Posted on June 30, 2013
Posted on June 23, 2012
We’ve had a few storms here over the last few weeks. Big arsed hairy Indian Ocean winter storms.
These are usually ok – the wind howls, the rain falls and then its gone. Except this time we had 2 of them back to back, the first with a sudden howling gale that knocked down fences and trees and damaged the roof and the second, a few days later, bringing 12 hours of violent wind and torrential rain. This, as you can imagine did not go well with the already damaged roof, and water came pouring in through one ceiling over of the windows in the back of the house. Bah!
Posted on January 29, 2012
I’ve had a bit of a time off shooting film of late.
Sure, I’ve taken the odd shot and used the Polaroid a little, but nothing major for months. And I really miss it.
Now my D300 is in the shop for repairs and I wont have it back for a while, I’ve got the time and inclination to shot a load of medium format again.
Posted on May 29, 2011
I got some more films back and I love them. The negatives are gorgeous but scans themselves weren’t brilliant. A little nip and a tuck and some removal of dust and fluff from the jpegs and I have a load of shots I’m really happy with.
I took a bunch with the Holga again – its one of those cameras that when you get the films back, you kick yourself for having left it so long to use it. I promised myself I’d take a few dozen shots a week, but as yet, I’ve not done that.
Posted on March 26, 2011
It’s overdue – the shots from the ‘blad are here and I’m very happy with them 🙂
I’ve said this before, but there seems to be a lightness of touch that film has in the way it renders some light conditions that digital can’t reproduce, or at least I can’t reproduce it!
Posted on March 13, 2011
I finally got around to developing some film – its been sat in my cameras for ages, a few from the Trip 35 and three from the Hassleblad.
I’m going to try to take a few more photos this week as I’m up in the city every day – I just need to take an hour after work to point and shoot at a few people 🙂
My pet project is to use up all the films I’ve bought before the end of the year – that means shooting at least a roll every week or two. Perhaps I can get around to my project theme too, but it does require asking strangers to pose (not rude) for me.
Anyway, without further ado, here’s the first of the shots from the Olympus Trip 35
Posted on January 5, 2011
All The Gear and No Idea.
Its a common problem. A newbie rocks up with many thousands of dollars of shiny new kit and has not a clue what to do with it.
You can find examples of this everywhere and in sports and hobbies of all kinds. Its an issue where people have lots of disposable income and somebody tells them (or maybe possibly hints at a kind of a compliment) they have an ounce of talent.
All of a sudden, they have dreams of being the next Lance Armstrong (cycling), Annie Leibovitz (photography) or Valentino Rossi (motorcycling) or Eric Clapton (guitar) and go out and spend as much as they possibly can on the very best equipment.
A flash, full carbon, dura-ace equipped bike, a top flight digital SLR and a brace of professional lenses and flash guns, a race replica motorbike or a Fender Stratocaster and Marshall amp and cab combo.
Whilst all the time have absolutely NO idea of how to use any of it.
I’m going to focus on cameras as it’s the thing closest to my heart (well, cycling is too, but I’ll leave that one alone)
I’ve seen this so many times. Someone takes a nice shot with a point and shoot camera, takes this as a sign of massive untapped talent, so spends thousands on a super DSLR, with which they promptly take hundreds of super high quality but utterly shite photographs, increasingly blaming the failures on the camera, the light, the subject, etc. Anything but themselves.
So, I’ll enlighten everyone.
Bar a few circumstances where professionals or serious amateurs will make use certain features, the camera makes almost NO DIFFERENCE to the result.
Yes, I know – you’re thinking this has to be wrong. Well, it’s really not.
An image needs to speak to an audience, to capture imagination, to stir the soul or heart, to provoke a reaction, to inspire and cause the viewer to stop and admire.
So, how many of those things has anything to do with equipment?
Clue: Pretty much none of them – its all to do with aesthetics. Which you can capture with anything, and in many ways, advanced technology actually works against this.
Yes, sure, sometimes you need a specific camera to do something – a long lens for wildlife or professional sport, an underwater housing for the best marine photography or a very low noise DSLR for low light portraits or weddings, but 99% of the time, the camera has nothing to do with it.
How many of the great shots that you have seen are due to the best quality smallest pixel, lowest noise and highest resolution?
Clue #2: None.
