Daily Image — 30 August 2023

Capture with Sony A7Sii and a Jupiter 3, 50mm f/1.5 wide open.

I woke (much too) early this morning, thinking about a report. It is OK — I often wake early when working on something challenging and have ideas for how to progress. I think on them a bit, then do something to distract my mind, and then return to sleep.

My distraction was discovering a set of weekly emails from David duChemin, a Canadian photographer and teacher. I really admire him, not just for his body or work, but because he is a good teacher. In his videos, he comes across as that friendly, caring mentor that you want to spend a lot of time with.

The emails were a string of lessons called The Vision Collective that I subscribed to several years ago. I read the first one, Abstraction. The direction was to create a set of abstract photographs. The assignment lasts a week.

Well, I am to far into the week. But I decided that I would make a few abstract images on walkies today. I should do the same for the next several days. Who cares if I take ten days or two weeks to complete the assignment? I am long past due anyway.

I purposely selected a new lens, a Jupiter 3 50mm f/1.5 rangefinder lens (L39 or M39 mount) from Russia. It has a red Cyrillic P that is supposed to mean a superior coating. The lens is probably about my age, so I do not expect much from the coating. But it is an interesting lens. It looks like it has 10 or 12 aperture blades (lovely). It is pretty fast. It has a good reputation for background blur/bokeh. My instance is in reasonable mechanical and optical condition for its age.

I mounted the lens on my Sony A7Sii and The Girl and I took off down our cul-de-sac. It was late, because I was working, so I expected a little shorter walk than usual. But I also knew she could play in the grass to cool off.

I made a few images and purposefully put some of them out of focus. The lens can make some beautiful soap-bubble bokeh balls. I think these are fun.

We paused where a drainage ditch crosses the old Carson Flume for another set of images. There is some water in the ditch that is not too bad because recent runoff cleared out all the trash. She splashed around a bit while I shot some sunflowers.

We paused again at the Station 51 Park so she could chase ground squirrels and roll in the wet grass. Then we headed home for water and some lunch (for me).

Looking for objects that might make an interesting abstract is an good exercise. I like the one for today. I think tomorrow I will look for something that will work in black and white.

Daily Image — 29 August 2023

Experiment in bubble bokeh with the Sony A7Sii and a Meyer-Optik Gorlitz Oreston 50mm f/1.8 vintage lens. The lens needs to be cleaned, but I see no fungus, just a bit of dust and haze.

This old Meyer-Optik Görlitz Oreston 50mm f/1.8 arrived in the mail yesterday. It is a classic lens that can produce some interesting images. My copy came attached to a Praktina 35mm SLR, which is a decent vintage camera (all mechanical except a light meter) but I have use for.

I affixed the lens to the Sony A7Sii for walkies this morning. I missed the focus on a few images and will have to reshoot them. There is also a bit a trick to using this lens and that will require some repetitions.

The lens needs to be cleaned because there is a little dust and haze on the inside of the front and rear elements. The aperture is clean. If I can figure out how to get the front element out, I will clean it. Otherwise I will have to send it out and have it cleaned.

Post was with Color Efex Pro 4, which I am also experimenting with.

Daily Image — 28 August 2023

The Mad Dog Cafe has nothing to do with Joe Cocker. But the food there is decent and it is an interesting place. Capture with the Fuji X100V at f/8, Tri-X 400 film simulation.

On my way to Sacramento, I stopped in Woodfords, California for lunch. The old Woodfords General Store used to be a bar and grill. Now it is more of a bistro than a bar.

Yes, beer is still available — in a bottle. But the pastrami and Swiss on rye was good and so was the potato salad. Although I no longer drink soft drinks (much), I decided to have a root beer. It was good, too.

Daily Image — 27 August 2023

I shot this with the Sony A7Sii and a Zuiko 85mm f/2 at either f/2 or f/2.8. The jpeg is out of camera using the Sony Vivid recipe, with some minor adjustment in Iridient Developer for contrast, color, and sharpness.

On walkies this morning, I carried the Sony A7Sii with an adapted Olympus Zuiko 85mm f/2 that I am testing. I will make a more complete review later (already have the test shots done), but thought that this sunflower with an out-of-focus bee was fun. The shot was captured at f/2 or f/2.8. I did a little post-processing in Iridient Developer (a recommended program, especially for Fuji X cameras) that included increasing the color saturation and vibrance a bit, adjusting the contrast to better cover the scene (and look my filmic), and bit of sharpening.

The lens is soft wide open. This is not unusual for vintage class and especially fast glass, like the 85mm f/2. It sharpens up nicely stopped down a stop or two. I like it.

Remainders: 26 August 2023

Perhaps I should add a header image to these posts to add a little interest. Thoughts?

  • The State Film Lab is still developing film for those who do not have access to a photography laboratory. I will use them. I have been thinking about running some film.
  • While watching a little YouTube this afternoon, I came across Faizal’s presentation on how he uses his Fujifilm cameras. It is worth a watch.
  • I have a penchant for experimenting with vintage and odd lenses. Radjuva has some interesting writings on Soviet (and other) lenses.
  • Another outfit that produces APRS products for amateur is Byonics. These are hams that make stuff for hams.

Daily Image — 26 August 2023

On walkies I spotted this cart sitting in the shade. I had the Nikkor 82mm f/2 mounted on my Fuji X-E4 and made the capture. I think the shot was captured at f/2, but I did not record it. Straight from camera with the Tri-X 400 film simulation.

The caption pretty much says everything that needs to be said. One thing I will mention is that the bokeh of this lens with the subject/background distance is a little crazy in the upper right. That is not pretty.

I have a Zuiko 85mm f/2 sample in my collection. I think it should be taken for a walk and tested. My other Olympus lenses render out of focus areas well. This Nikkor does not.

Daily Image — 24 August 2023

Shot with the Sony A7Sii and a lovely Carl Zeiss Jena Tessar 50mm f/2.8 wide open.

An interesting lens arrived in the day’s mail. It is a lovely silver Carl Zeiss Jena 50mm f/2.8 Tessar. The lens has a great reputation among vintage glass shooters. So I decided to add one to my collection.

This is a test image of my Lucas plushie. I rather like the background blur. It is very soft and smooth.

Daily Image — 20 August 2023

Captured with the Fuji X-E4 and the Fujinon 35mm f/1.4 at f/1.4.

After I spent much of the morning puttering at my desk, I decided it was time to get out. We are experiencing the remains of a hurricane from the south. Our weather is cloudy, very cool, and a bit rainy.

The Girl asked to go with me. So, she did.

I had a lens to put into return mail. It was not what I expected. So we walked north to the post office and I dropped the parcel in the bin while chatting with Older Son. Then we walked the reverse of our normal circuit to Station 51. There was no one at the park, so Sera got some time off leash. She had a blast chasing the ground squirrels.

On our way home, I stopped at the planters outside the NDEP building and made a few images of the flowers there. I missed the focus on most of the shots with the thin depth of field of the 35mm f/1.4 wide open. I still got a few decent captures.

Once home, I made some lunch and shared some of my chicken with The Girl. She is doing much better today.

I am grateful. Life is good.