We didn’t get much rain yesterday but it does seem that the weather is shifting towards being wetter which is good. It has been dry. I made these images while sitting in the car waiting to go inside for a medical checkup.
I’m still frustrated with my photography so I’m going to try and also shift it a little. I have been using the Pentax KP and zoom lenses to make mostly snapshots of things around the campus. I’m going back to using mostly my smaller cameras, the Fuji X100V and the Olympus TG-6 and at the same time try and shift my views, etc. We will have to wait and see if I can succeed in making significant changes.
When we have been ordering groceries for pick up recently, we never get a full order. It always seems that at least half of our order is out of stock and we aren’t attempting to order paper products which the store website says is out of stock. We only order what is supposedly in stock according to the store website. I wonder how long this will go on. Is this the new normal?
In some ways, it might be the new normal for an extended period. Many businesses are not going to make it through the lockdowns, all around the world. These businesses going out of business will in itself create additional disruptions to supply lines and might create even more items being temporarily out of stock. Add in the trade wars and the impacts of increasingly severe weather due to climate changes and we might be in for a future of continually adjusting what we can buy and thus eat.
I fully expect the new normal to be a continuous set of adjustments to dealing with everything from the virus to longer term financial realities. While I’m hoping for things to get better, I really won’t be surprised if they are as bad or worse. I might need to move into a depression era style of photography.
While the future won’t be like the past, or current conditions, I’m still relying on my past experiences to adjust for a different photography future. While doing that I reworked some older images, shown here, that I had made last year with a pocket camera.
I expect to go back to carrying a rugged pocket camera when I’m out of the house and to be using it to make a greater percentage of the images that you will hopefully be seeing on this blog. I would like to photograph scenes similar to these but that depends upon how much, and where, I’ll be able to go.
Another variable that I expect to get wilder is the weather. It seems that we swing from one extreme to another and that it gets both wetter and dryer, warmer and colder, and windier. We could even end up having more of a problem with hurricanes this summer, so I’m trying to be prepared for that as well with waterproof cameras.
While staying in, I got curious about what I could see with weather cams. I took a look at the one overlooking the Hanover, PA square and captured two images from the weather cam. I then resized them and applied a little processing. The first image was made between 1 and 2 pm on 31 March, and the second image was made after midnight on 1 April 2020 when it rained.
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.