A LITTLE MORE TIME: PT.II | 35CHRONICLE PHOTOGRAPHY

black & white, fine art, history, infrared, photography, rural, skies, structures, trees

Still Un-Still… | 720nm Infrared – Long-Exposures


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III: Un-Still [II] | 30″ – f22.0 – ISO:100 – 27mm | 720nm IR

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IV: Un-Still [III] | 30″ – f22.0 – ISO:100 – 27mm | 720nm IR

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A Little More Time: PT.I | 35Chronicle Photography

black & white, infrared, photography, rural, skies, structures, trees

“Until the Day Break.”


At just about the start of spring, or – the close of winter (depends, I suppose, as to whether you’re a glass half-full or half-empty kind of person, maybe?) Bumble and I found ourselves heading out towards the coast again, an impromptu, spur-of-the-moment hop in the jalopy to get out for a while. Some sunshine, sea air and, hopefully – a few shots. I’d packed my ‘minimum’ bag – basically, it consists of two of my GXRs with A16s (a standard and, a full-spectrum unit) and EVFs attached, one R72 and an ND1000 – a couple of spare batteries; that’s it. It weighs next to nothing and covers a huge amount of photographic ground, given the way I shoot. As we headed towards Rockliffe from Dalbeattie, dodging pot-holes on a full stomach after a spot of lunch in Kippford, the skies were clearing to reveal some gorgeous blue above, and, a few short-lived clouds, enough to keep them interesting should we stop for a couple of frames, for sure. As we approached the turn-off for Rockliffe, I spotted the clouds right over the small parish church on the corner and thought it might be nice to stop and set up for a few grabs. 

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I: “Until the Day Break.” | 15″ – f22.0 – ISO:100 – 28mm [GXR A16 LTFS + R72 & ND1000]

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This tiny, beautifully situated and, just as beautifully kept little church kept me amused for almost an hour; not least because even though, visually, the weather was gorgeous, the wind was blowing so much that it actually had my camera toppled over on its tripod twice. Had I not been paying attention during the longer exposures I was making at the time, I’d never have caught it in time to prevent almost certain damage. Still, whilst I had to let go of those particular frames, I am very happy to have come away with some very pleasing captures, almost ghostly after the non-relenting wind and, more pleasurable for me to look at, because of it.

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II:  Un-Still | 30″ – f22.0 – ISO:100 – 24mm [Kit: As Frame: I.]

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There’s an atmosphere here that, when viewing through alternative, non-visible light, is so eerie that I wonder if next time, I’ll visit with an extra ND in my bag! I hope very much that you’ll enjoy these few captures here, and in my next post. Thank you, as always, for reading and I wish you a fabulous weekend.

VB.
… R …
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Abbotsford House, Melrose | 720nm Series: PT.II/II | 35Chronicle Photography

black & white, history, infrared, rural, structures

A Few More Takes: A National Monument.


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IV| 1/540th – f7.5 – ISO:200 – 35mm – 720nm IR | Ricoh GXR A16 LTFS Conversion w/Hoya R72

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V | 1/110th – f8.0 – ISO:200 – 24mm – 720nm IR | Ricoh GXR A16 LTFS Conversion w/Hoya R72

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I | 1/380th – f8.0 – ISO:200 – 24mm – 720nm IR | Ricoh GXR A16 LTFS Conversion w/Hoya R72

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Abbotsford House, Melrose | 720nm Series: PT.I/II | 35Chronicle Photography

black & white, history, infrared, people, photography, rural, structures

Great Scott!


