no snow but still pretty cold…
Fujifilm X-T1; Fujinon 10-24mm f4; Lightroom
emulsion on silver gelatin
I don’t think I’ve had a rant on my blog for a long while, so here goes.
I managed to get some quality time with the camera at the weekend and was just on the way home when I came across this path. The sky was vivid, the sun was shining, the trees bare and the path led up to the horizon, a perfect mixture for a shot with a polarising filter. I had just parked the car when I noticed a couple behind, walking up the path towards me. I figured I had about a minute to take the shot. It took me a little longer…. now if this had been England, the couple would have stopped and waited for me to finish the shot, but it isn’t, so they didn’t, indeed they even let the dog off the lead quickly so as to ruin the shot. This is after all Germany and it is their good right to go forth at their own given speed regardless of the consequences for anybody else. It’s certainly not against the law!
The good point, as punishment they make this weeks “perfect duet” immortalised for their rudeness forever in cyberspace. Now that’s what I call revenge! 😉
Well here we go again, another 53 weeks lie ahead of us.
If anything this next period will be more difficult than the first, if only because doing something again is often more difficult than setting out to do something the first time.
They say you should start as you mean to go on, so at the last minute on the Sunday afternoon (before the light faded), I walked up to the Belvedere Palace to shoot this.
I do hope you like it!
As autumn rapidly approaches, every warm sunny day is welcome.
This was shot from the Nikolaikirche overlooking the old Town Hall to the high-rise blocks of flats in the distant
Babelsberg Zentrum Ost.
Edit: Thanks Pete for correcting me! I always thought the other areas were sub-suburbs of Babelsberg.
f/16 1/40 ISO 200 @ 30mm
This is my mother-in-law. Contrary to popular perceptions they’re not all battleaxes.
f/4 1/4000 ISO 200 @30mm
I thought I would give you a “making of shot” of this week’s image. It’s the first time that I have actually appeared in my own blog.
This is Tom, he is the honorary uncle to my children and the best friend a man could have.
For those in doubt the bench (bank or whatever you want to call it) is in the background.
f/5.6 1/200 ISO 200 @85mm
Here in Germany they have a wonderful tradition for the first school day. The children have to go into school on a Saturday where they are able to meet their new school mates and receive a “Schultüte” (translates as “First-Day-of School-cornet” apparently). The “Schultüte” is normally filled with stationary and more importantly lots of sweets.
This was Johanna’s big day, although I fear that she had to share some of her goodies with her mother.
f/6.3 1/200 ISO 400 @30mm
These are the last two taken on holiday.
The first one shows the lovely fishing village of Polperro which was just down the road from Looe (Cornwall) where we spent the second week of our England and Wales round-trip.
The second picture was shot on the way back to Harwich at Stonehenge.
f/14 1/125 ISO 400 @17mm
f/14 1/250 ISO 400 @30mm Pol. Filter
Some of you might have guessed that the project has not died, moreover everybody is entitled to a bit of a holiday sometime.
After driving back through Germany and the Netherlands this was the view that greeted us on the Stena ferry taking us home.
There will be more to come over the next few days to catch up.
f/16 1/60 ISO 400 @17mm
and this one is a very special example…… meet the aptly named Bonny.
She is a very obedient, patient and easy going girl, quite prepared to have her pictures taken in the rain sitting next to her favourite treat without complaint.
A real low maintenance girl……..
f/4 1/80 ISO 100 @30mm
After a short weekend break in the south of the country, this week’s post is centred around the river Saale.
As we have now reached halfway on the photographic journey through the year 2011, this week’s entry is interactive. All those entering the poll (see below) have the chance to become the lucky winner of a once in a lifetime prize.
