On our recent trip to Poland, I took my Bronica SQ-A, Zorki 4 and Lomo LC-A and used them to photograph my usual Polish subjects – old Polish cars, socialist architecture and the things that sort of sum the place up and show how different it is to all that is familiar in England.
As usual, I processed my own black and white films (a collection of Kodak Tri-X 400 and Ilford HP5+) using whatever chemicals I have to hand, and as usual, I quite enjoyed the processing. However, scanning negatives is always laborious and usually takes me a couple of rolls to get the settings and workflow that I’m happy with. I need to check the condition of my scanner somehow and print some of the negatives to see how they look without the digital part of the process to see if it is my negatives, the scanner or just my haste to get through them.
Enjoying the convenience of having two backs for the Bronica, I also took a couple of shots on Fuji Velvia that were processed and scanned by Peak Imaging.
These first few pictures were taken at Syców’s bus station. Przedsiębiorstwo Komunikacji Samochodowej, or PKS, can be translated as Motor Transport Company and is a major Polish enterprise dealing with inter-city public transport using coaches. It was created as a state enterprise in 1945 in post-war communist Poland as Państwowa Komunikacja Samochodowa (State Motor Transport). In 1992 it was renamed to its current name. Until recently it had a monopoly on suburban bus transport in Poland. Recently it has been broken up, with many new companies being privatised.
Buses in Poland appear to still be popular and I’ve read that part of the reason for Syców’s development into a town the size that it is is because of its bus connections. At some point during the 1960s, a pretty typical Soviet era bus station was built in a style and from the materials that almost everything else built during that era was; ie. modernist straight lines and concrete.
I’m not sure if it has ever been refurbished or even painted, and it looks a pretty desperate place to spend time waiting for a bus. While taking these, and for the first time in Poland, I was approached and warned against taking pictures, being threatened with ‘Ochrona!’ I didn’t hang around to find out if the guy was serious…