You know how I know this? I bought a Nikon D50 when I couldn’t get the right shots with my antiquated point and shoot. No additional lenses, I just spent time working out how it worked and made horrific mistakes, got way ahead of myself, got a reality check and kept on learning. Then I bought a D300 just after they were released. And it did pretty much nothing to improve my shots until I went back to basics and worked out what I wanted the camera to do for me.
I went through that trough of disappointment with digital and bought a Holga and a Trip 35 and even a Hasselblad 500C/M to teach myself how to read light, how to compose and how to take a good shot.
And I’m still learning.
My favourite shot? I’ve not taken it yet 😉
So go out, take photos with whatever camera you have to hand – the iPhone is a prime example of this – shoot, look for image you can see in your mind, create, experiment, learn to read the light, go back to basics, try film, polaroid. Do all of these things, even buy a second hand vintage camera from ebay to experiment. Look on Flickr for photos you love and work out what it is about that shot that moves you and try to replicate it.
Point and shoot cameras usually have enough manual settings to do most things. You know that Av and Tv mode you keep on looking at but never using? Ever used that macro mode on the point and shoot? Learn what they do and when to use them before moving on. Learn when to use a certain setting to control the end result.
But whatever you do, don’t go straight out and buy $5000 cameras and lenses to do any of that for you. I guarantee it’ll make no difference whatsoever if you don’t know what the camera actually does.
Posted on September 17, 2010
I got my films from my trip to the UK back yesterday and they are awesome!
I love my Hasselblad, it produces amazing images – so clear and full of glorious colour and definition in a way that digital images somehow aren’t. The trouble is, scanning these amazing prints and showing them on here doesn’t show them how they are at all 😦
I tried scanning them at 600dpi, but the resulting images lack clarity, so I really need to do them at the full 1200 or higher – which means a scan time of more than 9 minutes per image – crappy scanner.
So, I need to buy a dedicated medium format negative scanner.
They cost AU$750
Add it to the list of stuff I ‘need’ 😦
Expensive hobby, this film lark. Looks like I might be getting familiar with home developing sooner rather than later!
Aaaaaanyhoo… I do have some initial scans to share – they’re pretty much all of my kids and family, but hey, its my blog, I can share if I like! I’ll probably redo these over the weekend – hopefully they will come out with a bit more ‘pop’
Oh, and I’ve done this on my work laptop which has a very bright screen, I don’t know if the colour/contrast on these pics is actually correct or not 😦
Posted on July 22, 2010
So, as you are aware, I got my films back – I was especially looking forward to seeing the shots from the Hasselblad, given I paid a small fortune for it and am betting the farm that it’ll produce images that will stir my creative soul. I know, not too much pressure then.
First, the Holga, which never ceases to surprise and amaze
Next, the Hasselblad – early days with this beastie, only just got hold of a lightmeter so the early films were guesswork and counting back from Sunny 16..
I think it’s safe to say that the camera has done ok 🙂
Pretty happy with those so far. I have another 2 films I’m scanning and there are some interesting shots there too.
Can’t wait to get out again and take more shots now!
Posted on July 21, 2010
I’ve been waiting eagerly for these ever since I got the call on Thursday to say they were ready and being posted back to me.
Well, they arrived yesterday and I’ve been scanning a few of the shots already and I’m pretty happy with them.
It was a bit of a camera combo this time
1 roll of 35mm from the (now dead) Supersampler
2 rolls of 35mm from the Olympus Trip 35
1 roll of 120 from the Holga
3 rolls of 120 from the Hasselblad
So, here’s a selection in the same order..
The Lomo Supersampler
The Supersampler has 4 lenses and no viewfinder – it simply takes one shot through each lens over the course of a second or so, making very interesting images. Sadly, our one has broken and the films get scratched and broken trying to get them out. These were taken in Melbourne and are relatively unscathed.
The Trip 35 – slide film cross processed like transparency film
Trip 35 – black and white
The Trip 35 ones were a little disappointing – there’s something a bit bland about the way the shots seem to come out and I’m pretty sure it’s not the lab or the scanning. The cross processed shots have very vivid colours – lomo-esque, but without the charm of the Holga’s lens distortions or the delicacy of the medium format film. I wonder what these would have been like if I’d got them processed correctly? Ah well.
The black and whites were very grey on the prints – I think the Trip tends to meter a little on the light side of the middle of a scene, which is okay I guess, but it can leave the pics a bit washed out. A quick push through photoshop for a little tweak of the curves and levels soon brought a little punch back, although not as much as I’d like. You live and learn I guess.
The Holga and Hasselblad shots I’ll save for another post.