Ritchie Roesch recently announced his Film Simulation Challenge, which requires that the photographer load her camera with one film simulation recipe, capturing either 24 or 36 frames before changing settings. The photographer is forced to shoot with that one “roll” of the film until that roll is completely exposed. Ritchie’s post from today reminded me that I had not yet submitted an entry.

My first roll for the challenge I used a roll of Kodachrome II while walking around the main street in Hightstown. But this time, I used a modified version of Ritchie’s Fujifilm X-T30 Velvia Film Simulation Recipe. The Fujifilm X-T2 lacks the Color Chrome Effect setting that is available on the Fujifilm X-T3/X-T30. All of the images in this post are straight out of the camera. I love how the colours of the flowers and the fruit “pop.” Next year, I’ll make a note to use this recipe to shoot the early spring foliage and flowers with an additional mental not to use it this fall for foliage.

I captured some photographs at the Montgomery Farmers’ Market then drove to Hollow Road, where I parked my car and walked down to the rock bed of the Rock Brook. As usual, the sound of the water rushing over the rocks and the wind blowing in the trees set me at ease. I was relaxed, noticing how green everything was and the lack of flowers. The occasional bright yellow butterfly floated by on the wind, too quick to photograph. I followed their flight through the trees into the distance.

The silence was broken by the sound of my iPhone, a call from my sister-in-law, inquiring how my wife was feeling after her surgery yesterday. We chatted and made plans to take my nephews out for a wander in the woods to my photographic hideouts. On my way home, I stopped in at Hobler Park. I captured some images of art installation and the yarrow flowers, the only thing in bloom at this point in the high heat and humidity of August.

Here are the keepers from my roll of 24. I used a 10 stop neutral density filter to capture the images of the water on the Rock Brook.

Frame 5, Tomatoes, Montgomery Friends Farmers’ Market, Skillman —FujiFilm X-T2 + XF16-55mmF2.8 R LM WR @ (55 mm, 0.003 sec at f/3.6, ISO200), © Khürt L. Williams
Frame 6, Rock Brook, Hollow Road, Skillman, Montgomery Township —FujiFilm X-T2 + XF16-55mmF2.8 R LM WR @ (16 mm, 8.500 sec at f/8.0, ISO200), © Khürt L. Williams
Frame 8, Rock Brook, Hollow Road, Skillman, Montgomery Township —FujiFilm X-T2 + XF16-55mmF2.8 R LM WR @ (16 mm, 0.017 sec at f/8.0, ISO200), © Khürt L. Williams
Frame 11, Rock Brook, Hollow Road, Skillman, Montgomery Township —FujiFilm X-T2 + XF16-55mmF2.8 R LM WR @ (27.4 mm, 8.500 sec at f/8.0, ISO200), © Khürt L. Williams
Frame 12, Rock Brook, Hollow Road, Skillman, Montgomery Township —FujiFilm X-T2 + XF16-55mmF2.8 R LM WR @ (55 mm, 13.000 sec at f/8.0, ISO200), © Khürt L. Williams
Frame 14, Rock Brook, Hollow Road, Skillman, Montgomery Township —FujiFilm X-T2 + XF16-55mmF2.8 R LM WR @ (55 mm, 0.018 sec at f/8.0, ISO200), © Khürt L. Williams
Frame 19, Rock Brook, Hollow Road, Skillman, Montgomery Township —FujiFilm X-T2 + XF16-55mmF2.8 R LM WR @ (55 mm, 0.000 sec at f/8.0, ISO8000), © Khürt L. Williams
Frame 22, Hollow Road, Skillman, Montgomery Township —FujiFilm X-T2 + XF16-55mmF2.8 R LM WR @ (37.6 mm, 0.000 sec at f/8.0, ISO8000), © Khürt L. Williams
Frame 20, Hollow Road, Skillman, Montgomery Township —FujiFilm X-T2 + XF16-55mmF2.8 R LM WR @ (29.2 mm, 0.000 sec at f/8.0, ISO8000), © Khürt L. Williams
Frame 23, Hollow Road, Skillman, Montgomery Township —FujiFilm X-T2 + XF16-55mmF2.8 R LM WR @ (37.6 mm, 0.000 sec at f/8.0, ISO8000), © Khürt L. Williams
Frame 31, Hobler Park, Great Road,, Skillman, Montgomery Township —FujiFilm X-T2 + XF16-55mmF2.8 R LM WR @ (55 mm, 0.000 sec at f/2.8, ISO200), © Khürt L. Williams

