I encountered this Street Zorro early evening walking toward me in Hollywood, Los Angeles. He told me he was on his way to work, posing for tourists for a few bucks. I was his first customer for the day and he kindly waited while I changed my lens. The Carl Zeiss Jena Sonnar makes a very fine portrait lens but it was let down here somewhat by my over-enthusiastic use of fill-in flash. Blown highlights are one of my pet photographic hates. The Praktica BD36 TTL flash throws a strong beam, and definitely needed a diffuser.
The famous jazz mural by Bill Weber on an apartment building above a restaurant in North Beach, San Francisco, featuring Benny Goodman blowing his clarinet, Gene Krupa pounding the drums and Teddy Wilson tickling the ivories. The work is in colour but I've always thought it was better suited to black and white. A win, in my opinion, for the Sonnar 135 and Delta 100 combination.
I was walking down the main drag in Hollywood when this guy comes out of a hotel surrounded by a dozen or so photographers, all clicking away in his direction. I quickly got myself into the crowd and grabbed a few shots. I had no idea who he was. I asked someone and they mentioned a name I'd never heard before and very quickly forgot. So to this day, despite showing this image to numerous people and performing reverse image searches, I've still no idea who he is!
The title comes from an excerpt of 'Sea Watching', a poem by RS Thomas:
Grey waters, vast
as an area of prayer
that one enters.
The statue is one of the 100 cast iron figures on Crosby Beach in Merseyside, created by the sculptor Antony Gormley, purportedly depicting his own body. At the time this image was captured the statues were pristine, having been in place for less than a year; they are now covered in barnacles, seaweed and funny hats.
From the interior of a very old rural church in Kent. That's all I can remember of this place. It was the first time I'd used film kit for at least a year and I quickly came to realise one important difference in approach between digital and film photography. Before 2008, when I shot only film, I'd usually keep a small notebook handy to jot down the location, frame number and technical details of each capture. Handwritten, what we now call EXIF information. There's no need to do this with digital; the EXIF file automatically tells all. Except, that is (sans GPS widget), where it is you're at. So I was bumbling around with a kit bag of film gear, and I never thought to keep a record of which particular old church I was photographing among the several I visited that day.
I wasn't sure what to make of this wild west upstairs, art deco downstairs place. It's supposedly a lawyer's office but looks more like a shabby film set for the Chandler-esque office of a down-at-heel private dick. And it's pink, well, salmon coloured. Then again, it is San Francisco.
Detail from Museum of Modern Art, Barcelona. Captured with an old manual focus Sigma 35-70mm f/2.8-4 Zoom Master, a lens I tended to use more and more infrequently as the years went by (and nowadays, never). It's far from a popular lens and generally gets a bad press. However, initially I found it to be quite acceptable. My copy is capable of returning very sharp images even wide open, provided the light is strong. It particularly suits ISO 100 and 200 films with saturated colours though, surprisingly to me, others have said that their colours turned out on the dull side. But - and this is a big but - the barrel distortion is really poor. I'm not talking expected normal wide-angle noticeable here, but ridiculously bad, especially visible in architectural shots with straight lines, that I eventually grew tired of the necessary post-processing to correct the verticals and retired it for good. This is one of the last images I captured with the lens and it's been skewed in Photoshop.
One of the many old doors in the small historical town of Bergerac, in the Dordogne region of South-Eastern France. In this case, the 39th door. The intense shadow makes the door appear to be chopped, which appeals to me. The deep black shadow is courtesy of the Pancolar and Delta pairing.
A chance encounter, strolling through the back streets of an Andalucian town. My first thought was that she must have lived through the Spanish Civil War. I pointed in the direction we were walking and pointing hopefully in the right direction, asked "estación de autobuses?" She must have thought I spoke more Spanish than I actually do because she offered comprehensive directions, accompanied by numerous directional flexions of the hand, of which I understood perhaps 10%. She very graciously let me photograph her and I later added a little Photoshop dating treatment. After we thanked her and walked away my wife said "bet she was a babe when she was younger." She still is, or sadly, most likely was. All things must pass.