Boat, and end of year thoughts

Boat tied up at wharf, somewhere near Springdale, Newfoundland. 2006.

Today I finished organising and culling my photo collection. It was a long project that took several months to complete. I started with 25,000 photographs and when I finished everything today I had 10,700 pictures on my hard drive. I could probably tidy up a bit more at the ancient end of the collection, but it’s good enough. It’s a satisfying way to end the year.

Photos that I might want to share publicly are very rare before 15 years ago. The photo above is only one of 5 that I marked as good from 2006. Photos of friends and family are valuable, of course, but only to me.

I don’t usually make new year resolutions because I can never keep them. But yesterday I wrote down a few photography guidelines to follow in the new year and for years after. (Maybe). I want to use more film, but film and developing are wicked expensive. So I’m only going to use film when I’m going out to make photos of something in particular. No more cat photos and no more carrying a film camera when I’m just out for a walk. I got back five rolls of film yesterday and there were too many frames wasted on nothing. I can use a digital camera if I feel the urge to go out and click away. There is always a phone in my pocket and that’s fine for snapshots. Other guidelines include things like using a tripod whenever possible and not rushing to finish a roll of film. I tend to rush the end of a roll because I want to get it to the lab and see how I did.

What else am I thinking about at the end of this year? I have to lose some weight. I’m not fit to look at. I’d also like to be more organised and diligent. I’m great at making schedules and plans but not very good at following them. I guess there are a million things I need to change about myself, but I’ll never get around to them. I’ll just have to choose one or two and see what I can do about those.

Happy New Year.

Filial Son

Stele honouring a filial son

I might have posted a similar version of this photo before but this version is better composed. I think. I am too lazy to go back and look through folders . . . .

I wonder if there are any laws regarding the removal of memorials like this one. It appears to be on private property. Could a new owner of the property get rid of this and put up apartments? Surely not? One hopes . . . .

Bus Stop, King Myeongju’s Tomb

Entrance to King Myeongju’s Tomb Park

In my last post I uploaded a few photos of my walk back to the bus stop. I had also visited the park a couple weeks before that, but had to retreat because it started snowing. I didn’t mind the snow, but it was a Sunday and I was worried there would be no buses and that no taxi would want to come up a mountain road in the snow. While I was waiting for the taxi I made this photo of the bus stop and the information sign. Most historical sites have this sort of sign under a tiled roof. It looks quite nice.
If you smoosh your face up to the monitor you might be able to pick out my tripod on the bench in the bus shelter . . . .

Back to the Bus Stop

I visited King Myeongju’s Tomb this morning with my Minolta X700 and a roll of HP5+. I brought a digital camera along in case the Minolta’s batteries died (Forgot to buy spares. Stunarse.) and to use as a light meter if I ran into some very tricky lighting. The digital camera stayed in the bag while I was using film because the Minolta’s meter is pretty good, there wasn’t too much contrast in the scenes I photographed, and I know a bit about when to use exposure compensation. (So I’ve probably buggered everything up).

I used up a whole roll and didn’t want to start a new roll just for the walk back to the bus stop, so I put Mr. Minolta in my backpack and took out Mr. Fuji. It’s convenient to use the digital camera, but making photos with a manual camera is a real pleasure by comparison.
But I digress. I made a bunch of photos on the way back down the hill and I’m happy enough with three of them to share here.

Someone has done landscaping work here since I last visited a month or so ago. I don’t know if these stones were dug out of the earth to make way for the new path or if they are going to be used to make a wall or something.
Also new since I last visited. They look old, so I don’t know if they have come out of the ground or if they are going to go into the ground.
Waiting for the bus to depart.

The city’s bus system application said that no buses would arrive for another hour, so I decided I would have to call an expensive taxi to get home in time for lunch. But while I was having a swallow of tea a bus did show up. I’m not surprised. The schedule is often wrong. I sometimes think Gangneung’s bus schedule application uses the data from some other city.

