Cold Bog Camera Two

Pair of Bog Cameras (Nat Chard)

Tooling for Bog Camera (Nat Chard)

Bog Diorama Prints (Nat Chard)

(Continued from previous post below)

James Perry Wilson made his survey of the Cold Bog site on June the 17th 1949. Michael Anderson and Ruth Morrill, who had been Wilson’s assistant in painting the Cold Bog diorama, took me to see the original site on June the 17th 2001. Unfortunately the weather was not perfect, but it help up long enough to take the pictures. The next day Michael arranged to have the diorama opened and I took a set of photographs of the diorama. The photographs taken by the Cold Bog camera of the site produce an image that is the ideal projection for the diorama shell shape, as an unfolded sheet. The photographs of the diorama unfold the painting as if it were a flat sheet. The lowest of the photographs above shows prints of the Cold Bog camera photographs  of diorama (left in each case) and site both in the form of the diorama shell and as flat images (unfolded).

The test photograph in the previous post was taken just before leaving for New York and the knurled knobs I had made for winding the film on were aggressive on the skin, so on my arrival in New York I bought the leather work gloves, one of which is seen in the top picture, to help with this task.

J.P.Wilson's panorama of photographs (assembled by N.C.)

Above is J.P. Wilson’s survey photographs from 1949, assembled to (by me) to make a panorama. There is no attempt to blend them, so the range of exposures is apparent.

Wilson Grid (J.P.W.)

Kodachrome slide taken by J.P.Wilson on June 17th 1949 of Cold Bog with his grid scratched onto a piece of clear plastic placed over the slide.

Normal view of site, 2001

Above is a photograph of the site taken with a normal 35mm camera on June 17th 2001.

Below is the same view taken with the Cold Bog camera

Cold Bog camera photograph of site (Nat Chard)

Normal camera photograph of Cold Bog Diorama

Above is a normal photograph of the diorama and below is a photograph of the diorama with the Cold Bog camera. As with the site, the shape of the diorama replicates the U shaped valley so the unfolded image appears to have a much flatter horizon than appears to the diorama viewer.

Cold Bog camera photograph of diorama (Nat Chard)

Stereo pair of Cold Bog camera photographs of diorama (Nat Chard)

I mentioned in the previous post that I built three cameras. I needed two to take stereoscopic photographs and a third in case one of the others broke down. Wilson worked with stereoscopic photography. I would suggest that a lot of the depth in his shadows in woodland scenes comes from his work with stereoscopic surveys. But the real benefit of making stereoscopic photographs of the diorama was to test my method. When looking at a pair of stereoscopic photographs of the diorama the form of the shell as a curved surface is very clear.

When taking the pictures with my Cold Bog Camera, viewing a stereoscopic pair should reveal a three dimensional foreground with a flat painting behind. If you go cross eyed so that the foreground bushed register in both images, you can see this take place in the stereoscopic pair above.

Some of the Cold Bog camera components (Nat Chard)

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