underground

As always, if you have questions, objections, worries or praise, and especially if you found your picture and want it removed, feel free to contact me. I will get back to you as soon as possible. You can also read my full disclaimer, if you are interested.

 

The last few months have been rather difficult and strange for me. It’s been a bit of a battle with my health, and technology has not been kind to me lately either. But then there were also 3 exhibitions with my work included, two of them still running now, and by mere coincidence I have actually found something that has been simply amazing for my health!

If you’re reading my blog regularly, you probably know that I’m struggling with chronic health issues and that sometimes things get quite bad – so bad that I can’t really take pictures. I don’t talk about it much here, since this is a space for photography, but it becomes pretty obvious when I disappear for months on end. In any case, after my latest flare that kept me from doing any work this summer I was ready to try some new stuff to make things better. After another one of those endless searches on the internet and in all sorts of related health groups on Facebook, a friend finally pointed me in the right direction. It turns out that there actually was a solution out there all along that nobody feels like talking about too loudly! Of course, there are no magic pills and the new treatment hasn’t solved all my problems yet, but it has actually improved the worst symptom tremendously: I have basically been in constant pain for the last 8 years and this actually gets rid of a huge chunk of it without any side-effects! On some days I’m even completely pain free now, which is absolutely astonishing for me. And the cool thing is: There is still lots of scope for more improvement, so things might even get better when I fine-tune the treatment over time. In any case, I’m really glad that I’ve finally found something that works so well.

Not only my health was acting up in recent months though: I was also haunted by technical challenges and failures. My MacBook battery and charger died and the computer itself started crashing randomly, which eventually killed my main external hard drive. So much for the reliability of current Macs! Luckily no data was lost, but it is still hugely annoying and my hard drive failure also happened right when I wanted to prepare this post. I still haven’t managed to troubleshoot the crashes despite my efforts and frankly my prognosis for this machine doesn’t look too stellar. I’m really annoyed since it’s only a bit over 2 years old and there is a good chance that this is actually some sort of catastrophic hardware failure that can’t be repaired for anything less than what a new – obviously more reasonably priced – machine would cost.

The reason why I’ve been using macs has been reliability. I didn’t have to turn them off for months and most of my macs ran reliably until there was no current software for them anymore. There were of course minor glitches, a worn out cable or fan here and there, but nothing substantial in 13 years of using these machines. This reliability for me justified the higher price. Well, when you are trying to diagnose a misbehaving mac a quick look on the internet reveals that this is certainly not an isolated case – recent macs seem plagued with hardware failures and operating system glitches! The software has become much less reliable and with this most recent models I have had to restart a lot because the camera, microphone or speakers suddenly stop working out of nowhere. And now catastrophic hardware failure just 4 months after all warranty lapsed? What a coincidence! I guess I won’t be buying a mac again.

Even on the technology front I have some good news though! I’ve finally managed to fix the grid view on the blog which broke after I changed hosting providers. Without the grid view my very long posts become extremely difficult to navigate and posting very regularly without a good way of getting to older posts would have been a bit of a waste. For months I couldn’t find the right file that would have solved the problem – it was obviously one in thousands of files and all searches came up empty. Yesterday I finally figured out which file it was and fixed it within a couple of minutes! So, regular posting can finally commence again!

All of this technology mess has shown me one thing though: I need a better solution for backups! Don’t get me wrong, I actually have a really good system for my work: I have all my older digital pictures saved in several places and have built in backups for my film photography in the form of negatives + scans, so all my pictures are relatively safe automatically just by using film. Scanning takes time too though and I wouldn’t want to lose all that work when a hard drive dies! I used to have a backup for the scans too, but then not long ago my backup provider decided not to serve private customers anymore, which broke my backup solution entirely. Of course this happened right at the same time the technical issues started – notice a pattern? In any case, I need a backup solution that can’t be broken by some outside influence. I already have a plan now which will involve much geekery with one of these amazingly small and cheap Raspberry Pi machines running Linux. And since I’m setting up a Linux box anyway, I might as well check out whether I can migrate my photography workflow besides scanning to Linux while I’m on it. Better get ready for that time when my MacBook decides to give up its struggles for good.