So here goes:
The first two were taken directly on the banks of the Saale River in Hirschberg (Thuringia). This Bench is the longest to be cut from one log (according to the Guinness Book of Records), and seats approximately 97 people depending on which nationality you are.
f/7.1 1/250 ISO 400 @17mm
f/5 1/500 ISO 400 @34mm
The third picture was shot in Burgk (Thüringen) and shows the new tower (42 metres) with views over the river Saale, the Castle and the surrounding landscapes.
f/8 1/500 ISO 200 Pol. Filter @17mm
Please cast your vote:
The Economist was recently titled “The man who screwed an entire country” accompanied by a picture of Silvio Berlusconi. In Potsdam it isn’t a single man but more a political morass of people who were on the payroll of the regime before the fall of the wall. One of the latest victims has been the local public services company which hosts the annual music festival in Potsdam. This year’s roll call included Simple Minds, Robin Gibb and Kim Wilde.
The first shot was taken as a candid during Kim Wilde’s “Cambodia”. My covert skills obviously leave a lot to be desired as my subjects quickly spotted my intentions. The second shot was taken with their kind permission.
My thanks go to these unknown siblings on a bench.
f/4 1/25 ISO 800 @50mm
f/5 1/8 ISO 1250 @30mm
This week’s picture is a tribute to a great Frenchman, Antoine de Saint-Exupéry both an aviator and a children’s author. Second only to that man Eric in French history…..
This was shot with kind permission of Verena under the plaque commemorating Saint-Exupéry in the Panthéon (Paris) during a recent business trip.
f/5 1/125 ISO 800 @29mm
This is Oma (Grandma) in the Stadtpark in the beautiful city of Hamburg.
She says “the best years were my thirties”,
My reply “unfortunately mine are all but gone!”
“You’ve still got your forties to come!”
That’s all very well but if the thirties were the best years, where do we go from here? They say the old thirties are the new fifties. That’s my story and I’m sticking to it!
P.S. she’ll be ninety-three this year so she ought to know (she’ll kill me if she reads this).
f5.6 1/100 ISO 400 @44mm
This is Uli, my colleague on a very wet day in Milan. We went from a glorious nearly 30°C in Berlin to a miserable 18°C and rain in Milan. Still I got to see the San Siro from the outside so all in all not bad for a day’s business trip.
The first picture (above) is a crop of the second (below), as usual I couldn’t decide so I’m hedging my bets once again.
Both (of course) f4 1/1250 ISO 400 @30mm
as above ………
f8 1/50 ISO 800 @50mm
This was taken early in the morning whilst on my way to work on that “sit up and beg” style Dutch bike of mine that I have mentioned previously. The view is from the Havelstrasse across to the Hans Otto theatre in Potsdam.
I’ve finally gone full frame, albeit analogue. This was shot with a Pentacon 50mm f1.8 (effectively a Meyer Oreston 50mm f1.8) lens on a Praktica MTL3 camera which were last produced around 1984. The MTL3 is completely manual with the only electronics being an inbuilt TTL light meter. It is pure East German precision engineering even if the technology used is over five decades old.
I’m really enjoying shooting film at the moment so be prepared for more in the coming weeks. This shot is OOC as they say, meaning straight out of the camera with no digital development whatsoever.
If I remember rightly:
f11 1/500 Ilford HP5 (ISO 400) @50mm
This is the avenue that runs between the Orangery and the Dragonhouse (Belvedere) in Sanssouci.
I seem to have suffered a creative block this week, considering my L.O.F.T. it’s astonishing that I can be susceptible to such a thing.
f10 1/125 ISO 100 @30mm
Schleiz’s claim to fame is one of the oldest “natural” race tracks in Germany.
The first ever race took place on the 10th of June 1923, with the aim being to race as far as possible and as quickly as possible on five litres of fuel. The winner of the car race was Mr. Huldreich Heußer with a total distance of 87.3 km and an average of 41.4 km/h (which quite incidentally is similar to what I get out of my Dutch “sit up and beg” style bicycle when going downhill fully laden). Mr. Horst Raebel on his motorcycle managed six laps with an average speed of 64.2 km/h (which is something to aim for on that bicycle).
