Contains Flash Photography

Every so often it’s good to do a studio shoot using a few flash heads.  I’ve nothing grand – a cobbled collection of eBay-sourced Interfit units with cheap backdrops and stands. It’s a basic setup with a soft-box facing the sitter and two units at 45 degrees on to the white cloth, then using a black backdrop with a soft-box and brolly two-light arrangement.

Lighting setup
the budget setup..

To make things interesting, the session with my good friend and singer/songwriter/guitarist Thomas, was to be captured on full-frame digital ( Canon 6D) and on 35mm black and white film (Kentmere 100) using mid 70’s basic manual camera, the Ricoh KR-5.  Without a flash meter, the plan was to get a setting on the 6D that looked ok, then set something similar on the Ricoh.  So 1/125 at f8 – then play about with the lights.

First up – some low key against the black backdrop,

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softbox, brolly fill and 85mm lens
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single light with soft-box

Then a white backdrop with the softbox straight on.

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key – no guitar
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and with guitar

Next up was a repeat of this lighting with the Ricoh. It’s a very basic but solidly built mechanical SLR. And it did ok

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tones ok  – but scanning a bit off round the face
Thomas
look forward to the darkroom print…
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getting there…
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35mm close up glory

As is often the case, scanning a low key image is a bit tricky  – the real test will be darkroom print – but the high keys portraits on the Ricoh were near the mark with the full frame Canon digital.

So a quick photo shoot to compare digital and 35mm black and white film.  Next will be to compare negative scanning with a darkroom print scan as well as an indepth look at using the Ricoh.

Indiana Wants Me

I’ve had the good fortune to visit the US on 3 separate occasions in recent years – and most of that time has been spent in Indiana.
These were working visits – it’s one of the more unlikely holiday destinations if you’re heading across the Atlantic but it has a quiet charm and warm feeling that makes me want to return.

Indy

The city of Indianapolis is a smart place with an accessible downtown area, the speedway and is home to my weekly dose of NFL.

P6273270View from Monument Circle
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Capitol Building
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Monument Circle

Upstate (Downstate..?)

I spent quite a while at two of the state’s Universities – Ball State and Taylor – and travelled around some unheralded places.

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Headin down south. Upland, IN
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A poor man’s Stephen Shore. Muncie, IN
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The Middle. Surrounded by corn
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another photogenic gas station (petrol as we call it..)
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The big sky around Matthews Restaurant, Matthews, IN
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Welcome to Matthews
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Old trucks and primary colours. OK, ‘colors…’
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Grain Truck, Matthews

Gas City – the smallest ‘city’ I’ve ever been to, but home to Friday speedway. Noise, fumes and fried food.

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The home of motor racing
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Gas city Speedway
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Gas City bunting

One of the most striking visual features I noticed was the signage. Sometimes grander than the actual place, sometimes unintentionaly funny but something we’ve lost over here.

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The King of Pizza
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It was closed, but I would’ve had a good time here
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Free panties on Friday night, Fort Wayne, IN

Baseball. If ever a sport is more enjoyable watching live rather than on TV, it’s baseball. This was my first experience at Fort Wayne.

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Parkview Field, Home of the Tin Caps
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Uncontroversial kneeling

I hope to go back to Indiana next time I visit the US. It’s an unassuming place with warm, friendly people, incredibly photogenic and seems to exude a laid back form of conservatism. Sometimes, though you have to be immodest, especially if you are the best damn sports bar.

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Simply the best. Blu 49