Internal Affairs | PT.V | 35:Chronicle

black & white, colour, full-spectrum, Indoor, night / low-light, photography, structures

St. Giles’ Cathedral – Edinburgh | PT.III.


This is to be the final part of my St. Giles series. In all honesty, I could have gotten way more value out of my £2 photo-pass that I purchased upon entry. I could easily have whiled away more hours here than the one that I did. Watching, looking, shooting, looking. The light was poor though, a very dull and overcast sky affording less quality and intensity through stained-glass – so diffuse that my fixed lens camera of choice made it much more difficult to grab a steady shot, the later the afternoon became. Insosaying, I grabbed my low-light camera. Actually, it’s primarily my weapon of choice for much of my IR compositions, but, removing the UVIR Cut filter from in front of the lens element, I was able to gather twice as much light as my primary, fixed-lens camera. Shot in true full-spectrum, capturing all available light (from UV-A through VIS to IR) renders even sharp details a little softer due to invisible lightwave pollution but I still think these make the grade. I hope you will enjoy these last few captures.  

R.

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I | The Dark Exit.

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II | Symmetry Divine.

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III | Symmetry Divine [II]

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2018 Photographic Review | 35:Chronicle

28mm, 35mm, 50mm, black & white, boats, close-up, colour, faux-colour, Indoor, infrared, landscape, macro, nature, personal, photography, review, skies, spring, structures, trees, waterscape

One Hundred, into One.


Seeing as how this post happens to be my one hundredth, it’s actually ninety-nine into one . Since I began this blog back in March, I have also enjoyed the works and posts of so many of you and, if there could be more hours in a day, there would be many more besides, too, providing me with no less enjoyable learning, entertainment or, food for thought. I have also, over the last ten months, hoped to provide some interest in the field of photography, my own takes from various genres of our art-form which I feel so passionate about. Without the love for it, the desire to (hopefully) create something a little different on occasion or, the discipline to stay true, it’s all for nothing. Insosaying, I hope with all the passion that I have for various genres of photography, that my sincerity is not only intact but also, perhaps more importantly, unmistakably evident.

As this year now tick-tocks on to draw its last, making way for the next, I would like not only to thank you most sincerely for your input, your comments, clicks, follows and conversations, but to wish every one of you a very happy New Year for 2019. Your presence here is just as important as my own works, because without a reader, a word or a picture – would be pointless. Therefore, if you will forgive my indulgence, I would like to share with you all just some of my favourite frames from this inaugural year on 35:Chronicle.  I truly hope that you will enjoy them.

Wishing you all wonderful celebrations and, much happiness from the coming year.

Warmest regards,

Rob. 

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Snowdrops | 35mm.

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Telford Woz ‘Ere! | 720nm Faux-Colour Infrared | 35mm.

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Double-Masted | 720nm Infrared | 35mm.

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Bluebell | 35mm.

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Broom | 35mm.

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Milkbank House Ruins | 760nm Infrared | 28mm.

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Talla Reservoir | 760nm Infrared | 28mm.

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Talla’s Monitoring Station | 720nm Infrared | 50mm.

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How the Other Half Live | 720nm Infrared | 35mm.

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Sir Duncan Rice Library | University of Aberdeen | 28mm.

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Moonrise | 720nm Infrared | 85mm.

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Grandeur | 35mm.

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Happy New Year 2019, to You All!

R.


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INTERNAL AFFAIRS | PT.IV | 35:CHRONICLE

35mm, 50mm, black & white, colour, full-spectrum, Indoor, night / low-light, photography, structures

St. Giles’ Cathedral – Edinburgh | PT.II


IV | Grandeur.  [X100T: 35mm – 1/12th – f2.8 – ISO:1600 – +0.7 – Matrix]

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V | Light. [GXR A16 (Full-Spectrum): 85mm – 1/125th – f5.5 – ISO:1600 – Matrix]

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VI | Blue II. [X100T: 35mm – 1/9th – f2.8 – ISO:1600 – +0.7 – Matrix]

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VII | Lantern. [GXR A16 (Full-Spectrum): 50mm – 1/30th – f4 – ISO:1600 – Matrix]

