Fuji X100T – A Street Photography Review . . .

. . . ‘Nothing ever stays the same’ as the old saying goes, and if the past 6 or 8 months of my life are anything to go by, that couldn’t be more truthful . . .

In a relatively short space of time, I once again find myself living the life of a single man. Further, I’ve moved away from the isolation of the wilderness that is the Lake District and now live on the UK canal system, aboard a Narrowboat.

This has brought with it an altogether not wholly unexpected (or unplanned) bonus – the canal network throughout England (around 2500 miles), meanders not only through some of the most gloriously scenic countryside this little island of ours has to offer, but also virtually every major town and city across the land.

As a Street Photographer, I now find myself approaching the genre’s natural hunting ground from an entirely new and refreshing perspective. There can’t be many Streetog’s that arrive to take pictures, by boat?

As you would expect however, living aboard a boat brings with it a necessary downsizing and minimalisation of one’s approach to daily life and possessions. This attitude naturally leads to the choice of camera one elects to take on their photographic excursions.

After much deliberation, I found myself veering away from the long-held attraction for the simple and reliable (and expensive) Leica M (digital or analogue), and elected instead to invest in that comparatively cheaper and altogether more modern take on the Street Photographer’s tool, the Fujifilm X100T.

fuji fujifilm x100t digital street photography camera

As regular readers of the blog will no doubt recall, I have an annoying (for me) tendency to purchase cameras, believing that each successive model will be ‘the one’.

Of course this was always never the case, as in a very short space of time, I would find myself eBaying the latest and greatest model, and just as quickly replacing it with the next ‘keeper’.

Continue reading “Fuji X100T – A Street Photography Review . . .”

Another Date Added To My Street Photography Talk ‘Tour’ . . .

. . . I am delighted to have been asked to give a talk on my Street Photography and Street Photography in general, on the 6th November 2018 at the North Cheshire Photographic Society.

There are currently other clubs and societies that have also expressed an interest and will post dates as and when they are confirmed, both here on the blogroll and on the Talks page.

Continue reading “Another Date Added To My Street Photography Talk ‘Tour’ . . .”

A Talk On My Street Photography at Alsager Camera Club, 3rd May 2018 . . .

. . . Yes, I have been asked to give a talk on my street photography at the Alsager Camera Club, Cheshire, on the 3rd May 2018.

For the past few years I’ve harboured an ambition to partake in some form of public speaking, with regards my photography and street photography in general. So when an invitation arrived in my inbox from Geoff Reader at Alsager Camera Club, I was quick to accept his generous and unexpected offer.

Currently I’m working on the presentation I will be giving, via digital projector – a mixture of my favourite (and not so favourite) photographs, what drew me to take and what I ‘see’ in them, ‘what is street photography’ (in my opinion), as well as the ‘ups and downs’ (quite literally) of pouring your ‘all’ into the art form. Of course, being in the digital domain, video will also be taking a role as well in some part.

Continue reading “A Talk On My Street Photography at Alsager Camera Club, 3rd May 2018 . . .”

URBAN International Photo Awards 2017, Now Open For Entries . . .

. . . The URBAN International Photo Awards 2017, an international stage for photographers, is now open for entries. Italian artist Maurizio Galimberti will be Jury President and a total prize fund of 4,000 euros (1300 euros to the winner), is up for grabs . . .

Submissions now open to the URBAN 2017 Photo Awards, international contest organized by Italian cultural association dotART, together with media partners Photographers.it and Sprea Fotografia.

Urban 2017 Photo Awards + Exhibition 14 February - 31 May 2017 Kevin Shelley Street Photography Blog UK

Now in its eighth edition, URBAN sees every year thousands of participating pictures and hundreds of participants from all over the world. It is an always growing international contest, one of the very few that goes “over the boundaries” of the Internet offering to photographers real visibility through dozens of international photo exhibitions.

Continue reading “URBAN International Photo Awards 2017, Now Open For Entries . . .”

Chester Street Photography with the Mamiya C33 and Ilford FP4+ . . .

“That guy must really like his camera, he hasn’t stopped looking at it for the past 10 minutes?”

At least that’s how I imagine the average ‘Joe’ might regard someone shooting Street Photography with a TLR camera, such as the Mamiya C33.

In all honesty I’ve never felt more comfortable photographing strangers and candid situations, than when using the Mamiya C33 TLR Medium Format camera.

Young Girl in Chester Finds Something Amusing Medium Format

Admittedly the ‘outfit’, with it’s 135mm Sekor lens (90mm in 35mm terms) does weigh as much as a Carling 8-Pack (whatever one of those is). Fortunately this minor (?) handicap is utterly negated by the unorthodox (by modern standards) shooting style.

Continue reading “Chester Street Photography with the Mamiya C33 and Ilford FP4+ . . .”

