ARCHIVE KENYA 94 – SOMETIME EARLIER IN THE WORLD – AGAIN

 

 


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Sunrise at the mouth of the Njoro River at Lake Nakuru, Kenya; Jan 1978.  I showed this scene in colour in an earlier post – and that version is again shown, below.

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The colour version more reflects reality.  The colour is a little “off”, but then this is a decades old colour transparency that spent many years in the tropics, often as a valued part of slide presentations.

The mono version is rougher, grainier.  There is more structure in the mist, which I like.  And rather more detail and contrast in the foreground which, again, does it for me.  But what do you think? 

Click onto the “early morning” tag (below) to see more images from the early hours of the day.  

Click on each image to open a larger version in a separate window – recommended.

Here is the colour post’s text:

Early morning mists rise above the lake and, as the sun appears, everything is flooded by warm, golden light – a scene seemingly from long ago in the world that has always fascinated me.  Here is something primeval, here we are an irrelevance.

The gaunt skeletons of trees out in the lake are Yellow-barked Acacias that were killed as the lake’s soda-rich waters rose up around them.

There are two types of birds here.  Those holding their wings out to dry, and those perching on the dead trees, and those very faintly seen bottom right, are Cormorants – the same species as found in Europe.  The dark scrum of larger birds at the lake’s edge are White Pelicans – one great head and neck can be seen as, preening, a bird reaches deep into its plumage.

Technique: tripod-mounted OM-2 with 400mm Vivitar lens; Agfa CT 18 colour slide film, rated at 64 ISO.

THE ARCHIVE KENYA SERIES

I’m re-posting photographs that I took in Kenya over 30 years ago.  You can find more context here .  Click onto the “Archive Kenya” tag (below) to see more of these film images from Kenya.

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ARCHIVE: LOOKING AT CARS 13 – EARLY MORNING, TEALHAM MOOR

 

 


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Early morning mist, Tealham Moor, south of Wedmore; 8 Apr 2015.

The old and the new.  A smart new vehicle coming south down the tarmac of Jack’s Drove at a good pace and, next to it,  the water-filled ditch (rhyne) which has been here for a century or two, well back into the times when the only vehicles along here were horse drawn.

The rhyne acts as the fence around the field of pasture visible on the right, the gate of which is accessed from the drove via the little bridge.  The metal gate, which is hardly visible on the right, has wooden rails at its sides to stop ever venturesome cattle from trying to squeeze around it and escape.  The droves are tracks between the fields which allow farmers to access their land without crossing that of others.

The Looking at Cars series: looking back through the nine years of the FATman Photos archives (and some new images too), I’m posting pictures of cars in various contexts and styles.  Earlier Looking at Cars posts are here: 1 (with context); 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 .

Click onto the “early morning” tag (below) to see more images from the early hours of the day.  

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

Technique: D700 with 70-300 Nikkor lens at 270mm; 400 ISO.

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ARCHIVE KENYA 84 – SOMETIME EARLIER IN THE WORLD

 

 


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Sunrise at the mouth of the Njoro River at Lake Nakuru, Kenya; Jan 1978.

Early morning mists rise above the lake and, as the sun appears, everything is flooded by warm, golden light – a scene seemingly from long ago in the world that has always fascinated me.  Here is something primeval, here we are an irrelevance.

The gaunt skeletons of trees out in the lake are Yellow-barked Acacias that were killed as the lake’s soda-rich waters rose up around them.

There are two types of birds here.  Those holding their wings out to dry, and those perching on the dead trees, and those very faintly seen bottom right, are Cormorants – the same species as found in Europe.  The dark scrum of larger birds at the lake’s edge are White Pelicans – one great head and neck can be seen as, preening, a bird reaches deep into its plumage.

Click onto the “early morning” tag (below) to see more images from the early hours of the day.  

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

Technique: tripod-mounted OM-2 with 400mm Vivitar; Agfa CT 18 colour slide film, rated at 64 ISO.

THE ARCHIVE KENYA SERIES

I’m re-posting photographs that I took in Kenya over 30 years ago.  You can find more context here .  Click onto the “Archive Kenya” tag (below) to see more of these film images from Kenya.

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ARCHIVE 559 – OUR FRIEND, AGED THREE (MONO)

 

 


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One of the wonderful little girls in our lives – aged three and giving the camera a fleeting look.  9 Sept 2012.

I suppose this is high key mistiness – good old Minimalist “less is more” maybe – and I want to try more images in this vein.

I’ve used the Antique Plate II preset in SEP2 as a starting point, and converted its rectangular vignette to a circular one.  Her eyes were a little too sharp – that 105mm is really something else! – so I’ve reduced their structure and added a little blur.

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

Technique: D700 with 105mm Nikkor lens; 6400 ISO; converted to mono in Silver Efex Pro 2.

