If all I wanted to do, and I do like doing this, was make pictures of common things around me each day, I could be satisfied just using the TG-6 and processing the images this way. The TG-6 is the only camera I need for these kinds of pictures. It is comforting to know that if I ever get to the point where the TG-6 is the only camera I can handle, that I could still enjoy making images like these, if only for myself.
Misty was sick for a few days so we took her to the vet Saturday morning. While Marcia and Misty were inside, I sat in the car and waited and challenged myself to make some pictures from sitting inside the car in the parking lot. The pictures above are what I made.
I have even thought about using this camera and technique and printing a book of such pictures from around Hanover if I could weave them into a story or theme of some kind. Hmmm, maybe just images related to the Civil War, the one in the 1800s, not the coming one.
This article brings me to the third leg of my anguish relative to photography, and that is which camera(s) do I need or would I like to use? While it depends on what I’m photographing, I prefer certain cameras and lenses for their ease of use with my hands & eyes, crop-ability, image quality, etc. so I am always looking for a balance between what I photograph and what cameras work best for me.
In the past year I used a Pentax K-1 full frame camera as well as several different Fujifilm cameras and lots of lenses and different waterproof pocket cameras in order to better handle the lighting conditions while photographing various Homewood events and activities and landscape. I then sold all of them and went back to Olympus micro 4/3 cameras with fewer lenses. I did this because I was having trouble with my hands and back when using the larger heavier gear, and thought I could get by with less and it would help. I found that I could accomplish all that I needed with micro 4/3 gear when it came to getting suitable images for Homewood uses. Mainly the reason I could do this was because of my use of LR improvements as well as my skills to process the images. I have still been looking to see if there is another camera that I would rather use for some of my personal photography. I would like something simpler and better engineered that was more of a joy to use.
Now that I have been using an Olympus TG-6 camera to make images (like for the above photograph with no processing other than perspective straightening), I have been finding that it really helps with my hands, especially in colder wetter weather conditions and that it is convenient to carry in my pocket. I am also finding that I can do quite a lot with this camera even though it is just a small pocket camera with a 1/2.3 size 12MP sensor. Some of my processing changes have helped with my ability to make the images that you have been seeing in my posts lately.
I have been getting very comfortable with just using the TG-6. I am sure that if I were to travel by air again that it is all that I would take and use due to its size and ruggedness. The main shortcomings, if you wish to think of them that way, are the lack of shutter control and the need to use very slow shutter speeds in darker lighting conditions, and the lack of a viewfinder. The impact of no shutter control means that I need to take pictures of things that aren’t moving in low light. The lack of an EVF is amplified because I have switched to transitions eyeglasses and they turn dark in bright sun when it is most difficult to see the LCD when composing. Fortunately, I can see well enough if I take my glasses off to help see the composition and the LCD of the TG-6 is better than on the TG-5. I have also increased the brightness of the LCD. Sometimes, the limitations of only having an effective maximum focal length of 100mm can be a problem, but not one I’m usually facing in my personal photography.
I have even found myself thinking about “what if the TG-6 was my only camera?” I’m sure that would limit my Homewood photography, but not all of it. It is something that I will continue to experiment with for a while. Who knows, it may be my next big step towards simplifying and reducing the “stuff” in my life. I have been exploring this idea and watching what Adrian has been doing with his photography as he has been using smaller one-inch sensor cameras. If for whatever reason I stopped with my Homewood photography, I would probably reduce my gear down to just the TG-6 and/or a camera like the new Fuji X100V. I like challenges and I find the concept of using less very intriguing, but there are still times when I would like a larger sensor and a faster lens to reduce depth of field.
As I have written in these last three posts, I am undergoing a lot of anguish and I intend to keep exploring and making more changes. I haven’t made a decision yet, and indeed I probably do not want to make a decision relative to cameras yet since that would give me less to think about, but I do want to be prepared to take the next step if/when necessary.
I am probably closer to making changes in my subject material and processing, etc. than I am with cameras. We will need to wait and see how that goes as I keep exploring and discussing things with my friends, and even maybe trying some other cameras, something more capable than the TG-6. I would still like a more capable camera with higher quality images that is better engineered and more of a joy to use; but first I need to figure out what I want to photograph and can’t make with what I own.
