Donegal – Town and County

It’s a big place Donegal.  One of Ireland’s biggest counties, it’s rugged, remote and a wee bit different.  They even speak like us Northern Irish in some parts.

gift shop
Guinness and gifts
donegal
The Road to The Back Arse of Nowhere
donegal signs
Signs

 

 

 

clogh
Rock Tír Chonaill, Glen Colmcille
apxPKL026
wild Atlantic Way

 

 

 

apxPKL020

Donegal town is a nice quiet place – shops, pubs,  a castle built by Red Hugh O’Donnell  and plenty of churches

castle bar
The Old Castle Bar

 

 

donegal castle
Donegal Castle

 

donegal castle2
Donegal Castle

 

 

 

donegal church
St Patrick’s Church, Donegal

 

 

Praktica L. Putting the ‘no’ into ‘No Frills”

pl8

There are basic cameras and there is the Praktica L, a large block of East German utilitarian metal introduced to consumers and comrades in 1969 as the first camera in Praktica’s L-line.  The previous PL Nova range cameras were basic enough with some models having metering, and the whole range having some curves, bevels, lines, circles and a bit of a retro look, even for 1960’s cameras.

With the L range, Praktica embraced modernity, sort of. No lines, curves – just a big heavy functional camera, and to these eyes, a thing of beauty.

pl3
that  lil’ Pentacon decal

The Praktica L has no meter, no split focussing screen, no battery – nothing other than a shutter button, speed dial and a winder. My model has a slight deviation from conformity. A small number of the L’s had the Pentacon logo etched on the prism housing and a small ‘L’.  I was delighted when my £8 eBay purchased arrived with this decal.

pl6

The winder doesn’t even have the black covering present on many later Praktica L ranges, obviously far too decadent.  The shutter speed dial is the usual with a flash hot shoe sync at 1/125, a fastest speed of 1/1000th and an ISO indicator.  Just as a reminder as there is nothing electrical in this camera.

pl7
minimalist

The viewfinder is bright and bare.  There is a wee pointer which disappears when the shutter is cocked.  There is also no focussing aid like a split screen – which can make focussing a bit trickier than usual.  So nothing to distract from composition..

Which brings me to the lens – the much derided Domiplan 50/2.8, a lens with a pretty poor reputation out there.

pl9
the dreaded Domiplan

It looks nice with the ‘zebra’ markings, it’s extremely basic in construction and, yes – a bit soft. But it’s not terrible and with metering by sunny 16 it did ok. These shots were taken in changing weather in County Donegal on a roll of Agfaphoto APX100.

glencolmkille1
Glencolmkille at f16
glencolmkille2
and at f4 with swirly Domi-bokeh
guinness
it was closed
pub
daytime drinker looking for his bike
roartys
Roartys
rock shadow
rocks shadow selfie

Like a lot of old cameras – and basic cameras – there’s a lot to enjoy using without a meter and focussing aids, and using a pretty crappy old lens while getting half decent results.  And of course using one so aesthetically pleasing.

The Kodak Retinette 1A. A first roll.

IMG_20200531_172617

The Kodak Retinette 1A. The site Kodak Classics gives in excellent detail the history of the delightfully well-built Kodak Retina range and its budget sibling the Retinette.  Mine is the type 042 Retinette 1A from around 1962 and the first thing you’ll notice is that this is one solid wee camera.  There’s a lot of metal and it’s not the lightest, there are no lugs for a strap (you’ve to use the case) and it’s fully manual – no meter and viewfinder/guess focussing (there are sort-of zone dots).  And it’s a delight to use.

r2

All the business is done on the lens/shutter housing. A Pronto shutter unit with a Reomar 45mm f2.8 lens. With no internal meter, it’s Sunny 16, a handheld meter or the phone app. There is a generous range of four shutter speeds 1/30th to 1/250th and B. Who needs milky water anyway.  Aperture is F22 to F2.8.

Focussing is a reasonable guess or using the sophisticated 1-to-3 dots going from close to further away, Father Dougal style. R1

You could attach a rangefinder to the cold shoe, but since you can pick these cameras up for a tenner, it hardly seems worth the bother.  And why not go fully manual – it’s part of the fun of using something of this vintage.

There’s a wee button to open the back and film goes in easily, and the viewfinder ? – nice and clear with zero information apart from the subject.

R3Rvf

There is a self timer, they’re the weak link in a lot of vintage cameras and since I’m never going to use it, I’ll assume it’ll work.

The first roll out was Agfa APX100 developed in Ilford Ilfosol with some shots taken in Lloret de Mar, Spain and east Belfast.  For the contrast..

