Frankfurt in January

February 19th, 2019

It was cold in Janu­ary, but this did not stop us from walk­ing through this beau­ti­ful city with so many nice places and inspir­ing per­spect­ives … depend­ing on where you go and what you (want to) see.

This time I used two digit­al cam­er­as. Num­ber one was a Ricoh GR II with its mar­velous 2.8/28mm lens. Num­ber two was my work­horse, an Olym­pus OM-D E-M1, this time with a M.Zuiko 2.8/7–14 mm lens, which gives a nice width and which is part of the holy trin­ity — the m.zuiko 2.8/7–14 mm pro lens, the m.zuiko 2.8/12–40 mm pro lens and the m.zuiko 2.8/40–150 mm pro lens. I still have to improve on these very wide city shots. As often, I made black & white and col­our ver­sions.

The full series can be found here.

In case you’d like to com­ment, it’s appre­ci­ated … and maybe you want to vis­it my web­site or my flickr page too.

So long … and thanks for all the fish.

Photographers Christmas Dream

December 16th, 2018

Com­ing back from a short trip to Nürn­berg, I also had time for a stay on the Nürn­ber­ger Christ­kindles­markt … and it’s world-fam­ous Schasch­lik booth (pic­tures later, when the film has been pro­cessed). Found there an amaz­ing old photo shop with some nice Pho­to­graph­ers Christ­mas Dream. As it was Sunday, the shop was closed … unfor­tu­nately.

The real reas­on for the short trip was some­thing more ser­i­ous, which lays back more than 70 years … dated in the days of World War II. But more on that later when the film has been pro­cessed. I used a Min­olta Dyn­ax 7 with an AF Macro 2.8/50mm lens attached and a Kodak Ultramax 400 film loaded.

In case you’d like to com­ment, it’s appre­ci­ated … and maybe you want to vis­it my web­site or my flickr page too.

So long … and thanks for all the fish.

Sevilla, when it’s still cold at home — Part 7

December 14th, 2018

The Plaza de Espana in the Parque de Maria Luisa was built for the Ibero-Amer­ic­an Expos­i­tion of 1929. The build­ings at Plaza de Espana form a huge half-circle rep­res­ent­ing the four ancient king­doms of Spain.

Parque de Maria Luisa offers some nice views includ­ing numer­ous build­ings, built for the Ibero-Amer­ic­an Expos­i­tion.

Monte Gurugú.

Pabellón Real.

Museo Arqueoló­gi­co de Sevilla.

Park view.

The Real Fab­rica de Taba­cos de Sevilla — now part of the Uni­ver­sity of Sevilla — was the ori­gin­al place where the story of Car­men, the Opera from Biz­et, played.

It is told, that in those days the tobacco build­ing, where only young women were work­ing, was safe-guarded by troops to pre­vent young men from enter­ing the build­ing. As the tem­per­at­ure was quite hot inside, the young ladies were only slightly clothed.

Today, the old fab­rica is part of the Uni­ver­sity of Seville.

This part closes the Sevilla post.

In case you’d like to com­ment, it’s appre­ci­ated … and maybe you want to vis­it my web­site or my flickr page too.

So long … and thanks for all the fish.

Sevilla, when it’s still cold at home — Part 6

December 2nd, 2018

Walk­ing through town, where it’s always worth mak­ing a pic­ture … or two. Same in the old World’s Fair area, where the EXPO ’92 was hos­ted and where so many nice spots were left behind.

Con­trary to Lis­bon (EXPO ’98) in Seville no one seems to be proud of this area and what has been built. No one recom­men­ded a bike tour through this area, while it’s only a short ride off the town centre .. they did not even men­tion it worth a vis­it when we asked.

The Puente del Ala­millo is anoth­er high­light of archi­tec­ture in Seville with a mighty pylon.

On our way back to town centre … always keep an eye open.

And now .. the Cated­ral de Sevilla with its Gir­alda tower was built between 1434 and 1506. It based on an ancient Almo­had mosque from 1172 to 1248 and — after recon­quista — a Chris­ti­an­ized mosque between 1248 and 1434.  The 105m Gir­alda bell tower was the former min­aret of the Almo­had mosque.

The Tomb of Chris­toph­er Colum­bus.

The Gir­alda Tower.

View from Gir­alda tower — in the back­ground Iglesia Cole­gi­al del Sal­vador, Puente del Ala­millo and Met­ro­pol Para­sol.

Next to come … Plaza de Espagna

In case you’d like to com­ment, it’s appre­ci­ated … and maybe, you want to vis­it my web­site or my flickr page too.

So long … and thanks for all the fish.

Sevilla, when it’s still cold at home — Part 5

November 11th, 2018

Real Alcaz­ar is one of the mir­acles of Span­ish his­tory, built for king Peter of Castile between 1350 and 1369.  It is the old­est roy­al palace in Europe still in use.

After this long tour, we had some time to stroll around in town.

