PEOPLE 262 – WOMAN WITH BLUE NAILS

 

 


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As so often happens, a grab shot – time for only one, very quick shot –  as passing traffic momentarily slowed down.  Luckily I had the camera set to spot metering linked to the active autofocus point, something I’m using quite a lot at the moment.  And the telephoto zoom was fully extended.  I just raised the camera to my eye, it found focus on her hand almost instantaneously, and I fired.

What do I think about this image?  Well, a passing soul, a passing someone, a stranger to me as I am to her, someone going somewhere.  But now, I suppose, part of a design, resting her fingers upon – or is she helping support?! – a curving metallic blueness set in a photographically enhanced darkness.  And if I could produce more such images, of beings in artificial, abstract realities, I would.

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

Technique: X-T2 with 55-200 Fujinon lens at 305mm (equiv); 800 ISO; Lightroom, including the Classic Chrome film simulation; Park Street, central Bristol; 7 Apr 2017.
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ARCHIVE 289 – LUO FAMILY

 

 


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Luo family on a farm near Akala, in the far west of Kenya; April 1979.

The backdrop is the painted wall of a wattle and daub hut, the smooth surface layer of which is starting to flake off on the far right.  Minor points, maybe that I’ve only really appreciated now, after all these years, are the Vicks poster and the kitten.

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

OM-1 with 50mm Zuiko; Agfa CT18 colour slide, rated at 64 ISO.

UPDATE: The people in Kenya were in the main very friendly and hospitable.  I very much enjoyed my years in that country.  Again – once again – I wish that I had photographed more of the people that I met there.

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PEOPLE 261 – GOING TO WORK 21

 

 


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Woman driver, an anonymous someone in the morning rush hour – a picture to look deeply into, almost abstract, a traveller cocooned in a cacophony of reflection.

Again a grab shot, the traffic surged forward, momentarily paused, and there was just time for a single, frantic shot before the great metal torrent streamed off again on its way into the city.

This is a restricted crop from the very centre of the image, but the X-T2’s 24 megapixels in the less than full-frame sized APS-C sensor certainly helps when using such small parts of the capture.

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 and 20.  Each will open in a separate window.

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

Technique: X-T2 with 55-200 Fujifilm lens at 276mm (equiv); 12,800 ISO; Lightroom; Temple Gate, Bristol; 24 Feb 2017.

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STILL LIFE 89 – WARM LIGHT

 

 

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The start of the day.  Warm, early light and many shadows.

Click onto the image to open a new version in a separate window, and click onto that new version once more.

Technique: X-T2 with 55-200 Fujinon lens at 276mm (equiv); 6400 ISO; Lightroom; near Temple Meads, Bristol; 24 Feb 2017.
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PEOPLE 256 – GOING TO WORK 19

 

 

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The overcrowded and overwarm world of the bus to work in winter: morning rush hour, Temple Gate, Bristol; 24 Feb 2017.

Technique: a desperate grab shot.  As has happened before, a bus full of rush hour commuters passes and there is time for a single shot – only I’d failed to raise the ISO in the poor light, and so to a moving target and an exposure of 1/10th second with a 276mm (equiv) telephoto and (mercifully!) image stabilisation on (as it always is).  And, of course, less vibration because of the lack of mirror slap on a mirrorless camera.

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

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

Technique: X-T2 with 55-200 Fujinon lens at 276mm (equiv); 800 ISO; Lightroom.
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PEOPLE 254 – FACE AT A WINDOW

 

 

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Yes she’s in the Berkeley Square Hotel but, as one senior denizen was heard to murmur … in a rather dignified and mountainous murmur it must be said … “One feels that she’s been here forever, don’t you know, a real fixture if ever one saw one …”.

But is she a fixture or a fitting in that august establishment?  Fixtures and fittings?  Or is one – me, a Brit actually – just playing with one’s language???   All is not what she seems …

Technique: X-T2 with 55-200 Fujifilm lens at 305mm (equiv); 800 ISO; Lightroom; Berkeley Square, central Bristol; 24 Feb 2017.
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PEOPLE 253 – WOMAN AT A CASHPOINT (MONO)

 

 

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The morning stop for cash – Park Street, central Bristol; 2 Dec 2016.

Three dark elements, two for automatically dispensing and one for gratefully (or maybe even indifferently) receiving. 

I was struck by this tall, dark figure and the shadows (accentuated a little here) cast by her wide-brimmed hat: she is restocking her purse with the spending ammunition required for the day ahead.

