U-Turns | Ricoh GR III | 35Chronicle

35mm, black & white, close-up, fine art, Indoor, macro, photography

I Know! I Said I Wouldn’t Do It…

Back in March 2019 I wrote a post about the (in my view, amazing) Ricoh GR entitled ‘You Can Call Me – Jack’ (post #121 from my archives page, if you’re interested) in which I wrote: “If the GR III is as good as it’s going to get, then I’m sorry Ricoh- you already got it bang-on with the first one – nuts, bolts, the lot. And I’m not moving. I mean, what would be the point?” Okay, so I have had the GR III for a few months now and whilst all the reviews are out there – I’m not about to write another one; not yet anyway. (I have a very early start tomorrow. That’s my excuse and I’m sticking to it!) What I will do now, though, is just post a couple of macro / close-up frames of another of my favourite things and, let the images do the talking. I love how the GR line just gets better and better. I hope you’ll enjoy this little smidgen of self-indulgence. I have never found a camera so good at macro as the GR series and the III gets even closer than the I/II. All frames were shot using my favoured 35mm internal-crop mode and I didn’t even need my Hoya +10 for these… blows my mind!

Have a great week, all!

R.

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Taking Time Out | Ricoh GR III | 35Chronicle

black & white, colour, nature, personal, photography, rural, skies, spring, sunset, trees, waterscape

A Change of Rhythm.


In some ways, we can all do with it – albeit enforced of late but, I have other reasons to feel the benefits of little changes here and there. For those of you who follow my pages here, you’ll know very well that I am a devout fan of monochrome output for my own personal photographic endeavours. Colour has mostly (since I first picked up a proper camera over twenty years ago) remained a constant source of confusion, distraction and dare I say – annoyance, too. I’ve discussed these feelings somewhat in previous posts so I won’t be waxing on about it here; suffice to say – I have often struggled with colour photography. Recently however, I managed to get my hands on a new GR III – a camera that for me would supersede all others when it comes to black and white shooting. Then, yesterday evening, Bumble looked out through the living-room window and remarked upon the sunset across the other side of the Nith. A short, gentle walk was suggested, and, (in keeping with current restrictions of course) – we happily stepped out.

I grabbed my GR on our way through the door. What a treat! But though I have, as so many photographers – naturally, had little opportunity to get out and shoot this camera (any camera) I am nevertheless extremely happy to share these few frames.

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III.

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I do hope that you’ll enjoy these few captures and, that you are all remaining safe and well. Sending my very best wishes to every reader; to you and to yours. 

R.

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Lockdown Blues | 35Chronicle

35mm, black & white, colour, people, photography, portraits

It’s Can’t be Easy, Being Seven!


Two weeks of lockdown before the school Easter holidays commenced and guess who’s had his fill of it all, already? Homeschool is tougher than he’d bargained for, he’s not allowed to visit the new local play-park, the shops have all run out of his favourite sweeties and through it all, I keep sticking my new GR III in his face! It’s tough, being a little ‘un, I can see that. To make matters worse, my Windows 10 laptop has all but died on me after a recent Windows Update (thanks for nothing, Mr. Gates – or whoever is running the show at Microsoft, now) and I have had to find a complete new way of processing, editing and saving my shots. To top it all, I have to use the WP app my iPad – which is not as simple as it should be and I can see a few corrections to formatting in Safari, coming right after I publish this. Anyhooz, all is not lost – it’s all about adapting, I guess.

Speaking of adapting, I know I said I wouldn’t do it, but yes, I did – and I am loving the latest iteration of Ricoh’s GR. All of these frames were captured on it at my favoured 35mm internal crop mode and to round off on a good note – young Flynn was only feigning in shot one. He’s coping just fine and can even tell the time now! Onwards!

Though I am certain that nobody has ever pegged the GR series as a serious portrait tool, I reckon it’ll pass. Keep smiling, keep well and, I hope you’ll appreciate the annoyance I have had to endure this afternoon to bring you these! One has to laugh, eh?!

R.

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Lowther Castle – PT.III | VIS Collection | 35Chronicle

black & white, photography, ruins, rural, structures

To Be Continued… One Day.


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IV | 1/60th – f8.0 – ISO:200

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V | 1/60th – f8.0 – ISO:200

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VI | 1/60th – f8.0 – ISO:200

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VII | 1/125th – f8.0 – ISO:100

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Lowther Castle – PT.II | VIS Collection | 35Chronicle

28mm, 35mm, black & white, photography, ruins, rural, structures

An Impromptu Stop-Off.


After an unpredictable weekend away (during the most recent storms, here in the UK) the day of our return seemed much brighter and, a lot easier on the outdoor gear. Rather than to return straight home, we decided instead to make the most of the atmospheric reprieve and make a mid-morning stop-off here, at Lowther Castle, near Penrith. In PT.I, I published a few infrared frames that I was able to bag during a couple of short-lived bursts of less diffused sunshine but sadly, as my preamble would suggest, they just didn’t last. The tail-end of ‘Dennis’ was still licking in the air.