I was clearing out my email when I stopped to read one from the Sourland Conservancy. I learned that a new member of their staff, Carolyn Klaube, had a website detailing her hikes along the Sourland Mountain range trails. Carolyn has been hiking the trails – alone or with assistance from her two young boys – through the seasons, photographing items of interest, and sharing random facts and links to learn more.

Tarzia Drift Open Space Preserve —Canon EOS 5D Mark III +EF24-70mm f/4L IS USM @ 41 mmf/4.0 ISO 100—CC BY-NC-SA

Carolyn wrote about her discovery of a new mini-park, Zion Crossing, along Hollow Road on the border with Skillman and Hillsborough. Carolyn’s blog is called, Sourland Niche and I spent almost an hour reading it before I came upon the post that prompted this blog post.

Tarzia Drift Open Space Preserve —Canon EOS 5D Mark III +EF24-70mm f/4L IS USM @ 24 mmf/16 ISO 2500—CC BY-NC-SA

According to the Montgomery Township website:

This land is located directly adjacent to 300 acres of other Montgomery, Hillsborough and Somerset County-owned open space. These new acquisitions will further expand the Township’s “Rock Brook Greenway” project area. Rock Brook, with headwaters in the Sourlands, is Montgomery’s highest quality stream and trout-stocked waters. By preserving these properties, and others in the Sourlands, the Township is protecting water quality and securing contiguous forest canopy. When woodland is cleared for development, a “hole” in the tree canopy is created. Many susceptible species, particularly birds which migrate through the Sourlands, require a certain area of contiguous forest to successfully forage, breed and nest.

Tarzia Drift Open Space Preserve —Canon EOS 5D Mark III +EF24-70mm f/4L IS USM @ 70 mmf/16 ISO 100—CC BY-NC-SA

I was excited to visit Zion Crossing. The day before reading Carolyn’s post, Bhavna and I had visited my favourite spot along Hollow Road. A small patch of gravel on the northern side of the road allows access to a clearing in the trees and a path leads down to the Rock Brook. I told Bhavna about Carolyn’s post and the new park and we agreed to find it the next weekend.

Tarzia Drift Open Space Preserve —Canon EOS 5D Mark III +EF24-70mm f/4L IS USM @ 42 mmf/22 ISO 100—CC BY-NC-SA

It was easy to find. Carolyn provided a Google Map link to the location. We almost drove past the entrance. There is a very small sign to the unpaved roadway to the parking area.

Getting out of the car we could immediately hear running water. A trail leads down from the parking area to the Rock Brook. We saw a picnic table with an umbrella. I made a mental note to come back with a picnic basket when the weather is cooler.

Tarzia Drift Open Space Preserve —Canon EOS 5D Mark III +EF24-70mm f/4L IS USM @ 42 mmf/22 ISO 50—CC BY-NC-SA

Bhavna walked down to the water the area while I looked around taking in the scene and thinking through what photographs I might capture. I set up high on the bank just above the rocks but struggled with the camera settings. I eventually gave up and walked down to where Bhavana was. We could see a small waterfall pouring into a rocky beach. I set up there.

Tarzia Drift Open Space Preserve —Canon EOS 5D Mark III +EF24-70mm f/4L IS USM @ 24 mmf/22 ISO 50—CC BY-NC-SA

I spent most of my time listening to the water, the wind in the leaves, and taking photos. I head Bhavna exclaim in joy at seeing fish in the water. She sat on a rock and waited for me to finish taking my photos. I watched her relaxing.

