Back at it again with this year’s trip to the marvelous Jazz Age Lawn Party on Governor’s Island in New York City. For those unaware, the Jazz Age Lawn Party is a yearly event taking place on a weekend in both in June and August where you travel out to the really beautiful island off the southern tip of Manhattan and have a day filled with jazz, champagne and dancing. Everyone dresses up in their finest 1920’s threads (some of it is genuine vintage clothing from the time period!) and enjoy a day relaxing.
I always go with the amazing Penumbra Foundation’s tintype booth they run every year. They shoot actual tintypes on large format 4x5 and 5x7 cameras. I document their booth as well as the event on Super 8 and this year I added some 16mm into the mix as well. The Super 8 was B&W Tri-X self-processed at MONO NO AWARE, a cinema arts non-profit I work with in Brooklyn, and the 16mm was color negative shot on a Bolex H16 and processed/scanned at the new Kodak NYC lab! You can see some of the footage from the day below!
A fun little snippet in there is when part of the cast of the upcoming Broadway show and Steven Spielberg directed film adaptation of West Side Story. Probably around 8 of the cast members were at the event just enjoying the day and couldn’t help but get a tintype of the crew to immortalize the day. They were a lot of fun and really loved their tintype. I later caught a portrait of two of them on some instant film which is featured at the top of this post.
Aside from documenting on motion film, I always can’t resist bringing a few still cameras to take some portraits because the outfits are always incredible. I brought along a Polaroid 110B with some Instax Wide film as well as a modified Instax Wide 300. Bringing along cameras that were at least closer to the correct time period (albeit still from the 50s technically) is a treat because they always get a lot of looks and questions as I walk around with them.
Also, while helping out the Penumbra Foundation with their booth, the tintype studio manager, Jolene Lupo, and I devised a very McGyver’d way to shoot a “mug shot” type double exposure on a single plate. Took a lot of ingenuity and several extra hands but the results were exactly as we’d hope for! This is the flipped scan since with a tintype, everything comes out inverted.