OUTER SUBURBS 174 – EARLY MORNING 38

 

 

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Other images in this Early Morning series – from both rural and urban settings, and from Kenya too – are here: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 .  All will open in separate windows.  You can also search on the “early morning” tag.

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

Technique: TG-5 at 100mm (equiv); 6400 ISO; spot metering; Lightroom, starting at the Camera Vivid profile; south Bristol; 10 Jan 2020.
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BIRDS 125 – FERAL PIGEON (MONO)

 

 


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Feral Pigeons on a church roof, under the dark overcast of a wet morning.

Feral (or Town) Pigeons are the descendants of the truly wild Rock Doves that in earlier times were widely kept in dovecotes for food.  They occur in a great variety of plumages, and are widely found in towns and cities.

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

Technique: Z 6 with 24-120 Nikkor lens at 75mm; 6400 ISO; Lightroom, starting at the Camera Landscape v2 profile; Silver Efex Pro 2, starting at the Grad ND (EV-1) preset, and adding a moderate Coffee tone; Weston-super-Mare, Somerset; 3 Jan 2020.
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BIRDS 124 – JACKDAW (MONO)

 


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Walking in the early morning of New Year’s Day in south Bristol, and being suddenly delighted by a storm of black bodies and whirling wings close overhead. They were Jackdaws, small crows, and this large group had recently emerged from a communal roost where they’d spent the long winter night and – garrulous, sociable, busy, noisy – they were off around Bristol’s rooftops in search of the day’s first meal. They landed on the roof of a nearby factory but, active as they were, I knew that they’d soon be aloft again in a noisy, wheeling black cloud.

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LOL!!! >>> and so to one of photography’s great sayings >>> that the best camera for the job is the one you have with you >>> and so, from my pocket, I produced something really totally unsuitable for the job ahead, the only camera I was carrying, the Olympus TOUGH TG-5.

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But the birds were on the move again even quicker than I’d anticipated, and any “photographic technique” on my part was reduced to managing to get the zoom to it longest length (100mm equivalent), pointing the little camera at the whirling flock and firing five quick, single frames.  The camera was set for spot metering, thankfully at 3200 ISO, but on this dark morning that still only gave me 1/30 second at f4.9.

I’m also a great believer in “any picture is better than no picture at all”, and in this case the slow shutter speed blurred the flailing wings to give a real sense of movement – and so to high contrast black and white processing in Lightroom and something of an impressionistic result.
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OUTER SUBURBS 171 – EARLY MORNING MIST, MAIN ROAD

 

 


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Walking amidst early morning’s dark uncertainties, the wild and welcome screams of gulls my only companions. 

And, alone still, reaching a road – with trees, mists, lights, and the sky slowly brightening.

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

Technique: TG-5 at 38mm (equiv); 6400 ISO; Lightroom, starting at the Camera Portrait profile; south Bristol; 30 Dec 2019.
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OUTER SUBURBS 170 – EARLY MORNING 35

 

 


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Other images in this Early Morning series – from both rural and urban settings, and from Kenya too – are here: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 .

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

Technique: TG-5 at 100mm (equiv); 800 ISO; spot metering; Lightroom, starting at the Camera  Portrait profile; south Bristol; 5 Dec 2019.
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BRISTOL 158 – HAPPY CHRISTMAS!!!

 

 


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HAPPY CHRISTMAS EVERYONE, AND THE HOPE THAT 2020

WILL TREAT YOU ALL KINDLY.

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AND THOUGHTS TOO FOR THOSE IN THIS WORLD WHO ARE SUFFERING ADVERSITY >>> HOPE TOO FOR THEM,  IRRESPECTIVE OF THEIR RACE, CREED, NATIONALITY, GENDER, SEXUAL ORIENTATION, AGE, DISABILITIES, ETC ETC >>> ALL THE USUAL SUSPECTS! – WHICH OUR SPECIES SO HABITUALLY USES AS THE BASES FOR DIVISION, HATRED AND OPPRESSION.

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Christmas lights over central Bristol – click onto the image twice to view an enlarged version in a separate window.
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TALKING IMAGES 51 – THE OLYMPUS TG-5 AT FULL STRETCH

 

 


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WALKING IN THE NAUTICAL TWILIGHT!

LOL!!! >>> early morning walking on the day before the Winter Solstice – this was taken yesterday at 0715, and Google tells me that dawn in Bristol was at 0733 yesterday, Dec 21st.  So this is apparently during what is known as Nautical Twilight, which is when the Sun is between 12 and 6 degrees below the horizon, i.e. not yet risen but still providing some brightness.  This form of twilight is known as Nautical because the horizon and some stars are visible, so permitting navigation at sea on clear days.  But there are no stars visible here, because the darkness above the horizon was a thick, dark rain cloud, which was about to empty its contents quite accurately onto The FATman!