Ricoh WG-5 Rugged Street Photography Camera Review (Part 2) . . .

. . . continued from Part 1 . . .

It’s all well and good owning what many regard (or regarded) as the ultimate Street Photography camera (Leica M), but if you don’t use it for what it was intended, it becomes nothing more than an expensive piece of jewellery, or bling, or even an extravagance. More worryingly, outside of the relatively ‘clean’ environment of the street, the Leica M could be quickly ruined through dust and water contamination, or damaged from the slightest knock, etc.

What I needed in reality was a camera that would do everything. A camera I could ‘throw’ into the cavernous pocket of my motorcycle jacket and not have to worry about it getting cold or dusty. A camera I could clip to the ‘day pack’ on the front of my Kayak and not worry about it getting wet (or god forbid submerged if I capsized), or a camera I could simply stow in the glovebox of the car. All of this whilst still being able to turn it’s hand to the occassional bout of street photography.

Ricoh WG-5 GPS Rugged Street Photography Camera

Hence I narrowed my choice down to the Ricoh WG-5 GPS, an all weather, rugged, waterproof (to 14m), dustproof, shockproof, freezeproof and crushproof, 16 megapixel compact point and shoot camera, or as Ricoh prefer to simply describe it, ‘Adventure Proof’.

Continue reading “Ricoh WG-5 Rugged Street Photography Camera Review (Part 2) . . .”

Ricoh WG-5 Rugged Street Photography Camera Review (Part 1) . . .

. . . The Leica M-E has gone to a new home.

For that matter, the Voigtlander 50mm f/1.5 Nokton and Voigtlander 28mm f/1.9 Ultron lenses and the Leica M2, now also find themselves spread far and wide and hopefully providing many more years of photographic excellence to their respective owners.

Am I mad ?

This was a recurring question that I kept asking myself over many a month. Would clearing out all of my ‘Leica kit’ really be such a bad thing?

Continue reading “Ricoh WG-5 Rugged Street Photography Camera Review (Part 1) . . .”

Morecambe Not Wise – Expired . . .

. . . To be completely honest and as far as I was concerned, photography was dead to me.

Regular visitors to the Street Photography Blog will be all too aware of my eternal battle with ‘seasonal disappointment’, brought on when the days shorten and the sky turns an uninspirational shade of morbid-grey.

In this frame of mind I would habitually ‘hibernate’ throughout each autumn and winter period, until one day the overcast horizon’s lift, that strange ‘light in the sky’ makes a much anticipated appearance, and it’s no longer necessary to wear five layers of clothing just to go shopping.

Morecambe Walking The Dog UK Street Photography Mamiya C33

This time round however, things felt oddly different.

Continue reading “Morecambe Not Wise – Expired . . .”

Mojo Falling – A Street Photographer’s Crisis of Faith . . .

. . . “Hello, is there (still) anybody out there?”

Truth is (and now over 3 months since my last post), it makes no real difference if there isn’t. Photography doesn’t mean anything to me anymore. There, I’ve said it.

Even presented with the opportunity to take photographs, I find my mind drifting towards other more attractive propositions, like playing guitar, or riding my motorcycle, or Lamb Balti Vindaloo.

A case in point would be last weekend and I find myself at my favourite campsite in Delamere, near Chester. This rather convenient ‘stop over’ is a particular first-choice of mine, specifically because it features a railway station not 50 yards from its entrance gates. Step aboard this incredibly swift and cost effective public service and the wonderous realms of not only Manchester and Chester, but also Liverpool are between 15 minutes and one hour away.

Having always fallen into the comfortably familiar routine of Chester on the first day (because it’s a Saturday and hence more people) and Manchester on the Sunday (it’s a huge city, so still busy), I’d considered it a refreshing change to try Liverpool.

old woman liverpool cuddles dog love street photography leica m9 m-e

Continue reading “Mojo Falling – A Street Photographer’s Crisis of Faith . . .”

A Late Street Photography Postcard from London . . .

It’s that ‘quiet time’ on the blog again. The London trip came and went, a good time was had and many favourite photographs were captured, using both the Leica M2 and M-E.

Truth is however that before I knew it, my number-one pastime was becoming more of a ‘job’ (again and unpaid at that), with ‘appointments’ being made, promises promised and items for review provided.

So I decided to take a break from the whole photography scene, with Twitter, Facebook and Instagram ‘holidays’ booked. 🙂

And what an absolute joy it’s been without the constant thought of ‘this has to be done’ and ‘must sort that out’ etc. Instead I’ve been able to completely forget about all of ‘that stuff’ and concentrate on other things instead, such as music and my first motorbike in 3 years – nice.

