Yesterday’s Walk

When I took a walk yesterday I looked for bits of color and scenes that fit the 18-55mm zoom lens that I had on the camera.  I don’t normally use this lens when I go for a walk since I prefer using just one camera and one prime lens when I walk.

You might notice that all of these pictures were made at the 55mm focal length which is the longest zoom range for this lens.  I often wish I had a prime lens that wasn’t too large or heavy that was slightly longer.

I am still pondering whether it is worth my continuing to show pictures of the things I see around me, when I really don’t go far or see much of interest subject-wise.  I have followed the practice of trying to make pictures of common everyday things that I see, and to do it frequently.  In many ways it is only a visual diary of my life.

Acros Film Simulation in LR

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When I saw the above scene I just knew I had to have a picture.  I later made the others below so I could get an understanding of how well the simulation worked for other types of scenes.

I found something I like … the Acros film simulations from Fujifilm.  These were a bunch of test images of different things that I made one morning.  They were all converted within Lightroom to the Acros camera calibration.  Some have been heavily cropped, others not.

You can read about Acros here.  I am anxious to compare the in-camera Acros jpegs to the Lightroom (LR) conversion.  Based on my other comparisons between LR camera calibrations and the in-camera jpegs, the in-camera images will be better.

Landscapes

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In the past I made a lot of landscape pictures.  I liked them, but in the past I mostly made rural area landscapes, like in West Virginia, etc.  My challenge now is to see if I can build upon my landscape genre to include areas within Penn Township as well as beyond.  I was driving down a different road one morning in the rain when I made the above image.  We have a lot of industrial activity as well as agricultural in the outskirts of Hanover.  Maybe I can make more scenes similar to the above, but I need to think about it some more.  They are still too documentary, unless I can make them into something more.

Not It

I would like to decide what kinds of pictures I most prefer to make and look at.  Ones like the above are not it.  I have constrained myself to photograph what is most readily available.  I have tended to make documentary pictures of the things I see as I go about my day-to-day existence and I doubt that will change, but that isn’t enough.  I would like to pick something that I can, and most like, to photograph for my blog, but I have not been successful.

It was Antoine de Saint-Exupery who said that “perfection is achieved, not when there is nothing more to add, but when there is nothing left to take away.”  I have therefore decided to eliminate ideas about what and how to photograph and see if I can narrow down and find a type or style of photography that I like.  So far, I have decided to discard any ideas of making more documentary style images in town like above.

While I like the documentary style for my Homewood or travel pictures, I do not like them as well for my blog.  It might be because I get my fill of them and am looking for something more unique for my “fun images.”

My Minimal Solution?

I am in the process of transitioning to a simpler, more minimalist style of photography.  I hope to shift towards only using prime lenses.  I have tried to do this before and didn’t succeed.  I hope I am successful this time.  Some of the reasons I didn’t succeed before were because I wasn’t happy with the quality of my images and I kept feeling like I needed to photograph things that were distant.

I am now hoping that having a 24MP camera with quality prime lenses along with a shift in my style of photography will enable me to succeed.  While I will still be using my zoom lenses for some of my event photography for Homewood for a while, it is my intent to try and move that work to prime lenses over time.  Some of the factors that I am relying upon are:  1) Using a 24MP camera to give me more capability to crop images and still have them large enough for printing, 2) Using quality prime lenses like the Fujifilm 35mm f/2 lens with other prime lenses, 3) Using higher ISOs to allow me to achieve sufficient image quality along with having more mega-pixels to crop.  With higher ISO settings I hope to achieve greater depth of field through better control of apertures while still keeping my shutter speeds up.

I am also hoping to speed up my workflow by using jpeg images rather than raw files.  The jpegs along with software should hopefully be good enough, especially for my documentary type images.  I am also planning on photographing more often in manual mode so that I can optimize my situation.  I am setting my aperture and choosing a shutter speed according to the conditions and then letting the ISO float between 200 and 12800.

One unknown at the moment is how much I can crop and photograph with only a 35mm prime lens.  The above images were made that way as jpeg images.  As time goes on I may acquire a wider and a longer prime lens if I find that they are necessary to do away with the heavier zoom lenses.  The best minimal solution is to photograph only with the 35mm lens.  I think I can make that work for my personal photography, but maybe not for all of my Homewood photography.

What is happening is that my love of the technology and the minimalism of the camera and lens combination, is winning out over my desire to photograph a wide range of things.  My desire to use a minimal amount of gear is winning.  I have spiraled up and down the chain of many cameras and lenses in the past, but I think I have now found my solution with the Fujifilm X-Pro2 camera and prime lenses.

My remaining concerns are the weight of the X-Pro2 camera in conjunction with my ability to hold and use it with my hands, and what I will photograph without using heavier zoom lenses.

Sunday Walk

I took a walk to see what I could see.  I noted that there are still some roses but even they are coming to an end.  Plum Creek was very low with little water flowing.  You can also see that some leaves are falling, mostly due to the lack of rain, etc.