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ARCHIVE 548 – A WONDERFUL SURPRISE (MONO)

 

 


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I had a wonderful surprise yesterday (8 Apr 2015).  I was out early in thick mist on Tealham Moor, on the Somerset Levels, seeing not a lot through the viewfinder but firing off frames into the murk regardless, knowing that the pictures would be better seen and comprehended on my PC’s screen.  (As a side note, I kept the camera on +2/3 stops exposure compensation to better capture the mist’s delicate nuances).

Anyway, I took two pictures of a metal gate and its wooden side rails next to a water-filled ditch and, in the first picture, looking at it on the PC at home, that’s what I got – the gate, the ditch and the mist.

But in the second picture (shown above), which was taken only moments after the first, there is a diminutive but very distinctive silhouette on the gate’s wooden side rails – sometime in the 13 seconds between the first and second shots, a Kingfisher had landed on the fence, to use it as a vantage point for spotting fish in the waters below >>> and, busy taking the picture, I had been quite unaware of it!

Wow, bring it on, Nature simply never fails to get to me!  I am of course an ex-birder with a vast regard for birds, but a Natural event like this is to me something fundamentally simple – as well as being something priceless, something quite beyond value, which certainly lifts my quality of life.

Click onto the “early morning” tag (below) to see more images from the early hours of the day.

Click onto this image to open a larger version in a separate window – highly recommended.

Technique: D700 with 70-300 Nikkor lens at 300mm; 800 ISO; Dfine 2; Silver Efex Pro 2, starting at the Darken Contrast Vignette preset.

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ARCHIVE KENYA 58 – MT KENYA (MONO)

 

 


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Mt Kenya, seen from the gate of Mt Kenya National Park; August 1978.

The dark highland forest surrounding the mountain has mist clouds. Above this forest is a great mass of slightly paler, hummocky country known as the Vertical Bog, a steep and muddy section. Further up again, are bare rock, ice and snow.

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

Technique: OM-1 with 75-150 Zuiko lens; Agfa CT18 colour slide film rated at 64 ISO; converted into mono with Alien Skin’s Exposure 2.

THE ARCHIVE KENYA SERIES

I’m re-posting photographs that I took in Kenya over 30 years ago.  You can find more context here .  Click onto the “Archive Kenya” tag (below) to see more of these film images from Kenya.

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ARCHIVE KENYA 51 – DAWN MISTS AT LAKE NAKURU (MONO)

 

 


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Dawn mists rising from Lake Nakuru in central Kenya; Jan 1978. 

The large birds with huge bills in the foreground are White Pelicans.  In the lake behind them are the remains of trees that, flooded by the lake, have been killed by the high concentration of sodium bicarbonate in its waters.  Cormorants  perch on these dead trunks, and there is also a nest of sticks.  Around the bottom of these trees, three flamingos are feeding, heads down in the water.  More pelicans are further out on the lake, fading into the haze.

Click onto the “early morning” tag (below) to see more images from the early hours of the day.

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

Technique: Vivitar 400mm telephoto on Olympus SLR, mounted on a tripod.

THE ARCHIVE KENYA SERIES

I’m re-posting photographs that I took in Kenya over 30 years ago.  You can find more context here .  Click onto the “Archive Kenya” tag (below) to see more of these film images from Kenya.

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ARCHIVE 531 – FANTASY IN INFRARED

 

 


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Mist on Tadham Moor, and the road past the Magic Carpark given the look of colour infrared film, courtesy of Nik’s excellent Color Efex Pro 4 image editing software.

One of my aims with this blog is to present a variety of imagery.  This is both to stimulate and perhaps even enthral those looking at these posts – and also to keep myself on my toes in terms of imagination and creativity.  Producing a blog with a constant theme might be a way to attract a large and loyal number of viewers who enjoy that theme, but I have to hold up my hands and admit to not being able to resist going here and there, following where my imagination takes me, and here is an example.

Its a core belief of mine that its always worth looking long and hard at images – and I (and many others too) have found that returning to an image weeks, months or even years after it was captured can and does inspire new ideas and new ways of looking at it.  Indeed, some photographers make a point of never working on their images soon after they have been taken but, instead, of always coming back to them some days or even weeks after the event – with fresh minds and well rested eyes.

I am not returning to this particular image long after it was taken, but I have subjected it to another of my core routines, which is to look at it long and hard before deciding upon what, if anything, to do with it.  What sorts of things to I think about in this situation? – well, colour/mono/both, possible types of crop, potential for rotation/flipping, effects of various software edits, etc.

And experimenting (which is another way of saying “playing around”!) in Color Efex Pro 4 I came upon this infrared colour film filter, and was instantly attracted by its effect here.  There are of course the mysterious silhouettes and the warm orange glow, but this is not like simply using some kind of orange filter because the colours of the tarmac road and its grass verges are still faintly visible.  Whether this image will stand the test of time – whether I’ll still like it in a month’s or year’s time – is another matter but, for now, here it is.

