It’s a wonderful world

Monday

Insta Repeat posts collages of photos from the same geographical location that look remarkably similar, even though they were taken by different photographers.
...
The intent on Insta Repeat is deliberate—to duplicate a photo in order to evoke a similar response from viewers.

Feet dangling over Horseshoe Bend evoke a sense of adventure and thrill-seeking. The woman paddling in a mountain lake evokes wonder and serenity. So, if you want to conjure those emotions in your audience (while also projecting those qualities onto yourself), just retrace the steps, and—voilà—success! Follow the formula and you'll achieve similar results.

Sometimes, the Internet makes me sad.

Alphonso Mango cat
Alphonso Mango | Monday 14 June, 2021 | Apple iPhone 11 Pro | iPhone 11 Pro back triple camera 6mm f/2 | 1120 sec at f/2.0 | ISO 25

I’ve inconsistently used Day One for a daily journal for several years. But over the last few weeks, I’ve finally got into a grove of writing in my Day One daily journal. In addition, I’ve used the journal entries to create a weekly post on WordPress. So today, I was excited to read that the Day One team is joining Automattic, creators of my favourite website software, WordPress.

Today, I’m thrilled to announce that Day One is being acquired by Automattic Inc. This is incredibly exciting news. For the past 10 years since I started Day One, I’ve worked to not only create the best digital journaling experience in the world, but one that will last. By joining Automattic, I’m now more confident than ever that the preservation and longevity of Day One is sure. This acquisition will provide Day One access to the same technological, financial, and security benefits that WordPress.com, Tumblr, and other Automattic entities enjoy.

Automattic is led by founder Matt Mullenweg, a pioneer in the web publishing space and founder of WordPress.com. The Automattic teams have built and supported products and services with massive global scale, and I can’t imagine a more ideal home for Day One now and for the future.

Wednesday

I grew up in the West Indies in the 1960-the 1980s, and I don't remember anyone on any of the islands using mulch. I live in a townhouse community. Every few years, the landscapers come out with trucks loaded with mulch and start laying it down in every planting bed and around every tree in the neighbourhood. I've never understood or liked the smell of mulch. What was its purpose?

Many who grew up in the 1970s and earlier will remember when mulch was not a 'thing'. People did not put annual layers of wood chips on their gardens and there were not bags of mulch for sale at garden centers. Wood mulch became popular with the Clean Air Act of 1970. Until then, sawmills burnt their extra sawdust and wood chips and tree bark.

This was a source of air pollution, so they sought an alternative use for their by-product. The National Forest Service reported that tree bark chips were a useful source of humus in the forest. From there, an American obsession was born. It has grown to the point where mulch is now manufactured specifically for gardens, sometimes from old pallets and other material that does not serve the purpose of enriching the soil, and is instead, purely decorative.

For several years I have attempted to create a native plant garden in the tiny 25 square foot bit of dirt in the front of the house under the partial shade of a large maple tree. First, I would attend native plant sales once a year and purchase something suitable. Then, I put out the required flags to indicate to the landscapers that the homeowner was managing the garden bed and did not want them to touch my plants. Invariably the grounds crew would ignore the flags, pull out my budding native plants and dump the mulch.

Last year I planted several native plants that grow during the early spring. My plants had just started to put out leaves about the ground. I came home to find them buried under the mulch. I complained a bit more forcefully with the HOA management. The landscaper returned and removed the mulch, further damaging the fragile shoots. The leaves were gone.

Since I am now responsible for mulching, I am exploring alternatives better suited to a native plant garden. When deep mulch is pushed against trunks of woody plants or over the crowns of native plant perennials, it kills the plants. I am looking for an ecological alternative. I am considering using inexpensive mushroom compost, but I don't know if that will work. An option is mycorrhizal fungi compost which naturally increases microbial activity in the soil, but it's expensive.

I am now reading up on "green mulch". The idea is to plant short, spreading, perennial ground cover between larger plants. The challenge is that my native plants are still small and have not yet established themselves. The green mulch may compete with the smaller natives. I want to forego the mulch and fill in some of the bare spots in the garden with [native plants of varying sizes](I grew up in the West Indies in the 1960-the 1980s, and I don't remember anyone on any of the island using mulch. I live in a townhouse community. Every few years, the landscapers come out with trucks loaded with mulch and start laying it down in every planting bed and around every tree in the neighbourhood. I've never understood or liked the smell of mulch. What was its purpose?


