STILL LIFE 103 – FLIGHTS OF STEPS

 

 


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Looking down flights of steps with yellow edges.

Originally taken in portrait format, the image has been rotated 90 degrees anticlockwise.  The last two steps of a flight with their yellow, high-visibility safety edges are seen on the right, and there is a small landing, floored with handsome granite slabs, in the centre of the picture.  A second flight of steps descends between dark walls on the left but, because of the angle of the shot, all of the yellow edges of these steps meld together to form one yellow mass.  Another landing is dimly seen between the walls’ shadow at extreme left.

Click onto the image to open a larger version in a separate window, and click onto the larger version to enlarge it yet again.

Technique: X-T2 with 55-200 Fujinon lens at 85mm (equiv); 400 ISO; image rotation;  Lightroom, applying the Astia/Soft film simulation; York Place, Clifton, Bristol; 21 Apr 2017.
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OUTLANDS 15 – RECENTLY PRUNED TREE (MONO)

 

 


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Pruned/pollarded tree; West Littleton, South Gloucestershire; 12 Apr 2017.

This tree looks absolutely shorn, battered and blasted, but I’ve caught it a little early in the year – give it another month or two, and it will be sprouting and sending out shoots like there was no tomorrow.

Another of these shorn trees in West Littleton can be seen here.

Context about this second Outlands trip can be found here, and there are other images here: 12, 13, 14.

Click onto this image to open a larger version in a separate window, and click onto the enlarged version to further enlarge it – recommended.

Technique: X-T2 with 55-200 Fujinon lens at 215mm (equiv); 1250 ISO; LightroomSilver Efex Pro 2, starting at the Architectural preset.
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STILL LIFE 100 – KING WILLIAM AVENUE

 

 


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Traffic sign and early sunlight.

There is another picture of this wall here.

Click onto this image to open a larger version in a separate window, and click upon this enlarged image to enlarge it further.

X-T2 with 55-200 Fujinon lens at 250mm (equiv); 200 ISO; Lightroom, including the Astia/Soft film simulation; King William Avenue, central Bristol; 7 Apr 2017.
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STILL LIFE 99 – PARKED CAR REFLECTING ARCHITECTURE AND BLUE SKY

 

 

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Reflections in the bodywork of a parked car.  The blue sky can be seen left of centre, with distorted reflections of buildings around it.  The other reflections are from the car itself.

Technique: a first for this blog, in that although Lightroom has been used afterwards for final processing, this image was initially generated by the X-T2’s Raw Conversion facility.  In-camera, this facility allows Raw files to be edited in various ways – Push/Pull Processing, Film Simulation, Dynamic Range, Grain Effect, White Balance, Cropping, etc, etc – and then to be saved as jpegs while leaving the original Raw files intact.  In this case, the Raw file was given the look of Fuji’s Velvia film simulation, which (as users of Velvia film may remember), boosts colours and contrast.  Sitting down with the camera after a photo session, I find this a useful and creative way of looking through what the session has captured, as well as experimenting with the images to see what looks and crops may be eyecatching – and then saving those that appear useful.

I have a sneaking feeling that some photographic purists might consider this cheating, because I’m letting the camera do some of the processing work for me whereas I ought to be handling the whole of the processing myself in eg Lightroom.  Well, two thoughts about that.  First, I have always said – and it has always been a very core part of my photographic thinking – that all that matters in photography is the final image, irrespective of the way(s) in which it has been generated.  And second, if I generate something like this image, am I really going to expend lots of time and energy seeking to replicate it with Lightroom, when I already have something useable to hand?

Click onto the image to open a larger version in a separate window.

Technique: X-T2 with 55-200 Fujinon lens at 305mm (equiv); 200 ISO; jpeg with the Velvia film simulation generated from a Raw file in-camera; Lightroom; King Street, central Bristol; 7 Apr 2017.

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STILL LIFE 98 – TWO CARS

 

 


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Cars parked next to each other; view through the windows of one car to the car behind.

Click onto the image to open a larger version in a separate window, and click onto the larger image to enlarge it yet again.

Technique: X-T2 with 55-200 Fujinon lens at 205mm (equiv); 400 ISO; Lightroom, including adding Fuji’s Velvia colour profile; thin black border added in Color Efex Pro 4; outside Harts Bakery, Bristol; 7 Apr 2017.
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STILL LIFE 95 – BICYCLE AND PAVEMENT (MONO)

 

 


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Victoria Street, central Bristol: pushbike, pavement (aka sidewalk!); textures, shapes and many shadows.

