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New Vintage – The Minolta XD-s Analogue SLR

Abstract Person, Barcelona

In sudden burst of enthusiasm to try something slightly different, I have dusted-off the old Minolta XD-s and shot a roll of Ilford HP5. All the images here were taken using the Minolta MD 50mm f1.4 lens. There were three aims: to check if the camera light seals are still good enough (the camera is more than 30 years old…) to see if I can still figure out how to focus manually to see of the effect of the smaller camera on subjects… These images were shot in about an hour […]

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Flight Mode

Skateboarder in mid-flight, Plaça dels Angels, Barcelona

  Some more experiments with slowish exposures and fill-flash at dusk, Plaça dels Angels, Barcelona. These were taken with the Ricoh GR using the pop-up flash. Probably a longer focal length would be helpful, but the wide-angle with a low point of view seems to work well for these.  

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Modern Transport

Flying Scooter, Plaça dels Angels, Barcelona

  Another photograph from the on-going experiment in using a mix of flash and long-exposures for night-time images of objects in motion. Scooters like these are a surpassingly common form of transport in Barcelona – although the levitation is less common… This was taken with the Ricoh GR’s pop-up flash using a 1/10th second exposure and fill-flash while panning. The wide-angle (28mm equivalent) of the Ricoh means that you need to be a bit too close for comfort with some of these shots – probably a camera with a longer […]

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Rough Night

Homeless in Plaça dels Angels, Barcelona

Plaça dels Angels, Barcelona. The square is home to both Barcelona’s main modern art museum, and possibly the largest collection of homeless people in the city. There is a seemingly endless supply of old mattresses that provide at least some comfort in the night, but the unseasonably wet and cold weather at the moment is problematic. In a curious twist on the banking crisis many homeless people are now sleeping inside the lobbies of local banks to avoid the weather. The number of homeless people in the city has increased dramatically since […]

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Watching

Looking

Another example of how using a 50mm lens is difficult in Barcelona. This was taken at f6.3 ISO10000. I would have liked to have been further back and more depth of field, but there was very little space and very little light.

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Modern Communications

Catalunya

Carrer Elizabets, Barcelona. This and most of the upcoming shots were taken with the 5DIII and 50mm. In shadow is very very hard to get sharp focus and a fast shutter speed without insanely high ISO values. This image ended up at ISO 12800 at f11.

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Focal Length, Subject Distance and F-Stop for Zone Focussing

Sleeping on top of the Electric Box

Shooting with a prime lens and zone-based manual is an almost Zen-like experience. No zoom to worry about. No panic as which focus points were selected or whether or not they happened to lock on to something completely random. The camera becomes a transparent tool that shoots as soon as you touch the shutter button. There are many ways to set up zone focus, but I settled on a very simple rule-of-thumb. All I need to know is the focal length and roughly how much of the frame is being […]

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