So what about the pictures from London? Well for now I’d like to present what is for me, probably the finest photograph I’ve taken to date (in my opinion). Taken with the Leica M2, Voigtlander 35mm f/1.4 Classic lens, Ilford HP5+ and processed in a new (for me) developer, Tetenal Paranol S (review to come).

Chow for now and enjoy.

Naked Bike Ride London 2015 Leica M2 CV 35 1.4 Paranol S Kevin Shelley Street Photography Blog UK

Short Reviews, London in June and How Much Money I Make . . .

. . . Have you ever stopped for one moment to evaluate just what it is that you hope to get from your photography? Maybe you just do it for the enjoyment? Possibly like me, you also write a Blog? If the latter, why go through all the time, expense, effort and worry (yes really) of doing so – surely it can’t be for the money?

With regards that last point, I was struck by this particular question a short while ago – how much money have I earned in the last 20 years from my photography, or the 3 years of this blog, or for that matter, the many countless photographic ‘weekends’ away?

Well that’s easy and you may or may not find the answer surprising – Ten pounds.

Yes, Ten Quid, a Tenner, a Bill & Benner, a Cockle, an Ayrton Senna, a Cock & Hen – and I can easily recall how I came to be in possession of that beautiful (if slightly limp) ‘Brownie’.

Five years ago I had this crazy idea of selling photographic prints. As chance would have it, there was a local photography exhibition just a few weeks away and in a moment of utter madness, I chose twenty of my (then) favourite images and had them printed as 16×12″ black & white photographs. As a finishing touch, I lovingly mounted each one in a chunky ebony-coloured wooden frame. Three hundred pounds later and on a cold and dark morning, I headed off to the exhibition. At an asking price of just £25 each, I was sure to make my money back AND turn a tidy profit for my troubles?

Continue reading “Short Reviews, London in June and How Much Money I Make . . .”

Leica M Edition 60 – The Street Photography Review . . .

(Please be sure to see the end of this review for an important update).

. . . During the previous installment of this review, I got to know the M Edition 60 a little better and gained a clearer understanding of what it can offer photography today. Now in this, the final chapter, I took the Leica M Edition 60 out and onto the streets of Chester and Manchester, where I could properly put the camera through its paces . . .

. . . The brief was simple. Evaluate whether a digital camera can function as an everyday ‘shooter’, without a screen – just myself and the Leica M60 enjoying a relaxing stroll through the sights, sounds, smells and inhabitants of two popular, sprawling and rugged cities in the North West of England.

Man Waves in Chester UK Leica M Edition 60

How in fact is it possible to spend an entire two days shooting street photographs and using only a camera that provides just the bare minimum of options necessary to capture a picture – those being shutter speed, aperture, focusing and ISO sensitivity?

Continue reading “Leica M Edition 60 – The Street Photography Review . . .”

Leica M Edition 60 – Past Future . . .

. . . Previously in the article Leica M Edition 60 – A Design Concept (and deliberately avoiding the term ‘Part One’ if only in the interest of originality), I looked at the M60 from the point of view of Leica and in particular their designers and marketers, what ‘it is’ and what it means to Leica themselves. Now I’ll examine the camera, what it’s like to use (with the resultant photographs) and what it can offer the photographer of today . . .

. . . Writing camera reviews (or any written work for that matter), is rather like designing a camera itself. Typically and when beginning such a creative endeavor, it’s common practice for the Design Team (or writer) to draw inspiration and ideas from areas seemingly unconnected to the task at hand. This is often achieved by the creation of a ‘Mood Room’ – an area whereby objects or photographs are collected together and that in some way instill a particular feeling, or an emotion, or place the individual ‘inside’ the mind of the prospective customer. For example, someone wishing to create a vehicle that evokes a sense of the 1950’s may watch a movie from that period, such as ‘Rebel Without A Cause’.

Another approach is to seek enlightenment from one’s own memories and experiences, and which is a technique I frequently use when piecing together the basic premise of an article, such as this one.

Front Top View Leica M Edition 60

In my case and through the course of the 3 or 4 days spent so far with the Leica M60, I was beginning to form a sense of what the camera ‘says’ to me as a photographer. During this period, two distinct and completely unrelated memories began to surface – my favourite old Television Set and Eric Clapton.

Continue reading “Leica M Edition 60 – Past Future . . .”

Leica M Edition 60 – A Design Concept . . .

. . . There is a saying in the world of product design and marketing that is as old as those professions themselves – “There’s no such thing as bad advertising”.

Take for example the case of Leica, for I believe that with the release several months ago of the M Edition 60 (simply called the M60 from now on), there must be at least one or two Designers and Marketers sat in front of their computers at Leica HQ, rubbing their hands with glee?

On the surface however and judging solely by the multitude of impassioned comments this camera has garnered on forums and social media, this would appear to be a peculiar assumption to make.