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(St. Giles’ – PT.I)
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Internal Affairs | PT.III | 35:Chronicle

35mm, black & white, colour, full-spectrum, Indoor, night / low-light, photography, structures

St. Giles’ Cathedral – Edinburgh | PT.I


We’re all running short of time at this end of the year, so, let me say this off the bat in case you don’t have time yet to read to the end of the post – to all of you who read and follow my pages, I would like to wish you all a very happy Christmas and,  I extent my warmest thanks for your support, your comments and, your valuable time ever since I started my little blog, back in March. It’s been a superb journey thus far and, I hope to get at least one more post in before Hogmanay!

On Friday of last week, I had occasion to visit Edinburgh. As it’s that time of year again, I do like to get to Princes Street and do the whole Christmas Market thing, kind of a tradition and as I didn’t get to visit last year, I was very keen to get there before this Christmas kicked off, proper. Now, I resisted the temptation to shoot all things Christmassy so please do forgive me for the lack of tinsel, Santa-hats, seasonal pullovers, mistletoe and the like. Instead, I again only wanted to capture the feel of the place at this time of year. With that said, the images I have chosen for this post may feel a little off-piste or, at the very least, somewhat off-topic. The thing is, I’m not religious nor do I have any great love of this time of year, however, I do enjoy its essence, and – different things mean different things to different people. So, instead of capturing the shiny and commercial side of the season, per se, I decided instead to simply wander and shoot. 

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I | Blue. [X100T: 35mm – 1/13th – f2.8 – ISO:1600 – +0.7 – Matrix]

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Sadly however, the weather was bloody atrocious, nothing but dull light, blanket grey skies and drizzle for most of it, which, made things a little tricky, as is oft’ the case under such conditions when you’re wielding a camera. I decided then, that West Parliament Square would be a great place to grab some serious frames – at the Cathedral of St. Giles. In my bag I carried two cameras – my X100T and, my Richoh (True Full-Spectrum converted) GXR – see my Light Waves page for more info on TFS if you’re not au-fait with it). The Fuji handled outdoors just fine but, being a habitual ISO:1600 maximum shooter, it was sluggish here. I did grab a good number of frames with it inside St. Giles’ and in fact, two of them are right here – but when I really struggled, the GXR’s completely unhindered sensor came into its own. Especially when the light became really difficult. Of course – shooting in mixed light with a full-spectrum camera makes things extremely tricky when it comes to colour reproduction but it’s forte is really black and white output anyway – so, I was in my element. Shutter speeds were almost twice as fast as the standard Fuji when my ISO and Av were the same. A nice little bonus when shooting hand-held indoors and, it certainly helped me in keeping a few frames a little less shaky, shall we say? 

As an aside, the X100T frames have a rather HDR look about them, which I am surprised at. After extremely minimal processing from RAW (RAF converted to DNG) and not even two minutes consideration I am, though I do not enjoy HDR images, very pleased with the results here – and the subject matter does seem to pop, rather nicely.  

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II | Ornation. [GXR (TFS): 24mm – 1/25th – f4.0 – ISO:1600 – -0.3 – Matrix]

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III | Yes, I Probably Looked a Right Berk Laying on my Back on the Cathedral Floor for this One – but, I Don’t Care! [X100T: 35mm – 1/13th – f2.8 – ISO:1600 – +0.7 – Matrix]

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I hope you will enjoy these few frames, that you have a splendid Christmas, however you’re celebrating and, I hope to be here again with you before the New Year! 

Have a fabulous time, all! 

R.


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Shifting Spaces | University of Aberdeen | 35:Chronicle

28mm, black & white, Indoor, photography, structures

The Sir Duncan Rice Library Atrium.


At the beginning of this week, I was fortunate enough to have made a very special visit and, my first, to Aberdeen. Having arrived during the middle of the afternoon, (and, at this time of year when the light begins to fade not long after 3pm) – photographing during the daytime on the city’s streets left me little time for captures. Leaving my tripod at home was probably not the best idea either, but as street photography was not my primary reason for visiting, I was quick to absolve myself. 

