Postcards?

Sunday, August 1, 2021

I discovered a new iPhone photography app called FIMO via the CameraGoCamera blog. FIMO is a vintage camera app that allows users to add retro filters to their pictures. FIMO tries to simulate the look of analogue film stock, including famous classics such as Kodachrome 64, Portra 160NC and Tri-X. Many apps mimic the look of analogue film stock, but FIMO has a few unique features.

The FIMO film simulations add scratches, dust, frame shakes, and other old defects one might find on an old film print. What's unique is how it simulates the process of loading and unloading a roll of film. There's a cool animation when you open the film door to swap out film rolls. Some of the films are free to, but others require an in-app purchase after shooting three frames. Rolls of film sell for about $0.99, although some rolls sell for $1.99.


I don't have any postcards to share. I was never into postcards. . I don't think it's a good idea to write personal thoughts on the back of a generic photograph that anyone in the post office can read. If someone were to send me a postcard (and no one I know send postcards to anyone), I would most likely look at it briefly before tossing it in the trash.

Bhavna wife thinks this is a negative way to look at postcards. She thinks postcards are a way of saying, "I'm in this lovely place and I thought of you". I don't see it this way. In any case, she neither sends nor keeps photographs either.

So for the challenge, I will share a single photograph that I think one might find on a postcard. This photograph has no meaning to me. I have to wonder why I even have it.


Saturday, August 7, 2021

I have also tried many film simulation recipes from Ritchie Roesch and Jamie Chance to create in-camera JPEGs. But recently, I have been skipping the JPEGs altogether as I prefer to work on the RAW image files. I may apply a film preset or profile in Adobe Lightroom, tweak the sliders to my liking or pull the image into Luminar AI. I am usually happier with the result.

Back Catalogue

Back Catalogue. What is old becomes anew!

Frank chose the phrase "back catalogue"1 for the weekly photo challenge. Frank, thank you for this!! Until my eye-sight returns to normal, I can’t drive, which means my photographic opportunities are limited to my home or to wherever I can safely walk. I submitted nothing for the last two challenges. My Adobe Lightroom Classic catalogue has two decades worth of digital photographs. I was sure I could find a picture to share “as is” or to re-interpret. The challenge with this challenge was deciding how far back in the catalogue to go, what to choose, and why?

After thirty minutes of skimming my catalogue, I chose this image of the Statue of Liberty from 15th August 2012. Bhavna, the kids and I took a day off in the middle of the week to visit Ellis Island. We had hoped to avoid the tourist crowds. We need not have feared, though, as it started to drizzle when we got to Liberty State Park, New Jersey. We were undeterred and toured Ellis Island, enjoying the indoor exhibits. We thought that maybe the rain would let up by the time we finished touring the facility so that we could visit the Statue of Liberty on Liberty Island, New Jersey.

But as we excited, it was still raining, and since none of us wanted to walk around in the rain, we waited for the return ferry to Liberty State Park. As our boat crossed the water, the sun attempted to force itself through the rain clouds. I pulled out my Nikon D40 and snapped this shot.

I used Google Colour EFX Pro to add some "grunge".

22 June 2013 – Grand Central Terminal: 100 Years of a New York Landmark – Nikon D5100 + 18-55 mm f/3.5-5.6 @ 18 mm @ 18mm, 20s at f/16, ISO 100 – DxO Silver Efex Pro 2

The second image is from a June 2013 field trip to Grand Central Terminal on Park Avenue at 42nd Street in Midtown Manhattan, New York. My friend and instructor, the Princeton based photographer Alan Kesselhaut , organised the field trip, obtaining tripod permits for the well-trodden Main Concourse so that we would not be chased away by transit police. At the time of our visit, Grand Central Terminal was celebrating 100 years of continuous operation, making this field trip significant. The window was darkened in certain spots to create the number "100".

Interesting side note, there is an Apple Store in the space at the top of the staircase just below the large window.

The image was originally a colour HDR photography. For this version of the picture, I applied one of the B&W presets from DxO Silver Efex Pro 2.

24 May 2013 – John Haines Hall, Princeton University – Nikon D5100 + 18-55 mm f/3.5-5.6 @ 32 mm @ f/4.8, ISO 100

The third image is from the Spring of 2013. I was recently released from my employer of ten years and was a week away from starting as a consultant for a client in Trenton. I was bored at home, so I grabbed my camera and tripod and took a drive into Princeton on what was a fresh, crisp sunny day. I walked around Princeton University noticing that most of the co-eds had gone home for the summer break, but the campus still had some signs of life. It was late Spring, and many of the trees on campus were green with fresh young leaves. The ivy was crawling everywhere. The trees and the Ivy and the bicycles in front of John Haines Hall were full of bright colour.

I took several shots and combine then in Photomatix Pro for an HDR effect. I may have pushed things a bit too far with the saturation and vibrancy settings. I'm not sure what happened, but I can't find the original images from which I made the HDR.


  1. I have corrected Frank's spelling of the word catalogue. 

Happy Birthday America

First come rights, and then comes government.

I admit that I have no read the Constitution of the United States of America. It's something I wish to correct.

I am not a natural born US citizen. Decades ago, right around the time, I was college age, my grand-father obtained resident alien status for his children and his grandchildren.

I was able to immigrate to the USA for college to study physics and electrical engineering. Upon graduation, and before I went off to graduate school, I applied for US citizenship. I became a naturalised US citizen in 1993. I was so happy and so excited to proudly and loudly say, "I am an American!".

When I sing or hear the US national anthem or recite the pledge of allegiance, I can't help but be moved by promise embedded in the words.

I had looked upon the United States of American as the land where I could be free; an inviting place, where anyone could work hard and achieve their dreams. I hope it still is.

More about this image at the link.