Thursday, May 21, 2015

Return to Smokey Hollow Falls

I was last here about 8 years ago and I took a spill into Grindstone Creek in early November with my gear at the time, I think it was my Minolta XE-7. Great camera, pity the meter has gone erratic and repair techs just don't want to touch it.

Two weeks ago I returned to Smokey Hollow this time with my Mamiya C220f kit, a better tripod and was way more careful not to fall into the creek. Now, it was a bright day and that presents a problem because I don't have any neutral density filters that fit Sekor TLR lenses. To solve this I deliberately overexposed the film between 32 and 50 ISO and shortened my processing time with my go to developer Xtol. I'm happy with that I got from this.

Camera: Mamiya C220f, Sekor 80 f2.8 and 135 f4.5 lenses.
Film: Ilford FP4 125 pulled down to somewhere around 32-50 ISO, Xtol 1+1.

Smokey Hollow Falls2_

Grindstone Creek

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Sometimes I Wander the Streets of the City

Hiking of another sort in Toronto.

Camera: Leica M3 Dual Stroke, type one 50 f2 Summicron lens.
Film: Ilford Delta 100, Xtol 1+1.

Three Banks_

Bay and Wellington

Bay St

King and York._

Wednesday, May 06, 2015

In the Beaches with a Leica

Below you will find an early production Leica M3 dual stroke rangefinder camera. It's considered one of the all time great 35mm film cameras, beloved by photojournalists and serious photographers 50 years ago, and still loved today by hard core film photography enthusiasts. This camera has a dual role, photography tool and family heirloom having a special place in my camera collection. Dad gave me this Leica along with a early production Nikon F a month before he passed, I have a lot of memories tied up with this camera, I remember wanting to play with it as toddler and wound up with a plastic Diana camera instead. This M3 has been overhauled twice, had a shutter curtain replaced due to some stray cigarette ash when dad was loading the film. Even after 10 ten years, my M3 still feels like it is dad's camera, I do own a second Leica, a made in Midland Ontario M4-2 from the late 1970s and consider it a workhorse.

Now I was out shooting in the Beaches a few weeks ago on the first real nice day of spring and used Ilford Delta 100 because it was one of those days with a mix of sun and cloud in terms of lighting. I love how the 50 f2 Summicron lens rendered the steal sign belonging to the Beaches institution The Goof, it just pops. One thing I do want to do is invest in more lenses for my Leicas, I currently own a two third party lenses the Voightlander 35 f2.5 Skopar and a Canon 50 f1.4 M-39 thread mount with M mount adapter as well as the Leica 50mm Summicron and a 90 f4 Collapsible Elmar lens. I would love something wider, a 28mm focal length and a 90 f2.8 Tele Elmarit lens. Unfortunately M mount lenses cost money, for now I make do with what I have until my career situation changes. I'm looking for a social strategist or community management opportunity in Toronto.

Thursday, April 30, 2015

The New and Improved Google Snap Seed for iPhone

Every major software update in the iPhone ecosystem begets updates to the individual apps. Lo and behold Google re-did their Snap Seed app making it even better. What this app does along with VSCOcam is act as a third party interface for your phone's camera, now with Snap Seed you can also import photos in from your on board library and edit.

I always recommend this to friends looking for a photography app.  Snap Seed is available in iTunes and the Google Play store, it's free and easy to use for both skilled photographers and those looking to add a bit of snap to their images without a steep learning curve. Now, if you are one of those tech outliers who uses a Windows phone, I'm sorry (correction, that might change with the introduction of Windows 10). If you were issued a Blackberry handset through work, there are work arounds for Google apps on certain models but most likely your IT department locked the phone down tighter than Fort Knox, sorry again, no app for you.

So below you will see how the controls are laid out starting off with basic editing tools which are self explanatory. Now the non photographers are going to ask, what's that wave in the bottom left opposite the plus button. That's called a histogram, it is graphic representation of what your exposure looks like. In digital photography you want to get that wave towards your right without blowing out the highlights. It's a little advanced class, but with a bit of experimentation, you see what different exposures look like with the same subject under different lighting conditions.

Below the editing tools are the filters which give you a variety of effects. Personally I have been using the drama filter recently and it works especially well with flat lighting situations. The drama filter was a little overkill with the night shot but I wanted to demonstrate what it can do. You also have the framing filter, I used the slide film rebate in this example.

So there you have it, Snap Seed is an easy app to master, now go have fun.

2015-04-19 14.16.38

2015-04-19 14.16.52

2015-04-19 14.17.08

Photo 2015-03-26, 21 02 22 (1)

Thursday, April 23, 2015

Walking over Queen St.

Shot yesterday afternoon in downtown Toronto between the Eaton's Centre and Hudson Bay Company. I was killing time waiting for a roll of Portra 400 being processed at Downtown Camera and running a few errands in the city.

Camera: iPhone 5s
App: Google Snap Seed, Drama Filter (no Kardashians involved).

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Welcome to Spring, Finally.

Took long enough, welcome back.

Camera: Nikon FM2, Nikkor Ai 28 f3.5 lens.
Film: Kentmere 100, Xtol 1+1 for 10min at 20c.

Thursday, April 09, 2015

Throwback Thursday New York City Edition.

Surfing Air BnB listings recently, dreaming, New York, it's been too long, two years already. I need a fix of your hustle, bustle and photographic inspiration. Well, ok a proper slice of pizza as well and a return visit to George Keeley on the Upper West Side for a really nice pint of Brooklyn Brown Ale. This year is unlikely, maybe 2016 for the big return, hopefully with a much stronger Canadian dollar.

Below are some shots I really haven't shared far and wide, all were taken on a rainy Monday south of Houston Street in SoHo mostly. When I do return, I want to explore more of Brooklyn and the East Village as well as revisiting the High Line, Central Park and the Upper East Side.

Camera: Leica M4-2, Voightlander Color Skopar 35 f2.5 lens.
Film: Ilford HP5, Xtol 1+1.