I consult for a well known international bank based in Spain. The topic of corporate business to business VPN across country boundaries came up in a recent discussion at the office, so the conversation was fresh in my mind when I read this post by Bruce Schneier

We don't talk about it a lot, but VPNs are entirely based on trust. As a consumer, you have no idea which company will best protect your privacy. You don't know the data protection laws of the Seychelles or Panama. You don't know which countries can put extra-legal pressure on companies operating within their jurisdiction. You don't know who owns and runs the VPNs. You don't even know which foreign companies the NSA has targeted for mass surveillance. All you can do is make your best guess, and hope you guessed well.

Corporations will align themselves to the laws of the counties where they operate. However, consumers are working from ignorance regarding the privacy of consumer VPN connections.


In the past, I have immersed myself in the woods around Somerset and Mercer county, practising "shinrin-yoku". I did it in 2020, but my 2021 forest bathing is deficient. Andy Summons writing in Urth Magazine offers tips on making the best of the experience.

The simple act of immersing ourselves in nature helps calm our mind and focus our awareness on the present moment. Yesterday and tomorrow melt into insignificance as our brains race to take in the details and sensations around us. Even Albert Einstein understood and touted the benefits of spending time in nature, saying: 'Look deep into nature, and then you will understand everything better.'


cat
Alphonso Mango | Wednesday 16 June, 2021 | FujiFilm X-T2 | XF16-55mmF2.8 R LM WR @ 55 mm | 1125 sec at f/8.0 | ISO 640

I think our cat Alphie gets lonely now that I'm back to working full-time. My day is hectic, and I don't have time during the day for us to play fetch or just sit for a tummy rub. Kiran is at Oberlin College for her summer semester. At her suggestion, I moved the corporate laptop setup to the desk in her room. It's worked out well, providing a change of environment when I "leave" at the end of the workday. These few weeks, I noticed that Alphie quietly sits on Kiran's bed or the carpet, cleaning himself or enjoying the sun coming through the window. He's good company.

cat
Alphonso Mango | Wednesday 16 June, 2021 | FujiFilm X-T2 | XF16-55mmF2.8 R LM WR @ 55 mm | 1240 sec at f/8.0 | ISO 400

Friday

Earlier this week, I discovered two tiny green caterpillars with brilliant yellow dotted black bands across each body segment. They were busy devouring the leafy bits of a parsley plant growing in the garden planter in the front deck of our home. I don't recall, but I may have planted parsley or parsley seeds in the past. So I let the caterpillars have their way. The benefit of attracting a future pollinator outweighs the loss of the plant.

swallowtail butterfly caterpillar
swallowtail butterfly caterpillar | Monday 14 June, 2021 | FujiFilm X-T2 | XF16-55mmF2.8 R LM WR @ 55 mm | 1125 sec at f/5.6 | ISO 400

Shaan did some Google-foo, and we think these are black swallowtail butterfly caterpillars, commonly known as parsley worms. These caterpillars can grow up to 5 cm. I think they are almost full size. I noticed that they had devoured most of the plant and wondered what they would do once the plant was stripped if they were not yet fully grown. With any luck, these caterpillars will pupate into new black swallowtail butterflies, and I'll get a photograph or two.

swallowtail butterfly caterpillar
swallowtail butterfly caterpillar | Friday 18 June, 2021 | FujiFilm X-T2 | XF16-55mmF2.8 R LM WR @ 55 mm | 1125 sec at f/4.0 | ISO 1250
swallowtail butterfly caterpillar
swallowtail butterfly caterpillar | Friday 18 June, 2021 | FujiFilm X-T2 | XF16-55mmF2.8 R LM WR @ 55 mm | 1125 sec at f/5.6 | ISO 1250

Sometimes life is challenging, but overall, it's a wonderful world.

Saturday

I skipped my usual morning coffee brewing ritual. Instead, I picked up two cups of coffee and a bacon, egg & cheese sandwich from Buy the Cup. Governor Murphy has lifted the mask mandate for non-governmental and non-health organisations, so I walked into Buy the Cup unmasked for the first time in eighteen months. It was great to see Vitaliy.

coffee sign
Saturday 19 June, 2021 | FujiFilm X-T2 | XF27mmF2.8 | 120 sec at f/8.0 | ISO 6400

I noticed the light shining through the thick cloud layer onto the neighbourhood tot-lot on the drive home. The light was bouncing off the light morning fog. I pulled over to look for photographic opportunities. I looked through the viewfinder, and suddenly, I realised that the "caution" tape that had once covered the swings and slides had been removed.

