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  1. #11

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    Quote Originally Posted by markbarendt View Post
    So, did they actually tell you explicitly no tripods/monopods?

    I ask for two reasons. 1- When I'm doing paid asignment work with ANY type or size of camera, I use a support wherever physically possible, even in bright sunny situations. This makes a huge difference in the quality of the shots I can get. 2- You have a night shoot coming next week, the darker it gets the more support (and artificial light) is needed.

    As to your night shots posing an issue for post process; only if you scrimp on exposure.
    They didn't actually tell me no tripods, but because of the erratic nature of the subjects (most with mental health issues) they will only co-operate for fleeting moments. There's a lot of dancing about basically.
    But I take your point about the night shots and may will consider the tripod here.
    'Cows are very fond of being photographed, and, unlike architecture, don't move.' - Oscar Wilde

  2. #12

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    Quote Originally Posted by TooManyShots View Post
    Oh, about your shot example? Yeah, I think you nailed the exposure and the tonality looks good. HOWEVER, the composition is bad. Your vertical line is not straightened. Two, too much space above the head. Third, the man's elbow has been cut off.
    Thanks for your list. I don't think the picture works completely, but for different reasons. Most significantly, the interaction between the two guys is confusing. I certainly won't be submitting the picture.
    I agree that the composition isn't quite right, but we all beat to a different drum in that respect.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Last edited by batwister; 04-14-2013 at 04:01 PM. Click to view previous post history.
    'Cows are very fond of being photographed, and, unlike architecture, don't move.' - Oscar Wilde

  3. #13
    adelorenzo's Avatar
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    Can you shoot with flash?

  4. #14
    Bill Burk's Avatar
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    batwister,

    Good for you to be photographing socially important issues, like this place that caters to people with mental health issues. I think you should do what you are doing, and just improve the process. You know simple things like going in repeatedly, getting permissions squared away beforehand (If possible. That might be a tall order). Shoot the general facilities without subjects to see how the lighting works. Meter before you engage the subject and compose the shot. Little things like that might lead you to being able to focus and shoot when the time comes.

  5. #15
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    This is one of very, very few incidences when I would go for a smaller film camera that I can operate quickly, even an AF camera. The Pentax 67 is a beautiful piece of engineering (I never ever use mine without a tripod, and the images speak for that) but it is slow, cumbersome, unwieldly can be difficult to focus in low light and the meter is rudimentary in its decision making, especially in mixed light. If I had a choice, I would take the Olympus OM 4, with motor drive (if you are MF-preferenced), or one of the modern era AF Canons (1N, 3, 5...). Spontaneity and being ready for unexpected moments is what this sort of work is about, and I do not think the 67 is really suited to it. Having said that, you've made a good fist of the image. I am unconcerned about compositional errors in terms of on-the-fly, free-framing documentary and reportage, and the circumstances you have described are indeed challenging.

    A DSLR is not the answer. In its blithe automation and speed, it would only entice you to make many, many images and thus draw the whole job out, especially if you shoot bursts and the frames have very little intimacy or differences; professional editors would delete 300 and save just 4 being so ruthless over photographers' laissez-faire with these ubiquitous things. You're lucky then that the editing you do will comprise of maybe a few rolls of film and if technique is good, they'll be very, very sharp pics suitable for reproduction and printing to quite large sizes.
    .::Gary Rowan Higgins

    A comfort zone is a wonderful place. But nothing ever grows there.
    —Anon.






  6. #16
    Ken Nadvornick's Avatar
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    It IS possible to over-think issues to the point of having even worse outcomes than would have otherwise been the case. Sometimes I sense this is your greatest enemy. Perhaps the deceptively simple words of Theodore Roosevelt, the 26th US President, may be appropriate here. There is depth of wisdom in these short eleven words,

    "Do what you can, with what you have, where you are."

    Then just let everything else take care of itself. And surprisingly, it will...

    Ken
    "They are the proof that something was there and no longer is. Like a stain. And the stillness of them is boggling. You can turn away but when you come back they’ll still be there looking at you."

    — Diane Arbus, March 15, 1971, in response to a request for a brief statement about photographs

  7. #17

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    Quote Originally Posted by Poisson Du Jour View Post
    A DSLR is not the answer. In its blithe automation and speed, it would only entice you to make many, many images and thus draw the whole job out, especially if you shoot bursts and the frames have very little intimacy or differences; professional editors would delete 300 and save just 4 being so ruthless over photographers' laissez-faire with these ubiquitous things. You're lucky then that the editing you do will comprise of maybe a few rolls of film and if technique is good, they'll be very, very sharp pics suitable for reproduction and printing to quite large sizes.
    I was waiting for somebody to say this But such thoughts can easily become stubbornness I feel.

    Looking at the last photographer's images, shot on a DSLR, they are naturally and appropriately free of any kind of compositional artifice. They work for their directness and clear interaction with the subject.
    It's of course very self-indulgent to be striving for artful compositions under the circumstances, and the reason I took this on was partly to try and free my photography of contrivance.

    Sent the Portra off for development today and will make a decision about the use of the Pentax when I see them.

    I'd hope this thread can stir some debate about 'idealism vs. realism' regarding the use of film photography in these situations. I'm not giving up on using it yet, but trying to determine how much of it is simply about ego - as TooManyShots hinted at in his first post.
    'Cows are very fond of being photographed, and, unlike architecture, don't move.' - Oscar Wilde

  8. #18
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    Batwister,

    I think the point that Garyh is making is that the tool isn't the issue.

    I would have no hesitation in using film for the task you have described. I doubt Garyh would either.

    There are various methods for shooting any photo, whether a method is realistic or not, depends on the expectations of the task at hand, the preferences of the photographer, and the tools available. There is no all encompassing answer that will fit all.

    One of the big advantages film provides is one that you are already using.

    Quote Originally Posted by batwister View Post
    I Sent the Portra off for development today
    Somebody else does the back end work and that is a huge advantage when that backend time or the backend tools at hand are considerations. (This idea is universal regardless of method.)

    Assuming both you and the lab do good work, you will get good results.
    Mark Barendt, Ignacio, CO

    "We do not see things the way they are. We see things the way we are." Anaïs Nin

  9. #19

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    If your shot is representative of the kind of interaction and scenarios that are required then I think you have caught the essentials. It is the expression and relationship of the two individuals and the setting that count. I hadn't even noticed the elbow being cut off or any vertical/horizontal "discrepancies"

    I suspect I might have been less centred on the people and scene i.e. distracted, had it been in colour so B&W seems very appropriate to me

    As far as tripod/monopod and its cumbersome and off-putting quality is concerned, 7Dayshop sells an attachment that fixes to the tripod thread and has an extendable wire that runs to your foot so acts as a monopod but with hardly anything for the subject to see.

    It might be worth considering.

    Best of luck with the project

    pentaxuser

  10. #20

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    Quote Originally Posted by pentaxuser View Post
    As far as tripod/monopod and its cumbersome and off-putting quality is concerned, 7Dayshop sells an attachment that fixes to the tripod thread and has an extendable wire that runs to your foot so acts as a monopod but with hardly anything for the subject to see.
    That's a good idea, thanks.
    'Cows are very fond of being photographed, and, unlike architecture, don't move.' - Oscar Wilde

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