Category: Monochrome Challenge
Monochrome Challenge: A Walk in the Park
With the recent death of my wife of 17 years, Abby, I had a few days off to unwind and organize.
Fellow photographers Robert Stinson and Mackenzee Crosby met last week for a bite, then a photo walk in Ada’s famous Francis Wintersmith Park.
I make pictures with a lot of different photographers as a photojournalist, which is very fun, but I also like stepping out of that box and being a different photographer sometimes.
An odd observation about that: photographers relax by being different photographers, airline pilots relax by flying their Cessnas and Piper Cubs, writers relax by setting aside their novel and working on their poetry instead.
Robert, Mackenzee and I are three very different photographers from each other, though we share some common ground, the love of image-making and self-expression.
For this occasion I decided to shoot in monochrome, both because the type of images I was making were less about color and more about light and composition, and because both cameras I was using, the Nikon D7100 and the Fujifilm X-T10, both have excellent monochrome rendering capabilities.
My Fuji wore the 16-50mm kit lens, and the Nikon wore the 1980s-vintage 85mm f/2.0 Nikkor. I especially love the look of images made with the 85mm, and it’s good to keep my manual focusing skills sharp.
At one point we did an old familiar challenge: each of us picks another one to pose for a portrait. Mackenzee photographed me, Robert photographed Mackenzee, and I photographed Robert.
Film Simulation Bracketing
An intriguing feature in my Fujifilm X-T10 is film simulation bracketing. When turned on, shooting one frame creates three JPEG files of the shot, each set to one of Fuji’s film simulations. You can choose which three film simulation modes you want in the menu. In this case, I told the camera to create one of each: vivid, sepia, and monochrome…
You can set the camera to use any of its nine film simulations. These frames are straight out of the camera, unedited. As you can see, a feature like this has some interesting potential.
Monochrome Challenge: Snow
Our patch of southern Oklahoma just received more snowfall that in the last ten years combined. Our mighty Irish wolfhound Hawken couldn’t wait to romp around in it.
Film: My Time at The Daily Times
I worked for a short time at The Daily Times in Ottawa, Illinois, in 1988, with a very talented young photographer named Harold Krewer. We often challenged each other to feature photo shoot-offs, and it raised us both up in quality, and it was very fun.
Film: My Time at The Shawnee News-Star
I was the swing-shift photographer at The Shawnee News-Star from November 1985 through April 1988. I was partnered with a talented former Vietnam Air Force member Ed Blochowiak. Between us we made some great images and won some awards. Ed spent his entire career at the News-Star, and, sadly, died just two months after retiring in October 2016.
Film: Ada Cougar Football State Championship 1988
I had been at The Ada Evening News (now, The Ada News) just six weeks when I photographed the Ada Cougars winning their 15th state championship in December 1988 at Oklahoma State University’s Lewis Field.
Most of the action and trophy photos were published in the sports section that Sunday. I was looking through a box of black-and-white negatives from that month and decided to write my column about scanning film, and scan many of these images, which have not been published since that time.
Monochrome Challenge: After the First Freeze
My readers will recall that after the first hard freeze of the year, Hawken the Irish wolfhound and I expand our walk to include a large area of woods to the west of our home. If we exhaust all the trails in a single walk, which we often do, it comes to about three miles round trip. We are never bored.
For this edition of the Monochrome Challenge, I brought my tiny, seldom-used Olympus FE-5020.
Abby and I rewatched Three Days of the Condor recently, and enjoyed it immensely.
When I was about 16 I saw this movie, starring Robert Redford and Faye Dunaway. Dunaway portrays Kathy, a photographer who gets tangled up in the intrigue. In her apartment, Redford, whose character is Joe Turner, looks at some of her images on the walls; deep, rich, low-light black-and-white images. He remarks that the photos aren’t really autumn, but they aren’t really winter. They are in between – November.
Kathy: Sometimes I take a picture that isn’t like me. But I took it so it is like me. It has to be. I put those pictures away.
Joe Turner: I’d like to see those pictures.
Kathy: We don’t know each other that well.
Joe Turner: Do you know anybody that well?
Kathy: I don’t think I want to know you very well.
This scene made a huge impression on the early years of my own photography.
Late Fall Monochrome
The Monochrome Challenge continues with these late autumn images.
Late Summer Monochrome
The monochrome challenge, seeing and shooting in black-and-white, continues.
These image were made with my 2003-era Minolta DiMage 7i in black-and-white mode.
The Monochrome Challenge, in which we shoot in black-and-white only, continues…
The Tangled Web
Monochrome in Mid March
I continue with the “monochrome challenge” with these images, all made while walking my Irish Wolfhound Hawken.
After what seemed like an interminable, cold winter, we have experienced some very nice springs days.