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Archive for October, 2011

I love watching and photographing the many moods of the Delaware River along the banks of Red Bank Battlefield Park. Some days the river is lazy, the water smooth as a sheet of glass, while on other days the river is alive with movement. Tuesday was windy, the tide was up and the water danced and played on the rocks.

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Well, if the water can play so can John. I had an 85mm lens mounted on my F3HP so I could get close without getting wet. The waves rolled in, the water hit the rocks jumping and playing in the light. I watched, waiting for a good wave, hoping to catch just the right instant to press the shutter.

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I took this shot on the shady side of the pier so I had to open up the lens and use a slower shutter speed. Again, I watched and waited for the right moment to trip the shutter.

Two photos, two different moods, moods that had to wait until I developed and scanned the film the next day to see if the images matched my vision. I’m happy with both pictures, glad that I and my equipment were up to the task (I mean play).

I love my Nikon F3HP. It’s like an extension of me when I compose through the 100% high eyepoint viewfinder. I’ve always been partial to moderate telephoto lenses like my lovely 85/2.0. I used Ilford FP4+ for the first time in months. I had forgotten how much I like this film. It’s expensive but I don’t care. I have one roll left and will order more. I think this film has the loveliest tonality of any B&W film I’ve ever used.

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A Dance of Death

I almost always bring a camera along when I go out riding my bicycle. Sometimes the camera simply goes along for the ride but when I see an image that wants to be remembered, I stop and take a picture(s).

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This image was inspired by an image I found in John Daido Loori’s “Making Love With Light” — a close in shot of a bittersweet vine wrapped around a black locust tree. The image is paired with these words:

“Living together
        dying together,
black locust and bittersweet.”

What struck me when I made my image was the deadly embrace of vine and tree. I have no idea what kind of vine nor the type of tree and it doesn’t matter. What does matter is the image that conjured the words “A Dance of Death” in my mind. The vine uses the tree for it’s life while slowly choking the tree. Tree and vine live together, locked in their deadly dance until one day they will die together.

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I’m in the mood for a change of pace this week so I dug back a few months and rediscovered (actually I’ve been saving this one) a poolside portrait of one of our twin granddaughters.

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Neither my wife nor I are sure but we think the twin in this photo is Livvy. We can tell Livvy and her sister Maddy (their third birthday is in two weeks) apart but this is one of those times where we can’t be certain.

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This week’s images are from the same roll of film as last week’s photos. Film cameras don’t record EXIF metadata so I rely on memory (mom gave me a digital recorder for my birthday to help me remember in the future). I’m pretty sure I was using my 75-150 zoom lens for these shots.

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You can see the water moving in this photo. The rocks are on the shore and if you listen carefully you can hear the water lapping against the rocks. I do like the ‘colors’ and textures in this image.

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And another view of reflections, ripples and rocks — this time a bit closer. Zoom lenses do come in handy when you can’t zoom with your feet.

I installed DigiKam on my system last night because I wanted more sophisticated photo management software and the DigiKam photo editor can work with 16 bit image files. I used DigiKam to massage the tones and sharpen both images and I’m pleased with the results. I’ll have more to say about DigiKam after I’ve learned more.

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The river, always changing, smooth yet in motion. The Delaware River was a gently rolling, rhythmic presence on an overcast day a few weeks ago when I took these photos.

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I’ve taken more than a few photos of this pier from the shore in Red Bank Battlefield Park. This day, the delicious, quiet, liquid reflections help tell another story of the river and it’s many moods.

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Here’s another shot taken from the same spot looking downriver along the shore. I like the way the river ‘captured’ the soft light of an overcast day with these gentle reflections.

Both images were taken with my Nikon N8008s/35mm AF lens using Freestyle LP400 (Fuji Neopan 400) film and scanned on my Minolta Scan Dual III with VueScan Pro software.

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