is the little beauty:

Ful-Vue-SuperTaken with a Canon 5D. And this is its gorgeous little waistlevel finder:

Ful-Vue-Super2As you can see, with the sieve-like memory I possess, the only way to remember a) that it is loaded and b) what with, is to stick the end of the box on the back of the body. So, today I shot the last frame of the 12 on a roll of Ilford FP4+ That, in itself, is not thoroughly straightforward since this little camera takes 620 film, which is now pretty much extinct (please, please correct me if I’m wrong!), so it is loaded with 120 film. The plastic spool is trimmed back right up to the beginning of the backing paper roll and then the top and bottom are sanded down to within an inch of their lives. And only then will it fit. Just. Added to which this particular model had difficulties getting past the 10th frame on the two occasions I used it last – years ago – but a small metal washer kindly donated by ‘Imself fixed that problem. I got all the way to the 12th frame.

So tonight, after mixing fresh chemicals and fiddling and fiddling in a dark bag to spool it and get it into the developing tank, with baited breath I developed it.

And look, it worked!


Hung out to dry

negs2And now, the hardest part… I’ll have to wait till tomorrow to scan them and see if they’re any good. *Sigh*

The main issue is usually being a really very poor judge of distance for the rather basic focusing. Keep everything crossed for me! 🙂

(I’m now hatching a plot to stick 35mm film to the backing paper and run a few frames of that through it… *squeee*)

Old Friends

I’d like to introduce you to an old friend of mine – the Ensign Ful-Vue Super.

Ensign Ful-Vue Super

Ensign Ful-Vue Super

It is the most adorable little TLR, manufactured between 1954 and 1959. You can’t tell scale from the photograph, but it fits in the palm of my hand, and that flippy bit on the top? It folds down so the whole thing is a cute little almost-square.

Here’s another perspective, my glasses through the stunning viewfinder:

Ensign Ful-Vue Super

Ensign Ful-Vue Super

As you can see, I have loaded it with Ilford FP4+ 120 medium format film. This is not a straightforward task, since this little camera takes 620 film, and you can’t get hold of it for love or money these days. Well, you probably could, if you had enough money to throw at it. But the 120 can be adapted, with a little tinkering, some clippers / scissors and some sandpaper. The plastic ends of the spool need to be cut back to the edge of the backing paper, and their tops need to be sanded down until they are thinner than you imagine necessary. Then it fits a treat.

The last time I used this camera was a couple of years ago. I became dispirited because when I got to around frame 10 the winder lost its grip and kept slipping and I could never get a full roll of negatives off it. Until… today, my Beloved gave me a super-thin metal washer from his toolbox and I hope (fingers are so firmly crossed) that this time around, I’ll get them all…

So – it’s loaded up and ready to go. As soon as the weather improves, I’m off out to give it another spin. In the meantime, here are a few of the shots I got last time around:


My favourite Norfolk stomp.


Bertie against the chimney, sitting on the coal-box


Details of a Norwich Church


Teddy in Cuba Viva



Humph in the window of our old home

I’m happy to have rediscovered my mojo 🙂