Amice likes to sit on the windowsill and watch the world outside. He’s very interested in watching birds, but he also likes dogs, cats, and children. I need to learn the art of sitting and doing nothing from him.
Our Lord and Master Amice usually looks like this:
But once or twice a day he needs to discharge all the energy he’s built up from time in the sun and occasional strolls to his food bowl. Then he looks like this:
Drive ya mad . . . .
But good photo practice . . . .
For every relatively in-focus photograph of my cat, there are five or six pictures with blurred turning heads, flicking tails, massive yawns, or his rear end exiting the frame at warp 5.
In my last post I joked about joining a cult to paint alleyways. It later reminded me of another experience I had with a church member. I was exploring the city of Anyang one day in 1996/97 when a smiling woman approached me. Our conversation went something like this….
W: Where are you from?
W: Oh, that’s very nice! What are you doing here?
M: I work at an English academy here in Anyang.
W: That’s nice. Do you have many friends here?
M: No, not really. One of my co-workers.
W: Oh, you should come to our church. You can meet lots of people.
M: Well, I’m not a Christian, so I don’t think I would fit in.
W: No, no! It doesn’t matter if you’re not Christian. You can come to our church!
M: I’m not really interested.
W: You know, two of my brothers-in-law are American. They weren’t Christian, but they started coming to our
church and now they are Christian!
M: Well, that’s very nice for them and their wives, but I’m not interested in attending church services.
W: We have lots of foreigners at our church so there are English church services and you can meet other
M: Yes, that’s very nice for foreign Christians, but I’m really not interested in going to church. I’m not
W: (pause) There are lots of girls at our church . . . .
She almost had me, haha. The encounter was weird, annoying, funny (in hindsight), and uncomfortable all at the same time.
She definitely would have had me if she had mentioned the church was full of cats.
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 . . . .
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 . . . . .
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.
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.
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.
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.
The second roll of film I put in my new Samsung Minolta X-700 was Ilford HP5+.
Amice whined until I brought him into the hallway so he could do his usual tour.
While I was out with the camera, I decided to try the ‘pram at the end of the hallway’ photo again. I’ll get the ultimate version someday . . . .
I made a trip to Sacheon Harbour to make some photos and visit a restaurant I like. I got no good photos and the restaurant was closed. Curses. At least I came away with a photo of one of the many well-fed harbour cats.