I’ve really no idea who won this particular race, but today the top speeds average 160 km/h per lap……I think I’ll get my coat!
f10 1/250 ISO 200 @35mm Pol. Filter
…… on a sunny May afternoon in Neuruppin (1923).
f4 1/800 ISO 200 @19mm
….. or in German the “Lustgarten” which somehow has a more appealing ring to it ……..
f14 1/200 ISO 200 @30mm
It’s 21 years ago this Spring since I sat my A-levels and these ladies 20 years my junior will be studying hard as I write to make sure they get the grade for Uni. I certainly don’t envy them in the slightest.
Without wanting to sound like the pompous “old git” that I really am, I’d like to say to them “make the most of it all and above all enjoy it!”, I know I did (and do).
The picture below gives an idea how the scene my have looked in the late 1980’s or early 1990’s.
My special thanks go to:
The Music Class of 2011 at the Goethe Gymnasium Nauen, Germany
They are: Nora, Anika, Carolin, Susi, Anne, Deborah, Sophia, Fine, Anne, Jenny, Isabell, Alena, Kristina, Miriam, Franzi and Antje.
f5 1/25 ISO 320 @19mm (for both shots)
Aren’t I a lucky boy? I don’t just get to partake in a business trip to Hong Kong, but I also get to invest in a brand new razor-sharp Sigma 30mm 1.4 whilst I’m there.
This was shot from pier 9, Central district, Hong Kong Island looking across to Kowloon where the MS Queen Elizabeth was moored. I did try to persuade quite a number of people to let me take their picture on a bank, but they were not in the slightest interested (it must have been my handsome appearance).
f1.4 1/40 ISO 800 30mm
I finally found a bank with someone on it.
This is Pete, he’s the gentlest soul you’ll ever meet.
f5 1/160 ISO 100 19 mm
It’s nearly twenty years ago since I first heard this song with a very good friend of mine travelling to his home in a small German town on the Polish border. Being six months into my year abroad at the time, it reminded me very much of my own home in the North West of England.
Today I see the song in a slightly different light…. guilty as charged? I don’t really think so, this isn’t the land of gold and poison, neither do the palm trees grow here naturally. It is nevertheless a very different place from “that” town, which conversely does not mean that I don’t look frequently behind me, to “my” valley of green and grey.
For those interested:
Photographically speaking I’m not really sure I like this weeks entry (colour key is out and my processing skills need to be honed), but it does partially summarise this place where I live today, particularly, and if not only, at this time of year.
f10 1/40 ISO 400 17mm
I think you may have to get used to a number of these banks being within the boundaries of the city of Potsdam, as well as being taken at the last possible moment during the week.
The more observant of you will have noticed that this was taken on a Sunday, hence it was taken on the first day of the new week. This is correct, unless you live in Germany, where the first day of the week is a Monday. Although I always mutter that this custom is incorrect and probably goes against some international (most probably European Union) law, it certainly worked to my advantage this week.
To those readers used to my rants on this subject and the mixing up of commas and full stops in the German numerical system I have this to say:
“Was interessiert mich mein Geschwätz von gestern.” Konrad Adenauer (First German Chancellor of the Federal Republic of Germany)
This roughly translates as:
“Who cares what twaddle I have spoken in the past” A rather novel admittance for a politician I think.
That does not go to say that I will in future condone either of the above errors.
The image was taken on my Sunday “Bread-Roll-Run” with the kids, whilst their mother idled, well deserved I might add, in her warm and cosy bed.
We’ve had mild weather with rain over the past few days, which has brought the remnants of the New Year’s celebrations to the surface as well as preserving patches of dirty snow.
A picture fitting for the time of year I think.
“It takes a lot of imagination to be a good photographer. You need less imagination to be a painter, because you can invent things. But in photography everything is so ordinary; it takes a lot of looking before you learn to see the extraordinary.” – David Bailey – In “Face,” (London), Dec 1984.
It is with this in mind that we set off on our 53 week photographic journey. There are few things more ordinary than a bank, so in the hope that not all the images presented are just ordinary, let’s get started.
It was one of the those wonderful Winter afternoons that you get when the easterly winds blow across the North German plains making the air dry, crisp and very cold. We were out with the kids to see how the wild bison, horses and reindeer fared in the conditions. As the winter sun started to set I came across this makeshift bench.
It was my first bank of the year.