I often make pictures just to see what else is there that I didn’t notice before. I had never noticed this U. S. Mini Mart on Carlisle Street before. I just thought it was a gasoline station that I have driven by many times but after looking at the picture more closely I see it is a small store that I have never heard of.
I made this image the other day while driving around. I’m still thinking about what to photograph within town and what lenses will work best. If I decide to pursue images along the streets, I prefer to do it with prime lenses.
Another issue is how to capture the scene. If I walk the sidewalks, I am often to close to capture the overall view and I have to contend with broken uneven sidewalks. If I drive by, I have to be careful and avoid other cars, which isn’t the safest thing to attempt. If I photograph from the other side of the street, I still have to contend with cars going by and parked on both sides of the roads. In addition, the distance away affects the lens focal length choice.
In the past I ended up mostly photographing details since that was easiest to get from the sidewalks. I may still have to do it that way, but I have one more thing to try. That is to move out into the residential streets where there is less traffic. Or I might give up trying to make pictures in Hanover, PA. That thought also leads to “What else is there to photograph?”
It is obvious that the color orange caught my eye for this image. It is another image where I was seeing what I could make with the X100F from within my car as I was driving around. I just set the shutter speed to 1/500 sec and photographed whatever caught my eye. When it warms up, if my knees and back allow it, I hope to walk around with the X100F camera and look more carefully for images, but not for people. In general, it is getting harder to photograph recognizable people anywhere in the developed world’s cities and towns and this will have a growing impact on street photography. I am noticing more backs of people as well as people in shadows, etc. from many of the photographers who put their work online.
I often need to rethink about why I take pictures for myself, how I like them, and for what purpose. If I really thought about the answers to these questions from another viewer’s perspective, I probably wouldn’t be taking any personal pictures since I really don’t have any thoughts about them from another’s perspective. In fact, every time I think about what the purpose is for my photography from a more encompassing outsider’s perspective, I start thinking about stopping with my blog. Many, a large majority of my local viewers are interested in the subject. I’m not. The things that attract me are the tones, colors, light, shadows, etc. and photographing scenes that others don’t, or at least in ways they don’t.
My sole purpose for my own photography is for my own entertainment and fun. I have the time since I am retired and have nothing else to do and since I am visually oriented, I like to make pictures. For me photography is a day-by-day activity. I am perfectly satisfied to take pictures every day, process them in various manners, and then trash them and start over. The only thing keeping me from immediately trashing my pictures is that I am not able to take pictures every day and I therefore often like to go back and process old photos differently.
Hmmm, now why do I publish some of them in this blog? The only reason I do it is that a few people (very few on an image-by-image basis) seem to occasionally like them or want to see them. In addition, a few photographers are interested in my thoughts from a gear perspective and how my particular uses for particular cameras might give them ideas for their own photography. In reality, I blog to create a record of my photographical exploits and I like to spend the time writing.
I am also interested in the technology within the cameras and with the software to process the images. Maybe that is because I’m a retired Aerospace Engineer. This interest in the technology is why I have continued to buy, try, and sell so many cameras, but that is slowing down since I realize that the current technology is way more sufficient than I can learn and use or need, and it is getting too expensive. Most of my cameras were purchased based upon a need for making pictures of Homewood activities and scenes for the residents. Those needs have been due to low mixed light levels and required focal lengths and shutter speeds.
Occasionally I think about what I would use if I only photographed for my personal enjoyment and not also for Homewood residents. Someday I might concentrate on one camera and one lens solely of interest to myself, at least for my personal photography. The question is, what would they be if I were to buy something new? I can spend hours researching and wondering. At the moment it is the Fujifilm X100F camera with the effective 35mm lens that I have and love using. Maybe that is all I need.
Several have noted that they never see my picture among the ones that are published here at Homewood at Plum Creek, so I thought I would remedy that. I took this picture in a mirror as I was walking past it in one of the hallways; but it didn’t look like this until I had processed it to feel like I feel, an old man.