CS Lewis statue, Belfast

CS Lewis and Wardrobe.  Belfast.
CS Lewis and his wardrobe.  Belfast
cslewis2
James McEvoy tribute.  Belfast
cslewis5
Aslan.  Belfast
sp3
Window shopping, Lloret de Mar
sp6
Graffiti. Lloret de Mar
sp9
Ice Cream, Lloret de Mar
sp8
Catalonia says Si.  Lloret de Mar
sp4
Sant Romà, Lloret de Mar.
sp2
A bit softer at open aperture… it may have also been rubbish focus by me..
sp1
Tables and chairs.  Lloret de Mar.

The main thing I noticed about the Retinette is that in good light, f8 and smaller, the lens is tack sharp and nicely contrasty.  In fact all the over/underexposed and blurred shots were purely down to me and rushing a bit.  When you slow down, check the exposure and take a bit of care focussing, this is a terrific camera. If the Irish summer holds up, it’ll see a few more rolls.

Hol18: and that was it

Last few shots of Munich.  It was my favourite spot on the European tour – the beer, the weather, the very German signage, the beer, the architecture, the metro (clean and punctual) and the fact that every green space contains a beer garden.  I’ll go back.

 

a wee kiosk
Shopping for the Touristen
tat
quality tat
peters tower
Peter’s church ticket booth
window box shadows
windows
mezzomix
Mezzo Mix – the genius of adding coke and fanta
frauenkirch1
Frauenkirche
albertgasse
quiet beer drinking area
wee fountain man
fountain heads
alone in the alter hof
a quiet part of Munich
hotel am markt
such wonderful signage
munich palace
the Palace
munich door
Door of Munich
valentin museum
Valentin Museum

 

And finally – lederhosen, sex and falafel all under one roof. So German

so german

Ricoh KR5 and Agfa APX

Hol18: Munichers..

Munich was worth the wait after a three week tour around Europe.  It’s one of the more photogenic cities I’ve visited with plenty going on.  Here’s a few more shots

Munich Boyband
stylish boy band
munich boules1
der Petanque
munich arches
archways of Munich
two old blokes
two oul blokes and a fountain
munich scene1
one oul bloke and a fountain
frauenrauchen
Trachten rauchen

Ricoh KR5 and Agfa APX100 from DM

Hol 18: Marienplatz

As a central square and meeting /arrival place, Marienplatz is hard to beat.  There’s the large Rathaus, S-Bahn station, shops, all the beer you can eat and all the tourist tat you can buy.

marienplatz
You are here.
marienplatz bike rides
cycle tours
marienplatz SU
Marienplatz
marienplatz old new
the new Rathaus on the left
reel around the fountain contrasty
Fountains
marienplatz spires
Marienplatz Spires
Smoking at kiosk with Pretzel
Tat and the Giant Pretzel
marienplatz
Marienplatz from the Galeria cafe

In the Rathaus courtyard there is a pricey restaurant (I didn’t) and plenty to photograph.

neues rathaus
the new old Rathaus
rathaus inner 3
Restaurant
rathaus inner 2
Two lions
rathaus inner 6 contrasty
Inner Rathaus
Into the Rathaus
Contrasty
rathaus inner 7
Rathaus restuarant
rathaus exhibition
Rathaus Photo exhibition space
rathaus inner 1
Windows
ratskeller sign
Ratskeller

Shot on Ricoh Kr5 and Agfa APX100

Hol18: Munich – Daytime Drinking

Munich is all about the beer – there are countless places to drink – indoor and outdoor, particularly outdoor and even on a Sunday, when shops are all closed the drink continues to flow.
Viktualienmarkt round the corner from Marienplatz is a great palce to start.

munich beergarden 2
Viktu-alien-markt.  Very ‘day-earth-stood-still’..
munich beergarden 4
Drunk and orderly queue
munich beergarden 5
daytime drinking
bier hier
waiting for drinkers
munich beergarden 1
Munich’s smallest
munich beergarden 6
Beer Garden and… pole

corner

munich beergarden 3
bring the baby for a pint

Away from the main beer garden,you can always find somewhere for a beer when you see that exquisite signage or well turned out staff.

they call her ivy
Ivy
traditional eating
Waitress
bierhalle
Waiters
paulaner
Paulaner sold here
munich street scene
more food n drink

or if you don’t fancy a beer, there’s aways the traditional Bavarian Coffee Haus..

starbucks munich style
die Starbucks

All shot on the Ricoh KR5 and Agfa APX100  – €4 a roll from Drogerie Markt