I had a few free moments this weekend and that, along with the weather turning warmer (note the coat and hat on the young woman walking on the beach… it’s warmer than it’s been!) I got out this weekend for some picture-making. Malahide, where I have an apartment, is a seaside village and just a bit down the coast road is a beach. I went for a stroll on Saturday and enjoyed the relaxation.
While for the most part things here are good (I am adjusting to the culture, the people I work with are solid, being without a car has made me walk more which in itself is a good thing — I’ve lost a few pounds and my belt is one notch less) I find the weekends the toughest to manage. I’ve never made friends on the fly — I’m good with people at work, I’m a social guy at heart — but just walking around, I keep to myself. I was never like those people in ‘Friends’ — you know, ‘where everyone knows your name’ — and so when I walk, as this woman was walking on the beach, I’m by myself.
I was an only child, so this is kind of familiar to me. I intentionally didn’t take TV as part of my cable package, I just have high-speed internet, so the combination of being alone a lot during non-working hours and having Peg still in the US has resulted in something surprising. I find I revert to behaviors I long ago left behind, like reading books. But the other weird, unexpected thing is that I don’t have much inclination to work on photos. I had plans to create a Blurb book (or three) while I was here, even create I new one from images I’ve taken while I am here.
But so far, I find on the weekend I just don’t have the energy.
Maybe that will change, but I know I hope to post more often now that things have settled down.
It’s been crazy here since I arrived. I am employee number 1, and I am doing everything from finding office space to interviewing office managers to doing my real job of being chief creative officer.
16 hour days are the norm; I start at 7:30 or 8 when I talk via Skype with my marketing director who is in London.
It often ends at 11pm when I talk via Skype to my partner who is in LA.
On the weekends I crash. Except when I work on Saturday, like I did this past week. The last two Sundays I have gotten up early-ish, gone for a walk into town (this photo was taken on one of those walks) intending to do post processing when I get back but then I lay down for a quick nap and feel drugged hwne I get up six hours later.
I hope it gets easier.
Did anyone see the announcement about the X-T1?
Grabbed this as I walked around town the first day.
Last week there was a discussion with Ray where I talked about my approach to a subject. Taking multiple images, looking for different ways to get to the ‘truth’ or at least a useable truth about the subject as I see it. All the while I was writing that response, I was thinking about this shoot, the one shown on the contact sheet above, where I walked around this tower near my house armed with my F100, a roll of Delta 100 and a ZF.2 50mm Zeiss lens.
Each frame has a number with year_month_date_ roll_frame (murphy’s law is in effect here, normally I number as I just described but this roll was missing the roll number, sigh). I every case where there are multiple exposures of a subject, I am normally playing with either focus or exposure.
In 2013, I set out to become comfortable with a 28mm lens. Before this year, I never felt like I handled that lens very well, and had always defaulted to the 35, not that there is anything wrong with using a 35mm lens.
In looking over the images I posted this year, while it might be obvious to say that the majority were shot with either the Fuji 18mm f/2.0 (27mm equivalent) or the Zeiss 28mm f/2.8 Biogon ZM, I felt like I ended up the year not only feeling comfortable with that lens, but in many cases while shooting in the street, preferring that focal length.
That kind of took me by surprise. More than a little bit, in fact. I had struggled in the past, but now *wanted* to have a 28mm. Who’d a thunk it?
I also bought a 28mm Nikkor AIS lens, just so that I’d have a 28mm on every major system I was shooting. So I feel like I made progress in that area of photography in 2013. I don’t know what I’m going to try in 2014. Yet.
So, Ray asked me to change the color of the comments text. Fair enough, because I had actually never seen the color of the comments text, and when I looked at it, I was aghast at how hard it was to read.
So, I went into my theme settings, and discovered that the color of the comments text specifically wasn’t set-able. Then, I remembered that when I had set up this theme, I had a student of mine (ahem, yes, a student helped me set this theme up) had hand-altered some of the theme’s settings because the calendar at the right didn’t have the right color for the days in that month when I had posted. What probably happened was that when he altered the days I had posted, he inadvertently altered the color of the comments.
So I started poking around and proceeded to f**k the child theme altogether (don’t know why) so I had to go to this light version of the theme. Which is not bad, mine you, and at least the comments are now READABLE (again, 1,000 apologies) but, as you can see in the calendar, those days I posted are now Un-readable (white against a white background) which pretty much confirms that that student hacked the theme and hard-coded those days to read the way they do now.
I do have a recent backup of the site but also need someone to help me fix the alterations to fix the comments font color only.
Anyone out there up for giving me a hand?
Joe McNally is a Nat Geo photographer and a proponent of the idea that to take in interesting photo, you should strive to put the camera in an interesting or new place, so that you get a fresh perspective on the subject, one that you might not have seen before.
The E-M1 has the ability to allow you to focus the camera and take a frame by touching on the articulated screen on the rear of the body.
In this frame, I’m sitting in the passenger seat with the camera pointed at Fiona in the back seat. There is no way I could have gotten this angle with any camera I’ve ever shot with before. I might have accidentally gotten the shot, but in this case I framed and touched and got the shot I wanted to get.
This is very interesting to me.
The E-M1 is a very, very sweet camera, made more so by shooting with the Panasonic 20mm f/1.7. One of the big things that leap right out at me is how responsive the camera is in every way. Focus, writing to the card, menus, etc. While it certainly has a lot of perks (articulated screen, EVF, anti-shake, no AA filter, and so forth) it really feels ‘ready to shoot’ every time I pick it up and carry it.
This camera, more than any other I’ve shot in a while, has really made me think deeply about the interaction between cameras and picture taking. Haptics, interface, feedback, availability, user experience, call it what you will.
I spent a week over in Dublin two weeks ago and I came away from that experience re-thinking what I would bring over there, camera-wise. With the amount of work I will be doing, I’ve begun to understand that maybe, just maybe, I won’t have time to indulge my passion for film processing.
Maybe I knew this all along and have been in denial, or maybe shooting with the E-M1 and its small size really brought that home, I don’t know.
For me, the journey is always 1/4 on the outside and the images and 3/4 on the inside. It’s great to be able to use this blog to talk about it.
To keep myself occupied over the Christmas vacation, I rented an E-M1 for a week. This is a quick holiday snap with Clarity at -100 just for that dreamy look.
Merry Christmas / Happy Holidays / Love to all!
I’ve been in Ireland the last few days and one thing that immediately strikes me is the quality of light. This far north the angle of the sun in the sky is very low, and with the cloud cover it has an interesting light-box like effect. In this image I’m looking right into the sun about 2:30 in the afternoon or so.