Though I would have loved to have shot a good many more IR pictures here at the beautiful Lowther Castle, I was nonetheless extremely happy to take in the atmosphere here and, with my standard GR in hand – make a generous number of black & whites. Shots I & III were captured at 35mm using the GR’s internal crop mode, while shot II was snagged at its native 28mm. 

Thank you so much for stopping by my pages and, I hope you’ll enjoy these few captures.

– R –

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I | 1/60th – f5.6 – ISO:125

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II | 1/60th – f8.0 – ISO:160

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III | 1/60th – f8.0 – ISO:125

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Hexham Abbey | PT.II | 35Chronicle

35mm, black & white, Indoor, photography, structures

A Little More Light-Play | Pushing the Ricoh GR


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IV | Ricoh GR 1/10th [H/H] – f3.5 – ISO:3200 – 35mm Internal Crop

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This little camera never, ever fails to astound me. After all I wrote about it [here] there was still one aspect of it that I never properly tried out. As a rule, I have seldom, if ever – shot at equivalent film-speeds of faster than ISO: 1600; not on any camera and certainly not seriously (save for occasionally with the incredible Nikon offering, the Df, which is  a whole different beast altogether). However, when the light drops and one finds oneself tripodless (say, through poor preparation, perhaps) the only way to get the shot, sometimes, is to bump up the ISO and, without anywhere suitable to rest my GR during the making of these frames, handheld was the only way to go. 1600 wasn’t cutting it as, even with reasonably steady hands and good stance, most of the frames were just coming out a little too soft due to that smidgen of camera movement.  Therefore, 3200 was the only way to get them. Without realising it, I was on a test mission after which I would find myself thoroughly delighted. My initial thoughts were simply that it’d be better to get the shots than not. 

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V | Ricoh GR 1/10th [H/H] – f2.8 – ISO:3200 – 35mm Internal Crop

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I’ve always enjoyed the grain that appears in the GR’s images, especially at around 800-1600; it’s light, almost organic in appearance and lends a feel to a composition that instead of destroying it or breaking it up, actually appears to add more warmth and cohesion instead. To me, it harks back to when I used to enjoy shooting Ilford HP5 on an old ME Super, all those years ago – and to be honest, on most occasions, grain is such an integral part of the frame that I rarely even see it; and that’s exactly what happened here when I started editing these shots. I couldn’t even see it. You’d be forgiven for thinking that these have all undergone a major repertoire during processing but in truth, I really don’t enjoy spending too long in LR and so, these are very lightly processed and NR hasn’t even been touched. Exposures are a breeze and accurate with the GR and after having shot with it for so many years, I’m fortunate to be able to feel like it’s really an extension of my hand and, it has seldom let me down. Whilst for some types of composition, clean, pristine is more desirable – it’s not always what I’m looking for and I am moving quickly away from the ‘keeping it sharp and clean’ school of thought. Insosaying, if the light is good, I’ll be happy come what may. I think that no longer being pointlessly critical is going to open up a whole new wave of ideas that I am already very keen to exploit. It doesn’t just do it in black and white, either; colour frames come up pretty nice too!

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As always, thank you so much for reading my pages and I do hope you’ll enjoy these few captures of Hexham’s gorgeous abbey. [PT.I can be viewed here].

-R-

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VI | Ricoh GR 1/45th [H/H] – f2.8 – ISO:3200 – 35mm Internal Crop

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Hexham Abbey | PT.I | 35Chronicle

black & white, colour, photography, structures

Light-Play | Outside vs Inside…


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I | Ricoh GR 1/60th – f5.0 – ISO:400

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II | Ricoh GR 1/15th [H/H] – f2.8 – ISO:3200

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III | Ricoh GR 1/15th [H/H] – f2.8 – ISO:3200

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(…no comparison!)

Happy New Year, all!

– R –


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Closer Still(s) | PT.XXV | Wilt in Nowhere | 35Chronicle

35mm, black & white, close-up, colour, fine art, macro, nature, photography, still life

Oh, I’ve Missed this Caper!


We all have our favourite genres when it comes to photography; me – I love IR and alternative wavelengths, people, waterscapes and boats and of course, if you’ve been reading me for a while, close-up & macro photography. As I was sitting at dinner with my family this evening it occurred to me that it’s been simply ages since I set-up to shoot any close subjects and, this was all because of one wilting Gerbera Daisy in a vase on the opposite side of the kitchen. 

As a predominantly black and white shooter, I was shall we say, uncharacteristically jolted into thought by its colour and the way in which it had drooped forward away from the rest of the bunch as if reminding me that I’ve lost touch with the finer details; and so, after clearing up, I excitedly pulled all the gear I needed, downstairs, and set up in the kitchen to photograph this forlorn but  beautiful little flower, perhaps not too many days away from being destined for the bin but not yet completely void of its former form; certainly worth a few shutters.

(Sorry for nicking the title from Tom Sharpe – it just, fitted.) I hope you will enjoy these few eagerly processed frames. This is about as hot off the press as it gets… 

– R –

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I | Ricoh GXR A12 33mm [50mm Equiv] Macro | 1/12th – f8.0 – ISO:100.

