This is one of my 'lunchtime pictures', I liked how he seemed pretty much fast asleep and enjoying the sun in front of St. Paul's. This is a favorite spot for people to have a nap since the sun almost always shines in this spot all through the year when the weather is nice. Took it with the GRD I and added the sepia toning and vignetting in post processing.
Another series and the first in a multipart series depicting urban decay in London. I will try to upload the next parts over the next weeks and months. London is on the one side a very old city with great Victorian buildings, new modern developments, skyscrapers and old landmarks. The other side of London are derelict and abandoned buildings, factories and churches. I find it fascinating how both of these are sometimes right next to each other. It is hard to believe if you look at the ridiculous property prices that there are so many empty buildings (new and old).
Some of these buildings however deserve to be demolished, like these ex-council flats in Kidbrooke or the worst part of London in Elephant & Castle. At least the former will soon be demolished to make room for a new development. When looking at some of the old council flats one has to wonder if these buildings were ever considered nice or what went on when people decided to build ugly grey concrete blocks of flats. Almost like piling up containers next and on top of each other. I for one hope these buildings will be demolished very soon to make room for new developments or better parks.
I took all pictures with the GX100, at first I thought of using the GRD I to get the grainy b&w look at ISO 400 but decided that some color will be better and the GX100 gave me the look I wanted and the versatility due to the zoom.
The initial plan for was to go to Bath for a daytrip but the weather was mixed so instead we decided to go to Bodiam Castle. It was a very nice trip and the castle offers some great photo opportunities even in mixed weather and with some light rain.
At first I thought of taking the GRD I and GX100 along but the dynamic range of them was a concern so I decided to take the GRD and Panasonic LC1 instead. The LC1 has a higher dynamic range and the slightly longer zoom is certainly very usefull. It is truly a unique camera with fantastic controls, aside from the GRD this is my favorite camera. Panasonic really needs to release a updated version of it with only a different sensor and leave the rest alone.
Took this while out for a walk this evening, the red stood out against the grey sky. This picture is not a cut-out but a full color picture where the only tweak was using manual WB in camera and saturating the reds slightly more in post processing. I added some vignetting to draw the focus more to the center of the frame.
Since I had some time after work, I decided to go for a walk around Canary Wharf and take some pictures. I found the handle being burries in one of the flower pots quite funny so decided to use this as my picture for the day.
Took this picture on my way home. I really liked the contrast between her red jacket and the black wall behind her. Also her attitude and confident walk made it a great scene. I slowed down to be able to take this picture. It was a shot from the hip without looking at the camera but it did come out almost as I wanted it.
After the recent sun we had a rainshower today. I saw this while walking past a hedge and it caught my attention. The pink in the green looked quite cool and I liked the small petal in the big leaf. Made some adjustments to the contrast and added vignetting to make the colors stand out more.
On another note, there will be another official Ricohforum meet-up soon but I thought in the meantime if there is interest we could have another unofficial meet-up. On Saturday 4th April, we could meet at Camera Cafe around 12 since it is very central and move on to take some pictures. If you are in or near London and are interested to meet up on that date let me know. If you don't have a Ricoh camera but are interested in Ricoh cameras or just want to meetup you are welcome to join.
Took a walk with the LC1 today, it is really a great camera to use and it is a shame that Panasonic did not see it necessary to replace it with a LC2 or base the G1 design on this instead of a dSLR. I like having the zoom and focus ring around the lens, this makes using it much easier and intuitive. There are only a handfull of digital cameras with great build and controls and these are the Ricoh GRD, GX200, Panasonic LC1 and Epson RD1. Took this picture while walking along the Thames. I liked the green and the light gave a nice contrast, I added some vignetting to get the look I wanted.
Although the weather was fantastic today, I did not get to take many pictures and spent most of the day indoors. I have been to a LPMG workshop, first about off camera flash and then Charlie Waite took over and told us about his motivation and approach to take pictures. It was a very interesting day and especially Charlie Waite is a great speaker. One perticulary interesting thing during his speech was when he showed us some of his work, he mentioned only one camera that he used and it must have stood out from his other pictures. This was a GR21 from which he had two pictures and both pictures were b&w high ISO film pictures. I found it very interestng to see that the only camera he mentioned was a Ricoh and like the majority of the Ricoh GR pictures they were shot in b&w. This shows me that my suggestion for Ricoh to create a fully b&w GRD would be a good idea and that people would like one.
The last day of my fish-eye lens week is today. I took a few pictures on my way home but this worked best due to the perspective although I had to play around with the colors and saturation a bit to get the look I wanted. It was a fun week and taking pictures where the quality does not matter and you can get away with noisy or blurry pictures is definitely something different to what most people try to achieve. While it will be back to normal from tomorrow, I am already thinking about the next weekly theme, maybe a text mode week would be fun.
