Lightning in Bottles, 5 Cámara Galletita Lumen Still Lifes – by Sonny Rosenberg

In an earlier article for 35mmc I detailed the genesis of the Cámara Galletita Lumen (lumen cracker camera) and presented a few examples of my earliest experiments with it. The experiments have continued, lately with a series of glass still lifes and very long exposures.

The camera has evolved a little bit as well. For a while now, I’ve been shooting with a faux cracker, really just a piece of aluminum foil stretched over a matte board camera plate and punched with random pinholes. Some of the holes have been taped over because I discovered early on that too many holes resulted in an image that was too confusing. Not that these strange, cubist like images aren’t confusing, they are, but with less pin holes in the faux cracker, the images at least sometimes bore some traces of representational photography.

The Cámara Galletita Lumen showing the updated faux galletita

To various degrees in these images if you look closely you can see traces of the bottles and jars, often liquid filled that were the rotating cast of the still lifes.

Almost all of these were approximately eleven hours, but now as the sun begins to wane, I’ll have to find ways to adapt to shorter exposure times.

These were all taken on what has become my standard for lumen shots Arista Ultra Edu 5×7 black and white photo paper. The resultant paper negatives are not fixed and the images are transient. The colors are the result of  small particles of silver migrating through the paper as a result of the actions of the photons of sunlight upon them, or so I surmise.

Without further ado here are what I consider to be the best of this series so far. I feel like this series is coming to an end, and soon it will be time for further experimentation.

Southern Glass


Sunrise Glass


Noon Smoke


Army of Bottles


Sunset Glass

On a somewhat sideways related note, and I feel a little guilty hawking my wares here on 35mmc, but I’ve been considering investing in an archival grade printer that will print nice 16×20 images and trying to sell a few prints but I’m having a hard time gauging whether there would be enough interest to warrant such an investment? By the time this article is published I will probably have bitten the bullet and opened up a little Etsy shop. If that happens, I’ll plug it on my blog.

Thanks for reading! For more odd stuff like this check out my little blog The Daily Lumenbox. 

Sonny Rosenberg is a semi retired Ceramics teacher who lives in Reno Nevada with his wife and three cats.

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