Other thoughts.  Does it represent reality?  No, of course not but, as I say, I like the look of it, and if I like the look of it – its in! 🙂  

And fantasy – well, ok, what’s out there beyond those “last two trees”?  If you’re a TOLKIEN fan, are we standing on the edge of the desolation wrought by the dragon SMAUG, looking out on a land ravaged by his fire and covered by rolling clouds of glowing smoke?  I’ll go along with that.  And who, or what, is going to appear in all that smoke, dimly seen at first but growing ever more stark, as they trudge up this road trying to escape a vast and monstrous foe that, for all of their lives, has just been an old and half-forgotten legend, the stuff of childhood nightmares, the stuff of fireside tales?

Click onto the image to see a larger version in a separate window – recommended.

Technique: D700 with 70-300 Nikkor lens at 230mm; 200 ISO; Color Efex Pro 4; the Somerset Levels; 8 Apr 2015.

UPDATE 2020: well, its considerably more than a year after this image was posted, and yes I certainly do still like it >>> and I am certainly still a fan of The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings!

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OUTER SUBURBS 240 – I DIDN’T LIKE MY FAMILY SO I MADE A NEW ONE

 

 


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Well, I’m still walking in the lockdown, usually leaving home at 0530.  The lighter summer mornings make early starts easier, and I relish the emptiness the lockdown has brought.  Although there is some traffic about – and with the lockdown loosening that has increased a little – in the course of walking for two hours I may only see 10 or fewer other pedestrians at this early hour.  And the fact that some of us now regularly encounter each other has brought a welcome camaraderie – a greeting, a few words exchanged, always at many yards’ distance – which brings a little more sense of normality, a little less desolation in the midst of all this quiet emptiness.

I’ve mapped out a route for walking along which, in most places, there are spaces that make it easier to distance myself from oncoming people.  Those out running are the main problem, and I am by no means the first to notice that many (but not all) of them simply run straight towards you, spraying out great lungfuls of moist breath and evidently expecting you to get out of their way.  Me being me, I have on a couple of occasions refused to move, and have seen the shocked looks as they veer suddenly to one side at the last moment.  This pandemic has revealed many interesting aspects of human psychology.

But the point of this post is to pass onto you something strange.   For there is one short section of my long walk that I have for some bizarre reason grown to like and welcome each early morning – and it is the scene above.  This is a long, wide, dead straight road, a major thoroughfare, that our really totally inadequate and inept local authority has chosen to place a 20mph speed limit on.  And as I walk out onto this road and look to my left, I see the scene above.  There is a lovely grove of trees on the right that always have squirrels around them, and occasionally foxes too.  And further up on the same side of the road there is a little patch of red, that is a lurid advertisement on the side of a bus shelter.  And beyond are the slopes of Dundry Hill which – on this particular morning – had lovely mist in the treetops along its summit.

And I can’t explain why, but every time I come out onto this big, empty, quiet road, and look up towards the lurid red poster on the bus stop and the green hill behind, I have definite feelings of peace, calm and belonging.  And I also have a feeling that when that poster and the lockdown are gone, that this place will not affect me in the same way.  And so I’ve taken a few photos to remind me of this scene, to help remind me of how these strange days were – and here are some of these pics.  And I’ve remembered that, as always, Life itself can be strange.

Click onto the “early morning” tag (below) to see more images from the early hours of the day.

Click onto each image to open a larger version in a separate window – recommended for the first two shots only!!!

Technique: TG-5; Lightroom; south Bristol; June 2020.
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Getting closer to the bus stop: the poster and the misty hilltop now more plainly in view.
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LOL!!! and here is “the artwork” itself.  I have not the slightest idea what its advertising – but I like the lurid red!!!

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ARCHIVE 516 – WOMAN IN THE FOG (MONO)

 

 


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Woman walking down the Wells Road in south Bristol on a foggy morning; 13 Mar 2014.

The G11 produces images that are already below full (i.e. 35mm) frame in size, and this is a substantial enlargement from one of those images.  Hence image grain has played its part here, and I’ve added to this with grain from SEP2.   This is a dank, foggy morning, all things are diffuse, and this very visible grain adds to that effect.

Where is she going?  She is hurrying down the pavement and, first drawn to that great catapult of a Plane tree, my eye is then drawn left to her – she and the tree are both very dark objects surrounded by light.  She is the stark, central point between the converging lines of the pavement and its attendant trees, which are dissolving off into the distance.  She is headed into that convergence.

The dark mistiness of the road is also headed down that way (with ghosts of buildings just visible over on the right), and a line of road markings, the brightest things in the frame, confirm that direction.

And what of her?  She is hurrying – to work probably, or to some appointment perhaps.  The morning was not really cold, but her coat, wide-brimmed hat and boots add to the inclement effect.

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

Technique: Canon G11 PowerShot at 28mm (equivalent); 200 ISO; Silver Efex Pro 2, starting at the Film Noir 1 preset.

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