Farewell 2018, Hello 2019…

Wishing all my readers a great new year, I hope it goes out with a bang. This month I have been busy with Wes Hardaker who has been guiding a select few photographers on the different applications of exposure control. I generally leave my camera set at -0.3, so it has been an education to finally play a little more with my exposure compensation dial.

New Zealand loves its Bees!

For my final challenge I was asked to create a set of Street Photos. However, I have been in the sleepy town of Blenheim in New Zealand. The town is great for wine, but a little quiet for Street Photography. I think I managed to pull of some work with at least an urban feel to it. All these photos are either very over or underexposed. Feel free to have a nose and leave a comment. This is me working outside of my comfort zone, something I will be trying to do more of in 2019!

Looking at 2019, I am hoping to do less social media, enter more competitions and work on making better images. I also have my first exhibition coming up in January, so watch this space.

Thanks to all of you who have been following this blog through 2018, I would be talking to myself without you.

Take care and keep clicking, Chris.

Best of 2018. Part 1

“Twelve significant photographs in any one year is a good crop.” – Ansel Adams

As the year comes to a close, I find myself reflecting on what I have achieved with my photography in 2018.  Today I scoured by hard drive for my favourite photos of the year. I will try and explain a little of what is behind each image. There will be six images in this post, and six in the next.

Varanasi

To get a good angle you sometimes need to fight for a spot. For this image I had to wade through the edges of the Ganges River to get around the crowd. A fast prime lens meant I was able to capture an image of good quality. While not ‘Street’ as many other images, it stands as a favourite.

Boy

This image falls short of being completely candid as this young boy was clearly posing for the camera. His mum was behind him in the shadow, and yanked him in after I captured this frame. While I often go out on photo walks, this image was taken while I was waiting for my Royal Enfield motorbike to be serviced.

Stone Mason, Bangalore

I love portraits, and this image has a back story. I was working on a project as part of the StepOutPhotography collective. The subject of my photo essay was the cemeteries in Bangalore. This stone mason was carving headstones outside the Muslim section of the burial ground.

Hindu Cemetery

This image was taken outside a Hindu burial ground. I like how the 3 men are passing the entrance. This was one of the final images of a days shooting.

Pattaya Ladyboy

Many of the ‘workers’ involved in Pattaya’s booming sex industry are reticent of being photographed. However, often the ladyboys were quite happy to pull a pose. I chose B+W for this image. There is a darker side to paradise!

Taxi Driver, Kolkata

Kolkata was my favourite location for photography this year. I woke up at 5am, shot like mad till 10am, and then crashed for the day. Candid photos can be a challenge in India, everyone likes to pose. Fortunately, this guy was to engrossed in the paper to notice me.

Keep an eye out for part 2!

Take Care and Keep Clicking, Chris

Photographing Varanasi

Chaos

Varanasi is the spiritual home for Hindus and sits on the banks of the Ganges River. The city is sacred to Hindus and is credited as being one of the oldest cities in the world. What many of the guidebooks forget to tell you is that it is thick with smog and full of people who are more interested in your finances than your spiritual life! However, don’t let that put you off, the opportunities for photography are fantastic.

Varanasi (1 of 1) Read More

Instax Cameras and Street Photography

Using The Fujifilm Instax 90 Neo Classic

This is not a review, more of a discussion. This camera is NOT going to create award winning photos, does not have great dynamic range and, believe me – you would not want to be paying for this thing to spit out 12 shots a second. However, it is fun and a great conversation piece at parties. It also enables the the act of giving. Instantly.

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Giving a Photo!

While far from a ‘specs’ list, here are some points you may like to know.

  • It shoots at a high f/number – generally, everything is in focus.
  • It looks cool and rugged, but is made entirely of plastic.
  • The Instax 90 has a few more manual controls than other models – but not that many.
  • The film is quite expensive.
  • The quality of the photos is either poor, or hip and grungy. Depends on your viewpoint.

I suspect that these comments would be the same for any model of instant camera. In general, they really are not that good for high quality prints. But they are instant, and that is pretty handy.

Opening Doors

Street photographers take. We take a lot. We take tiny snippets of people’s time and lives. Sometimes these moments are never noticed, other times they are appreciated, and unfortunately, there are times when photographers are just damn intrusive. It should come as no surprise that sometimes we are not wanted!

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Sharing

Every day I take a shortcut from work and pass by a group of families that live in a small squatter camp. They herd goats and appear to have a couple of cows. The camp looks ragged and is created from waste construction site materials, tarpaulin and scraps of plastic. I have been invited into a hut once, and the interiors are clean and tidy. Children play, women cook, and men head out looking for manual labor jobs.  Although I always get a friendly wave, the people living there become shy when my camera is out, and are reticent about allowing photography.

Equipped with my Instax, I have been able to give the families photos they can keep. The act of giving opens hearts, particularly when you are providing mothers with pictures of their children. Using this technique I have started to make inroads in the community. This is not the only location where I have used this method to build bridges. The Instax camera is now a tool I keep in my bag.

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Final Image

Tips and Tricks

  • If you try this method, make sure you only take as much film as your budget allows. I give myself one roll a day (10 pics).
  • Warning. Once you have handed out photos, any subsequent images you take with your ‘proper’ gear will be of people looking at their prints!
  • Clear some wall space at home. These photos are quite addictive.
  • Wonder at how you are managing without memory cards, Lightroom and Photoshop!

Take care and keep clicking, Chris

 

Olympus (1 of 1)

 

PS – you may notice the site has been re-designed. Feel free to explore and follow!

 

The World’s Highest Street Photo.

Bit of a long post here, mainly a reflection on a great adventure. Feel free to read it or pass it over. If you just want to see the pics, then here is a link…

https://pagespics.com/himalayas/

A Story…

This is a tale of friendship, family, photography, and travel. Forgive me if I stray from the narrative of cameras and the like, but photography does not exist on an island. My claim to have captured the highest Street Photo in the World admittedly relies on a relatively restrictive definition of what this genre entails. However, I will leave the nit-picking of definitions to others. I believe a Street Photo usually has to be taken from a Street (duh) and in an urban environment. Komic, a small village in the Himalayan Mountains, fits this definition as it is the highest village in the world accessible by road, sitting at 4587m above sea level.

Komic

Proof I Made It (Photo by Taeko Page)

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Failing with a Flash

Flash Photography

I felt like a newbie. I really have not got much of a clue when it comes to using a flash. Tonight I was walking home and was told our local village was having a dance party at 7 pm. Locals dancing is something I definitely wanted to capture. I set out just after 6, taking along my flash unit. I have only recently purchased the Nissan i40, and really have not had a chance to try it out with my Olympus EM5ii.

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I had some success.

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Walking Home and the Imperfect Photograph

The Challenge

Recently, through the StepOutPhotography Collective, my friend Birka Weidmaier has challenged me to take imperfect photos. This challenge is harsh, I know what you’re thinking, there are never any imperfect photos posted to pagespics.com! To rise to this challenge I need to look at unusual angles and focus points. Secondly, I am not allowed to crop or adjust the horizon on my photos. I can take a week deciding if a horizon is straight, and trying to get it wrong ON PURPOSE sends shivers down my spine.

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At an Angle!

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