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I | 1/350th – f7.5 – ISO:200 – 35mm – 720nm IR | Ricoh GXR A16 LTFS Conversion w/Hoya R72

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II | 1/270th – f8.0 – ISO:200 – 24mm – 720nm IR | Ricoh GXR A16 LTFS Conversion w/Hoya R72

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There is a special ‘something’ about the Scottish Borders when the sun is even only half out. From home, it takes barely and hour and a half to get there and so, at the beginning of this month we planned a whistle-stop visit with an overnight stay on the outskirts of Melrose; I had a few places on my list – two of which, my lenses would be extremely interested in! The first was here, at Abbotsford House; the famous home of the infinitely more famous late Sir Walter Scott – poet, novelist, playwright, historian, antiquarian, judge (to name just a few of his accolades, that is). It can be said that Scott can be largely held responsible for Scotland’s national and international identity;  there’ll be no argument from me on that one.

Though it is now a visitor attraction should not take away from the fact that Abbotsford is of huge historical importance to Scotland and, it is more a monument than a house. Not only this, it is also utterly breath-taking; outside and in. The restrictions still placed upon us by Covid however, meant that during our visit to Abbotsford – there was a blessings and a curse. The obvious blessing was the reduced amount of visitors as a result of lengthy timeslots between admissions; this meant a great deal to me personally because as with any time that I visit a place of interest, I always prefer to capture without the obvious element of tourism and favour making frames which concentrate solely (inasmuch as can ever be possible) upon my subject, without avoidable distractions within the frame itself. Conscious exclusion is a big part of how I prefer to compose and so this was indeed a welcome blessing. As for the curse – most of the interior of the house (in fact all, above the ground floor) was inaccessible by visitors and so, we were constrained to a very few rooms downstairs. This is not to say that what remains on view to the public is not of interest. I have seldom witnessed or enjoyed such eclecticism or marvelled at such broad tastes and collections. Though I am sure curators had a difficult time of putting everything together (it is impossible to know and even more difficult to conceive as to whether the house’ interiors have been preserved in their ‘natural’ state – yet, I doubt it very much given the huge passage of time since Scott’s death in 1832) – it is both wondrous and romantic to spend time taking it all in. Though I have never read his works, I really do feel that I should. I do feel a niggle in my side, edging me towards a few more books for my Kindle!

For now, here are my first few chosen infrared exteriors taken at Abbotsford House and, I can only hope that they bring even a little, light-hearted enjoyment. As always, thank you so much for reading!

R.
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III | 1/380th – f8.0 – ISO:200 – 24mm – 720nm IR | Ricoh GXR A16 LTFS Conversion w/Hoya R72

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2019 Photographic Review | 35Chronicle Photography

black & white, boats, close-up, colour, Indoor, infrared, landscape, macro, nature, night / low-light, people, photography, portraits, review, ruins, rural, skies, still life, structures, summer, trees, waterscape

As the Days Begin to Lengthen.


This time last year I was preparing my first ever photo-review here at 35Chronicle and, at the time, I could never have professed to have known just what a year 2019 was going to be for me. In every sense of the word it’s been an amazing year, and – a traumatically difficult one for the large part. Suffice to say that if you are a regular reader of my pages, you’ll know a little of what I’ve been up to and, subjected to and – you might also realise that as well as those closest to me who have kept me going throughout the year since spring, my love of all things photographic have been my main non-pulsatile impetus to get back out there and, get better. Better in health, at life, at shooting – just, better; in any way I can.

Despite some difficulties in getting back out there (you try shooting whilst holding on to your crutches while your camera bag is threatening to slide forward under the weight of the gear – with the express intent of taking one of your legs from underneath you!) I have enjoyed many excursions this year. Insosaying, I have done my best to represent each month of 2019 (by date of publishing) with what I feel is the one shot that truly made the cut. My cut. I hope I have done enough.

Of course, the whole reason I am writing any of this is because, well – you are reading it. As such, I need to say a massive thank you to a huge amount of people who have been with me this year and without whom, my 2019 would have turned out rather different and probably not as good. Therefore, to loved ones, to friends, to everyone here on WP, and to everyone who has been of support to me throughout the year, I thank you, from the bottom of my heart. You all know who you are and I forget not one of you.

