In Flight

I think this is a crow or raven, soaring out over the Grand Canyon.  With the 1 Nikon 70-300mm lens, this was a lucky shot – I saw the bird, but was busy with a film camera – and snatched the V3 and aimed.

A Portrait in UltraMax 400

This is the other half, taken with UltraMax 400 and the Nikon F3HP and scanned on the Pakon 135. A bit of retouch in LR, but overall, there is little difference. The skin tones were important, because he has a rather ruddy complexion (not as bad as mine), and sometimes toning it down removes a lot of other qualities in an image. Above is the “retouched” and below is the untouched.

UltraMax 400 in the Weeds

Initially, I was not especially thrilled with this film, and I hate to say it is most likely because of the packaging is yellow and blue, not colors I like together too much. Agfa Vista 200 has a decidedly more appealing more cheery packaging for me – love the red!

However, now that I have been using it a lot, I am actually rather pleased with it. I can push it in post, I can leave it be, I can mess up the exposures. It’s not too expensive. Neither the UltraMax nor the Vista have the colors of Ektar 100, but when you are using a new-to-you camera, a good length of inexpensive, reliable film for test purposes is necessary.

I admit, I love bright, impressionistic colors and strong contrast. Subtlety is not a strong suit in my preference range, but here, the delicacy of tonality and shading and contrast works to catch that magical time of day when the color fades away . . .

“All the World’s a Stage”

Nearby our house is a small local university. Every summer there is a Shakespeare festival – this summer marks the 21st anniversary. Last night we saw Julius Caesar, using a revision of this stage which was for their other production, Love’s Labours Lost. In the U.S., at least in California, Julius Caeser is required reading in 9th or 10th grade. I read it, and, oh, how I hated it. Not until I started seeing Shakespeare live did I have any appreciation for his works – I would love to see Kit Marlowe’s Faustus some day! But I digress . . .

Vacation Choices #2: Voigtlander Perkeo II 80mm f3.5 Color Skopar

Here is another camera I have taken pictures with, and which I am considering as a 120mm folder for our road trip.  The Voigtlander Perkeo II and the Color Skopar lens are a great combo.  I used Kodak Portra 400 in it, and really did not appreciate what the camera and lens and film can produce together.  These were taken last year in August, and produced some of my favorite images.

What are your thoughts about this camera for a road trip?

Vacation Choices #1: Olympus OM-1n

We are going to be on a longish road trip the last part of July and the first half of August. We are traveling throughout the west with family. Places to be seen include Arizona, Colorado, Wyoming, Nevada for the most part. We will see the Grand Canyon, Mesa Verde, Sedona, Fort Laramie, Yellowstone National Park, the Tetons, and places in between.

I am in a quandary – what cameras should I bring?? I want digital, and film, both 35 and 120mm. I have a herd of cameras, and only so much room. Now, I have to make some decisions.

I recently acquired the Olympus OM-1n and a 50mm f1.8 lens. Small and lightweight, discreet, easy to carry, simple to use, and it takes great pictures. Using Kodak UltraMax 400, I shot one roll, much of which pleased me for both color and clarity.  As you can see from the images below, it’s a pretty good little camera – much better than I had expected.

If you have any opinions, I sure would like to hear from you . . . I’ve got other cameras to discuss as well!