The whole time I have been pursuing photography I have been dithering with whether I am more interested in the gear, cameras and lenses, than I am with making images. I would like to stop this dithering and concentrate on what my intent, or purpose, or primary interest is in making images, but I find that to be difficult.
I’m thinking about a different project for this summer and photographing what I see, and lots of others don’t see, behind the scenes, etc. around Hanover in the allies and back streets. I made the above when I was out seeing what I could do with just the TG-6 camera with the thought that I might not need to use a larger camera.
I made these on the back side of the old McAllister Hotel that is being renovated into new apartments.
Open for business, right in downtown Hanover, PA. He is for rent as long as it fills his pocket. He won’t ever do anything to help business here over the long term. The expression “keep America great” is the exact opposite of his policy actions. He is destroying the future of America.
I though they must have been mistaken to issue an air quality alert for today, until I went out. You could see it and smell it. It reminded me of my childhood in West Virginia with the wood and coal smoke in the air. I had hoped those days were behind me, but probably not. These kinds of days will likely become more prevalent in the future with Trump’s EPA relaxing the rules.
Frederick St., Hanover PA in December 2019
UPMC Specialty Care Center Construction, South Hanover PA in December 2019
In the early years of my life here at Homewood in Hanover, PA I spent time walking the streets of downtown Hanover and making pictures. It didn’t take me too long to tire of that only because of the fact that I didn’t know how to feature such views and the sidewalks were disasters invoking potential falls. I kept looking for a theme, a viewpoint that I wanted to pursue and show my viewers. After getting tired of exploring the streets, I took the easier path and switched the bulk of my photography to views of Homewood at Plum Creek, and now I have about run out of image ideas of interest to me that I can make on campus.
I have photographed the same scenes of the campus over and over and pursued many different ways of showing them. I rapidly moved towards photographing details in order to not show the same compositions over and over. I took that path in my photography since many residents living here are very concerned about privacy and they don’t want their images shown around the world on my blog, and this is private property. That limitation has kept me from showing the most interesting aspects of Homewood, the people.
As I enter another year, I am again looking for photographical ideas of interest to me. In past years I tried many different cameras, lenses, and processing ideas in order to keep myself motivated and have a reason to keep making images. I have now about exhausted my opportunities to keep buying and selling cameras so the concept of testing and playing with different gear has probably run its course. Besides, most cameras have now reached a point of sufficiency. What do I do now? Trying to post images of interest to local residents on a daily basis will likely wind down due to lack of suitable compositions.
As I consider what and how to photograph in this coming year I keep coming around to two thoughts. First, I need to go beyond the bounds of Homewood to make pictures, and second I will probably have to slow down and not post as frequently. I find both of these thoughts to be painful and challenging.
Another factor, but not as significant, is the number of views of my blog. I had fewer viewers in 2019 than for any year since I moved to Homewood. When I moved here in October of 2011 the majority of my viewers were from outside of the United States. As I have shifted my blog to being more about the things I see here at Homewood, and also writing about life here, to the extent that I can, the number of those viewing my blog have gone down. All that this tells me is that there probably aren’t many who live here who look at my blog, or are interested in photography, and that other outside viewers are not as interested in what I have done photographically while living here.
My answer as to what I’m going to do in 2020 is that, I don’t know, other than likely post less with fewer pictures and continue with my smaller micro 4/3 gear. I have some ideas to explore based upon the above thoughts but we will have to wait and see what gets translated into action and what evolves. My goal is to continue my phototherapy and writing, but I don’t yet know what and where I’ll photograph. I’m looking for some new projects to pursue throughout the year …. maybe something like exploring the area in and around Homewood and writing and photographing about changes in the environment.
While sitting in the car waiting for Marcia and Misty to return I noticed this hawk a good ways away. It moved once getting closer. I’m trying to remember to always put the Canon G5X Mark II in my pocket whenever I go out. I made these images through the window of my car. They were cropped and resized.