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Author Topic: A few from Spain  (Read 3199 times)
seamus finn
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« on: May 02, 2010, 10:46:53 AM »
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Hello all,

Just back from a trip to the Almeria region of Spain.

Discovered these bird sellers in a street in a town called Requetes.


[attachment=21784:bird_sellers_lum.jpg]


In a square in Almeria, these two stilt walkers were in deep conversation, as were the couple seated on the bench. I was struck by the incongruity of the scene, especially when I spotted another couple - the two stone figures on the extreme left, who seemed  to be also studiously ignoring one another!



[attachment=21785:stilt_walkers_lum.jpg]


















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wolfnowl
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« Reply #1 on: May 02, 2010, 12:52:34 PM »
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The first one doesn't do much for me, but I like the second one, especially because, as you've pointed out, there are three distinct groups.  Foremost are the two stiltwalkers, one of whom is taking a break, reclining on the bench.  In the middle is a couple who are either so involved with their own conversation they're ignoring what's going on around them, or being surrounded by costumed people on stilts is so commonplace as not to have to take notice.  And on the left, the two statues who are each in their own world, or ignoring each other completely.

Mike.
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If your mind is attuned to beauty, you find beauty in everything.
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Patricia Sheley
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« Reply #2 on: May 03, 2010, 02:14:30 PM »
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Quote from: seamus finn
Hello all,

Just back from a trip to the Almeria region of Spain.

Discovered these bird sellers in a street in a town called Requetes.


[attachment=21784:bird_sellers_lum.jpg]


In a square in Almeria, these two stilt walkers were in deep conversation, as were the couple seated on the bench. I was struck by the incongruity of the scene, especially when I spotted another couple - the two stone figures on the extreme left, who seemed  to be also studiously ignoring one another!



[attachment=21785:stilt_walkers_lum.jpg]
Seamus...did you by chance spend any time shooting that manually expressive man in the center of  image two...looks as if  varying angle and heights had much to work with in this location...any others?  Also if I visually crop just behind madame's shoulder(madame on the left) the image gains vitality...just my eye though...

(also selfishly wish the pair of bird vendors and all their accouterments could have been found by you in early morning light with a lens of more compression...love the elements available in that one...actually it would make for a great workshop assignment...turn the class loose on those elements with each of their own field of view and compression choices making the composition...) I covet some extended time in Spain one day... Pat
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« Reply #3 on: May 04, 2010, 05:52:21 AM »
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Seamus, I'm on the road and don't have time to comment extensively, but I agree with Mike. #2's my favorite.
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seamus finn
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« Reply #4 on: May 04, 2010, 07:17:00 AM »
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Pat,

I took only one shot of the stilt-walkers scene. I was sitting on a nearby bench, recovering from the hot sun. My first instinct was to crop tightly in processing as you suggest, but after much indecision, I reluctantly came down on the side of including the two stone figures as a further element reflecting the incongruous nature of the scene. I agree the tighter crop makes for a more balanced image but there's a price on everything! I still don't know if I made the right choice. And there's always Russ to consider when it comes to cropping.....

Re the bird sellers, again, one shot in sharp early-afternoon light with the wall in deep shade and the pavement blown out somewhat. The original is colourful enough in its own way. The final image required a fair bit of selective work to bring the footpath patterns back in the highlight areas.  

Re various lenses, I brought only one thanks to airline baggage weight restrictions in this part of the world  - Canon 24-105L plus 5D body. After a few days in the heat, this combination gets heavy enough. I suppose the whole trip was troubled from the start.  A major complication was the presence of a huge cloud of dust hovering in European airspace from a volcanic eruption in Iceland which grounded aircraft throughout Europe for several days and caused massive disruption and expense to airlines and passengers alike. As I write, the damned thing is back again, this time hanging around over Ireland where all flights were cancelled last night and are just now being resumed as I write. More mayhem for everybody - and according to the experts, it may continue on and off throughout summer. Luckily I managed to get in and out of Spain between clouds, as it were.

Pat, the idea of shooting in Spain is very appealing and I've been there a good few times, mostly in the Barcelona area. On this occasion, I went south to the Almeria region. The trip included a visit to the famous Alhambra site at Granada - one of the most visited places in the country if not the world. It's a palace and fortress complex constructed during the mid 14th century by the Moorish rulers of the time - a majestic, magical place.

