Thursday, 26 March 2015

'The Albatros and the Eclipse'

Watching the solar eclipse last week was quite a magical experience. As the moon moved over the sun, covering almost the entirety of the sun's surface, the quay at Wells-Next-The-Sea fell eerily quiet. Dusk had briefly fallen and birds could be seen flying to roost. A calm fell over the little harbour, as the wind dropped and the water lay still.

I walked to the quay, mainly to witness the eclipse, not to photograph it. But somehow the conditions seemed right. The cloud, while thick in places, kept breaking, offering superb views of the moon as it travelled across the sun's surface. I decided to photography along the harbour wall, where the sailing ship 'Albatros' is moored. The eclipse was just above and to the right of the tall mast of the boat, and it made for a great composition. I set up my Fuji X100 on a tripod, and as the dynamic range was so great, bracketed five exposures at 1EV steps. This allowed me to capture the entire spectrum of light and shadow. The single images were then merged during the processing stage, once back on the computer, and saved as a single file.

I'm really pleased I took the time to capture this image, as it happened in just the right place, at just the right time. The position of the eclipse, just above the iconic sailing ship's mast, on such a calm, Spring morning, have made for a truly unique photograph, and one that won't be repeated again in my life time.   

solar eclipse above the albatros at wells-next-the-sea #eclipse #solar eclipse
The Albatros and the Eclipse

Tuesday, 24 March 2015

Beach huts, pencil sketch

The beach huts at Wells-Next-The-Sea always make for a great artistic subject, and this sketch shows the view looking West along Holkham beach. The sun is seen setting over the sea, bringing to an end, another glorious Summer's day at the coast.

Beach huts at Wells-Next-The-Sea, pencil sketch
Beach huts at Wells-Next-The-Sea

Tuesday, 17 March 2015

A bit of street with the Fuji X100

I've been very busy with gallery bits and bobs the last few weeks, and It's been tough to set aside much time for photography. I managed to get to Scarborough in late January, and capture two landscape images I was pleased with, but no street photography as such. I'm running a couple of films through my Nikon FM3a, (at long last) where I've been focusing on street candids, but the only other street photos I've taken recently were with the Fuji X100.

I have an original X100, and while I hear the S and T models are vastly superior in many ways, I get on just fine with the original. It doesn't use an X trans sensor like the later versions, but I have to say, I find that a good thing. I also own an X-T1, which does use an X trans sensor, and while I find the camera and sensor incredible, images processed in Photoshop can sometimes leave a lot to be desired. They can exhibit a painterly effect, particularly when capturing fine foliage or grass detail, something I do quite often with landscape scenes. I've had to resort to using other software, and for me Photoninja does a far better job with processing X trans files. It's just a shame that I now have to use two different software packages, depending on which camera's images I'm processing at the time.

Looking at the images straight out the camera from the X100, the detail is just terrific, with punchy colours and good contrast. No having to faff about with other software packages, just good honest files, from a more than usable 12 mega pixel sensor. I love this camera, and although to many, it's a bit long in the tooth, once we get to the fifth, sixth, seventh iteration of the X100 (or X200 as it may become), which one's likely to be the most collectable. My money's on the original, I think it's a classic, and quite possibly one of the most important digital cameras ever designed.

A bit of gossip, Fuji X100
A bit of gossip

Strolling along the sea front, Fuji X100
Strolling along the sea front

Baby overboard! No baby was harmed in the making of this picture, Fuji X100
Baby overboard! No baby was harmed in the making of this picture

Beach view, Fuji X100
Beach view