I am still thinking about different ways to make images of Hanover. Since it is pouring rain and in the 40s this morning, I am limited to looking back at previous images I have made and sorting out some different ideas through editing. One idea that might be different would be to make images of the many industrial sites around town that most others driving through wouldn’t know about.
I haven’t decided about this version of processing. I have looked at monochrome and higher contrast color several times in the past. I tried the style displayed here just to get an idea of how it worked. I need to let it “bake” for a while before I make up my mind.
I was out walking around Hanover, PA the other day trying a different lens. For some reason, I decided to snap the above view of Royal Farms when this automobile drove into my composition. I noticed this morning that it is an Abarth Car. I had never heard of it, so I looked it up. Looks like a jazzed-up Fiat.
I bought a new copy of the Panasonic 20mm F1.7 lens to use on my Olympus PEN-F camera as I go around the Hanover area. My hope is to use this camera-lens combination for the majority of my street scenes around Hanover. The above images are from when I was trying out the use of F1.7 aperture in pretty good lighting as well as when I was trying to carry the camera in my hand without a neck strap. The F1.7 aperture works fine, the carrying in my hand not so well. I have gone back to a short neck strap.
I want to try this setup since it is smaller and fits in a jacket or vest pocket or small bag. It also brings back fond memories of my trip to Ireland where I made similar images with an older version of the lens and camera. Several of those pictures are hanging on my wall next to my computer.
My goal is to use this lens to make more images from around Hanover. I think I have photographed about every inch of Homewood if not once, multiple times, and I need to move on to something else. When the weather gets better I hope to walk and concentrate on photographing Hanover and spending more time at it. While I am out photographing Hanover, I hope to work on several different projects/ideas/aspects of the area and capture the aura of Hanover as it currently exists.
I have made one post and a book of a Homewood tour of Ox Paper Tube & Core (one of their buildings above) and I would like to make other books of various aspects of Hanover. When it comes to displaying Hanover pictures in my blog I am not sure of what to do. I might occasionally do a short series of particular features. For now, I’m just interested in making pictures that I can edit later into potential books.
I wanted to try the Leica D-Lux 6 on the streets of Hanover, so I went to the square in between rains and made a quick loop around the block. Sorry for the repeats of previous pictures, but I wanted to get a feel for the differences with lighting, camera, processing, etc.
This processing style seems to work for these images. I’ll have to see how I like it with other lighting conditions, etc. this summer since I’m currently thinking that this camera will be my primary camera for my street photography around Hanover.
I am still looking for a theme for continuing to make pictures of the surrounding area for a possible book. My thoughts when looking at these older images were about Hanover having been left behind. I might see if that theme works for expanding out to the surrounding areas.
One thing I discovered when looking back through my older images was that I had used a lot of longer focal length lenses with various camera systems and that I generated a lot of detail or close-up views. I don’t think I will continue using the longer lenses. I never found a theme when looking that way and I now think a stronger, or at least different, theme might exist within the larger overall views when using normal to wider prime lenses.
I still am conflicted about a processing style, but that will depend upon the general emotion that I feel from my images if I make a book. The style of the above images is a little different then I have used before in that it is a higher contrast color style. I may use it, or I might switch to a B&W style depending upon which best supports the way I view the underlying theme. Old-time B&W images look more like it used to be but doing them in color might make a better point that it is like this today.
I want to get back to making pictures of Hanover and the surrounding area when the weather gets warmer; but, I haven’t decided upon a theme(s). I would like to present a story of Hanover, but I’m not sure what that is. I don’t really want to just wander around photographing whatever I see. If I do another series of Hanover pictures I would like to go looking for, and photograph, images that tell a story.
All of my life I have been future oriented; but, most images of Hanover are past oriented. People prefer to remember how it was. Businesses try to upgrade and preserve their products. Homeowners, at least some of them, restore their homes and outbuildings to look like they once did. I am more concerned about what it will be like in the future; but I am not sure as to how to use today’s pictures to express those concerns.
Is the future one of more decay and empty buildings and fewer jobs, or is it continual repairs and striving to maintain the past? Or is it something else? I am open to ideas.
I am tired of sitting around and not having a purpose for making pictures. I am tired of playing with different camera settings, etc. like I was when I made the above pictures early this morning. I am “subject starved”. I have multiple good high-quality cameras and lenses but don’t take them out looking for things and reasons to photograph, especially this time of the year. In addition, there are fewer events, etc. for me to photograph this time of year at Homewood. I need to stir-up my energy, opportunities, and reasons to make pictures. At times in the past I have resorted to carrying a small pocket camera with the hope that I would see something, anything, and make pictures of it, but the thought never lasted long enough, and it never seemed to help. I needed a purpose or goal or idea of what I wanted to do with a camera.
This winter I have been thinking about various projects for when the weather improves, but I haven’t launched any of them yet. I just haven’t gotten motivated enough to overcome the weather conditions yet, but I’m getting closer. I still have some testing to do to get a firmer idea of what I’m going to photograph and what style to use.
If you have been reading my posts for long, you know that this isn’t a new situation. I have always been anxious when I didn’t have a reason or goal leading me towards a subject and style of images. My most enjoyable time in the last few years was when I was making pictures and producing a photography book with pictures of crafts and etc. here at Homewood. I need a new thrust or idea like that book gave me, so I am going to take on a self-inflicted challenge.
I have long felt that cameras have passed the point of sufficiency from a technical perspective. Too many of us have become engrossed with the technicalities, with the number of megapixels, the dynamic range, the resolution, the lack of noise at higher ISO settings, etc. I would like to get away from those considerations.
My idea is to make some books with pictures from around Hanover that are different from others. One of my self-imposed limitations is to make the pictures with a small sensor, point and shoot camera. In the past I have been confronted several times when I was using a DSLR camera with a zoom lens on the streets of Hanover. People here are very private/paranoid and thought that I might have been working for a newspaper or someone else and they wanted to know why I was taking pictures of their buildings, etc.; thus, one reason for a less threatening pocket camera.
Another reason for a small lightweight camera is due to the fact that I have arthritis and other problems in my fingers and I can’t hold or carry heavy camera-lens combos for long. I also have back, knee, and balance problems, so I use a cane or walking stick and prefer to use a camera with one hand; another reason for a small camera which has image stabilization and some zoom capability.
I have been using a TG-4 as I explored some ideas for projects, but I decided to upgrade to the TG-5 to see if it was better. So far it is certainly worth it, at least in darker conditions. The processor is faster and more capable, and the initial images have better IQ with less noise than the TG-4. I will make some comparison images later to get a better feel for how much better the jpeg and raw files might be in good light. I also like the external controls better. It is easier to adjust exposure, zoom, etc. As far as I know, Olympus is the only camera manufacturer who is still improving the small 1/2.3 sensor cameras. Everyone else has given up to the smart phones; but, they represent an entirely different set of ergonomic issues and don’t yet include the zoom range, controls, capabilities, and the ruggedness of the TG-5. While I don’t plan on using the TG-5 underwater or at a pool or beach, ruggedness is of value to me if I drop it, especially with numb fingers in the rain or snow.