Avid reader(s) of this fluff had been alerted , by myself, that I was going to whip the Photoshop duster around some errant files and see if the way I shake the woofle dust over things is different from back in the day. Old files, new eyes or maybe the same old tired eyes but with a bit of extra jhuzzing from the latest software...why??... well because they're there and the rain has curtailed my efforts to rake all the leaves into mulch bin...er..things.. As a treat I've been handed a Plymouth Gin and non shall pass my lips until these pesky things have been uploaded and sent off into the web of wonder to be shoulder shrugged at with added head shaking,, Oh Happy New Year, lets hope I've not used up all my Cat lives with this years illness..es... See you on the other side..oh they are all Black and White except one..and all of Manchester , England. or are they?????
There was a record booth on Central Pier that had boxes full of old pub and club 45's, we're talking late 60's early 70's here youngsters, middles punched out so you had to get those odd plastic triskel shaped inserts so they'd play on the old Fidelity mono deck, Now there were those that I'd play all the time but soon tire of, Pop music..meh... then there were those that took a bit of listening to but became a bit more of a favourite, almost as though the hard work of getting into it gave greater rewards...and so we come to the Lensbaby 56mm f1.6...
Stuck it onto the D750 and thought...'WTF have I done' well it was a good..no great deal from Digixo
lovely chunk of metal, totally manual, blurry as a night on the Glenfarclas but tightens up the more aperture you dial into it. But my boats weren't floating, couldn't hear 76 trombones and I was rubbing my chin whilst simultaneously cocking an eyebrow...so let's scroll forward and I'm taking the D750 out with the 'baby velvet locked and loaded, no camera bag, nothing to distract or even rescue me from the tremors of a duff shoot and do you know what ..technique, understanding and image making all started to come together. There's no electronic connection between lens and body so you start to dial the aperture in and you see how the blur dials out , no aperture preview button required and for me the sweet spot occurred at F2.8. The focussing is all manual as well and it's an elbow cocking crank to get it all the way around, but I set things at 8' and moved in and out to get the focus point where I needed it, most of the images I took were quite close but not close enough to use the 1:2 macro capabilities at about 5".... So here you have a lens that gives dreamy fall off at wide apertures, tightens up like normal lens at apertures over F11 and has 1:2 macro capabilities...I'm getting to like it... oh first record I bought from Central Pier record booth with the middle missing Who do you love by Juicy Lucy here are some snaps....
Parc d'Armorique..this is where I live, if I had to try and describe it it's like a mixture between the Lake District, the Peak District and the New Forest but without all the tourists..... and just down the road to the North, West and South are the varied coastlines of Brittany and I've not really photographed much of it, all the work on the farm and being a wee bit ill for the past 6 months has knocked all the things I've planned to do on the head. So, new gear in the bag, Nikon 24-85, 70-200 and 50mm lenses to try out and I've barely given the D750 a chance to stretch it's legs..I'm waffling..anyway here are some snaps from Le Gouffre, where the River Argent runs down to the old Roman Lead mines and only about 6km from home.. So back with the ND filters and tripods over the next few weeks.
Was it only a few blog posts ago that some old cheeser was complaining about his mince pies and how he'd have to get some lenses in that could do all that magical auto focus stuff and save him all that squinting and gurning as things were wrestled into some semblance of focus... yep that was me... I can still do my fair share of squinting and gurning but what if some deal came along...you know one of those where one eyebrow cocks itself, one where the item is reduced for 'One weekend only' one where you suddenly find that 'The Precious' could be yours within 2 working days... no procrastination on this one, drool wiped from card , numbers entered...Merci Monsieur livraison gratuit aussi......and here it is.....now then the iphone 5 camera is having a very bad attack of the hiccups so please excuse the quality of the next 2 snaps
First impressions...feels as solid as a rock, probably lose the lens cap as it slides on and off, need to crank the focus ring around quite some distance, I think the old focus on a point and move in and out might come into play, oh and it has Macro capabilities... all in all I think there might be a fair bit of creative faffery to be extracted from this chunk of metal and glass.....I think we're going to need a bigger bag...