But now, let’s get to the really important part: The pictures. This time on the menu are a bunch of rolls from May last year taken around here during my low ISO challenge. For one month I decided to only shoot film at ISO 100 or below. Not easy for someone who is used to zone-focussing at ISO 400+, but definitely a fun challenge!

All pictures taken with: Leica M6, Voigtländer Nokton 50mm f/1.1.

Rollei RPX 100 / HC-110.

© Lilly Schwartz 2016

© Lilly Schwartz 2016

Hi there!

© Lilly Schwartz 2016

© Lilly Schwartz 2016

Multitasking.

© Lilly Schwartz 2016

© Lilly Schwartz 2016

Floor magnetism.

© Lilly Schwartz 2016

© Lilly Schwartz 2016

Bursting bubble.

© Lilly Schwartz 2016

© Lilly Schwartz 2016

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Loitering.

© Lilly Schwartz 2016

© Lilly Schwartz 2016

Worried?

© Lilly Schwartz 2016

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Sad pup?

© Lilly Schwartz 2016

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Tiny alien pretending to be a dog.

© Lilly Schwartz 2016

© Lilly Schwartz 2016

© Lilly Schwartz 2016

© Lilly Schwartz 2016

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© Lilly Schwartz 2016

Calling to the heavens.

© Lilly Schwartz 2016

© Lilly Schwartz 2016

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That surely went wrong!

© Lilly Schwartz 2016

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Outdoor concert.

© Lilly Schwartz 2016

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Strange beast with 3 heads.

© Lilly Schwartz 2016

© Lilly Schwartz 2016

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Heavy load.

© Lilly Schwartz 2016

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Yawn!

© Lilly Schwartz 2016

© Lilly Schwartz 2016

Watching the outdoor concert from the inside.

© Lilly Schwartz 2016

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Cleaning supplies.

© Lilly Schwartz 2016

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I bet he had sweets.

© Lilly Schwartz 2016

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Siehe unten.

© Lilly Schwartz 2016

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Ready to jump.

© Lilly Schwartz 2016

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Strange self-portrait.

© Lilly Schwartz 2016

© Lilly Schwartz 2016

Diabolic decoration.

© Lilly Schwartz 2016

© Lilly Schwartz 2016

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Down below.

© Lilly Schwartz 2016

© Lilly Schwartz 2016

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© Lilly Schwartz 2016

Dog running after a bike.

© Lilly Schwartz 2016

© Lilly Schwartz 2016

© Lilly Schwartz 2016

© Lilly Schwartz 2016

Cigar!

© Lilly Schwartz 2016

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Another strange alien pretending to be a dog.

© Lilly Schwartz 2016

© Lilly Schwartz 2016

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© Lilly Schwartz 2016

Why on earth?

© Lilly Schwartz 2016

© Lilly Schwartz 2016

Double self-portrait.

© Lilly Schwartz 2016

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Apparently the huge furry thing is called Gustav.

© Lilly Schwartz 2016

© Lilly Schwartz 2016

Slight accident.

© Lilly Schwartz 2016

© Lilly Schwartz 2016

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© Lilly Schwartz 2016

They were shooting a scene involving a fake ambulance.

© Lilly Schwartz 2016

© Lilly Schwartz 2016

Don’t touch that!

© Lilly Schwartz 2016

© Lilly Schwartz 2016

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© Lilly Schwartz 2016

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© Lilly Schwartz 2016

© Lilly Schwartz 2016

Another fur ball.

© Lilly Schwartz 2016

© Lilly Schwartz 2016

For some reason I like to photograph wig shops.

© Lilly Schwartz 2016

© Lilly Schwartz 2016

We all like our bears!

© Lilly Schwartz 2016

© Lilly Schwartz 2016

© Lilly Schwartz 2016

© Lilly Schwartz 2016

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© Lilly Schwartz 2016

Yes? No!

© Lilly Schwartz 2016

© Lilly Schwartz 2016

© Lilly Schwartz 2016

© Lilly Schwartz 2016

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© Lilly Schwartz 2016

Last one!

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