Saturday 19 June, 2021 | FujiFilm X-T2 | XF27mmF2.8 | 1340 sec at f/8.0 | ISO 400

The New Jersey Blueberry I planted this spring is doing well. Well enough to produce a few berries. I don't expect to eat these. I bought the plant for ornamental reasons. When the plant is larger and producing more berries in a few years, I'll try some berries.

New Jersey Berry
New Jersey Blueberry | Saturday 19 June, 2021 | FujiFilm X-T2 | XF27mmF2.8 | 1125 sec at f/2.8 | ISO 640

I feel like I see the barbers at Revival very often. My hair grows so quickly that I need a haircut every two weeks.

Clifford Family Farm
Clifford Family Farm | Saturday 19 June, 2021 | FujiFilm X-T2 | 27 mm f/2.8 | 1420 sec at f/8.0 | ISO 400

After my haircut this morning, I stopped in at the Farmers' Market. I said hello to familiar faces, Zelle, Lorette, and Todd and welcomed new faces. Ringoes based Roastwell Coffee Roaster are new to the market. I tried their bourbon-infused cold brew coffee. Delicious. I bought a bag of their Ethiopia Natural Kembata Grade 1 beans to brew in the Chemex.

Roastwell Coffee Roasters
Roastwell Coffee Roasters | Saturday 19 June, 2021 | FujiFilm X-T2 | 27 mm f/2.8 | 1550 sec at f/8.0 | ISO 400

Bhavna, Shaan and I spent the evening at Ironbound Farm in Asbury, eating flatbread pizza and drinking hard cider. I enjoyed the drive from Montgomery through the hills and narrow country roads in Hunterdon County.

flatbread pizza
Saturday 19 June, 2021 | FujiFilm X-T2 | XF27mmF2.8 | 1125 sec at f/4.0 | ISO 2000

The forecast was partially cloudy, so I reserved a table in the courtyard, but when we arrived, a slight drizzle turned into a downpour as we sat. We were seated at a table under a large tent. Despite the weather, we had a great time.

Saturday 19 June, 2021 | FujiFilm X-T2 | XF27mmF2.8 | 1125 sec at f/8.0 | ISO 640
Saturday 19 June, 2021 | FujiFilm X-T2 | XF27mmF2.8 | 1125 sec at f/8.0 | ISO 2500
Saturday 19 June, 2021 | FujiFilm X-T2 | XF27mmF2.8 | 190 sec at f/8.0 | ISO 6400

Sunday

I know I've harped on this before. I'll keep bringing up this topic every time an ignorant photographer tell me that their 35mm or 50mm lens is a "normal" lens.

Contrary to the traditional industry standard of 50 - 55mm, the actual focal length of a 135 format "perfect normal" lens is 43mm. ~ Alan Weitz at B&H Photo

The 35mm and 50mm focal lengths are 7mm to 8 mm too far from normal. The XF27mmF2.8 lens (41mm FF-e) is the closest I can get to normal on my APS-C Fuji X-T2. The MD Rokkor-X is the closest I can get to normal on my Minolta XD-11. But they are both much more comparable to normal than 35mm or 50mm.


Today was a lazy Sunday. I sat on the couching watching all the Fast and Furious movies. Bhavna suggested we go to Brick Farm Tavern for a drink. I had the latest Troon beer. Then we came home.