As so many times before, I made two albums, one in col­our and one in black and white, as both show their spe­cial mood.

Next to come … Cated­ral de Sevilla.

In case you’d like to com­ment, it’s appre­ci­ated … and maybe, you want to vis­it my web­site or my flickr page too.

So long … and thanks for all the fish.

 

Sevilla, when it’s still cold at home — Part 4

October 17th, 2018

Bull­fight­ing is still a cul­tur­al high­light in this part of spain — wheth­er you like it or not. The Placa de Tor­os is worth vis­it­ing nev­er­the­less — even out­side the sea­son.

A won­der­ful span­ish mar­ket can be found at the Mer­cado de Tri­ana — its one of the old­est mar­kets in town opened 1823, built on the rem­nants of the Castel San Jorge dated back to 1481 and its Arab ori­gin from 1171.

Next to come … Real Alcaz­ar.

As so many times before, I made two albums, one in col­our and one in black and white, as both show their spe­cial mood.
In case you’d like to com­ment, it’s appre­ci­ated … and maybe, you want to vis­it my web­site or my flickr page too.

So long … and thanks for all the fish.

Sevilla, when it’s still cold at home — Part 3

October 13th, 2018

The Met­ro­pol Para­sol was build in 2011 and con­struc­ted by the Ger­man archi­tect Jür­gen May­er. It is a wooden struc­ture, 150 x 70m wide and  up to 23 m high. On its top you can have a walk across.

As so many times before, I made two albums, one in col­our and one in black and white, as both show their spe­cial mood.

Next to come … Placa de Tor­os.

In case you’d like to com­ment, it’s appre­ci­ated … and maybe, you want to vis­it my web­site or my flickr page too.

So long … and thanks for all the fish.

 

 

Sevilla, when it’s still cold at home — Part 2

October 10th, 2018

Calle Sierpes is a won­der­ful shop­ping lane in the old cen­ter of Sevilla. I found tons of beau­ti­ful sub­jects (bet­ter objects) which give an impres­sion of the ancient his­tory of this beau­ti­ful and amaz­ing town.

As so many times before, I made two albums, one in col­our and one in black and white, as both show their spe­cial mood.

 

 

Next to come … Met­ro­pol Para­sol.

In case you’d like to com­ment, it’s appre­ci­ated … and maybe, you want to vis­it my web­site or my flickr page too.

So long … and thanks for all the fish.

Sevilla, when it’s still cold at home — Part 1

October 5th, 2018

Vis­it­ing this beau­ti­ful old town in Al Andalus for the second time, this time we choose to come in Feb­ru­ary to escape the sum­mer heat with its approx. 40 °C. End of Feb­ru­ary, it was sunny in Seville and we had cozy 18 degrees. Guess what cam­era was on board … I only say ‘work­horse’.

Attached to my Olym­pus OM-D E-M1 was my default lens — the fab­ulous M.Zuiko 12–40 PRO lens, which nev­er ever dis­ap­poin­ted me dur­ing all the years.

As so many times before, I made two albums, one in col­our and one in black and white, as both show their spe­cial mood.

We had an accom­mod­a­tion dir­ectly in the old centre around the cathed­ral and so all the major stuff to vis­it was in walk­ing dis­tance. After arriv­ing, the first way was down to our no. one Bodega, fol­lowed by a short walk around the fam­ous cathed­ral.

Next to come … strolling around the Calle Sierpes.

In case you’d like to com­ment, it’s appre­ci­ated … and maybe, you want to vis­it my web­site or my flickr page too.

So long … and thanks for all the fish.

Contax G1 with a Zeiss Planar 2/45mm

September 7th, 2018

This time a beau­ti­ful Con­tax G1 found its way to me, accom­pan­ied by three legendary Zeiss lenses. All parts are in good shape, so let’s see what comes out when the first film is pushed through.

On the one side, the Con­tax G-Sys­tem (i.e. the G1 and even more its sib­ling the G2) is said to be the world’s most advanced 35mm rangefind­er cam­era sys­tem. On the oth­er side its said that beside all its mer­its, it has its rough edges too. More on that later 😉

Here are the three stel­lar lenses I meant, start­ing with the Carl Zeiss Biogon 2.8/28mm …

… the Carl Zeiss Planar 2.0/45mm …

Contax Zeiss Planar 2/45mm

… and the Carl Zeiss Son­nar 2.8/90mm.

All three are rated as superb from a wide range of review­ers on the web — all far more exper­i­enced pho­to­graph­ers than I will ever be 😉

But now, film is loaded and on we go — an Agfa Vista 200 will do the job.

The Con­tax G1 body has been reviewed on sev­er­al web-loc­a­tions — just check my web­site to name some — so there is no need to repeat. There are some points which are widely cri­ti­cized — things like a hyper sens­it­ive shut­ter but­ton, a small view­find­er, too slow max­im­um shut­ter speed and an unre­li­able auto­fo­cus — so I’ll have an eye on these.

