Friday, 5 October 2018

Newcastle China Festival - 2018

The Newcastle China Street Festival is one of many programmed events during the Newcastle China Week.  The Street Festival is a celebration of Chinese Culture.  China Week consists of a Business Forum, Night Hawker Food Markets, the Street Festival and, stage and theatre productions to bring a greater understanding of the Chinese culture to the people of Newcastle.

A street festival is a great opportunity for a photographer to get out there amongst the people.  I find that people are more willing to have their photos taken at a street festival than they are about having them taken at other times when they are just going about their daily business.  

I took my Canon 600D with me. I had intended to shoot with my 50mm prime but, I decided to change to a Tamron 18-270mm f3.5 zoom as it gave me a lot more leeway with my shooting.   The Tamron has done an excellent job as you will see.  I shot in Aperture Priority mode which allowed me to have a quicker response to those unique moments that are gone in seconds.

For these photos, I edited in Lightroom using Nik Collection Plug-ins;  Colour Efex Pro and Silver Efex Pro.

Photos copyright © Life with Jordy Photography.
All Rights Reserved.

I always enjoy running into a fellow photographer and having
a conversation about what gear we are both using!

Friday, 14 September 2018

A New Project - Fuji Velvia 100 slide film

I'd been promising to treat myself to a roll (or 2!) of Fuji Velvia 100 for some time now.  Fuji is notorious for stopping production of it's films at a moments notice (which reminds me that I have to stock up on some Acros 100!) and I want to try some of their colour slide film.

Fuji Velvia 100 has a reputation for super fine grain which gives great sharpness and, excellent colour representation.

This is a colour positive film, and used mostly for slides (remember?  those things that need a projector to view!)  It produces a positive image on a transparent base i.e. the film looks exactly like the scene.  What people are most used to are film negatives.  Now, these are called negatives because when you look at the film, the image is reversed; the lightest areas of the photo appear darker and the darker areas of the photo appear lighter.  Also, in the case of colour negatives, the colours are also reversed into their respective opposites.

The Fuji Velvia 100 has a couple of drawbacks that I have to remember.  It does not have the exposure latitude of a negative film.  Negative film has a lot of give and take when it comes to getting a correct exposure (about 3 stops) but with this film the latitude is only 1.5 stops.  It is also more contrasty than colour negative films I have used.  I have been doing some homework and there has been a trend to shoot this ISO 100 film at ISO 125 (that is about one third of a stop) to bring out more detail in shadowy areas that otherwise may turn out dark.  I think that because this is my first Velvia 100 film, I will shoot it at box speed to see how it turns out.  

A slight drawback with this film is that it does not develop in normal C-41 chemicals.  It requires E-6 chemicals and I will probably have to send it away or drive and drop it off (I think there is a place on the Central Coast that develops in E-6).

One other thing I look forward to is some long exposure photos.  I've read many reviews and all say that this Velvia 100 allegedly has a low reciprocity failure and can be exposed up to 3 minutes without a colour compensation filter.

This is not a film that I am going to go out and willy-nilly click through all exposures.  I want to plan my shots and record the settings.

Keep an eye out for the finished products!

Monday, 20 August 2018

Caves Beach and Pelican

Both of these locations are in the beautiful city of Lake Macquarie.  North of Sydney in NSW and just south of Newcastle, there are some great beaches and, of course, the lovely lake itself.

I have written about the lake before but, for those who came in late, here is a little bit of information for you.

Lake Macquarie is Australia's largest coastal salt water lagoon.  It's a decent size covering 110 square kilometers (42.5 square miles).  It is twice the size of Sydney Harbour and is one of the largest salt water lagoons in the southern hemisphere.   The lake is connected to the Tasman Sea via a channel through Pelican, Swansea and, Swansea Heads.

Caves Beach is located on the Swansea Peninsula just south of where Lake Macquarie runs into the sea.  It is named for the caves which are accessible during low tide.  It's beach is a well known surfing beach and the location is also popular for spearfishing.

Pelican is on the eastern foreshore of Lake Macquarie on the channel that runs out to the Tasman Sea.  It is popular with fisherman and boating enthusiasts, whether that be for skiing, sailing or, just hanging around in a small tinny catching dinner.  Pelican has some lovely parkland on the foreshore with electric BBQs and lots of picnic spots.  It is also a great area for swimming in the quiet waters of the lake.

Kim and I had decided to go down to Caves Beach for the afternoon to get out and explore the rock pools there.  Of course, I took my camera!  I also took my Tamron 10-24mm lens to get in with some wide angle shots!

The sunsets early over Caves Beach thanks to the high rock bluffs at the southern end of the beach.  Of course, within this bluff and cliff area are the amazing sea caves.  The tide and light was against us so we didn't venture into the caves.  Rather, I concentrated on the light reflecting off the rock pools as the sunlight faded.