Brick Farm Tavern
Sunday 20 June, 2021 | FujiFilm X-T2 | XF27mmF2.8 | 1280 sec at f/8.0 | ISO 200

Kodak Vision3 250D

I saw the email notice from Old School Photo Lab to download my scans of the negatives from my roll of Kodak Vision3 250D 35mm film. I exposed this roll of film in May of this year. We were all vaccinated, so Jeremy and Neha wanted to visit so their baby, Ronith, could meet the rest of his family. It was great to see them. Neha is Bhavna's cousin. We were all still getting used to being with people so we sat outside and wore masks when we were close to Ronith. The family event provided the opportunity to expose a 24 exposure roll of Vision3 250D Colour Negative Film which I purchased from the Film Photography Project. FPP sells Vision3 Motion Picture film which they hand-roll into 35mm film canisters.

father and child
Baby Ronith and Dad Jeremy | May 2021 | Minolta XD-11 | MD ROKKOR-X 45mm F2 | Kodak Vision3 250D

This is one of the challenges I have with film photography. With digital photography, the image has dense metadata about the images - camera, lens, ISO, aperture, shutter speed, exposure compensation etc. With film, unless I take copious notes, most of this information is lost. I may remember that I used my Minolta XD-11. I may remember that I used my MD Rokkor-X 45mm f/2 lens. I know that the film I used is ISO 250. But unless I write it all down, I don't remember what aperture ad shutter speed was used.

Some of the images were blurry, but I liked the look of the sharper ones. Perhaps it's how the images were scanned but the images have a slight reddish hue that I do not see in the examples I found online.

Unfortunately, I can't just send Kodak Vision3 250D to just any lab. Like most colour motion picture stocks, 250D has a protective layer called Remjet, which helps deal with the tremendous heat generated while running through a motion picture camera. This Remjet layer must be removed during processing and requires specialist developing equipment not available at most film development labs. The film ($10) and the development and scanning ($24-$34) are expensive. I think I'll shoot this film again, but not often.

  • Name: Kodak VISION3 250D (5207)
  • Vendor: Kodak
  • Type: Color negative
  • Format: 35mm
  • Speed (ISO): 250
  • Exposure latitude: -5 to +5 stops
woman and child
Ronith and Nilima | May 2021 | Minolta XD-11 | MD ROKKOR-X 45mm F2 | Kodak Vision3 250D
Shaan | May 2021 | Minolta XD-11 | MD ROKKOR-X 45mm F2 | Kodak Vision3 250D
Rocky Hill Inn Gastro Pub
Rocky Hill Inn Gastro Pub | May 2021 | Minolta XD-11 | MD ROKKOR-X 45mm F2 | Kodak Vision3 250D
Red Doors, Rocky Hill
Red Doors, Rocky Hill | May 2021 | Minolta XD-11 | MD ROKKOR-X 45mm F2 | Kodak Vision3 250D
Front Porch, Rocky Hill
Front Porch, Rocky Hill | May 2021 | Minolta XD-11 | MD ROKKOR-X 45mm F2 | Kodak Vision3 250D
Source Farmhouse Brewing
Source Farmhouse Brewing | May 2021 | Minolta XD-11 | MD ROKKOR-X 45mm F2 | Kodak Vision3 250D

The High Line and Hudson Yards Vessel and Baldpate Mountain Hiking Trail

Tuesday

Here it is just the second day of the workweek, and I am already thinking about Friday. When I first started working in information security, I got out of bed excited and ready to work. I used to describe myself as one of the defenders of the realm, building walls and moats and shields, to keep the attackers from defeating the castle and pillage the people. I card. What is it about work in the present that I no longer enjoy?


cat in basket
Tuesday 8 June, 2021 | FujiFilm X-T2 | 16-55 mm f/2.8 @ 55 mm | 1105 sec at f/5.6 | ISO 400

Did you know cats start self-grooming by the time they're a few weeks old? Self-grooming rids the fur of dirt and parasites and stimulates their sebaceous glands to release sebum, a type of cat disinfectant shampoo.

cat in basket
Tuesday 8 June, 2021 | FujiFilm X-T2 | 16-55 mm f/2.8 @ 55 mm | 1100 sec at f/5.6 | ISO 400
cat in basket
Tuesday 8 June, 2021 | FujiFilm X-T2 | 16-55 mm f/2.8 @ 55 mm | 1100 sec at f/4.0 | ISO 400

I agree with Bruce Schneier, our military systems are vulnerable.

Any 21st century war will include cyber operations. Weapons and support systems will be successfully attacked. Rifles and pistols won't work properly. Drones will be hijacked midair. Boats won't sail, or will be misdirected. Hospitals won't function. Equipment and supplies will arrive late or not at all.


This week's update to Adobe Lightroom Classic included performance enhancements and an interesting "Super Resolution" feature.

