Skip to main content

TGIF Week 3

Religious Megabunker (21/365)
"Religious Megabunker"
Olympus E-1 with Sigma 30mm 1:1.4
1/500s, f/3.2, ISO 100

A capture if you will of a major church construction project on the corner of Curry Ford and Econlockhatchee here in Orlando Fl. I'd add "sunny", but today was anything but. It'd rained pretty thoroughly the night before and into the morning, leaving the rest of the day overcast and gray. The lighting was even, the better to illuminate the subtle patterns in the concrete slab walls making up the church and lending a depressing bunker-like atmosphere to the whole structure.

Still working with the E-1, learning more and more. Biggest lesson so far is that five high-quality mega-pixels can produce remarkably good photographs if you just let it. Combine the output of the E-1 with today's RAW converters and post processing applications (such as Lightroom 3.3), and the output is nearly indistinguishable from its more advance descendants, the E-3 (10 MP) and the E-P2 (12 MP). If anything, the E-1 has broken the crazy fever I've had lately to buy the latest high-megapixel offerings from Canon and Nikon. Even after nearly eight years (mine was built August 2003), my E-1 is still remarkable modern looking and handling.

Poised
"Poised"
Olympus E-1 with Sigma 30mm 1:1.4
1.30s, f/1.8, ISO 100

Oh, to be a Lab, and to just worry about the simple things in life, like my next meal, my next walk, or who will be the next person to interact with me. Max has entered that part of dog's life where he's extremely parsimonious expending energy. He'll lie still for long periods on the cool floor tiles, the only indication he's even conscious is the constant arching movement of his eyes. And yet, when the time comes, he's immediately up and moving about like the wind, that big otter tail thumping walls, cabinets, and my shins with gusto.

I like how this turned out with the Sigma. I set the aperture wide enough to give a pleasant, subtle bokeh, but with enough aperture to provide crisp detail. I can't say for certain, but the Sigma seems to focus more accurately and more assuredly with the E-1 than with the E-3, and with the E-P2 ... I'm being charitable when I say that autofocus with the Sigma 30mm on the E-P2 is lethargic. It's a good thing I've learned to manually focus the Sigma 30mm using the VF-2. I think it's significant when the Sigma 30mm acts like it was purpose made to properly autofocus on the E-1.

I also processed the first two photos in black and white as a reaction to an editorial written by Ken Norton on his blog. In his editorial, Ken starts by noting a resurgence of black and white printing, then starts reminiscing about his dark room days, and segues into a rant about the excesses of Flickr ("an abomination") and the state of digital black and white ("cheapened by people who think that desaturating and cranking up the contrast is B&W photography.").

Field of Crosses (18/365)
"Field of Crosses"
Olympus E-P2 with Zuiko Digital 9-18mm + DMW-MA1
1/2500s, f/4, ISO 200, 9mm, -0.7EV

Sunset
"Sunset"
Olympus E-P2 with Zuiko Digital 9-18mm + DMW-MA1
1/800s, f/6.3, ISO 200, 10mm, -1EV
I spent my twenties (starting in 1974) by working in and and helping to build black and white and color darkrooms for college and commercial work. I spent countless hours learning about and perfecting techniques for producing what I considered (and still consider) excellent prints. I lived and breathed darkroom lore and technique, and melded that with all the film photography I was doing at the time (both 35mm and 120/220).

I'm here to tell you that after 30+ years have passed, I can say with absolute certainty that hell will freeze over before I'll work in another darkroom. A well-run darkroom, especially a commercial or public darkroom, is demanding of too much time and money. The processes required to develop film and produce prints are simple enough, but the devil is in the details, such as maintaining proper temperatures, keeping the chemicals reasonably fresh and knowing when to mix new batches, water quality, etc, etc, etc. And when it's a public darkroom (such as at a school) where others besides yourself can use it and depend on its proper functioning, and you're ultimately responsible... I've been there, done all that, and burned out. I have no wish to go back. As a consequence I heartily embrace the digital age.

I'd like to think these simple images would meet with Ken's approval. If they don't, well, I won't loose any sleep over it.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

A Decade Long Religious Con Job

I rarely write inflammatory (what some might call trolling) titles to a post, but this building you see before you deserves it. I've been seeing this building next to I-4 just east of Altamonte/436 and Crane's Roost for nearly 12 years, and never knew who owned it. Today on a trip up to Lake Mary with my wife I saw it yet again. That's when I told her I wanted to stop by on the way back and poke around the property, and photograph any parts of it if I could.

What I discovered was this still unfinished eighteen story (I counted) white elephant, overgrown with weeds and yet still under slow-motion construction. It looks impressive with its exterior glass curtain walls, but that impression is quickly lost when you see the unfinished lower stories and look inside to the unfinished interior spaces.

A quick check via Google leads to an article written in 2010 by the Orlando Sentinel about the Majesty Tower. Based on what I read in the article it's owned by SuperChannel 55 WA…

first night for the gingersnaps

The first night has passed and the two have managed to survive, in spite of what their tiny hearts might have thought when first arriving. Greebo, the larger of the two, has been in hiding the entire time so far. Ponder has spent the time zipping in and out of hiding spots, checking things out, and learning just how comfortable pillows are for resting your head.

During the night I felt the tiny body of Ponder hitting the bed as he leaped up on the side, and then climbed to the top to run around on top of me. At least once he play-attacked my fingers. He might be small but his claws are still quite sharp.

When I got up in the morning the bowl of cat kitten food was fairly well depleted. It's been refilled and fresh water put in the big dish on the floor. I'm assuming that both Greebo and Ponder are feeding and drinking. I have seen Greebo under the furniture peeking out at me when I went looking for him. I'm leaving him alone while he continues to adjust.

So far the guys h…

cat-in-a-box channels greta garbo

So I'm sitting at my computer, when I start to notice a racket in back. I ignore it for a while until I hear a load "thump!", as if something had been dropped on the floor, followed by a lot of loud rattling. I turn around and see Lucy in the box just having a grand old time, rolling around and rattling that box a good one. I grab the GX1 and snap a few shots before she notices me and the camera, then leaps out and back into her chair (which used to be my chair before she decided it was her chair).

Just like caring for Katie my black Lab taught me about dogs, caring for Lucy is teaching me about cats. She finds me fascinating, as I do her. And she expresses great affection and love toward me without coaxing. I try to return the affection and love, but she is a cat, and she takes a bat at me on occasion, although I think that's just her being playful. She always has her claws in when she does that.

She sits next to me during the evening in her chair while I sit in mi…