Learning again, how to see. Part One

March 03, 2020  •  Leave a Comment



A man, sitting on a tubular structureGassing on the phoneGassing

It has been an age since I was on the street. I had done my street photography project in the area that is now called Old Delhi in 2014. I had converted it to a book, but have now decided to do it all over. Hopefully, I will do a better job this time!

Anyway, what I did decide, was to do the same - or, almost the same - 12 walks, in maybe a shorter time frame this year. I had worn one layer too many, and soon got a heatstroke. That was a first - a heat stroke in February!

The somewhat dark mood gave me an idea for a new street photography project, maybe in 2021. I shall have to earn the money to buy myself a Fuji XT-4! or, a Leica. Let's see which one I shall be able to afford.

Anyway, for these 12 walks, I took out my Olympus OM-2n. This is the first camera that I have ever owned, and it is one that my dad bought for me. I shall be eternally grateful to him for this.

It has a fixed 50 mm lens, and I was using a 100 ISO film.

I had further put a constraint on myself of shooting no more than one film.

So, here are my constraints;

  1. Black & white film. This means, no instant feedback, the way that we are used to in a digital camera
  2. A fixed 50 mm lens. By implication, I have to move my butt towards, or away, from the subject to adequately frame the image
  3. A restriction of 36 images. This one is difficult because, when added to the other two, I was conscious of a need to be very picky.
  4. Black & white film. Black & white, as a medium, can be very unforgiving. Especially on the street
  5. Manual focus. I had to slow down even more!
  6. No variable ISO.

I found myself taking a long, long time to take the images. It was no longer a case of going click, click, click!

My feeling is that the images of this shoot will be quite bad. Let's see

My feeling also, is that the images will get better and better as I keep progressing along with this project.

Learning to see. After doing photography for years, I did not expect that I would again be training myself to see. However, this is a useful discipline to keep practising. 

It's also great to be back on the street.

The one concession I allowed myself, was to take my mobile phone along. I use a One Plus 6T. When shooting, I used an app called "Hypocam", which converts my phone into a black & white camera. Next time, I will take it one step further.




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