Please do enjoy this selection of just some of my favourite frames of this year and I hope you’ll join me again in 2020. It’ll be great to see you again. (To H – thank you and please forgive me for my shameless and blatant use of your sign-off. It fits perfectly, expresses my intent to a tee and I truly can’t think of or find a better way to say it. I promise to only use it this once!)

See you on the flip-side, folks!

In Metta.

– Rob –


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January 2019 | Moss after Rain.

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February 2019 | The Wellspring – Kirkcudbright | 720nm IR.

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March 2019 | Thirlstane Arch – Powillimont, Southerness | 720nm IR.

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April 2019 | Dundrennan Abbey [AKA: The Day of Two Cakes!]| 720nm IR

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May 2019 | Angela.

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June 2019 | Gelston Castle | 720nm IR.

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July 2019 | River Nith to Greyfriars | 720nm IR.

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August 2019 | Angela & her Machines.

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[Just After] September 2019 | The Kelpies – Falkirk | Late Dusk.

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October 2019 | Light Muse (Sic!)

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November 2019 | Edinburgh, from the Castle.

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December 2019 | Paisley James – 4 Hours Old.
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Happy New Year 2020, to You All!

X

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The Gardens of Drumlanrig Castle | 720nm Infrared – PT.III | 35:Chronicle

35mm, black & white, infrared, photography, rural, structures

Hog Heaven | PT.II


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[Images: Ricoh GR 720nm IR Conversion – w/35mm Internal Crop.]

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Postcards from the Recovery Position | PT.VI – Reprise | 35:Chronicle

35mm, black & white, infrared, photography, ruins, structures

Lincluden Collegiate Church | 720nm Infrared [PT.II]


These two frames have been a long time (for me, anyway) on my shortlist for posting, since my initial publication of my first infrared captures of this beautiful ruin, back in May. They were captured in the middle of April just nine days before I became incapacitated (for a while at least) and for me – they still have great significance and certainly more than would ever allow me to forget the past and simply move on without acknowledgement of it.

Life was good. And it is, still.

R.

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[Images: Fujifilm X100 Internal 720nm IR – 35mm Equiv.]

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Goldielea Viaduct | 720nm Infrared | Ricoh GR | 35:Chronicle

28mm, black & white, infrared, landscape, photography, rural, skies, structures, trees

Isn’t it Always About – Time?


When I first moved up to Scotland, this disused viaduct was very soon to be a very regular sight for me – in that my regular work travels around the area of Dumfries & Galloway put it often in my line of sight. Needless to say, taking my love of old, bold structures, landscape and infrared photography into consideration, I have surprised myself that almost twenty years have passed and, I have only recently photographed it. From the roadside, it stands tall and proud, around two-hundred yards away amidst fields and forestry and, a care home stands directly in front of it. Behind it, sits a house and its grounds that, from first appearances, look to have once been a large stable block and yard. It’s unarguably  a beautiful and idyllic spot.

It was a couple of months ago when a rare day occurred; the sun came out early in the morning and seemed to threaten hard to remain out all day so, I grabbed one of my IR  cameras; not specifically for this series of images though, moreso to just throw in my small back-pack for a bike-ride with Angela that would take us through some gorgeous scenery and eventually terminate here – on the Dalbeattie side of Cargenbridge (on the outskirts of Dumfries). All the recent physiotherapy I have been having, though massively helpful, could not have filled my mind with the strength I seemed to feel on this day. An all-too-short twelve miles of road and off-road climbs under a relentlessly blue sky and increasing heat, pushing my legs to the limit and straining my once broken spine into comfortable submission had me feeling on top of the world and then, we climbed towards the viaduct that I have seen so many times over the years. Today, I would bag it. About time, indeed.

Thank you for reading my pages and, I do hope you’ll enjoy these three (rather later than they deserve to be) frames.

R.