Screen shot of Welcome to Lightroom Classic
Welcome to Lightroom Classic

The new Super Resolution feature uses artificial intelligence to increase the size of the image to four times its original size in pixels. (It doubles the length and the width.) This can be useful for making large prints or for upsizing a small crop of an image. Super Resolution will work on any file type (raw, JPEG, TIFF, etc.). However, Raw Details must be run with Super Resolution if the image is a camera-proprietary raw file (not a DNG, JPEG, TIFF, etc.) like RAF.

Screenshot of Lightroom Classic Enhance Preview
Lightroom Classic Enhance Preview

I tried it on one of my Fuji X-T2 RAF images to get an idea of how it worked. "Enhance" replaced the 30MB Fujifilm RAF with a 339MB Adobe DNG file! I suggest using this feature only when ready to make prints. I recommend performing the procedure on a virtual copy of the original RAW file.

There are seven new premium preset sets available in Lightroom Classic and the entire Lightroom ecosystem. Adobe hired photo editing and preset-creation experts to create them. The first three, Portraits, are categorised by skin type – Deep1, Medium, and Light. The other four, Style, include Cinematic, Futuristic, Vintage, and Travel preset sets.

Adobe Lightroom will now store preset files on your hard drive in a flat-file structure rather than subfolders corresponding to preset groups. This change did not affect the configuration of previously stored presets.

On macOS, this location is in the users home directory: ~/Library/Application Support/Adobe/CameraRaw/Settings


There are many new and improved privacy and security features in future releases of macOS, iOS, and iPad OS. My favourites so far?

Users have long worried about Siri recordings being uploaded to Apple, and listened to by teams trying to improve the Siri experience. In the future, Siri requests will be processed on your devices, so you won't have to worry about unwanted recordings being stored by Apple. This also means that you can make Siri requests without internet access.

It's spooky how sometimes the Alex agent in my eero thermostat randomly starts responding presumably to something overhead in household conversation or on the TV.

Thursday

The High Line
The High Line | Saturday 6 October, 2012 | Nikon D40 | 35 mm f/1.8 | 1200 sec at f/8.0 | ISO 1600

I'm excited about the weekend. Last Spring, I registered for a few workshops and courses with the Princeton Photo Workshop company. The owners, Alan Kesselhaut and Barbara Cuneo, are lovely people. Over the last decade, I have attended dozens of their workshops and course. Unfortunately, the planned workshops into New York City and Philadelphia were postponed during the pandemic under "shelter-in-place" executive orders from New York, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania governors. But now that New Jersey has reached its goal of 70% of residents being immunised, the workshops and field trips are back on the calendar. I will be joining a small group of photographers in Manhattan to photograph the are in an around The High Line and Hudson Yards Vessel. My first visit to the The High Line was over 9 years ago few times, but this will be my first visit to Hudson Yards and The Hudson Yard Vessel.


macOS screenshot of console app
Ubuntu 20.04.2 LTS and Apache/2.4.48

I wanted to enable TLS 1.3 on my webserver, which became available starting with Apache 2.4.37 which was available at Digital Ocean starting with Ubuntu 20 TLS. Although I know how to compile Apache from source code, I took the safer, faster and easier route.

Tonight I upgraded my Digital Ocean VPC to Ubuntu 20 LTS from Ubuntu 18 LTS. Just in case things went sideways, I turned it off and then made a snapshot of my VPC before following the tutorial. The entire process, including creating the snapshot, took about sixty minutes. Everything appears to be working, but I will keep the snapshot for a few more days, just in case.


Friday

I upgraded my Ubuntu Linux server and Apache web server last night so that I could enable TLS v1.3, but for some reason, the server was still only using TLS v1.2. I knew I had my ssl.conf file configured correctly.

screen shot of ssl.conf
ssl.conf

It was only after many hours on Google that I realised that Let's Encrypt includes its own Apache configuration file, options-ssl-apache.conf, where SSL Prototocls are defined. The Let's Encrypt configuration file was overriding the SSLProtocol and SSLCipherSuite settings in my main ssl.conf.

options-ssl-apache.conf
options-ssl-apache.conf

I copied the settings from ssl.conf to the options-ssl-apache.conf and restarted the server. My web server now uses TLS 1.3.


Saturday

Jim Grey recently posted about his experiences returning to working from a corporate office post-vaccination.