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II | Ricoh GR w/Hoya +10 Close-Up | 1/12th – f8.0 – ISO:100 | 35mm Internal Crop.

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III | Ricoh GR w/Hoya +10 Close-Up | 1/30th – f8.0 – ISO:100 | 35mm Internal Crop.

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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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On Human Connections (& the Withholding of Sherry!) | 35Chronicle

35mm, black & white, people, personal, photography, portraits

From my Quiet Corner.


It’s not often that I photograph people anymore, however this post for me at least, is a little more poignant. This year has seen hospital visits very frequently on my agendas. Not only for myself have I spent time in one or another, but sadly with an ageing family member and the problems exacerbated by the very same and unstoppable process,  this has brought on the necessity to spend even more time in various departments and wards throughout the year. But there’s something else about hospitals other than the obvious that runs deep in their very ethos that, if you simply look around you – can be seen everywhere. 

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Now, I know it’s absolutely not ethical nor even polite to photograph at random the unfortunate plights of others in such a personal context, so, I’d like to share instead a couple of simple frames which for me epitomise the deeper connections between human beings  that I have only ever witnessed so emphatically – in hospitals. Though I have hung on to these shots for a good number of months, (I found it very difficult to find a cohesive context in which to publish them) now – I feel I can share them in such a way that I would hope makes such clear sense as to render the message obvious. 

As I sat in the corner of a nearby community hospital, observing Angela with her ninety-nine year old grandmother, Ellen, who had by then been a patient there for over two months, the intimacy and love that filled the room was something that I just had to try to capture. Heart-melting moments, right there in front of me.

Thankfully, Ellen is home again at the time of writing and is doing very well indeed. (We’ve had to withhold the sherry though; just in case.)

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[Both frames were discreetly captured on my secreted Ricoh GR, set to my preferred 35mm Crop mode.] 

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

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

Light of Heart.


To find Drumlanrig so void of people on a gorgeous day like this is a rarity, a real rarity in fact. Perhaps it had something to do with the different timings of the school summer holidays between Scotland and England because from past experience, this place is usually teeming with people at this time of year. However, I complain not a bit simply because it did mean that I could exercise complete selfishness without a hint of guilt. Therefore, a few more IR frames from a place I love. To my mind – there’s no better way to see it. 

R.

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Closer Still(s) | PT.XXII | AKA: Miss Jekyll

35mm, black & white, close-up, colour, macro, nature, photography, still life

Love in a Mist.


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III.

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[All frames: Ricoh GR | 4:3 | Internal 35mm Crop | w/Hoya +10.]
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Postcards from the Recovery Position | PT.VIII | 35:Chronicle

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

Drumcoltran Tower [PT.III]


Okee doke, this is to be the last in my ‘Postcards’ series – no point kicking the backside out of it; (otherwise it just gets boring). Though I did get out and shoot a lot before I ended up rather incapacitated, I have been as productive as I can be of late and, will have some newer, more recent material up soon. Still, with regards to Drumcoltran Tower, I feel that despite three posts, there’s more to capture here and, when I am back on my feet, I absolutely intend to return and shoot again under even better light.

You’ll notice, if you have read Drumcoltran Tower [PT.II] – that I have chosen to post a similar first shot from the parapet and over the neighbouring farm, taken under visible-light conditions as opposed to the original IR frame in PT.II. I guess I still cannot decide which  I prefer. Nonetheless, the whole place has a wonderful feel which, I fully intend to exploit again in the near future. 

R.

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VII | From the Parapet.

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VIII | From the 3rd ‘Floor’.

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IX | Stone Steps by Window.

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Postcards from the Recovery Position | PT.V | 35:Chronicle

35mm, black & white, Indoor, nature, photography, portraits, still life

One Temperate Heart.


A little over three weeks into my recovery and I still have a long road ahead. Without labouring any point as to how I got into this position in the first place (you’ll have to read PT.I if you want the most basic of gists) I am at home, being well cared for by my Angie, and, when I have the opportunity (in other words, when she agrees that I’m fit and steady enough to move around a little and not completely doped on opioid pain relief and tripping over my crutches) – the first thing I still want to do (remember: this is a public forum, kids!) is, to make photographs. 

During my second week at home, I was able to do just that from my bedside and, as a way of reiterating that things could definitely be worse, I share these few frames with you all. I am missing some glorious spring sunshine but, it’s not going to stop me. I must keep moving. 

Warmth, Gratitude & Love.

R.

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I | From Friends.

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II | Introducing Charlotte the Red, by Window Seat (Don’t Ask!)

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III | Angie – After Fluffing-Up my Pillows.

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IV | From Friends & to Friends.

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All Frames: Ricoh GR | 35mm [APS-C Internal Crop at 4:3]
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Postcards from the Recovery Position | PT.IV | 35:Chronicle

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

Drumcoltran Tower [PT.II]


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IV | From the Parapet | 35mm | 720nm Infrared.

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V | From the Third ‘Floor’ | 21mm.

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VI | Without: Within | 21mm.

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Postcards from the Recovery Position [PT.I]
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