Saturday, December 15, 2012

Happy Sunday

Can't help it

I just love this building and this park  in Manhattan.  Naturally the building is the Flat Iron Building and the park is Madison Square Park. Shot in a late winter afternoon with the Olympus E PL-2.

Friday, December 14, 2012

Early winter scenes

Trees waiting to be blanketed with snow. Although I detest winter, there are moments when I's able to put my prejudices aside and enjoy it's beauty.

Adobe updates

The lack of   standardized raw output because each sensor is different, creates the need for constant updates. Here are some new ones from Adobe.

Adobe has released Photoshop Lightroom 4.3 and Adobe Camera Raw 7.3. These are final versions of updates that were originally posted as 'release candidates' on the Adobe Labs site, and are available for immediate download. The latest versions provide RAW support for 13 additional cameras, including the Canon EOS 6D, Nikon D5200 and Sony DSC-RX1. The Mac version of Lightroom features a Develop module that supports Apple's HiDPI mode, that makes the interface easier to read on the 'Retina' panels used on recent Macs.
The full list of additional cameras supported in this update is:
  • Canon EOS 6D
  • Canon PowerShot S110
  • Canon PowerShot G15
  • Canon PowerShot SX50 HS
  • Casio Exilim EX-ZR1000
  • Casio Exilim EX-FC300S
  • Leica M-E
  • Nikon 1 V2
  • Nikon D5200 
  • Nikon D600
  • Olympus PEN E-PL5
  • Olympus PEN E-PM2
  • Olympus STYLUS XZ-2 iHS
  • Panasonic DMC-GH3
  • Pentax K-5 II
  • Pentax K-5 IIs
  • Pentax Q10
  • Sony DSC-RX1
  • Sony NEX-VG30
  • Sony NEX-VG90

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Back to the present

I'm always amused when people state how much they love film and how digital is somehow not as good or expressive. Just try to scan old slides with their faded colors, dust and scratches to make you see how wonderful digital is. But to each his own. I still believe that LP's are superior to CD's but this is really due to the CD's lack of bandwidth and linear encoding. If they had waited a few more years, CD's could have rivaled the old LP's. But with digital, things keep on getting better all the times as each camera is able to take better photos. This is not due to more pixels but to better pixels. there's point where more may not really be better as one is left with huge files. The idea to record everything is not a very artistic one but  naturalistic nonsense. For that we can just use our eyes. Art must be much more. It is saying more with less, in a way.

These recent photos of my all time favorite building in New York, the Flatiron Building sort of prove the point. Here the LX-7 captures interesting images with it's 10 mega pixels sensor but with it's superb Leica designed lens expressively designed for it. With film, long exposures were difficult because of reciprocity failure that gave unwanted and unexpected color shifts, for example.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

A few moore with the "old' emulsion.

Again, these were all shot in old Quebec Ville with the Leica M 4 and the 35mm Summicron on Kodachrome II whose colors continue to shine.

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Back to before


These photos  shot in Old Quebec City all go back to June of 1973   and are all son Kodachrome X at a "fast" ISO [ASA] of 64. The camera was the Leica M-4 with that glorious Summicron 35mm F 2. A Weston Master V [five]  selenium  hand held  light meter [made in New Jersey] was used to measure the light.

Back to before Kodak changed it's emulsions with unexpected results that with the benefit of hindsight started it's decline. It was the beginning of Fuji that bid its time and kept on improving  their  products to the point that many pros began to prefer them over Kodak's. The result. alas is that Kodak is gone while Fuji   is stronger than ever.

Monday, December 10, 2012

When new and improved makes it worse

These shots all taken in Mija, Spain in 1974, tell a tale of progress going awry. I have been touting the superior color permanence of Kodachrome II for some time now. But in the spring of 1974, Kodak came out with new emulsions for Kodachromes and Ektachromes. While the Kodachromes were renamed to Kodachrome 25 and Kodachrome 64, the Ektachromes were not. We were all excited as the color had a slightly more natural look and I especially loved the reds. But looking at these slides now, we see that the new emulsions, said to have been more environmentally friendly, were actually failures. The colors have all faded and are now  like the old Agfachromes.  The Ektachromes have turned super magenta , unlike the older  emulsions, while the Kodachromes are bland and have lost those gorgeous  deep blue skies, Kodak was to repeat the same error in 1975 when they came out with their T-Max line of black and whites. They wisely continued with Tri-X but eliminated Plus-X and that glorious Panatomic-X. What can you say. So much for progress.
As it's obvious, I had to convert these scans to black and whites that are actually very nice.

Sunday, December 9, 2012

Madison Square Park

This is my favorite park in New York City after the Brooklyn Botanic Garden, of course. Smack in the center of  Manhattan one can see the Empire State Building to the North and the  fabulous Flat Iron Building that is adjacent to it. Again, these night shots were taken with the LX-7, a camera that continues to impress me. It may be a better camera for travel than the E PL-2.