Once we lost the light we decided to head home but, travelling north on the highway through Swansea, I realised that I would be able to catch the last of the light over the lake at Pelican.  We took a detour and arrived just as the Sun was sitting on the horizon and casting a lovely warm glow in the sky that reflected perfectly off the water of the lake.  Got a couple of nice photos before deciding to do some experimenting with silhouettes; as you will see!

Arriving home we toasted our lovely afternoon with a glass of red wine and contemplated how good life is!

Photos copyright © Life with Jordy Photography.
All Rights Reserved.

Wednesday, 1 August 2018

Bronica ETSRi and Fomapan 100 Classic

Wow, it's been a month since I posted!  That is way too long!

But, this is sort of a special occasion, so I hope you think it's been worth the wait!

For ages now I have been wanting to get another Medium Format film camera.  Nothing in particular, just a Medium Format film camera.  2 posts ago, in June, I introduced a couple of new additions to my film camera collection.

Here are the results from the Bronica ETRSi.  The Bronica ETRSi shoots in 6 x 4.5 format (which gives an actual frame size of 56mm x 42mm).  I get 15-16 exposures from the one roll.  This is great because my other Medium Format camera (Voigtlander Bessa 1) shoots in 6 x 9 format only gives me 8 exposures which is more expensive per exposure to develop and scan.

I took me a while to get used to this camera as I was shooting; the waist level finder can be difficult to compose a shot if you have never used one before.  The image through the waist level view finder is correct in the vertical plane but everything on the horizontal plane is reversed.  This is because there is only one mirror in the camera (unlike a 'normal' camera that has a 2nd mirror in a pentaprism viewfinder).  You have to move and tilt the camera along its axis to compose the shot and get it straight.  Apart from that, it is the same to operate this camera as it is any other camera; use the light meter (or sunny 16 rule if you are familiar with that) and change settings for each shot.

The lens is a standard size for this type of camera - 75mm Zenza Bronica EII f2.8.  This aperture may not seem as wide as some 35mm lenses but DOF in a medium format camera is much shallower because of the size of the negative.  It is a lovely sharp lens but I now have to pick up a new set of  filters to fit!

Winding the film onto the film back was a new experience too.  Read the instructions a few times and then found a great video on You Tube that showed it being done.

Not remembering to remove the dark slide from the film back also caused me some slight angst when taking a photo; I'd wrack my brain trying to troubleshoot the problem and them smack myself in the forehead once I saw the dark slide that was still in place!  I have 2 things from this camera to put into my pocket now; the lens cover and the dark slide.

For my first film I wanted to use a black & white.  I had some Fomapan 100 Classic sitting in the fridge that I had never used before.  I had purchased this film because it had been announced that my favourite black and white film, Fuji Acros 100, was to be discontinued and I wanted to start looking around for a replacement.

The Fomapan 100 Classic is billed as a fine grain, sharp film and, because it is a Panchromatic film, it has a wide range of halftones.  I wanted to see if it would fit the bill and, actually, I think I like it better!  Usually with the Fuji Acros 100, I would still have to digitally adjust the contrast because it seems a bit flat out of the scan.  These photos needed no adjustment in that regard.  It has great contrast and a wide exposure latitude (which means if I screw up the settings, I can still get a decent photo out of it!)

So, I'll let the photos speak for themselves.  Needless to say, I am loving the new Bronica; I look forward to acquiring new lenses, the hand grip and flash, a pentaprism viewfinder and an array of filters so I can expand its usefulness.  I still have quite a few rolls of Fomapan 100 Classic (in 120mm and 35mm) still in the fridge also so keep posted!

Photos Copyright © Life with Jordy Photography.
All Rights Reserved

Thursday, 28 June 2018

Streets of Surfers Paradise

How remiss of me!  I'd had a great afternoon of street photography in the Cavill Mall at Surfers Paradise when we visited there last, and hadn't posted it yet!

We had been staying in a really nice AirBNB down at Tugun and had gone to Surfers Paradise for a river cruise up the Nerang River for lunch.  A very nice lunch and couple of wines whilst cruising the river and catching the sights.  After the cruise we walked up Cavill Avenue toward the beach; there was an afternoon market on, and we always love to browse at a market.  Of course, I had my camera and this area is a great place for street photography!

The Mall, and the Main Beach area was fairly buzzing.  It was the week before the Commonwealth Games and so there were last minute preparations going on as well as many international visitors who had arrived early to catch the Games.

I shot with my Canon 600D and 50mm f1.8 lens.  There were lots of different people in the Mall and those coming off the beach.  The 'theme' for Cavill Mall is the beach; everyone walks up to and back from the beach via Cavill Mall.  It has changed physically over the years with the addition of high rise buildings etc but the mood is still the same; sand and surf, sunlovers, some carrying surfboards, walking around in just swimwear; it's a very casual and laid back atmosphere and the feel of it hasn't changed since I used to visit from my home town of Beaudesert (about a 40 minute drive away) over 40 years ago!

Photos copyright ©Life with Jordy Photography
All Rights Reserved

Newcastle China Festival - 2018

The Newcastle China Street Festival is one of many programmed events during the Newcastle China Week.  The Street Festival is a celebratio...