I used the Fujifilm X100F to take the picture and then used LR in addition to some older software that I have and had almost forgotten about. I like the look and I might use the software to age some of my future pictures from around Hanover. All I would have to do is keep the cars and people out of the scenes and they would look like they could have been made years ago.
As I write this post, I’m waiting for the delivery of the Canon G7X II camera to be delivered. As I made this image, I kept thinking that I wouldn’t need to use cameras like my Fujifilm cameras if all I did was make images like this.
I use my Fuji X100F camera as my carry with me camera most of the time. As such I tend to sling it around a lot, toss it into small bags with no padding, and try not to worry about damaging it. Since I don’t like to keep putting the lens cap on or taking it off and storing it while I take a picture, I don’t use the lens cap that came with the camera very often. I therefore wanted to keep a hood on the camera all of the time to help protect the lens, but the Fujifilm hood sticks out further than I like. I then looked around for other ways to protect the front of the lens.
I first looked at a clear filter but that meant that it would be getting scratched, easily broke, etc. I then looked for other hoods and found one that I really like, and it is a lot less expensive than the Fujifilm hood. The hood I bought is the Haoge LH-X49B 2in1 All Metal Ultra-thin Lens Hood with Adapter Ring Set. As an added bonus, the original Fujifilm lens cap fits on the hood if I want to use it.
I found that this metal hood does an excellent job of protecting the X100F camera lens and doesn’t protrude far, thus making it easy to carry the camera around without ever needing to remove the hood or use a lens cap.
It has been a year since I last walked the streets of Hanover with an X100F camera, but I’m thinking about doing it again. I will probably look for a mix of scenes others would recognize along with others that attract my eye like in the above; but I’ll try and not blow out the highlights next time. This is a crop of a larger, darker picture so I wasn’t as concerned about the blown highlight area when I took it.
My computer is limping since my memory is about full so I might refrain from many more pictures or posts until after I move this year’s pictures off to another drive at the end of the year.
The sky was orange in the east this morning and since I have been thinking about alternatives for enabling my photography of more things, I put the XF 55 – 200mm lens on the X-T2 and made a picture of the horizon. It wasn’t until I had the picture on my computer and cropped into the center section that I noticed this bird.
My conclusion is that I may need to continue using this lens and making photographs of distant details. I have no desire to carry the lens far, but I need to do everything possible to continue making a variety of images and using a longer lens is one way to do this. My problem is that using this camera and lens is counter to what I most like to use. I prefer to just use my X100F camera, but my subject matter for images using it to make images for my website is limited. If I am going to continue with long focal lengths, the next issue is, what could I do with an XF 100 – 400mm lens? Could I carry and hold it? It weighs about three pounds and is not cheap.
I’ll think about my situation a little longer. At the moment I am conflicted about two alternatives. One, use a wide variety of lenses and try to photograph a wider variety of things, scenes, etc. Two, challenge myself to just use the X100F with the effective 35mm focal length and see what I can find image wise. Which one would be more fun and give me more images to show and write about?
Last night I used a different approach for taking pictures with my Fujifilm gear. I used the X100F rather than the X-T2 with the 18-55mm zoom lens. With the X100F I set the aperture to F2 and the shutter speed to 1/60 sec. and let the ISO float automatically.
My reason for photographing in this manner was to keep warmer and safer while using just one hand for the camera. I carried the X100F on a short strap around my neck, wore a warm glove on my left hand which held my cane, and kept my right hand in a pocket without a glove. When I wanted to take a picture, I used my right hand to lift the camera, turn it on, and hold it out to the limits of the strap using the LCD to compose. The strap stretched taut acted along with my right arm as sort of a tripod to keep the camera stable.
I could have used my X-T2 with a 23mm prime lens in the same manner but the X100F is lighter and easier to carry and hold in the above manner. If there is a next time, I might carry both the X100F and the X-E3 with the 18mm prime lens, but that gets more complicated with heavy clothes and two cameras hanging around my neck.
These pictures are the front of the Community Center in Homewood at Plum Creek.