You'd think a location like that would get the creative juices flowing, but no, I felt as flat as a pancake and didn't manage even one shot I was happy with. In fact, the whole trip was a disappointment photographically. I ended up asking myself if I really wanted to photograph scenes which had already been done to death a thousand times - and better. Oh, I went through the motions alright, but wherever my mojo was, it sure wasn't in Spain on this occasion. I fear this may be reflected in the two images posted here, Mike. I guess I'm going through the equivalent of writer's block. Has anyone else experienced this, I wonder. Incidentally, I'm not blaming the volcanic dust for my woes - they were all self inflicted.

Anyway, thanks for the comments, all. Back to the drawing board!!

By the way, Russ, if you're on a shooting trip, I hope you have better success than I had....
« Last Edit: May 04, 2010, 07:44:05 AM by seamus finn » Logged

Rob C
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« Reply #5 on: May 04, 2010, 08:33:48 AM »
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Seamus

That's the problem with travel - its main function is to move you from location A to location B, and often when you get there, you realise that A was just as good and you'd have saved a lot of time and money not even thinking about B.

There are obvious exceptions, of course: little point looking for beaches in the middle of London, but when you have one great beach, why travel to another? But that's what makes Ryan Air go round - even if the advertised beach is perhaps fifty miles away from where you thought you were flying. You know, Glasgow Prestwick, or even Paris Beauvais, all rough-speak and almost fraudulent but probably not quite.

Writer's block: isn't that what scribblers claim is similar to photographer's blank film syndrome?

I have suffered from it all my life, the only thing that alleviated it was the commission, the catalyst that summoned up the mind etc. and made me do something, as the actress probably said to the bishop.

There is little chance of local stones turning me on either, regardless of how old, 'culturally valid' or anything else that's claimed for them; see one forest you've seen 'em all; one rock and you realise pretty damn soon that they are all rapidly going nowhere - watching paint dry is a high pressure sport in comparison. In the end, the only subjects that really light the glow are human. and even those are few and far between.

Part of the problem with photography is that people are so easily convinced that once they learn the how, they have a divine right to the next step: the what. Unfortunately, that's why there are really so few great photographers: those you would put in that bag all have the magic of the what - a magic that I am certain was there well before they realised they could express it and went on to get that camera. Most of us, sadly, try to do it  the wrong way around.

Rob C
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fredjeang
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« Reply #6 on: May 04, 2010, 09:18:04 AM »
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Quote from: Rob C
Part of the problem with photography is that people are so easily convinced that once they learn the how, they have a divine right to the next step: the what. Unfortunately, that's why there are really so few great photographers: those you would put in that bag all have the magic of the what - a magic that I am certain was there well before they realised they could express it and went on to get that camera. Most of us, sadly, try to do it  the wrong way around.

Rob C
Yes!!! The what is the real work, the how is just necessary to some extend and available to anyone without exception. IMHO.

edit: I forgot, may I ad the Why also.

What and Why, and a little bit of how.
« Last Edit: May 04, 2010, 09:20:14 AM by fredjeang » Logged
seamus finn
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« Reply #7 on: May 04, 2010, 12:51:05 PM »
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Rob C,

To tell the truth, I'd travel anyway - the eternal optimist constantly poking a camera around the next corner. Having been a scribbler all my professional life, I've often found that the only way to get the creative juices really going is to be right up against a deadline with no way out. To quote yourself, it's the catalyst that calls up the mind. As for the what and the why, I think I'm still working on the how.

Regards,
Seamus
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seamus finn
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« Reply #8 on: May 05, 2010, 12:54:23 PM »
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A few more for consideration:


[attachment=21853:abandoned_church.jpg]



[attachment=21854:boat_lum.jpg]



[attachment=21855:house.jpg]






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John R
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« Reply #9 on: May 05, 2010, 01:53:51 PM »
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Quote from: seamus finn
A few more for consideration:

[attachment=21855:house.jpg]

I really like the last one you posted. All of the colours and elements balance beautifully. The effect is somewhat light and airy, but I like it. Many people on this site really like or prefer BW, but I don't see how a BW version can capture the feeling and juxtaposition of the colours and elements.