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I | 28mm 

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II | 21mm

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III | 28mm

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  • Engineer: John Miller.
  • Operational: 1859-1965. Castle Douglas & Dumfries Railway.
  • Desc: Fine 18 Arch, Double-Track Viaduct on a Curve, 1011ft Long & 92ft High.
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The Falkirk Wheel | PT.I | 720nm Infrared | 35:Chronicle

35mm, black & white, boats, infrared, photography, skies, structures, summer

They Paved Paradise.


It’s not what you’d expect and it certainly was not what I expected it to be either; I didn’t do any research, favouring surprise over fore-knowledge of a place that is often mentioned but not yet visited. Much like a literary classic, I suppose, that sits on the shelf for years and soon becomes ignored until the day when it simply falls into your hand. Well, it was that close and quite simply could not be ignored.

The Falkirk Wheel is a monumental piece of engineering – a rotating boat lift that since 2002 has reconnected the Forth & Clyde Canal (below) and the Union Canal (above), the first time since the 1930s. The site itself is one of the most staggering pleasures to the eyes but I have to say, that turning the whole place into a theme-park doesn’t lend well to the sheer awe of it all. Certainly, it will draw huge income and just as likely, it makes life a little tricky for any photo-enthusiast (ie: moi!) to make images of the prime attraction – the wheel itself. Nonetheless, without wishing to sound like an affiliate to the Scottish Tourist Board (or an anti-affiliate at that) for anyone who is interested in the waterways of Scotland, or anywhere for that matter, or engineering – this thing is a must see.

It works on the principle of Archimedes theory of displacement (that a body immersed in water displaces its own weight in water) thus, each of the two gondolas contains 250 tonnes (250,000 litres) of water without a boat within, or the same weight when containing a vessel. This means that enough electricity to boil a few kettles is required to get the wheel turning before the balance of the two gondolas (180 degrees from each other) keep the wheel turning in perfect balance with each other. It’s all extremely simply yet, ridiculously clever. 

Here, I have done my best to capture some of the essence of the Wheel whilst sticking to the idea of conscious exclusion, (in other words, without the pedalos, ice-cream stalls, crowds and, bouncy castles, for instance). I do hope you’ll enjoy this first instalment. 

R.

[All images: Fujifilm X100 Internal 720nm IR – 35mm Equiv.]

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The Kelpies | 720nm Infrared | 35:Chronicle

black & white, infrared, photography, structures

Transformations.


By the end of July I was already starting to get back on my feet, so, after almost three months of restrictions, it was time for us to plan a road-trip and – do something a little bit different. I dumped the crutches in the boot of the car (just in case) and, we headed to Grangemouth, home of the Kelpies, for a few days r’n’r. 

Though we’d read before about these incredible structures, nothing could have actually prepared us for the sight that awaited us as we approached them on the motorway. Our hotel destination was only a mile or so away from The Helix where these two stunning 300-tonne, 30m high, steel-panelled structures are  situated, so we couldn’t have been better placed. Within an hour of checking in, I’d already loaded up the cameras I’d be using to photograph them and, we were setting off on foot already towards the canal and – towards our first close-up look at the Kelpies; the name itself deriving from the Scottish word for shape-shifting water spirits which inhabit Scotland’s lochs and pools.

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Designed and built by Andy Scott in 2013, the Kelpies have been given huge acclaim and attract millions of visitors every year. Its not hard to see why. Standing upon a specially constructed lock and basin, they dominate the skyline in a way so rarely seen, anywhere. For this reason alone, I was determined to capture them in infrared right from the off but in fact, the first and third frame I shall post here, were shot on day two when the clouds had finally lifted to let the sun in. Frame two was shot on day one under less than ideal IR conditions but, has to be included to give some frame of reference as to their domineering and imposing presence. They truly are a sight to see and, I do hope you’ll enjoy these first few frames.

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On a side note, I would like to thank, so much,  all of you who follow or regularly read my pages and my works for bearing with me. It’s been a really difficult year since April but I am very glad to say that not only am I recovering extremely well, but I have been so busy enjoying the fruits of life again that I have found ridiculously little time to sit, process, write or do much else for that matter. I really have been making up for lost time, which is another way of saying – my catalogue of shots has been increasing lately!