SOMETHING FOR THE TECHIES …

Well, Nautical Twilight, we live and learn, but the real point of this photo are the technicalities – which I know will immediately send most of you glassy eyed and soporific.  (Well, OK, good point, more glassy eyed and soporific …)  But here is the TG-5 working almost flat out – the handheld exposure, using spot metering for the highlights, was 1/13th second at f 4.2; 6400 ISO; 74mm (equiv) focal length.  There was nothing convenient to lean on in an attempt to steady the shot, so I had to rely on the camera’s built in stabilisation.  The TG-5 will go up to 12,800 ISO but looking at the grain in this photo, after processing in Lightroom, the grain at 12,800 must be really something else >>> although that might not stop me using that ISO in the future!

I don’t think the picture is pin-sharp but, as always, that is not overly important to me.  What is important to me is that this little camera has just about managed to cope with the conditions prevailing on this wet early morning, and that it has enabled me to produce a pretty accurate representation of the scene, of what it was like being there – the thin, wan light on the southeastern horizon, the dark cloud threatening rain, the silhouettes of the bare winter trees, and that single lit window – people up and about early, getting ready for a probably dull and wet, winter’s day in south Bristol.

You can enlarge this image in a separate window by clicking twice onto it – recommended.

BIG BOYS’ TOYS!

But I’m not a techie, far less, and >>> oh thank heavens!!! >>> not a Pixel Peeper either!  Every week, Amateur Photographer magazine keeps me up with the latest advances in digital cameras, some of which I understand, some of which I don’t.  But the bottom line is that I’m simply interested in cameras that do the business, that come up with the goods.  My criteria are basic: I want a camera to be (reasonably) lightweight, compact and robust, with good ergonomics (i.e. feeling natural and intuitive to handle/use), and one that is capable of working in diverse light conditions – including (definitely without a tripod NB!) the murk pictured above.

Some people apparently want to be seen with cameras that look good, that perhaps are thought to add something to their image, but such feelings interest me not in the slightest – I just want a camera that does the job, and that doesn’t break my nearly 70 year old back!

One thing that attracts me about photography is that it enables me to be creative, to express my artistic side – relatively easily.  Recently I read a book on oil painting, which is something I thought might be interesting, before quite quickly coming to the conclusion that I lack both the necessary skills (my drawings have always been truly terrible) and – equally importantly –  the patience required.  Far better to stick with my cameras!

Another thing that attracts me to photography is that it is a meeting of science and the arts, and that to be done successfully it needs a bit of both disciplines.  Which of course leads to those more interested in the technology, and in my experience this is mainly a male thing – Big Boys’ Toys!  Just how Politically Incorrect can I get???  The thing is, I have recurring eyewitness accounts of a photography group who go out to various locations to take pictures – when the women actually do take pictures whereas most of the men spend at least some of the time discussing the relative merits of their camera gear!  Well, I do want to fit in, so maybe I should buy a powerful sports convertible with one of these overlarge, super noisy exhausts – mid-life crisis (a bit late, as it happens …) here I come!!!

AND SO TO THE BOTTOM LINE

And so to the bottom line, via a quote from Amateur Photographer’s Deputy Editor, Geoff Harris, last week:

I really do believe a major part of being a successful photographer is not only to become technically competent and to know your camera inside out, but also to be able to spot a unique opportunity in the first place.  I guess that is what people mean when they talk about “developing your eye”, but this essential skill only comes about through experience.

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BRISTOL 157 – MARSH STREET (MONO)

 

 


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The built environment – rigid, cold, blank, straight-sided – and the barely seen, soft and natural roundnesses of a small, warm, living thing.

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

Technique: Z 6 with 70-300 Nikkor lens at 105mm; 6400 ISO; in-camera processing of the raw file, using the Graphite profile; Marsh Street, central Bristol; 29 Nov 2019.
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PEOPLE 380 – DRIVER IN THE MODERN WORLD

 

 

She is at the wheel – and on wheels too – comfortably cocooned in metal, plastics and glass, all powered up and ready to go. 

But glancing around, perhaps for some human contact, for some respite from this purely blank, mechanically mobile world, the view outside – as inside – is only of endless artificiality, only of yet more, transient cocoons, passing on anonymously by.

Click onto the image twice to enlarge it – recommended.

Technique: Z 6 with 70-300 Nikkor lens used in APS-C format to give 450mm; 6400 ISO; Lightroom, starting at the Camera Dramatic profile; Bristol city centre; 29 Nov 2019.
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OUTER SUBURBS 160 – EARLY MORNING 31

 

 


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Clear morning, early December.

Other images in this Early Morning series – from both rural and urban settings, and from Kenya too – are here: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 Each will open in a separate window.

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

Technique: TG-5 at 100mm (equiv); 800 ISO; Lightroom, starting at the Camera Vivid profile; south Bristol; 4 Dec 2019.
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