Friday, February 19, 2010

A bit of fun for Friday!

These were all taken with the Yashica Electro 35 GT on Kodak B&W 400. I got the rangefinder sorted out, discovering in the process several interesting ways to get it wrong. It's close to being calibrated properly, and I only have to do some minor touch up on it. The big problem was that the rangefinder images coincided before the lens reached infinity, then diverged again as the lens hit the infinity stop. The adjusting cam didn't have enough range, so I ended up moving the 45 degree mirror - and that lead to the discovery that turning the wrong adjusting screw sent the images out of kilter in the vertical plane too. It's all back together and everything seems OK, except for the big, greasy fingerprint inside the front glass! Now, who could have done that?

Anyway, that first shot above was taken at oh-dark-thirty with my elbows braced atop the car. The lens was wide open and the exposure was probably in the one-eighth to one-quarter second range.

Here's Number One Daughter making a cake for Valentine's Day. This was taken by available light in our kitchen. Again, the lens was probably wide open. Not bad for a hand-held shot.

Do you see the cyclist up ahead? The guy in the pickup clearly did. He moved over into the adjacent lane to pass. This section is slightly uphill and the speed limit changes from 45 to 35 as the road goes into Owasso.

Here's a cropped and magnified version of the above shot. I tried making it bigger, but it went grainy. It also went very grainy if I tried to sharpen it. Still, it's a good example of the capability of these old cameras. Next time, I'm going to ask the photo processor if they can deliver RAW files rather than these jpegs. I'm tinkering a little with Raw Therapee, a free RAW editor, but you can play with RAW files in the latest version of Picasa too.

One disadvantage of RAW files is their sheer size as they're literally the data that comes from the image sensor. But I noticed in one of those night shots from the Canon A590IS that the RAW images contained much more noise than jpegs - until after they were processed. Then they appeared to contain much less. I'm not an expert on this. I'm just learning. Still, it's fun to tinker with it.

One last thing - and it's not about photos or cameras!

I posted a straight news piece about the bicycle ban in Manor, Texas over on the Examiner. In all honesty, I've been having trouble writing because I just couldn't find the energy. The drive was gone. But after my phone conversation, anger gradually ratcheted up within me. I seldom get mad and have it keep building like that, but it was a real trigger for writing. I can't say I like it, but it is what it is.

The Examiner piece is straight forward reporting, but I still needed to vent that anger, and what better way than by engaging in some straight forward sarcasm. Imagine it. That will turn up here shortly, and surprisingly enough, Dr. Wally Crankset figures prominently in it.

Labels: ,


Blogger Steve A said...

This is an extremely interesting post to me for many reasons. First off, is that really a thumbprint in that first photo. It looks like a flare from the light.

Second, I ran across another old camera of my own. Some kind of Monkey Ward camera I had back in the 60's. The film counter is at 4. What, if anything, might it reveal?

Third,the cyclist photo is interesting in that it brings a quandry into mind. With light traffic, almost all motorists would change lanes, even with a cyclist hugging the RH lane edge as in the photo. As traffic gets heavier, more and more motorists see changing lanes as more danger than hoping there is enough room to get by that guy. It is almost ironic that you might as well hug the curb when there are hardly any cars prowling about and there is little rational basis for fear. The only one that'd hit you is one that was so distracted or drunk that you disappeared from the radar. On the other hand, if the road is thick with motorists, you'd best mix it up with them.

11:42 PM  
Blogger Ed W said...

Steve, one of my co-workers said that many department store cameras were made under contract by the large Japanese camera manufacturers. Sears, for instance, had many that were re-badged Ricohs. So you may have a gem under that Monkey Ward label, or maybe not.

I went back and looked at the original in that street shot taken in the pre-dawn darkness. There's an odd pair of curving flares extending from the streetlight, plus there's another really weird one over near the pickup on the right. I'll enlarge them later.

I've seen that cyclist a few times on his commute. I was curious about how he'd handle traffic just past the point where I encountered him as I could see long lines of cars overtaking behind me. There's a signal just past this hill, and he'd be in fairly heavy traffic when he arrived there. But he must have turned off because I didn't see him again that day.

4:18 PM  

Post a Comment

<< Home