It was towards the end of a long morning’s photography, and I was walking back towards Harts BakeryLOL! I was being irresistibly dragged there by my love of good food, might be more accurate!!!  Isn’t a total lack of willpower sometimes just wonderful?!  Or perhaps I should omit sometimes?

And, walking back along Victoria Street, it was just before I photographed these men waiting for a bus.

Click onto the image to open a larger version in a separate window, and click onto the enlarged image to enlarge it again.

Technique: X-T2 with 55-200 Fujinon lens at 305mm (equiv); 200 ISO; Lightroom; Silver Efex Pro 2, starting at the Pinhole preset and adding a tone; 24 Feb 2017.
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STILL LIFE 90 – YELLOW CHAIR WITH BLUE LEGS

 

 


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Sitting in Browns after a lot of walking and photography, looking at the interplay of light, colours, shapes and textures.

There are other pictures of chairs, and thoughts, from Browns here and here.

Click onto the image to open a larger version in a separate window, and click onto this larger image once again.

Technique: X-T2 with 55-200 Fujifilm lens at 206mm (equiv); 3200 ISO; Lightroom; rotated; Browns restaurant, central Bristol; 24 Feb 2017.
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STILL LIFE 88 – PARKED CARS

 

 

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Looking along a line of parked cars, Lower Maudlin St, central Bristol; 24 Feb 2017.

Composition: I have a visual fetish for looking along lines of objects – vehicles, buildings’ windows and facades, trees and so on – that recede into the distance.  I suppose this is something to do with the convergence of such views, and the apparently diminishing scale of the objects.  In this case there was a building site on the right, with a big, pale, solid wooden fence between it and the pavement.  In the bright sunlight, this stockade was reflecting a lot of light onto the line of closely parked cars – and so to focusing on the mirror of the nearest car to establish a prominent, solid object to tie the rest of the composition to, and then letting the camera look on down the jumbled line of metallic shapes, with empty, sunlit pavement relatively featureless on the right.  The X-T2’s APS-C sensor gives greater depths of focus than full frame sensors, but even on f8 the close-in use of a long telephoto narrows the zone of sharp focus considerably, rendering the more distant cars as increasingly vague shapes and impressions.  A couple more car mirrors add some structure to that receding line of metallic chaos, and two red brake lights add welcome hot colour.

Click onto the image to open a larger version in a separate window, and then click onto the enlarged image to enlarge it further.

Technique: X-T2 with 55-200 Fujinon lens at 305mm (equiv); 800 ISO; Lightroom.
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STILL LIFE 87 – HAND RAIL ON RED WALL, OVEREXPOSED

 

 

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Hand rail on red wall.

A rail beside a flight of steps that ascend this bright red, outside wall.  An older picture, here, puts it a little more in context.

Technique: in the bright sunlight, exposure for the shadows has caused the highlights to almost burn out, perhaps making the image more abstract.

Click onto the image to open another version in a separate window, and click again onto that image to enlarge it.

Technique: X-T2 with 55-200 Fujinon lens at 305mm (equiv); 400 ISO; Lightroom; Park Row, central Bristol; 24 Feb 2017.
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STILL LIFE 86 – PARKED CAR

 

 

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Reflections in the bodywork of a parked car; Park Street, central Bristol.

Not an easy image to comprehend and maybe not intended for comprehension.  It has been rotated 90 degrees anticlockwise.  The little door covering the fuel cap is the little circle with a raised finger hole, down just right of the picture’s centre.  Up left of that, and snaking slightly across from lower left to upper right, is the edge of the vehicle’s closed rear passenger door.

Technique: with me, with regard to photography (but maybe not much else), the great thing is not to overdo things.  And when it comes to visually overdoing things, Lightroom, with its myriad sliders, is an overdoing disaster just waiting to happen – its so easy in LR to end up unintentionally overcooked and garish – which for me is one of the few complete photographic no-no’s.  Undercooked is fine, intentionally overcooked is fine – but the real no-no is overcooking something and then trying to pass it off as reality.  So on first looking at this after processing it, I thought (and not for the first time) OMG!, what are you on, Lewis?!  But, looking back at the unprocessed image, and looking through the LR adjustments I’ve used, this is in fact not far from reality – which is a relief!  The car was not super clean, you can see dirt etc on it it you look closely but, in brilliant sunshine, it was parked next to something – and I can’t now remember what – that, on the low angle, brilliant sunshine, was extremely reflective.

Click onto the image to open a larger version in a separate window, and then click onto the enlarged image once again – recommended.

Technique: X-T1 with 55-200 Fujifilm lens at 305mm (equiv); 400 ISO; Lightroom; rotated; 20 Jan 2017.
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