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III.

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It’s bally good to be back, so, for reading me again – thank you! 

R.

[All images: Fujifilm X100 Internal 720nm IR – 35mm Equiv.]

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Caerlaverock Castle | 720nm Infrared | PT.I | 35:Chronicle

35mm, black & white, infrared, landscape, personal, photography, ruins, rural, skies, structures, trees

Crutches.


When things turn for the worst, we all need some kind of crutch to get us through – something (or things) that we can truly lean on. There’s no subtle message here, though. Besides the obvious, it’s not only been the sticks that have got me on my feet again. Though it was only the beginning, the end of April was a horrifying time for me and I have had no end of support from so, so many people. Friends, work friends and colleagues, healthcare professionals, family and of course, my love and my rock, Angela. I owe so many – so much.

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On the inside though, it has been imperative that I am and remain as positive as I  can possibly be and this is why, in writing this short post, I remember and continue to appreciate the support, care and love of every single person to have been here for me and, for those especially – who remain. No, I am not yet out of the woods, but I can see a clearing. Without every single iota of support that I have received over the last almost fifteen weeks, I am certain that I would not be in such good spirits, nor as motivated and hopeful as I unquestionably feel. The reason I’m writing these words, is this: these pictures of the beautiful Caerlaverock Castle are extremely important to me for one huge reason – they are the first outdoor pictures I photographed since the latter part of April.

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If photography was not another of my crutches, my loves, I don’t know what else I might have leaned upon to get me back out there, and so, with even the minutest support of every single person who helped to get me back out there and the love, support and patience of a very special woman, I was indeed able (after only eight weeks) to make these frames. I get almost tearful when I view them. The afternoon I made these was a struggle for sure – but it never was going to be just about getting a few pictures. Every single person around me – helped me to make them.

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In two words: thank you!

R.

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The Gardens of Drumlanrig | 720nm Infrared – PT.I | 35:Chronicle

28mm, 35mm, black & white, infrared, photography, rural, structures, summer, trees

Hog Heaven – An Alternative View.


Back in early April this year, we visited Drumlanrig Castle, near Thornhill. You may remember, if you’re a regular reader, that at the time, I was shooting with my then newly internally converted 720nm IR GR [PT.III of original series]- and, what I really wanted to capture were the beautiful gardens here. Sadly, April is a little early and the groundsmen were still working their fingers to the bone in preparing these fabulous grounds for the public and, some shots of the castle itself were the best that I could steal. Once they were open however, we went back – and, what a glorious day it was to wander around and to play with light again. 

Don’t be misled by a gentle introduction – this place is stunning in any light and, I hope to do Drumlanrig’s gardens justice over coming posts. I only hope you’ll enjoy them.

R.

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Down by the River | PT.II | 720nm Infrared | 35:Chronicle

35mm, black & white, infrared, photography, trees, waterscape

Looking Up.


Just a couple of weeks ago I was beginning to feel a lot more comfortable on my feet, (with hospital supplied crutches, naturally) – and so, I felt that it was a good time to get across the road and take a little stroll along the river path. My fitness is undoubtedly less since the end of April and I am determined to lessen the damage as much as I can. Not only this, but I have been utterly itching to get out with my cameras again. This day seemed to me a perfect opportunity to kill two proverbial birds with a single stone. With Angie at my side (mainly because she doesn’t trust me walking alone yet – probably a very wise thing) we gently walked for a while, taking in the beautiful afternoon sunshine across the Nith and, regular stops for shots meant that I wasn’t pushing things too hard. 

To keep my bag light, these frames were all shot on my internally IR converted GR (with internal 35mm crop). In all honesty it’s still my go-to for impromptu jaunts. No matter – I hope you’ll enjoy these few frames as I have. I guess that for me, they’re way more significant. I can once again enjoy what I love.