The first lens I’ll try is the Carl Zeiss Planar 2.0/45mm, which is said to be  one of the best lenses of all times.

Puh, … film is done and in the lab. In the mean­time I can talk about how it went, shoot­ing this combo.

To me, this cam­era is a little gem. It fits in the hand like it was made for … me. Reminds me some­how on its SLR sib­ling — the 159MM. All dials and switches and but­tons are simply where they should be. As I was shoot­ing in aper­ture pri­or­ity mode with auto­fo­cus, the only thing to adjust was the aper­ture.

First point, the max­im­um shut­ter speed of 1/2000s was nev­er an issue.

Shoot­ing ISO 200 film there is plenty of room for adjust­ments for play­ing with depth of field. Using film with ISO 100 or ISO 400 or even ISO 800 makes it easy to work when the envir­on­ment makes it neces­sary. I do not know how some claim this 1/2000s to be an issue — too slow and not fast enough. Dur­ing their time, 1/2000s was not that bad, when most SLR and Rangefind­er offered 1/1000s — and yes I know there were SLR offer­ing 1/4000s already … at least some.

Maybe com­ing from mod­ern DSLR or Mir­ror­less Cam­er­as (I really like this term as it describes an object with its miss­ing fea­ture) with their max­im­um shut­ter speed of 1/4000s or 1/8000s or even elec­tron­ic shut­ter with 1/32000s is some­how chal­len­ging for those old cam­er­as, but really .… it’s nice hav­ing it, but who need this?

Second point, the hyper sens­ible shut­ter but­ton.

When ‘half-pressed’, it trig­gers auto­fo­cus and auto­ex­pos­ure meas­ure­ment. To call this ‘half-pressed’ is some­what funny as you do not really need to ‘press’. I com­pare it more with the shut­ter but­ton of my Min­olta X-700, where a slight touch trig­gers the meas­ure­ment. That’s it.

You get used to it the more you use it. Is this not the same with all things you learn? Learn­ing to ride a bicycle is tricky in the begin­ning, but once you got it, it’s pretty easy for the rest of your life as you know how to keep the bal­ance.

Third point, the auto­fo­cus.

I can remem­ber my Yash­ica T5 which too has a cent­ral auto­fo­cus field only. Not hav­ing the inten­ded object in this focus field gives a missed focus … les­son learned.

Same for my Can­on AF35 MKII. Cent­ral auto­fo­cus field and if you miss your inten­ded object it res­ul­ted in a missed focus … les­son learned. Easi­est to be seen when shoot­ing two people, fram­ing that both are placed well and point­ing the cent­ral focus field in the middle between them. Wow … get’s the back­ground sharp and in focus then.

And yes, if you place ver­tic­al lines in this focus field it helps a lot. So there’s noth­ing spe­cial with it. Learn it and then do it — it’s like rid­ing a bicycle. That the pass­ive auto­fo­cus is not that good in really low light does not bear a big sur­prise. No con­trast, no auto­fo­cus. If you keep this in mind, auto­fo­cus works like always — and it’s fast enough.

If you come from the digit­al age with your DSLR and Mir­ror­less Cam­era car­ry­ing tril­lions of focus points spread over the whole sensor and work­ing with arti­fi­cial intel­li­gence like algorithms to auto detect everything … yes, then you per­haps might get a little bit lost with a single cent­ral focus field.

I learned, that many pro­fes­sion­al pho­to­graph­ers often deac­tiv­ate their auto­de­tect everything auto­fo­cus and use the cent­ral focus field only. Guess why?

Fourth point, a small view­find­er … can we please skip this and go to the next point.

Indeed it’s small — the smal­lest I’ve ever seen, besides some very old cam­er­as like my Zeiss Ikon Ercona II. Once you know how to best look through it (i.e. pos­i­tion your eye), you see all things neces­sary. The info pan­el on the bot­tom, the cent­ral auto­fo­cus field and the full frame (pun inten­ded). Noth­ing more is needed to frame and focus.

Shure, if the view­find­er would be like on a Min­olta Dyn­ax 9 this would be fant­ast­ic (more on that in a later post). But finally it shows what it should and its suc­cessor made it bet­ter with a lar­ger view­find­er — on the G2.

Next point … my con­clu­sion:

If you can find one — get one and enjoy it.

Point one, two, three and four show to me that you do not need to worry using this cam­era. Those were the most cri­ti­cized top­ics and none is a show stop­per. The oppos­ite is the case — this cam­era fells into hand as it was made for and it’s hand­ling is so easy.

Besides all that tech­nic­al stuff, this cam­era is a real beauty — as beau­ti­ful as a cam­era can be. To me, this is a won­der­ful piece of tech­no­logy and worth being used to take pic­tures without any doubt.

In case you’d like to com­ment, it’s appre­ci­ated … and maybe, you want to vis­it my web­site or my flickr page too.

So long … and thanks for all the fish.

P.S. Just to men­tion, the full film can be found on flickr in col­our and in black and white.