I worked in the office on Tuesday. The company opened its office on Monday, allowing anyone vaccinated to work unmasked. I had to provide a scan of my vaccination card. I understand how some people might find this to be too invasive, but in this instance I didn’t at all mind sending in my scan.
...
Sure enough, working in the office on Tuesday left me spent. It had been a long time since I’d dealt with rush-hour traffic, and that spent a whole energy card by itself. It didn’t used to, probably by sheer daily repetition. But after a 15-month hiatus, I had lost my chops, I guess.
...
Of course, I did all the things you do when you work for the first time in a new office: set up my desk, figure out how to work the coffee machine, and find the restrooms. But I also took all of my meetings over Zoom just as I did the day before working at home, as nobody I met with was in the office that day. So I had Zoom fatigue on top of everything-is-new fatigue.

Bhavna and I had only been indoors with the public for the first time last week. One brewery was entirely indoors, but we kept our distance from people. The other was a farmhouse brewery where both sides of the farmhouse were open, allowing for a good breeze to blow through. Again, we kept our distance from people. We won't dine indoors in public for a while. Baby steps.

My employer (I consult) has not requested a return to the office as yet. I'm unsure what's planned for our team. Our associate director is in Boston. One team member is in Brooklyn (New York), one in Atlanta, one in Dallas, one in Virginia, and I'm in New Jersey. We host all our meetings over Microsoft Teams. There is no good reason to be at a company location only to host all our meetings over Microsoft Teams.

Before the pandemic, I consulted for a UK based bank with IT teams across London, Hong Kong, New York City, New Jersey offices. We hosted all of our meetings over WebEx, which I attended from my desk (each workspace had a VDI and phone with a headset). The two-hour commute to Manhattan each day just felt stupid. Our boss agreed and allowed us to work remotely two days a week. Commuting those three remaining days still felt stupid.

I think the whole "back to the office" thing is dumb. I can work remotely for the rest of my life. Before the pandemic, when I worked remotely (two days a week), I would meet friends and family for lunch or dinner or a pint at the bar. Except for losing out on meeting with friends and family, switching from two days a week to full time remote during the pandemic was the easiest thing to do. I don't need to be with my co-workers to have friends. I want to continue working remotely, but now I can have lunch/dinner/beer with vaccinated friends.

There is a billing being debated in the state senate that would ban the use of vaccine passports and bar any public or private entity — schools, businesses, beaches, doctors — from asking about or for someone's vaccination status. Politics aside, I think it's too invasive and unenforceable and discriminatory. What if I lose the vaccination card? A person can't use vaccine passports apps such as New York's "Excelsior Pass" if they don't have a (compatible) smartphone.

No employer has ever asked me to prove vaccination from the flu or any other infectious diseases. In the past, they allowed OBVIOUSLY sick people to come to the office during flu season. My wife's cousin was fully vaccinated months ago. He travelled to Florida. When he returned, he decided to get tested for COVID and of course, he tested positive. He was asymptomatic. But of course, his vaccine passport still allows him into the office. So the situation with COVID is no different than with the flu.

I'm taking the train from Princeton Junction (NJ) to Manhattan tonight for a photo field trip around The High Line and the Vessel at Hudson Yards. I have to wear a face mask but will not be required to show proof of COVID vaccination. When those 6 million daily commuters start using the overcrowded New York and New Jersey train system this July, none of them will either.

The "proof of vaccination" request is "security theatre."


Rollei RPX 100 and Svema Foto 200

This afternoon I got a notification from The Darkroom that my rolls of Rollei RPX 100 and Svema Foto 200 35mm film had been processed and scanned.

Alphonso Mango
Alphonso Mango | January 2021 | Minolta XD-11 | MD ROKKOR-X 45mm F2 | Rollei RPX 100

The 36 exposure roll of Rollei RPX 100 was exposed between January 2021 and February 2021. The subject matter is uninteresting. This was my first time shooting a roll of Rollei RPX 100. The images are shown above and below are among the best frames from the roll and my two favourites. The remaining frames were either badly exposed, or the subject matter was uninteresting.

man facing camera through a window
"RV" | January 2021 | Minolta XD-11 | MD ROKKOR-X 45mm F2 | Rollei RPX 100

The Rollei RPX 100 Rollei RPX 100 scans do not appear to have a lot of contrast, but I love how the whites are rendered.

kitchen
March 2021 | Minolta XD-11 | MD ROKKOR-X 45mm F2 | Svema Foto 200

The 24 exposure roll of Svema Foto 200 was exposed between March and April 2021. Unfortunately, I forgot the roll was still in the camera. A few weeks ago, when I opened the back of my Minolta XD-11 to load a roll of Vision 250D, I exposed the roll. Ugh! There were far fewer keepers than with the registration of Rollei RPX 100.