I hope that you will too.

R.

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I | Water or, Sky?

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II | Still.

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III | To Greyfriars.

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Like a Tiger Caged | 720nm IR | 35:Chronicle

black & white, boats, infrared, nature, personal, photography, rural, trees, waterscape

On the Inside.


It’s been over seven weeks since the accident that put me flat on my back and, I’ll be brutally honest – it’s starting to hurt more. I’m not talking about the pains from the injuries though, you understand. Those, I can deal with. But the pain I am starting to feel inside, the one specific pain that keeps nagging me and, reminding me that life is still happening and, I need to get back out there and be, well, normal again. To be able to live my life as I live it is all that I want now. I am getting about a lot better lately, but the sun is shining, the weather is beautiful, the spring is passed and I feel anxious, taunted, and I know how much I am missing out on because today, I should be out there too.

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I | On the Rocks [II] | 720nm Infrared.

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II | Water Under | 720nm Infrared.

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Like a caged tiger, both physically and mentally, with purpose and a distinct rolling of the shoulders, I am pacing, looking out at a world I still can’t touch, yet. It’s temporary – but time doesn’t wait and I am, through my steady improvements, becoming teeth-clenchingly restless for the outside. Artistic block is creeping in too and my edge is feeling decidedly dulled. I need to be doing what I do.  None of this will matter much to many, nor should it matter – but my protracted pauses are of good reason.

Bear with me, please – I’m getting there; and keep doing what you all do. I’m reading!

R.

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III | Stronger | 720nm Infrared.

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Gelston Castle | PT.II | 35:Chronicle

35mm, black & white, infrared, photography, ruins, rural, structures

Infrared & Visible-Light Comparisons.


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IV | Gelston Castle | Visible | X100T | 35mm Equiv.

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In Gelston Castle | PT.I I published a few initial frames of this utterly gorgeous ruin, all three – photographed in infrared, using my internally converted 720nm IR X100. There’s a reason that I use this camera for infrared shooting rather than any later iterations of Fuji’s iconic camera. The sensor. Though it has less resolution than the ‘S’, the ‘T’ or the ‘F’ – its more organic output is simply perfect, when the slightly grainier aspect of IR light is to be captured. For some reason, the later versions of the X-Trans sensor just failed to do it for me and, as much as I have tried to wait, to see if one day their output would one day find its way into my visual affections – it hasn’t. I think six years with later X offerings is more than long enough. So, whilst my ‘T’ ended up for sale recently, the original will stay in my bag until it croaks on me. 

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V | Gelston & Resident Crows | 720nm IR | X100 | 35mm Equiv.

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As I habitually resize all of my frames before uploading for posts, there won’t be much visible difference between my captures  and those from most other similar cameras with the same sensor size and subject to a similar workload, but when I’m working on them in post, I really do notice. On the other hand, my other internal IR conversion (the Ricoh GR) though slightly more gritty than the X-IR, has an even more pleasing output for infrared, but, oddly, even after setting WB prior to each excursion, the X seems to show much better colour balance and wider tonal range under infrared conditions, whereas the GR-IR shows only red and magenta tones. As I process all of my IR work for black and white, this makes very little difference in the long run – unless I need to accentuate any particular colour band. 

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VI | Gelston thro’ th’ Trees | 720nm IR | GR | 35mm Internal Crop.

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To (non-scientifically) show the differences between three very different cameras, and, just for fun – these are three more shots of the beautiful Gelston Castle, from three different perspectives; one from each bit of kit. I hope you will enjoy them for what they are. 

R.

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HOME A RATIONALE | LIGHT-WAVES | ARCHIVES | LINKS
Thank you for visiting. If you would like updates, please click Follow. All Images & Posts © 35:Chronicle (2018, 2019) except where specified. No Copying or Redistribution of any kind is permitted without prior consent from the author, unless links to original work is clearly provided.
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