Tarzia Drift Open Space Preserve —Canon EOS 5D Mark III +EF24-70mm f/4L IS USM @ 50 mmf/22 ISO 50—CC BY-NC-SA
Tarzia Drift Open Space Preserve —Canon EOS 5D Mark III +EF24-70mm f/4L IS USM @ 24 mmf/22 ISO 50—CC BY-NC-SA
Tarzia Drift Open Space Preserve —Canon EOS 5D Mark III +EF24-70mm f/4L IS USM @ 24 mmf/22 ISO 50—CC BY-NC-SA

Tuesday Photo Challenge – Play by jansenphotojansenphoto (Dutch goes the Photo!)

Your challenge is to use the theme of Play in any way that you see fit! As it can be a verb or a noun, be on the stage or in the backyard, there’s plenty of playroom with the theme!

On Saturday I was supposed to participate take a field trip to lower Manhattan. I feel like a broken record but my Nikon broke over the winter and a friend loaned me her father’s Canon camera and 70-200mm lens. It’s a good camera and lens but not ideal for cityscape photography. For that, I needed a wider lens. I rented a Canon 24-70mm f/4L IS. I was excited for the opportunity to capture some city scenes that I had on my list and play around with night time photography.

The Rock Brook —Canon EOS 5D Mark III +EF24-70mm f/4L IS USM @ 24 mmf/22 ISO 100—CC BY-NC-SA

The Rock Brook —Canon EOS 5D Mark III +EF24-70mm f/4L IS USM @ 24 mmf/22 ISO 100—CC BY-NC-SA

Unfortunately, the weather turned sour and the field trip was postponed to next weekend. I tried to make the best of it but it rained on Saturday morning. The rain stopped later in the afternoon for a few hours. My wife saw my disappointment and encouraged me to go out to one of my favourite spots along the Rock Brook. I’ve visited and photographed this location multiple times. I thought it might be boring but I do enjoy walking along the rocks and listening to the wind in the trees.

However, when we arrived the water level was extremely low. I guess we’ve had very little rainfall this summer but I hadn’t noticed. There was very little water flowing but I was able to access areas of the Rock Brook that I had never accessed before.

The Rock Brook —Canon EOS 5D Mark III +EF24-70mm f/4L IS USM @ 45 mmf/22 ISO 100—CC BY-NC-SA
Water flowing —Canon EOS 5D Mark III +EF24-70mm f/4L IS USM @ 24 mmf/22 ISO 100—CC BY-NC-SA
Water flowing —Canon EOS 5D Mark III +EF24-70mm f/4L IS USM @ 70 mmf/22 ISO 100—CC BY-NC-SA

Bhavna encouraged me to play around with what I had. I moved around setting up the tripod in different locations. Unfortunately, I am not familiar with the Canon menus and struggled to get the camera set up for long exposure photography. I played around on various menus trying to get the camera to do what I wanted.

Unlike my broken baby Nikon DSLR, the Canon EOS 5D Mark III has no flip screen. I think a flip screen is something that is a must for landscape photography. Well …. maybe not a must. But it definitely makes things easier when the camera is mounted low on the tripod. To get the compositions I wanted I had to contort my body to see down to the level of the viewfinder.

Looking south from the Rock Brook —Canon EOS 5D Mark III +EF24-70mm f/4L IS USM @ 24 mmf/22 ISO 100—CC BY-NC-SA
The Woods —Canon EOS 5D Mark III +EF24-70mm f/4L IS USM @ 24 mmf/22 ISO 100—CC BY-NC-SA
The Rock Brook —Canon EOS 5D Mark III +EF24-70mm f/4L IS USM @ 26 mmf/22 ISO 100—CC BY-NC-SA
Bhavna is ready to go —Canon EOS 5D Mark III +EF24-70mm f/4L IS USM @ 70 mmf/4.0 ISO 1600—CC BY-NC-SA

I didn’t get much time at the Rock Brook. About thirty minutes after we arrived, Bhavna felt rains drops and gave me a verbal warning. I snapped a few more shots and we returned to the car just as a light drizzle started.