The City of London is full of small passageways or alleyways like this, it makes it easy to go between the main roads and provides lots of shortcuts. It also has a lot of "hidden" pubs, bars and shops in some of the narrow alleys. If you are in the City, make sure you look out for them and find out where they lead you. If nothing else you may find an interesting photo opportunity.
This is another picture from Greenwich Park but with the nice weather at the moment it is too nice not to go here on my way home. This is another "wildlife" picture and I thought of James after I took it ;).
Another lunchtime picture, this time from the city "beach". :) The weather was great and it would have been really nice to be able to go to a real beach but since it was not posible the beach at the Thames had to do the job.
The weather was great today and since I finished early I took a walk through Greenwich Park. With the sun out I am more motvated and using the fish-eye lens pushes me to try out new things and different perspectives. This picture might not be so different from the usual pictures I have but it was the one I liked most from today.
Following on with my 'Fish-eye Week' was a nice walk through Greenwich Park and along the Thames to the O2. The weather was great and there were a lot of people out and about. Using the fish-eye lens is great fun and leads me to see thigs in a different light. There a few really cool things you can only do with this lens but when I briefly comapred it with the GR lens it is unbelievable how much quality gets lost by using the adapter lens. Then again, it is not about the quality but about the fun and about seeing things different.
I haven't used my fish-eye lens for quite a while so I thought it could be fun to have a fish-eye or Lomo-style week. I went out for a stroll around the neighbourhood today. This picture I liked and processed it to get this look. The GRD II is better for this kind of pictures because it has a distance scale for manual focus and also remembers the focus distance even when powered off.
Sometimes if you go for a walk in a new area with the intention of taking pictures you end up without many pictures. This was the case for me today, I finished work early and thoight I go for a walk around te city and all the way to Old Street and Hackney. While it was a nice walk I was not very inspired so did not get many good pitures.
On a more positive note, I have won the February Ricohforum competition. The theme this time was "Man/Woman Behind The Counter", you can find all entries and votes here. Below is my winning picture.
Took this picture while walking home through Greenwich Park. There are a lot of interesting looking trees in there but this particular one stood out today. I liked the texture and contrast on the tree and it looks like a face to me.
After work I decided to take a walk and take some pictures on my way. I saw this cat and decied to take a few pictures of it. Turned out I took some of my most successfull pet pictures in the process. I am usually not very good at taking pictures, mostly due to me using wideangle lenses and having to get very close but also due to lack of interest on my part. I used the GRD II with the 40mm lens since it is better at low ISO and color pictures than the GRD I.
Took this picture, like so many others, after my lunchbreak. Taking pictures during lunch is sometimes the only way to keep my blog updated. This is where a compact camera comes in handy. This is why for me a compact camera will always have a big advantage. I took a few pictures but found this to be best although it is slightly out of focus. It works very well in sepia and since I haven't used sepia in a while it was good to have a picture that works beter with it.
While walking to the bus today I noticed this scene, the bag (or wherever is used to be) got caught in the barbed wire and with the wind it looked like it was dancing and took on all kinds of shapes. I found it very interesting and decided to take a picture of it. I thought of using color mode but found that the shapes and texture worked best in b&w mode. Sometimes it pays to keep your eyes open for everything that might make an interesting picture, this I leared since starting my blog.
Took this picture while waiting for the bus today, liked the grey sky. I wanted to give it the look of an old TV with heavy vignetting and strong contrast but, although it looks like it, the picture is full 'color' and not converted to b&w. I quite like the result after adding some noise it looks very crisp and I like the contrast.
After my film week, I decided to take my GRD I out again and take some pictures. I did not want to take any color pictures though and decided that b&w would be best for today, even better was the text mode however. I really like what you can get out of it and together with the audio recording mode it is the best scene mode you can find in any camera. I hope the new Ricoh cameras will all keep the text mode and bring back the audio recording mode. I am actually thining of having a whole week dedicated to the text mode.
The GR1 week is over and I finished one color film and am halfway through a b&w film. This time I enjoyed the experience a lot more although I still can't be really happy with film since it's such a limited medium. I missed some shots in the last days because I had only b&w film in the camera and the pictures would have only worked in color. Or the ability to change the ISO and be flexible is also something I miss with film. On the other hand I can't wait to see my pictures once they are developed so this is quite a nice experience. I posted mostly pictures from two films this week because I don't have all films scanned yet so could not post some of my b&w pictures I took with the GR1.
Took this picture on the same day as my last entry. This was a situation where a 40mm lens would have been better. Most of the time having a fixed wideangle lens is great and it gives you the flexibility you need but sometimes a 40mm or 85mm lens are nice to get a bit closer to things.
Continuing the police and security series from FRiday and yesterday it's another related picture. Took this during my last GR1 week but did not post it then. Yesterday evening I already finished one ISO 200 color film in the GR1 and have replaced it with a ISO 125 b&w film, not as fast as I would like but should give some nice b&w tones. Can't wait to see it developed.