JMR
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Eric Myrvaagnes
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« Reply #10 on: May 05, 2010, 08:50:18 PM »
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I'm a fan of B&W, but I like the colors in these a lot. The third is my favorite by far.

Eric

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Rob C
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« Reply #11 on: May 06, 2010, 03:21:21 AM »
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Quote from: John R
I really like the last one you posted. All of the colours and elements balance beautifully. The effect is somewhat light and airy, but I like it. Many people on this site really like or prefer BW, but I don't see how a BW version can capture the feeling and juxtaposition of the colours and elements.

JMR




Hi John

I love b/w too, and most of the stuff that I have printed for myself is in the form of b/w conversions from Kodachrome. Trouble is, it fails when beside colour. The website that I'm trying to piece together showed me this yet again: I had made many such conversions and had put them together in a basic form a week ago, but made the mistake of including some really nice colour shots too. Almost immediately on seeing them in site form I got an attack of panic: it just did the b/w work no favours at all.

Fortunately, my internet computer started to play up and I shut down the trial site in time. The period between that and getting the computer working again allowed me the chance to rethink and redo those b/w shots as their original colour versions. I now have a more balanced set of images, but have complicated the matter for myself by having had further ideas that I want to try out for the relaunch.

But the pictures Seamus has put up here are beautiful - all of them; such a three-dee sense about the textures and romantic but dramatic colours.

Rob C
« Last Edit: May 06, 2010, 03:24:00 AM by Rob C » Logged

seamus finn
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« Reply #12 on: May 06, 2010, 02:04:23 PM »
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Thanks for the comments, all. I'll chance another:


[attachment=21864:sunboat.jpg]

« Last Edit: May 06, 2010, 02:10:51 PM by seamus finn » Logged

Patricia Sheley
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« Reply #13 on: May 07, 2010, 11:30:31 AM »
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Quote from: seamus finn
Thanks for the comments, all. I'll chance another:


[attachment=21864:sunboat.jpg]


Ahh Seamus....You done it to me...try as I might to see your chart, the barkings and pleading to the Gods and commotion all about, from that pilot house, the night so long and much too cold to keep the vigil out....and then the leakages and forceful sea and terror all about...all his life maintaining , and then to come to this...every lug and screw deserting in the time of need...what could they do? complain? Naught could stall this bitter fate...

Ah sir...I could roll about the sand alongside closeup for days and weeks, morning light and dusk ...the paints and scars, the storied history waiting to spring free...

When the voices stop I'll try to see Your chart, but for now t'is you that's given my a heart a start...If you were of the fairer sex I'd name you Temptress!

Pat
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« Reply #14 on: May 07, 2010, 07:05:18 PM »
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Seamus, When I finally get back home in Colorado I'll have time to comment at greater length. All I have time to say tonight is "splendid work." Really splendid!
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Eric Myrvaagnes
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« Reply #15 on: May 07, 2010, 07:45:02 PM »
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Seamus,

That image is truly evocative -- as Pat has demonstrated!

Eric

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seamus finn
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« Reply #16 on: May 09, 2010, 11:27:04 AM »
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Pat,

I was in a bit of a blue funk on returning from Spain but your response to the last image has changed all that - now everything is sweetness and light. Much obliged!!!


Seamus
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seamus finn
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« Reply #17 on: May 12, 2010, 07:24:38 AM »
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This shy goat herder was going about his business on the side of the road to Cabo de Gata.

Incidentally, this one is for Russ

[attachment=21944:goat_herder4_lum.jpg]
« Last Edit: May 12, 2010, 12:15:24 PM by seamus finn » Logged

Eric Myrvaagnes
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« Reply #18 on: May 12, 2010, 08:14:15 PM »
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Seamus,

I like it.

(But for Russ I'll have to say, "Another face. So what?" But that's just for Russ.  )

Eric

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seamus finn
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« Reply #19 on: May 13, 2010, 05:21:06 AM »
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Thanks for that, Eric - point taken. I hope Russ is not insulted by the offering!!!    


Seamus
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