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

Technique: D700 with 70-300 Nikkor lens at 300mm; 12,800 ISO; Silver Efex Pro 2, starting at the Architectural preset.
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ARCHIVE 276 – PENZANCE MANNEQUIN, SUNSWEPT (MONO)

 

 

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Mannequin in a shop window, Penzance, Cornwall; 14 Sept 2011.

We were in Penzance on a brilliantly sunny day and potential pictures were all around – I’ve already posted some here.  This dummy was in a window facing straight into the blinding glare, and the combination of her extravagant hat and the patterns that the rim of this hat spread over her blankly staring face drew me towards her.  Post-capture, I thought of enhancing the whites of her eyes but decided that they’re ok as they are.

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

Technique: D700 with 70-300 Nikkor lens at 300mm; 400 ISO; converted to mono in Silver Efex Pro 2.

UPDATE: after all this time, still very much amongst my very favourite images.  I’ve found that to be a thing about blogging – I post an image that I’m (nearly always!) totally enthusiastic about at the time, but I’ve noticed that attitude can change over time, so that sometimes I can look back at past posts, and either think their images simply ok or, then again, not really that good.  But then there are the images that, old as they may be, I still feel really good about – and here is one.  And this is a healthy process, I think, probably one that we all do – we change over time, our visual perceptions and tastes change over time, we are moving on.

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STILL LIFE 78 – THE UPPER DECK OF A BUS, ON A SUNNY DAY

 

 

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Upstairs on an empty bus, at a stop in central Bristol.

At the top, the picture all is peace, happiness and light – the bus’s seats and windows, illuminated by a bright sunny morning.

But below is darker, and those eyes are looking – rather too intently, I do think – only at you.

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

Technique: X-T1 with 55-200 Fujinon lens at 250mm (equiv); 800 ISO; 20 Jan 2017.
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TALKING IMAGES 25 – AN IMAGE THAT BLOWS ME AWAY

 

 

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A key objective of FATman Photos, during its nearly six years of life, has been diversity of content.  By which I mean that I have always tried to present images with varying subject matter, genre and technique, as well as text to match in varying themes and styles – truth to tell, I enjoy the writing almost as much as I enjoy creating the images.  So, in further pursuit of these aims …

Sometime back, I used to subscribe to Black+White Photography magazine.  I have a great affinity for black and white images (and especially those that stray away from straight representations of reality minus its colours), and I found B+W to be somewhere between a photographic magazine and a publication on the arts, a combination that I liked very much.

At home here now, I’m clearing out some back issues of B+W, going through them to see if there are any pages worth keeping, and I came upon – and was instantly once again electrified by – this cover image.  It is by the haute couture fashion photographer Cathleen Naundorf, and B+W gives the title as: No title – Dior, Atelier d’Artiste – Cautaincourt, Paris, 2007.

The situation is very simple – ever since I first laid eyes on this picture it has both entranced and electrified me.  What do I like about it? Well, the black and white presentation for a start, and the very simple lighting, which is coming in from the left.

Then the dress is of course ornate, with high relief embroidery, embossing – what do I know about descriptions of female attire???  And then there are those big, big, rectangular lapels, which introduce a dischordant element of angularity.

And then we start to get to the real nitty gritty.  First, that wonderful, big and simply circular hat, and the fact that it is covering her eyes, and so imbuing the image with a very important degree of anonymity – so that this is not a portrait of an individual, but rather a piece of art, a composition, an ideal perhaps.  And while talking about the hat and the semi-obscured face,  what we are allowed to see of this face is powerfully lit on the left – right up there with the brightest tones in the picture – while the other side of the face is in deep shadow.  To me, this is almost not a face, but almost a rounded connection hanging down below that striking hat, which serves to connect that hat with the rest of her body.

And lastly the real cruncher, the pose.  Had her arms been down at her sides, this would have been a far less dynamic image, a far more serious image – one perhaps redolent of sorrow or even penance.  But the attitude of her arms and hands (those splayed fingers!) introduces a dynamic that for me changes everything, that makes me just love and wonder at this image in a way that I do with very, very few other images, including my own.  Those arms introduce a sense of style and also of great panache – here are flamboyance, self-assurance and also great vivacity. The woman may be anonymous, but she is leaving us in no doubt as to the intensity of the style and feminity that she embodies and so forcefully conveys.
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