Fujifilm X-T2
MD Rokkor-X 45mm F2 adapted to Fuji X-T2 | March 2021 | Minolta XD-11 | MD ROKKOR-X 45mm F2 | Svema Foto 200

The Svema Foto 200 appears to have more contrast than the Rollei RPX 100.


The High Line

This afternoon I travelled into New York City for a photograph field trip with instructor Josh Weiss at The High Line and Hudson Yards Vessel. What I like about the instructors of the Princeton Photograph Workshop is how excited they are about helping students. Josh met the group near The High Line on the sidewalk outside the Mercado Little Spain restaurant.

Josh Weiss
Josh Weiss | Saturday 12 June, 2021 | FujiFilm X-T2 | XF16-55mmF2.8 R LM WR @ 16 mm | 180 sec at f/5.6 | ISO 1600

We started on 30th Street between 10th and 11th Avenue. Josh provided passes to the High Line, and gave the group assignments and told us where and when to meet. The High Line was more crowded than I expected. Face masks were required to enter the High Line, but some of the people I saw were walking without masks. We walked from 30th Street to 16th Street before turning around and walking back toward 30th Street, continuing onto Hudson Boulevard to the Vessel.

Mercado Little Spain
Mercado Little Spain | Saturday 12 June, 2021 | FujiFilm X-T2 | XF16-55mmF2.8 R LM WR @ 33.2 mm | 180 sec at f/5.6 | ISO 800

For this field trip, I chose to use Jamie Chance's Urban Chrome film simulation recipe, which is based on Fujifilm's Classic Chrome JPEG film simulation. Jamie uses this film simulation recipe for most of his travel photography. Film Simulations are part of what makes X Series cameras special. Film Simulations can mimic the colour, tones and contrasts of well known analogue films. I can access them through my Fujifilm X-T2's main menu system. I can see the effect of the currently selected Film Simulation in real-time through the camera’s viewfinder or rear LCD screen. I loved the look of Urban Chrome which I think mimics the ambience of documentary-style magazine photography from decades past. It has slightly desaturated colours (especially reds and greens) with more shadow contrast, resulting in a vintage subdued look that works well with dramatic lighting and retro-style subjects, as well as reportage projects.

As usual, I corrected for my horizontal "tilt" in Adobe Lightroom and cropped the images as needed.

Saturday 12 June, 2021 | FujiFilm X-T2 | XF16-55mmF2.8 R LM WR @ 30.2 mm | 1600 sec at f/5.6 | ISO 400
Saturday 12 June, 2021 | FujiFilm X-T2 | XF16-55mmF2.8 R LM WR @ 23.4 mm | 1170 sec at f/5.6 | ISO 400
Saturday 12 June, 2021 | FujiFilm X-T2 | XF16-55mmF2.8 R LM WR @ 55 mm | 1250 sec at f/5.6 | ISO 400
Saturday 12 June, 2021 | FujiFilm X-T2 | XF16-55mmF2.8 R LM WR @ 33.2 mm | 1140 sec at f/5.6 | ISO 400
Saturday 12 June, 2021 | FujiFilm X-T2 | XF16-55mmF2.8 R LM WR @ 35.3 mm | 180 sec at f/5.6 | ISO 800
Saturday 12 June, 2021 | FujiFilm X-T2 | XF16-55mmF2.8 R LM WR @ 53.3 mm | 1180 sec at f/5.6 | ISO 400
Saturday 12 June, 2021 | FujiFilm X-T2 | XF16-55mmF2.8 R LM WR @ 55 mm | 180 sec at f/5.6 | ISO 1250

The Vessel at Hudson Yards

This was my first visit to the Vessel, and I was overwhelmed. Josh had arranged ticket entry, and we were allowed in a group. We set a time and a location to meet and then split up to pursue whatever object we desired.

