Don’t know what it is but the darkest months of the year, when it makes sense to lock myself up in the darkroom, I just don’t. Ok it might be a factor that the temperature is at maximum +14°C in there… but now I’m itching to get back to it. So I’ve developed some film, as always in Caffenol, I like to use it because it’s free of chemicals(I use enough of those when doing wet plates) and also I’m pretty lazy when it comes to develop film. I put all my film in there for 70minutes for a stand development and then it’s done. I also prepared everything to get my wet plating going and today the weather was perfect for it. So nice to get back into wet plating again! You never know what to expect with this old technique but I’m very happy with todays result. My first plate was pretty as an Ambrotype but the second one will be very nice printed in Lith. More results to come…
It was two weeks ago, feels like yesterday but a different world. We had so much snow and ice with a temperature of about -8°C and suddenly spring is here! Outside the tulips are peeking up from the pots of soil outside and indoors my chili plants are growing like mad, soon time for re-planting into even bigger pots. Same old problem, where to put them all?? The ground is still a bit frozen but as soon as it warms up I’m finally going to finish my greenhouse.
I certainly maxed the living-by-the-sea factor today! Swimming in the morning, had to hack a hole in the ice and then back in the afternoon to do some ice-skating at a pond by the sea overlooking the sunset. Sorry for the picture spamming but it’s just so gorgeous.
Making the most out of this gorgeous weather we took a long walk to Fotö(Foot Island). We paused at Vivi-viken(the best swimming place) and had fika on top of the jumping tower. Bumped into an Islander who bought chickens from us a few years back and got to say hello to his newest Plymouth rock chicks and Gizmo the goose. Gizmo is born in their house so he’s pretty tame but apparently he is getting a bit cocky and fighting to be the boss so that his owner needs to wrestle him to the ground to show him who’s in charge.. Funny how every walk I take with my daughter we end up meeting loads of animals. She always has her pockets full of bird food or old bread wherever she goes so no wonder they like her.
When I checked on my mushrooms this morning I thought the plant lamp had overheated or something, it looked just like smoke rising from the kitchen table! Then when I looked closer I realised it was coming from the yellow oyster mushrooms. They where letting their spores out. Apparently you are supposed to harvest before that happens but since this is my first time I didn’t know how big they would be before picking. It’s crazy how fast they grew! I first noticed a disgusting warty lump growing out last weekend, over night it turned into a cute little button-thing and then I could see the difference even from morning until afternoon and today -harvest! I fried some crispy in butter and had with my pasta, delicious, a bit of a nutty flavour. Now I have to google more mushroom recipes and hope for another batch to start fruiting.
Can’t get enough of this light. Today I didn’t venture further than the garden but I ended up taking loads of pictures, mainly with my Nikon 35mm but the Lubitel and Diana got in there to. It’s not often that I regret doing mainly black&white but today was one of those days. Although maybe Cyanotype counts as colour? Here’s a link to the neighbours shed done in Cyanotype from a wet plate glass negative Bleached back, I posted it 2014 then the shed was 112 years old, my neighbour the tin-smith is 102 this year and the shed must be turning 119 doing pretty well for it’s age and so is he.
This last week the Island has been covered in snow. Usually it turns into a brown/grey mushy slush in a day or two but now we’ve had a temperature at around -10 °C so it’s crispy white and clear and absolutely stunningly beautiful. I would say since the pandemic the nature reserve and everywhere else you go in nature is flooded with people but today on our two hour walk we only met a group of German drone-flyers. Found the perfect “fika”spot out of the biting wind, had some warm blueberry soup and chocolate balls and just admired the view. When our toes started complaining about the cold we headed home but by a long detour. The Island looks so different dressed in snow and ice and the colour of the last “golden hour” is just amazing, a golden pink, blue, purple…
After being so impatient with the mushroom growing I forgot to check on it for a few days until today -Wham! The growth bag with the yellow Oyster mushroom is covered with loads of mushrooms under the plastic! Which means that I should have cut it a few days ago but that’s alright. I carefully cut three holes where the most mushrooms grew and moved the bag to a sunnier place. Now it’s just to spray with water a couple of times a day and watch them grow. Gonna have to Google mushroom recipes…
…that I’ve not been known to have. From starting up fast not much happened with the mushroom mycel but after turning the temperature up in my sons room(which is now my plant nursery until he comes back for next holiday) the mycel almost doubled over a couple of days! I know I probably should have waited a few more days, I was thinking it all along while I cut holes in the bag with coffee substrate/Oyster and one of the small boxes of Lions mane. Oh well, so now I moved them onto the window seal for more light and spray the holes with water 1-3 times a day.
It’s funny how when you get something on your mind you see it everywhere, like being pregnant you see pregnant women everywhere, I now see mushrooms everywhere. These ones I actually found in my garden! I’m pretty sure they are what we in Sweden call Vinterskivling and in Japan they are called Enoki they are grown in the dark and look totally different.
After a few days on the sofa with a very surprising diagnoses, shingles, I ventures out in the garden. So nice when we finally see sunlight. I have managed to finish off an impressing amount of “old-lady magazines” this last week and there was one message that actually stayed with me -winter is there to dream, dream about better sunnier times. Wow I actually feel my hair growing more gray by quoting it.. Two hours in the garden in partial sunlight was all I needed to get in better spirit. The garlic is challenging the cold popping up through the frosty soil and indoors my chilli plants are growing.