Things I saw yesterday

Not much to report here. Had a fairly lazy day. We chilled in the morning. Went for a Parma Violet latte and Hot Chocolate at Cafe Rawnchy in Dennistoun. I had the Lavender and White Chocolate cake yum yum yum. Shot some stuff on the X-Pro1 with the VM 35mm f/1.4 and there’s even an iPhone shot in there from when the M mount lens couldn’t get close enough.

A rare ride on the subway and a walk in a different park

We don’t ride the Glasgow Underground much. It doesn’t come by our side of the city but today we were heading to the West End. No special reason: we just wanted to walk round a park we haven’t already walked round ten times this week. Covid lockdown certainly lowers your expectations off a fun day out.

I have also been playing around with shine new colour edits and I’m pretty happy with it.

These were all shot on the go with my X-T2 and the big 16mm f/1.4 (that thing gets a bit heavy after a few hours but the upgrade in image quality compared to the f/2.8 version is definitely worth it.

Why not drop a comment and get some chat going. Any subject, the lens, the edit, the composition, whatever…

Scalextric, snow & a 16mm lens

Recently I wrote about my newfound appreciation for the standard lens – in particular the XF 35mm f/1.4. This came about after I sold the little 23mm and 16mm. The choice of what to take out with me was sometimes crippling. This was not good for my already higher than average anxiety.

It worked out well, though. I became far more comfortable with that 50mm equivalent focal length. After more than six months shooting the same field of view I started to miss a wider option and going through my Lightroom library it was the 16mm I missed the most but the old f/2.8 was a little limiting in the low light I often shoot.

This is why I ended up with the XF 16mm f/1.4

I packed up the 35mm and tucked it away in the back of the wardrobe and entered a new chapter. The plan is to spend the rest of the year with only the 16mm f/1.4 on my camera.

I’ve had it a week so far and the challenges of such wide angles are flooding back to me but I’ll talk more about that later. In the meantime, here is some of what I have shot over the last week.

As always, I’d love to hear your thoughts on the images or any news you have.

It’s that/most wonderful/time of the year… again

Normally we would have a family market day in Edinburgh but the ‘Rona done did it’s thing and put the kaibosh on that.

But wait! Up steps the Mother with a stoater of an idea – Xmas BBQ in the garden. Get in!

The child writing Xmas cards for her classmates – she insisted on writing a card for everybody. Where on earth could her good character come from?

A day indoors (and a jpeg recipe to mimic my favourite film)

If you come here often you’ll know I shoot a lot of film lately – usually at least two rolls a week, and 90% of this is HP5 pushed two stops (meaning I shoot it like it’s 1600 instead of 400.

I still sometimes get the urge for a little instant digital gratification and that’s what this post is about. How do I keep a consistent look across images shot on film and digital?

Now anyone telling you they can emulate a film stock digitally is talking balls. I’m not looking to start any flame wars here it’s just a fact.

They way you shoot, develop and scan your film has more effect on the outcome than the film itself. Different developers generate a different amount of contrast. Increasing temperature to reduce developing time can have the same effect. Developer choice will also affect grain just as exposure compensation affects contrast AND grain. Even the lens you shoot with can affect contrast.

There is literally hundreds of black and white developers available. I could push process a roll of Tri-X, show it to an experienced HP5 shooter and tell him it’s his beloved Ilford film, just done in chemicals he isn’t familiar with. The various possible outcomes are that vast.

What I have here is what works for me – that is, a jpeg recipe which gets close to my film scans of HP5 EI 1600 developed 17.5 minutes in Xtol 1+1

Acros, Strong Grain, NR -4 Auto WB, H-1, S+2 Sharp 0

I can’t speak about exposure compensation as I have shot enough film without a meter that I have become a human light meter.

Today the weather decided I should stay in so ere is a day about the house using the above recipe.

Once again, thanks for reading and please use the comments to let me know your thoughts.

Turning day into night

I had to go out for milk earlier so I took the camera along and tried something I’d been meaning to play with for a while: using white balance to create the effect of nighttime during the day.

By setting white balance to tungsten (approx 3200k) the camera produces cool blue tones we associate with night photography. I was looking for light sources to further the effect but they were far and few between. Instead I used radial filters in lightroom to create the effect of off camera practical lighting.

I limited myself to 36 exposures and kept 9 of them. I’m mostly pleased with the results and the editing part was rather quick and easy: create a feathered radial filter, move it off frame, warm colour temp and an exposure boost did the job. It was of course important to avoid having the sky in shots but beyond that – point and click, job done.