A Lesser Photographer

I just came across this manifesto of A Lesser Photographer the other day, and it’s well worth devoting a quick post to it, because I pretty much agree with everything in it. My favorite principle is #1: “Artists Thrive on Constraints.”

It’s exactly why I love simple cameras like the Holga, and shooting fixed lenses. I love just carrying the Canonet around with me or just the Lomo. When I travel I now try to restrain myself from bringing a lot of cameras, but instead challenge myself to make the most of what I have.

It’s 10 simple principles, and why you may not agree with all of them, they’re well worth a read and a minute of your time, if you appreciate photography in any way. It doesn’t matter if you love shooting digital, film or with your iPhone. It’s always worth thinking about what you can do to improve, even if it means taking things out of the equation.

Throw in the 10 Golden Rules of Lomography, and you’ve got yourself a good set of constraints, rules, principles, what have you. They’re not mantras, but they’re worthing mulling over every now and then.

Coffee Collective in Copenhagen

Copenhagen II

Copenhagen II

Copenhagen II

Copenhagen II

Copenhagen II

Copenhagen II

I’ve had their coffee quite a few times before, courtesy of The Barn in Berlin, but I finally had an opportunity to visit their mothership. I was only in Copenhagen for two days for a conference, but the venue thankfully was conveniently close to the, back then, only Coffee Collective shop/roastery, where Klaus Thomsen himself is standing at the roaster, roasting away, producing some of the best coffee beans in all of Europe. Their Panama La Esmeralda is just outstanding, hands down, one of my favorite coffees of all time.

Coffee Collective is in my current European top three, which is basically a tie between Square Mile, Tim Wendelboe and them. They just opened a new shop in Copenhagen, but this is still their roastery, and a must-visit location if you’re a coffee connoisseur visiting Copenhagen.

It’s a nice little shop, where you wait for your coffee standing right next to the roaster. Of course you can buy their excellent coffee beans as well. I’d recommend getting their tasting package for a starters. A pretty good price for four bags of coffee.

In their shop they make a mean AeroPress, definitely a must have for the filtered coffee admirer.

Coffees I’ve Had Recently

essentials

On a recent trip to Toronto and Boston I shopped for some coffees, naturally. It’s the best kind of souvenir. So I thought I’d share what I had so you can get in on the action too.

This coffee came out surprisingly dark and slightly boring during a cupping, but I found it to be quite nice when filtered. It’s not as strong and in-your-face as a good Sidamo usually is, but it was quite nice when it was still reasonably fresh. I’ve heard only good things about Forty Ninth Parallel in general, so even if you’re not a fan of African coffees, they’re worth checking out.

Bought this coffee at Dark Horse in Toronto. They’re also selling their own coffee brand, but it’s very dark, way too dark for my taste, even too dark for a french press.

A rather interesting Kenyan. Unusually dark at first, but delicious and fruity in the aftertaste, but not very acidic, just very nice. Needs to cool down considerably before the flavor really comes out.

An all around nice and smooth Colombian. Went incredibly well with the Chemex. I had a phase of not liking Colombians, but when you get a really good one like this, it’s just a great coffee with no big surprises, but smooth on the tongue and well balanced. Highly recommended.

I also brought a bag of Intelligentsia, but I can’t remember if it was an El Salvador or a Guatemala currently. Of course I also brought a bag of Intelligentsia’s excellent Black Cat Espresso.

Of all the shops I’ve been to, Barismo was by far my favorite. Their shop is pretty far out in Arlington, MA, but if you’re in Boston or Cambridge and have a couple hours to spare, it’s totally worth a visit. They’re real geeks and certainly know what they’re doing. Great coffee. They also have a curious device for pour overs, a Luminaire Bravo-1, a water delivery system that lets you adjust water flow rate, temperature and volume. Pretty nifty, certainly nothing you’d install at home.

Other than that, I’m working on the usual Square Mile suspects. They just never disappoint, love their coffee.

So, have you had some great coffee lately? You should, life is too short for bad coffee.

Everyday Polaroid

self

king of the castle

right now

tiny clothes

today

I started resenting not taking photos on a daily basis anymore. I just admire Astrid’s way and endurance of doing that. Then I remember that I still have a crap load of expired Polaroid 664 film left. Time to get out the 110B camera and get shooting! The two bottom shots were taken with Fuji FP100C film that was still left in the camera. I love that film.

I’m mostly at home these days, so I took my time setting up some shots (some more than others really), using tripod and cable release. It’s an old camera and has some quirks, especially with the focus that’s a bit out of whack, but its lens is extraordinary, if I may say so.

Mari even started insisting I take pictures of her. I love that little one.