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I.

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One of the most beautiful places I was guided towards was the library at the city’s university. Primarily, I was told in no uncertain terms that I would fall in love with the view upwards from the ground floor of the Sir Duncan Rice Library. Laced with history, learning, awards and, aesthetic ingenuity and splendour, Kaine was absolutely right. And so, on foot, we made our way. 

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II.

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On arrival, the ground floor was a bustle of people and, I dodged many in order to selfishly occupy the space directly below the spiralling walkway that shrank as it ascended each of the seven floors above me. Continually, I moved around to capture this incredible structure from as many angles as I could before we had to leave, taking in the lighting and the tantalising lure of so many lines and curves. Coming from a countryside background to this, was – breathtaking. Whilst I can appreciate my natural surroundings in all of its splendour, there is something to be said for photographing outside of any comfort-zone that I most often find myself confined within. 

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III.

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My thanks go to Kaine for his expert guidance (especially given the time constraints placed upon him) in allowing me to make these (and other, yet to be posted) captures. I hope you will all enjoy these few frames which form only a small part of this incredible and, beautiful structure. 

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IV.

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(All images shot at 28mm, ISO 1600 & handheld).

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Back-lit Orchids | 35:Chronicle

black & white, close-up, colour, Indoor, nature, personal, photography

Is Three Really a Crowd?


Okay – forgive me, please! This is my third post on-the-bounce of the same photographic subject. I promise, I really was not intending to rip the arse out of this, however, the host plant from my last two posts was happily perched on my living-room window-sill, soaking up some of that gorgeous, bright stuff this afternoon – and, I just couldn’t resist a few casual frames of this beautiful plant. (Oddly, I have made some frames in colour today, that I am actually pretty happy with. Who’d have thunk it?!)

I’ll probably not be able to post again until almost the middle of next week, therefore, I’ll leave you with this smidgen of sunshine and, wish you all a fabulous weekend! 

R.

I.

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II.

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III.

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[To view other posts in my recent series, please click the ‘orchid’ tag].

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Milkbank House | PT.IV | The VIS Collection | 35:Chronicle

black & white, Indoor, photography, structures

Everywhere, is Someone’s Happy Place.


Back in July this year, I posted the last of my three posts of Milkbank House, shot in 715 and 760nm infrared. In conjunction with the IR frames, I also made a good number of visible light shots during the same visit for black and white output and, intended to post these an awful lot sooner than this. These shots have been sat waiting for me in my ‘To Post” folder ever since I finished processing them. I hope, during the past three months, that they haven’t lost their relevance. 

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I | Milkbank House – Front & Side Elevation.

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II |  Milkbank House Entrance Porch.

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III |  Milkbank House.

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IV |  Milkbank House – Receiving Room.

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v | Milkbank House – Stone Fireplace from the Side.

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Closer Still(s) | PT.VIII | 35:Chronicle

35mm, close-up, colour, Indoor, nature, photography, spring

Spring Broom | PT.II of II.


Righto, this is the second of two posts (otherwise it gets boring!) containing shots that I made last week of the gorgeous red and yellow broom flowers that are in massive numbers at the back of my house right now. They truly are stunning little flowers and, though most of the shrubs are offering yellow flowers only, there is just one out of the entire lot of ’em that has given up these beautiful variations, the like of which I have not witnessed before. To look at them with the naked eye, they are not all that remarkable, however, when getting up-close and very personal with these 15mm or so flowers, they do take on a much more intricate character, if that can be said of a plant? 

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IV. | 35mm w/Hoya +10

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V. | 35mm w/Hoya +10

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My macro / close-up set-up is pretty basic really and shooting only with a 35mm lens (which is not a macro-lens either) does make my choices very simple – I either can shoot what I envisage or, I can’t. It’s as simple as that. There are of course limitations but these only serve me to do my best to get more creative with what I do have in my bag. Yes, I have mentioned my little 49mm Hoya +10 Close-up filter a few times but I cannot stress how abso-bloody-lutely brilliantly useful that little filter is. Having spent countless thousands of pounds on photographic equipment over the many years I have been enjoying the art, it truly is a revelation to know that instead of forking out (and carrying around) more lenses, I have finally managed to put together a collection of three cameras and a few filters that even collectively weigh less than my last DSLR with it’s 50/1.4 mounted. Picky, I am indeed and I would be the first to be unhappy with my images if my chosen rigs weren’t producing the goods that I work towards – and the only duds I ever find are those reflecting my own mistakes. 

