STILL LIFE 124 – MORNING SUNLIGHT

 

 


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Slivers of morning sunlight on a city centre façade.

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Technique: X-T2 with 55-200 Fujinon lens at 113mm (equiv); 400 ISO; Lightroom; Narrow Lewins Mead, Bristol; 26 May 2017.
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ARCHIVE 296 – TIMBER (MONO)

 

 


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Stack of mangrove poles; Lamu, coastal Kenya; July 1978.

The (Western) human eye scans images from left to right, and from top to bottom. Here, my eye enters the image from the left, and then travels right along the parallel poles, until arrested by the vertical pole and its binding, at the far end – positioning the vertical pole on the right of the picture does not work so well.

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Technique: OM-1 with 50mm Zuiko lens; Agfa CT18 colour slide rated at 64 ISO; Silver Efex Pro.
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ARCHIVE 295 – TRAILING LEAVES

 

 


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Leaves trailing from a plant pot at The Point, Bristol harbourside; 11 Apr 2004.  

The few green leaves amongst the many leaf shadows on a featureless, bluish ground, are important here – the presence of the colour green definitely enhances the picture. 

Technique: rotated 90 degrees clockwise; OM-4 with 21mm Zuiko lens; Fuji Provia 400 colour slide rated at 3200 ISO. 

UPDATE: Minimalism, less is more; usually better than a cluttered image – the eye knows more what to look at, rather than being confused by masses of detail.  And quite a shock to see that I took this 13 years ago – I used to stalk around Bristol with this wonderfully compact 21mm lens, looking for simplicity, looking too for abstract compositions.  And I loved push-processing colour slide films (the Provia 400 here is being pushed 3 stops: 400 to 800 to 1600 to 3200), to boost the colours and contrast, and to get more grain, as seen here.
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STILL LIFE 121 – HAND RAIL

 

 


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I’m emerging from an underpass that crosses a sunken area of the city centre generally known as the Bear Pit, probably due to its lawless nature in times gone by (albeit not very far gone by …).

The sunken path that I’m following is climbing up and around to the right, and the grey hand rail on the sheer wall of the path follows that curve.  High railings to my left shed harsh shadows across the scene, and the wall to my right has various graffiti (for which read street art, in my parlance) and stickers adorning its surface.

And, this underpass and the Bear Pit having something of an uneasy reputation, having taken the shot I glanced nervously behind me – only to see another photographer taking my picture – as he said, the photographer being photographed!

This image might benefit from 90 degrees’ clockwise rotation.  See below – what do you think?

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Technique: X-T2 with 55-200 Fujinon lens at 305mm (equiv); 200 ISO; spotmetering; Lightroom, using the Velvia/Vivid film simulation; climbing up out of the Bear Pit, central Bristol; 26 May 2017..


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STILL LIFE 120 – WINDOW BOX

 

 


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Window box in Christmas Steps, a narrow and ancient alleyway in the city centre.

May sunshine was flooding across Bristol, but one side of the deep cleft of Christmas Steps was still in deep shadow.  I’m not usually someone who waits around for photos to happen, I’m usually on the move, if only slowly.  But the sunlight was inching its way around towards the Steps’ northeastern side – you could almost see the light creeping across the masonry – and I decided, this once, to be patient, because I wanted to see the light flooding across the textures of the buildings’ facades.

It seemed like an eternity, but a cat came over to see me and that passed some of the time.  And then the blazing light hit a window box, with the wall behind it still in deep shadow, and I took this picture.  The slightly open window frame is glowing in light reflected from a shop sign just out of shot on the left.

What does this picture do for me?  Well, it talks to me about peace – something not in limitless supply in the UK on this particular Sunday morning – and quiet; it talks about warm air, warm breezes and warm shadows to relax in, and some release from the pace, stresses and lowered quality of modern life.  It reminds me of pictures from more southerly climes, there’s something Mediterranean here perhaps, something not experienced over large parts of the year by us relative northerners.

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Technique: X-T2 with 55-200 Fujinon lens at 195mm (equiv); 200 ISO; spotmetering for highlights; Lightroom, using the Provia/Standard film simulation; Christmas Steps, central Bristol; 26 May 2017.
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PEOPLE 276 – WOMAN WALKING

 

 


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Bond Street: shadows, sunlight and someone, on a morning pavement.

She was always going to be anonymous – just her feet and shadow – but rotating the shot may have absorbed her still more into the overall abstract.

There is a rather different image of a man walking, here.

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Technique: X-T2 with 55-200 Fujinon lens at 153mm (equiv); 1600 ISO; spotmetering; Lightroom, adding 90 degrees clockwise rotation and using the Velvia/Vivid film simulation; central Bristol; 26 May 2017.
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PEOPLE 275 – GOING TO WORK 22

 

 


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Morning light in the city centre: blazing, angled glare, deep shadows, shiny cars, graffiti –  the walk to work through a very human, if dehumanising, landscape.

Earlier images from this series can be found here: 1, 2, 3, 45, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 1213, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20 and 21.  Each will open in a separate window.

Click onto the images to see enlarged versions in separate windows, and click upon these enlarged images to enlarge them yet again.

Technique: X-T2 with 55-200 Fujinon lens at 305mm (equiv); 400 ISO; Lightroom, using the Velvia/Vivid film simulation; Fairfax Street, central Bristol; 19 May 2017.

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STILL LIFE 117 – CAR BEHIND A WIRE FENCE

 

 

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Brooding in the shadows and all too beautiful; tantalising, seductive even; and prudently fenced off from those who might want – or perhaps even, desire – to take too close a look.

But a cold beauty now, dumb, metallic, inert, just a work of modern sculpture or an overlarge paperweight, even if all of that can be changed in an instant by the arrival of – no, not something with the elegance of Cinderella’s slipper – but more prosaically, in this mass-produced, machine-driven world, a key.

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Technique: X-T2 with 55-200 Fujinon lens at 305mm (equiv); 200 ISO; spotmetering for highlights; Lightroom, using the Velvia/Vivid film simulation; car park beside Temple Meads station, central Bristol; 26 May 2017.
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PEOPLE 268 – MAN IN A CAR

 

 


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Another early morning in the city.  I walked up Crow Lane, away from the harbour’s glistening waters, and photographed the clown poster.  Then, as I turned squinting into the bright morning light, there was a man, silhouetted, sitting in his car and totally immersed in his phone.

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Technique:  a telephoto zoom is ideal for this sort of quick, close in, intimate shot – the Fuji 55-200 (a 85-305 35mm equivalent) is often the only lens I carry.  And, when out photographing, I make a habit of frequently looking behind me – and especially so if the light is coming from behind me – and of doubling back on myself >>> you never quite know what might be lurking back there!   X-T2 with 55-200 Fujinon lens at 305mm (equiv); 400 ISO; spotmetering for the highlights; Lightroom.
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STILL LIFE 113 – HAWSER 2

 

 


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Mooring line on board the Thekla: there is another image of this ship’s hawsers, and some context, here.

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Technique: X-T2 with 55-200 Fujinon lens at 305mm (equiv); 1600 ISO; Lightroom; East Mud Dock, Bristol; 12 May 2017.
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