There was a lot of climbing, and as the sunset, we all seemed to find a spot to practice shooting silhouettes. Then we back down to the Backyard at Hudson Yards, where we photographed some of the food trucks while treating ourselves to soft-serve ice cream. It was an exhausting but fun field trip.

Saturday 12 June, 2021 | FujiFilm X-T2 | XF16-55mmF2.8 R LM WR @ 16 mm | 180 sec at f/5.6 | ISO 500
Saturday 12 June, 2021 | FujiFilm X-T2 | XF16-55mmF2.8 R LM WR @ 16 mm | 1400 sec at f/5.6 | ISO 400
Saturday 12 June, 2021 | FujiFilm X-T2 | XF16-55mmF2.8 R LM WR @ 55 mm | 180 sec at f/8.0 | ISO 1600
Saturday 12 June, 2021 | FujiFilm X-T2 | XF16-55mmF2.8 R LM WR @ 38.8 mm | 180 sec at f/8.0 | ISO 500
Saturday 12 June, 2021 | FujiFilm X-T2 | XF16-55mmF2.8 R LM WR @ 20.6 mm | 1170 sec at f/5.6 | ISO 400
Saturday 12 June, 2021 | FujiFilm X-T2 | XF16-55mmF2.8 R LM WR @ 16 mm | 1170 sec at f/16 | ISO 400
Saturday 12 June, 2021 | FujiFilm X-T2 | XF16-55mmF2.8 R LM WR @ 55 mm | 1400 sec at f/5.6 | ISO 400

This week's Lens-Artists Challenge #152 challenge is Shades and Shadows. Fortunately, today's field trip provided ample opportunity to find appropriate subjects.


Sunday

I think I overbooked my weekend. Last night's outing in New York City left me tired but I got up this morning excited about the group hike I was doing along the Ted Stiles Preserve in Baldpate Mountain. The hike was organised by the Friends of Hopewell Vally Open Space. Bhavna reluctantly agreed to come along.

We did not know what to expect. Apple Maps got confused and routed out to the wrong entrance to the preserve. I switched to Google Maps and we arrived just as the group was walking enter the trailhead. We introduced ourselves to Romy, the hike leader and the rest of the hikers. The trail led straight up along a rock-lined trail.

From what I gathered Romy and other hikers, the area was originally settled farmland before being given over to nature. We came to a pond with an abandoned shed where our group stopped for nature meditation, listening to the birds, frogs and of course the cicadas. Oddly, the sound of the cicadas was less prominent in the preserve than in my backyard.

As we hoked along the trail some members of the group dropped off returning on one of the inner loops. The rest of us continued up to the summit where we stopped for a rest and conversation. Then we headed back down the loop toward our cars.

Bhavna came home, showered and passed out in bed. I am too exhausted to properly document the rest of the day.

Sunday 13 June, 2021 | FujiFilm X-T2 | XF16-55mmF2.8 R LM WR @ 36.5 mm | 1180 sec at f/4.5 | ISO 400
Sunday 13 June, 2021 | FujiFilm X-T2 | XF16-55mmF2.8 R LM WR @ 35.3 mm | 1125 sec at f/8.0 | ISO 400
Sunday 13 June, 2021 | FujiFilm X-T2 | XF16-55mmF2.8 R LM WR @ 19.4 mm | 1200 sec at f/8.0 | ISO 400
Sunday 13 June, 2021 | FujiFilm X-T2 | XF16-55mmF2.8 R LM WR @ 16 mm | 1125 sec at f/8.0 | ISO 400
Sunday 13 June, 2021 | FujiFilm X-T2 | XF16-55mmF2.8 R LM WR @ 16 mm | 180 sec at f/8.0 | ISO 6400
Sunday 13 June, 2021 | FujiFilm X-T2 | XF16-55mmF2.8 R LM WR @ 16 mm | 1400 sec at f/8.0 | ISO 400
The Hiking Group | Sunday 13 June, 2021 | FujiFilm X-T2 | XF16-55mmF2.8 R LM WR @ 16 mm | 1340 sec at f/8.0 | ISO 400
Sunday 13 June, 2021 | FujiFilm X-T2 | XF16-55mmF2.8 R LM WR @ 55 mm | 1/1000 sec at f/4.0 | ISO 400

  1. I have never heard a skin type described as Deep.