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VI. | 35mm w/Hoya +10

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I love these images and I am very happy to have made them – yet, though I don’t expect anyone else to share my utter enjoyment of them, I do hope that some will find a little pleasure in them. Such an understated plant and yet, so full of form and vibrance that I find incredibly appealing. To have these frames is a real pleasure for me because, very soon, the garden floor will be coated in a carpet of faded yellow petals and, the hedgerows? Well, they’re certainly going to be left wanting, aren’t they?

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VII. | 35mm w/Hoya +10

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Click for PT. I of II

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Internal Affairs | PT.II | 35:Chronicle

35mm, black & white, close-up, Indoor, personal, photography

A Long Time Empty.


No.2

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I Can See Clearly, Now the Label’s Gone…

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Tiptoe Through?

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The Importance of the 35mm Lens | 35:Chronicle

35mm, black & white, close-up, colour, Indoor, infrared, landscape, nature, personal, photography

The Most Versatile Lens in your Bag.


The first lens I ever shot with was a 35mm, back in the day when I began making photographs with a film camera. In those days, zoom lenses had only been popular among casual shooters and enthusiasts for around ten years or so and my pocket was way too shallow to be able to afford anything more than my 35. So, it stayed with me and I made the best possible use that I could have with it. For over two years I used that same lens and the more I did, the more I loved it. It was almost as though I could predict how it would render, no matter what I was photographing; in essence, it’s frame-lines had begun to become branded into my brain, through my eyes. Of all the lenses I could have learned with, I am so relieved that my first lens was that 35. In later years I would come to prefer a 50 – a more natural focal-length for me, but whenever I spent time with this slightly longer lens, something often felt like it was missing. It took me years to figure out what that something was.

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Horse-Chestnut Bud

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After saving (and hammering my credit card on occasion) I acquired a number of other lenses over time, G.A.S took a firm hold of my psyche and, I kind of got lost. Though I loved all of the choices I was giving myself, I was only becoming more confused as to the ends I was trying to reach. Telephotos and mid-long zoom lenses made me want to go out and shoot wildlife; wider lenses had me scouring locations for old ruins and run-down buildings and kit zooms, the standard nowadays being the trusty 18-55, shot everything in-between; which was in honesty, almost everything. But even the useful FLs of a kit zoom weren’t really doing it for me because the something that I missed was this: scene and subject interaction. In other words, I was beginning to feel like a casual observer of the scenes or subjects that I was trying to capture rather than as an integral part of it. To me, this felt like a crime given how much I love and always have loved photography, but not only this, I wanted to be close to or even inside my frame – I wanted to be a part of the creative process that I absolutely love so much rather than as a bystander or worse, a casual voyeur on the perimeter, casually making frames of a world, or a scene – that was passing me by.

 

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Stumped | 720nm Infrared

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Shadowed

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It took me years to realise that I was killing my own creativity by trying so hard to cover every base by carrying way more glass than I could possibly need and, that no matter what lens I had mounted at a given time, I would always feel as though it was the wrong one, or, be at least concerned that it might not be the right choice at the time. Doing away with so much choice, essentially, does away with equal amounts of worry and concern. Furthermore, when we can make any and all possible images with any working lens, the only consideration needs to be how best to frame with that one chosen chunk of glass. To see in that focal-length and move around it and, through it, according to our own vision, whether unique or not. This does also mean that the legs get more use (particularly for prime glass) which in turn, puts me back in the centre of the process. But I hear cries and, they’re getting louder. They are cries of anguish and perceived enlightenment that are trying to tell me that I can’t shoot wildlife without a tele-lens, nor can I shoot wide landscapes or industrial frames without a decent wide lens. The 35 is neither one nor the other. So, what the hell am I doing? Well, I know these arguments well and I’ve been doing this a long time so, the ol’ saying about grandma proverbially sucking eggs may well be extremely relevant here. I don’t carry four or five kilos of gear any more and, I am still able to capture images that make me not only happy themselves, but also happy that I am back in the middle of my art. I simply had to revert to one main, workable focal-length and, get to know it again like I once did. The learning never stops but it’s amazing how quickly you can place yourself in the right spot for any shot when you only have to think in one perspective – the chosen prime perspective, that is. Before I have even lifted my viewfinder to my eye, I know where I need to be when an inspiration strikes. It takes away the guesswork, the trial and error, the faffing with lens-changes and the worry about crud getting inside the camera body. And yes, the bag is shedloads lighter and I can move about more freely, for way longer and, I don’t get home and reach for the Deep Heat anymore.

