The Online Darkroom Store

Thursday, April 19

Monifieth Beach



It's a funny old world when you start hoping that a photo from a 35mm SLR will turn out as well as the same shot taken on a phone. I was on a long beach walk yesterday and found the tide well out. I wandered up to the water's edge and saw this spit of land jutting out. In the background is the distant lighthouse at Buddon Ness. The scene looked like a giant "7" to me and I couldn't resist capturing it.

I took a few on the OM1 and then snapped the shot above mainly to send to Phil Rogers to give him something to look at whilst he was at work. The pic is completely untouched apart from a pre-set conversion in the iPhone editing software into a black and white image. The pre-set has actually given it a duotone look which I think suits it very well.

When I saw the job the iPhone had made of it I did wonder if the shot taken with the OM1 would be as good. For a start, the iphone's field of view is wider - something like 40mm - than the 50mm lens I had on the OM1. What that meant was that I could get the sunlight reflection at the bottom of the frame in the iPhone image but not in the OM1. There was no point in backing off to get it in as the reflection just followed me! It didn't matter what I did, the angle was just wrong when it came to the job of getting the reflection on film. I had the 24mm with me but that was far too wide.

Of course, I couldn't just meter the scene and expose the film in much the same way the iphone did it's job. No, I had to think of shadow detail even though my visualisation was dark and moody. So I'll probably end up with an over-exposed neg (for my visualisation) that will need to be printed down in the darkroom. I need to get out of that habit and expose the shot the way I see it.

So, the big question is whether or not the OM1 shot will be up to much. It's at the start of a roll so I'll just have to be patient I suppose.

6 comments :

John Carter said...

I feel you picked a good image to take. Downside of the iphone is there are lots of digital artifacts, upside maybe the meter may be better than your OM. It surely could be a fine image properly executed.

Herman Sheephouse said...

Yeah there is something very dreamy about that shot Bruce, but I am looking forward to the OM1. You've done it again though with moody landscapes - how do you do it? Mine always look quite 'bog standard' as it were . . .

Martyn Lacey said...

That is a nice shot, that lighthouse in the distance really gives the whole thing a sense of scale. The duotone look compliments the scene, and with a bit work your OM1 shot should be a good one too...when I say a bit of work I mean in the darkroom as there is a lot of contrast there to get right.

DavidM said...

FP4, 5X4, a little front tilt, sandbank on Z4, N-1 dev...
Have you seen Thomas Heaton's (-colour! sunsets! mountains! thirds!) tip – using old CDs under the tripod feet on sand or mud?
It's such a good image that it would be worth the trouble.

Bruce Robbins said...

It’s definitely worth thinking about, David. I go for a long walk along the waterfront there three times a week so it would be possible.

tjen dezutter said...

Hello Bruce

Sometimes I'm looking with great eyes of what -even a simple android like mine- could bring in photography. For me it's a new plaything; I bought a fisch eye and wide angle for it- ON 21 April I stood before the Louvre pyramides with only the Pentax ME loaded with Ektar 100.
I could use it at the blue hour but then I used the Phone .Incredible... so I did have shots in nighttime from Louvre and Eifel. Of course I better liked to use the Pentax on a stativ but this is for a time no longer option due to handoperation.
Let us know what the differences are with the OM 1. Nice shot.