It was a great morning up in the hills with old King Myeongju and I’m looking forward to going back there soon. Maybe after I buy a short telephoto for the Minolta. There were a few photos I couldn’t get this morning because I only had the 50mm. The Minolta photos will show up here in a couple of weeks, after I get the film developed and scanned. If I didn’t screw them all up . . . .

Fotography for Fun

I like making photos with my iPhone. It’s fun to just press the shutter button and not think much about exposure or post processing. The phone does a very good job of making scenes look good without me messing things up. I’ve thought about just using the iPhone for photography but the image quality isn’t quite good enough for most things yet. Adding a filter covers up a lot of problems.
Here are six photos I made the other day when I wanted to take a break from my camera woes. Despite getting rid of most of my equipment, I am back to wondering if I have the best cameras for my needs, blah blah blah. The problem lies with me, not the cameras, of course . . . .

Baskets in Winter Field
Persimmon Tree
Power Lines and Persimmon Tree
Apartment Employee’s Bicycle
Moving Day
Obligatory Cat Photo

For any iManiacs out there, the black and white filter is called Silvertone and the colour filter is called Dramatic. They come standard in Apple Photos.

I think I do best when using a square format. Is it time for a Hasselblad . . . . .? Oh, dear . . . . .

Classic Negative Simulation Examples

A couple of days ago I posted a photo of my cat made with Fujifilm’s Classic Negative simulation. I’ve been using it off and on since then to see what it’s good for. If anything. Here are a few results.

Photographed from the hallway of another building in the complex.

Sometimes I bring my camera into the hall while my cat does his daily tour. I think this is the best version of the scene I’ve done so far. Looks balanced, etc. I also like the tones and colours here. I really like the blue of the sky. The shadows are deep but there is still some detail. This is straight out of the camera except for for some straightening.

Anything is art if it’s neatly arranged and you think too hard about it.

One of Fujifilm’s managers said in an interview that Classic Negative is not suited for food photography, but I think this looks fine. Maybe he meant the food doesn’t come out looking Insta-worthy with blinding colour saturation. The simulation tends to make photos look warm, depending on the situation. I tried auto white balance on this photograph. The colours became accurate, but not as good. I like the warm colour cast here.

On the other hand, fixing the white balance made this photo look much better. Maybe because we expect white fur to look white in a photograph. Amice’s fur isn’t quite as dark as this. The colours of this film are not accurate, but they are usually pleasing. The consensus seems to be that Classic Negative is modelled after Fujifilm Superia negative film. I don’t have much experience with that film, so I can’t really say. But I guess it does look like negative film.

One last example photo. I made this late in the afternoon to see how the simulation handled high contrast scenes. Very well, I think. The shadows are deep, but, well, they’re shadows and I don’t really expect to see much in them. I could lift the shadows in Lightroom, but that usually looks fake. I rather like how the photo turned out. I shifted the white balance a bit, but otherwise no adjustments.

I’m going to leave my camera set to this simulation for a while. I thought it was a bit gimmicky when I first tried it, but it’s growing on me. I just have to mind the white balance and the highlights. I’d like to get out to the beach soon to see what holiday snaps might look like using this setting.

Heroic Pose

Amice in the living room

With his face in shadow, Amice has a bit of a batman (catman? batcat?) vibe going on here. “Whenever there’s trouble . . . . .” he’s usually the cause. Bugger kept waking me up this morning.

I photographed Amice using Fujifilm’s Classic Negative simulation. I’m not sure what to do with this setting, to tell the truth. Fujifilm says it’s not designed for all situations. E.g., food doesn’t look good when photographed using this simulation. It’s supposed to be nostalgic, so maybe it’s good for holiday snaps? I’ll keep experimenting.

Alley

Car parked in alley, downtown Gangneung.
Downtown Gangneung

I’ve photographed this jumble of buildings from the entrance of this short alley a number of times. Some of the structures look commercial and the ones in the far back look residential. I can only imagine that there were no zoning laws at some point in the past. Or that they were ignored. The contrast between the old buildings and the shiny black car is interesting.