Espaws, the new way to upload images to Getty, Now for a fair few years I've been manfully grappling with Gettys uploading system and gleefully embraced the addition of being able to keyword your own image....as long as the keywords were in the Getty database and no..all that metadata massaged into your imported Raw or DNG files was tossed in the bin. Meh...but now we have ESPAWs...and today I've bum jiggled myself deep into the office chair and set about filling in all the required fields in the required order without really paying much attention to the instructions on the box but hey, best way of learning, make a proper horlicks of it first time, learn from those tear stained mistakes and crack on once more. And what's this..keywords can be overwritten by metadata attached to your file, bulk uploading, bulk keywording, templates to save...my god , I'll never be able to keep up with the image snapping if it gets this easy.... and what's this... no weekly limit on the volume of uploads...I need to reassess targets, bring forward projects, run things up the flagpole, knock things into the back of the net, check which way the wind is blowing..oh and learn how to use this upload portal properly... this is what it all looks like
There are times when you want a shot so badly that, well, you just have to ignore that little flashing flash(?) symbol or sometimes little wavy hand, brace yourself against some solid object, take a slow sniper breath and blat a shot off. But what if you want to take a shot at a crazy low shutter speed to record some movement but then want some sharpness in there as well...I know...get a tripod or as I've done on the beach, make a dinky sandcastle or place your camera on a rock...but what about hand held...with a telephoto in challenging conditions.
Enter stage left the Nikon VR 3 system and with a bit of algorithmic waftines, Photoshop CC and it's Shake reduction filter. So out and about in the rather wonderful Huelgoat woods shooting the woodland in some nice low autumnal sunshine, ended up at the old Roman Lead mines and the River Argent... so walking back along the River path it suddenly struck me that a tripod would be more than useful but that was many a kilometer away in the car. So as I was out giving my new Nikon 70-200 F4 VR 3 a bit of a shakedown well, I thought I'd try to see how far I could push things... so 1st image is shot at F13 145mm on an FX...but at 1/8th of a second hand held...1/8th yep with VR active I wanted moving water but something sharp as a counterpoint.
Almost got away with it but just a touch of movement in the Holly so from Lightroom into Photoshop CC and Filers> shake reduction which looks a lot like the image below. One thing...be patient, this filter takes a bit of time, especially if you are resampling different areas of the image
Looks like they use a lot of edge contrast maths in a kind of Clarity fashion..add too much filter and you do get a breakout of light and dark haloing on the edges but trial and error will give you the experience to sort it out. So here is an enlargement from the bottom of the Holly as a before and after view, I'm sure there is something to be done by using a color selection and turning it into a mask to blend the shake reduced image(?) back into the original file anyhow...handheld at 1/8th and sharpish with a Telephoto..well what's not to like
So first up is an old Freecom 500gb drive which has all kinds of stuff tucked away so I've loaded some into a Lightroom Catalog and set about for a faff. When I look back on some of the processing I did..well..it is to my eyes now quite harsh, in those days the workflow was Bridge to Photoshop and off you go..use all the toys..spank that file until the pixels squeak. Well one things changed for sure and that's workflow.. Lightroom CC to Photoshop CC and saved back to Lightroom for a final once over before exporting...I was a late Lightroom adopter, version 3 I think and these days I never bother with bridge..time eh!! Still having it all on subscription means I'm always up to date...anyway these files are all shot with a Fuji S3 and it's buddy, the Tokina 12-24, delving into the files it wasn't such a bad combo, mind you I now see all the sensor dust...yikes....lumpy!! No wonder Alamy used to refrain from accepting some of the early stuff... so these shots are from Blackpool and Glasgow..mono conversions with my new found skills(?) on Wacom put to the test and its wafty brushing onto masks thingy. I'll be concentrating on the Black and White stuff for the next few posts and as I've just downloaded some screen recording software I'll give you the chance to see what goes on when I'm left on my own with some old hard drives and the whole of Spotify to amuse me.
What's all this then????
An unyeilding torrent of Photo babbel full of unconfirmed facts and manufactured photo drivel.. take from it what you like, it won't change the world but may leave you feeling nauseous...