With words such as irrelevant, unnecessary, snobbish, pointless, expensive, elitist, bourgeois and outdated appearing with almost nauseating regularity, how could one deduce that this would in any way work favourably towards building a successful and sought after product?

Front View of the Leica M Edition 60

Well, from the wisdom of Oscar Wilde, “There’s only one thing worse than being talked about, and that’s not being talked about”.

Continue reading “Leica M Edition 60 – A Design Concept . . .”

Another New eBook “The British – A Pictorial Guide for Other Nations” . . .

. . . Yep, following my visit to Bowness near Windermere in the Lake District and my experiences shooting Street with the Medium Format Mamiya C33 TLR, I have emerged from the fumes, flames, smoke and explosions of the Street Photography Blog laboratory, with another eBook.

“The British – A Pictorial Guide for Other Nations” is a light-hearted and ‘tongue-in-cheek’ search for the elusive and stereotypical representations of how other nations (may possibly) view the British. As it turns out, there is actually a strong basis for these (possible) misconceptions.

As usual, click eBooks to visit that page and download the eBook (PDF), or click the picture below.

Cheers,

The British - A Pictorial Guide for Other Nations eBook PDF Street Photography Blog UK

Medium Format Street Photography With A Mamiya TLR And Darkroom Excitement . . .

. . . If anyone was to tell you that ‘film is dead’, suggest to them that they place a post on Twitter and include the hashtags #Film #Photography. Leave to simmer for a few hours and if the number of favourites, enthusiastic responses and re-tweets they’ll receive are anything to go by, film is apparently continuing to grow in popularity – and I for one can understand why.

Leaving aside the obvious attractions of its inherent image quality, the ‘feel’ and the limited number of exposures available (with the benefits this brings to your photography), there is also a level of anticipation and excitement when it comes to viewing your finished images, which is impossible to achieve with digital. (UPDATE : Unless you’re shooting the Leica M Edition 60 – My 3-Part review starting here).

These unique qualities can be experienced whether you send your films away to be processed, or choose (as I do) to do the work yourself. However, it’s only in the darkroom that you’ll experience the full gamut of emotions.

Take for example the last two days, one Mamiya C33 TLR and four rolls of ‘expired’ Ilford FP4 Medium Format film.

Mamiya C33 TLR Medium Format Camera Street Photography Blog

It began a few days ago, when I accidentally tripped over my ancient (and beige) National Geographic canvas camera bag, poking out from under a table – “Ah the old Mamiya” I thought. Very shortly I’d pulled the camera from the bag and soon discovered there were also four rolls of unexposed black & white film in a front pocket. A quick once-over and several film-less test shots later confirmed everything was (somewhat surprisingly) in good order. The old grey-matter quickly got to work and in no time, a plan was hatched.

Continue reading “Medium Format Street Photography With A Mamiya TLR And Darkroom Excitement . . .”

My Latest eBook “Not Of The Street – Men With Beards” . . .

. . . Following the many encouraging comments I received for my first eBook “Street Photography – A Personal Point of View“, I was keen to set to work on my next ‘magnum opus’. 😉

Here then and for your viewing pleasure, is my latest offering “Not Of The Street – Men With Beards“, in PDF format and available for FREE download in the eBooks section.

This time the subject is both a series of 15 Portraits, taken with the Leica X (Type 113) that I recently reviewed, as well as many sentences regarding my views on the meaning and (perceived) limitations of the word ‘Street’ in Street Photography.

Enjoy,

eBook Not of the Street Men with Beards by Kevin Shelley Street Photography Blog UK

Leica X (Type 113) Review – Out Of My Comfort Zone . . .

. . . With this review I thought it would be the perfect opportunity to try something completely different, both for the Street Photography Blog and (possibly) for camera reviews in general. So in documenting my experiences with the Leica X, I’ve split it into two distinct parts.

Leica X Front View Review Street Photography Blog UK

Part One consists of this review, which is a hands-on look at how the camera performed when recently taking it round the UK Photography Show.

Part Two is an accompanying (and FREE) eBook in PDF format. The eBook “Not Of The Street” features (as well as writing) the main ‘body’ of photographs taken during the time spent shooting with the Leica X and which are themselves a first for my photography, a series of 15 portraits. Enjoy . . .

Continue reading “Leica X (Type 113) Review – Out Of My Comfort Zone . . .”

The Photography Show 2015 N.E.C. Birmingham (Part Three) . . .

. . . There’s an old saying ‘The Best-Laid Plans of Mice and Men Often Go Awry.’

In my case, at the Photography Show, that’s so very true. But on this occasion, it’s all for the better – much better.

I’d originally made a mental-plan of things to do, places to go and people to see. That was until today . . .

Continue reading “The Photography Show 2015 N.E.C. Birmingham (Part Three) . . .”