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Submission

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Cherry Blossom

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The 35mm focal length is considered to be at the longest edge of the wide-angle lens concept. It is also regarded as being pretty close to the natural focal-length at which we humans see. Neither of these ideas do I argue with. In contrast, I believe that these two elements are what truly make a 35 the most versatile lens for the way that I shoot and make photographs. Here are just some reasons as to why a good 35 should be a definite consideration:

  • Not only do most if not all 35s focus pretty close, they have little if any distortion (providing you haven’t got a dud).
  • They are inherently sharp (usually, even wide open – I’ve used many and never had a soft shot at f2 that wasn’t my own stupid fault).
  • Primes tend to open up more than zooms (though if you have deep pockets and you want, need and can justify the purchase of that mean looking 18-600mm 1.0 constant (you get the idea?!) then go for it). A fast 35 is a total joy to use when the light levels dip. If you haven’t tried it – you should.
  • The costs are relatively a lot lower than for good or high-quality longer or wider primes (so, much cheaper to replace if you drop it from a height).
  • They are small, light, often very well constructed and a joy to use. Because of the size and weight, they really don’t get in the way of my thinking. It’s a tool. I trust it. It works. Make photographs. Move on and, stop thinking about the gear!
  • 35 is wide enough to capture life as it happens, socially, environmentally, intimately – back in the 70s and 80s it was pretty much the only lens used by press photographers and if ever a lens finds itself in a tough proving ground, that’s probably it, right there.
  • Construction is largely such that it remains reliable for many years of service.
  • It’s the best middle of the road lens (alongside a nice 50 prime, depending on how you ‘see’) for learning and capturing whatever you want.
  • Whatever single focal-length one chooses to befriend, the mainstay of all of these points apply. I simply feel that a 35 is the true Jack of all’.
  • I’ve shot weddings, portraits, land & waterscapes, close-ups & near macro, stills and fine-art, visible, full-spectrum and infrared, the lot. The 35mm FL has seldom if ever left me wanting. My ageing legs too, are grateful, because they get a reason to keep working that little bit harder than a slightly sedentary brain would usually require of them.
  • Bag: Light + Bank Balance: Healthier (potentially).

If you’re considering venturing into a single focal-length for the first time, choose wisely and justify your choice, stick with it and, persevere. The benefits of restriction will present themselves quickly and, your eye will improve with enough frames. If you’re not sure about which FL to plump for but can’t get the idea of self-limitation for the sake of freedom out of your head, just go for a 35, mount it, forget it’s there, and simply enjoy making pictures – for the sheer love of it.

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Light & Love

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Old Flames | 35:Chronicle

35mm, black & white, close-up, colour, Indoor, nature, personal, photography, sunset

Light, is Light.

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Internal Affairs | PT.I | 35:Chronicle

35mm, black & white, close-up, colour, Indoor, photography

Light Pursuit


Let’s be honest – sometimes we just don’t feel like grabbing the gear and heading out to shoot. Other times, we might want to simply remain indoors and spend a while trying to capture some of the things around our homes; little pieces that we enjoy, that serve no discernable purpose but yet, please us nonetheless; whether it’s a form, a texture or simply in the way something we enjoy – catches light. The light is – everything.

Boite a Sel

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Triangles

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One In; One Out

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