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

Bronica ETRSi and 35MM N Film Back

You may recall that I wrote in an earlier article  (Jan 2019) about some difficulties I was having with a 35mm N  Film Back on my Bronica ...