Vertorama

Is "vertorama" a photography term, or simply something that people use to describe a vertical panorama? In other words, is every wide-angle horizontal image a panorama and every wide-angle vertical image a vertorama, and are they mutually exclusive?

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Showing part of an image before the whole can be seen is something designers often use to attract their product. I decided to do something likewise with my vertorama. 

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First showing the above before the beyond. 

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Just before pushing the button to create my image in a different form factor. 

the above

the above

the beyond

the beyond

the vertorama

the vertorama

Pillow Fight

 

Pillow fight commonly played by children engaging in mock battle, using pillows as weapons is as well a kind of flash mob event around the world. It's happening as well in Hong Kong. Now for the fourth time in a row. And despite the rainy weather all week it was perfect weather today. 

This years organised pillow fight happened at Chater Garden in Central district and is part of the flash mob culture with pillow fight flash mobs popping up in cities around the world.

Up to now the Guinness World Record for the largest pillow fight was set on November 14, 2008, at Butlins in Minehead, England with 3,706 people all fighting at once. The record was broken on October 27, 2013, by the attendees of a Dada Life concert in Chicago, with "maybe four-and-a-half-thousand pillows" and 3,813 participants.

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  waiting for the fight to start

 

waiting for the fight to start


  relaxing before the struggle

 

relaxing before the struggle


 

if you are tired you can sleep anywhere

if you are tired you can sleep anywhere

the fight is on

the fight is on

little bit shy, little bit afraid, but in the middle of the melee

little bit shy, little bit afraid, but in the middle of the melee

hit him, hit him, hit him

hit him, hit him, hit him

chaos reigns

chaos reigns

more to come ....

French Children Photographer

 

Landscape Photographer Ansel Adams is certainly a  photographer to explore but  even more in regard of someone who was massaging the prints as much as it needed to serve his taste. Surely someone who would be a pixel massage master these days. Than there are photographers as Cartier Bresson. There is a great deal of information you can find very easily on the internet of both celebrities. I like to venture out to introduce some of the lesser know but else wise equal image takers from different nations in the beginning of the history of photography as well some of today's  various photographers. Ere

Boubat  born in Paris, studied typography and graphic arts and worked for a printing company before becoming a photographer. He started out as a photographer after the war in 1946 and was awarded the Kodak Prize the following year.

He travelled the world for the French magazine ''Réalités'' and  worked as a freelance photographer as well. His uplifting and easy going images brought him the title of a peace correspondent by some of his friends and admirers.  He is known especially to  be an "Photographer With An Poetic Eye for Children".  

Mr. Boubat traveled widely during a career that lasted almost 50 years, unlike many other photographers of his generation his interest in political events as a photographic subject was very minimal. His rule, ''no bodies, no blood, no war,''  earned him the nickname as peace correspondent.

He was attracted by the beauty of life, wherever he found it. He liked photographing women, animals, trees and nature and especially children.  His use of light gave his work a special quality. Invariably the emotion evoked by his images is tenderness, as in one of his most popular photographs, ''La Petite Fille aux Feuilles Mortes.'' You can find some images on my Pinterest site at: www.pinterest.com/kiribane

There will be an exhibition and more information can be found here:

http://www.edouard-boubat.fr

 

 

Paris and the first snow in the year

Paris and the first snow in the year

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news stand in Paris

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children in Paris

Autochrome - an early attempt to capture the world in color

The Autochrome Lumière is an early color photography process. Patented in 1903 by the Lumière brothers in France and first marketed in 1907, it was the principal color photography process in use before the advent of subtractive color film in the mid-1930s (more at wikipedia)

At about 1909 the French banker and philanthropist Albert Kahn started his ambitious project to create a photographic record in color of, and for, the peoples of the world. He seems to have been an idealist and international interested, Kahn marveled about the just invented new autochrome process, the world's more and first user-friendly, true-colour photographic system, which didn't use hand coloring. His idea had been to promote cross-cultural peace and understanding with virtual means.

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The photos, made with this early auto-chrome cameras, are even today still magnificent and were intended to reflect different cultures, from Ireland to America to China to Japan to the Balkans to Mongolia to France and any other direction and country you might imagine.

His archive consisted of over 72,000 auto-chrome camera color photos and also thousands of feet of black and white moving images.  From everyday Parisian scenes to exotic scenes in asia and Africa his photographers captured scenes around the world that are now more than 100 years old.

Kahn used his vast fortune to send a group of intrepid photographers to more than fifty countries around the world, often at crucial junctures in their history, when age-old cultures were on the brink of being changed for ever by war and the march of twentieth-century globalization. 

His legacy is still kept at the Musée Albert-Kahn at his estate near Paris. It is now considered to be the most important collection of early colour photographs in the world. The museum and BBC produced a series of five films to bring this ode to life and humanity to a wider public. This also marks the effort by the French département of Hauts-de-Seine, owner of the Kahn collections, to preserve and enhance awareness of this exceptional heritage. 

The Musée Albert-Kahn is based at Kahn's former home at 14 rue du Port in Boulogne-Billancourt, a suburb west of Paris. The museum and gardens are open daily between 11 a.m. and 7 p.m. from the beginning of May to the end of September and between 11 a.m. and 6 p.m. for the rest of the year. For contact details and information in English about exhibitions and transport links, visit this website.  And there is some good information to be found here as well.

have a look as well at my Pinterest collection here.

and there is more information about the museum at: http://www.albertkahn.co.uk/about.html

and about the series at BBC books here and at BBC player when it works.

Bodyguard on the loose

Dangerous times ahead - got my own body guard into some training sessions


As you could follow my last events going to abandoned places and taking images as well quite into the dark of the nights and …..


Vietnam is for me still a safe place. There are the usual pickpocket tricks, some burglary and other minor crime. Not too much and not too dangerous for tourist and expatriates living here. Nevertheless sometimes there are even worse things happening and you have to be prepared or at least have someone else being prepared and looking after your safety.

a roundhouse swinger in action


Due to my schedule and as I have the camera mostly at my eye I can’t be prepared all the time. So a good solution is to have a personal bodyguard in case there is something dangerous happening. That thought and said I had this idea for a long time and decided to follow it up. Luckily I got hold of one brutal and capable fighter. To brush up her speed and level of fighting techniques I managed to get her in contact with a local martial art group were she excelled in her basic techniques impressing all of us.


So be aware or I let her loose! Or all others as well.

Mean mean mean



It's FASHION time

blue metal colors

blue metal colors

fun at the setting

fun at the setting

elegant times

elegant times

getting the colors right

getting the colors right

Fashion photography a genre of photography devoted to clothing and other fashion items. It can be an incredibly experimental medium, and sometimes results in innovative concepts. I like to dabble in it at intervals and with different results. All fun and easy going. There are some basic things involved. Model, clothing, location and light.

golden colors

golden colors

If you have a professional model at hand it gets much easier as he/she knows how to pose. Otherwise especially posing can be a tricky point for many photographers. There are a lot of books about it and lately video to give you some good ideas. One thing you can and should do is browsing through the latest magazines to target suggestions about what is currently fashionable and what catches your eye. 

Than there is the matter of location. Getting this right is important, especially if you want to convey a message with your kind of fashion. Think about it in following terms: urban setting , seasons, rural places, meadows, beaches, forests and many more.

 

Apart from all eventualities it comes down to organizing. Getting everyone involved, having a place to shoot, getting the right cloth, the right make up and some little or more bigger props as well.

 

One of the important thoughts should involve a theme or concept which will determine the choices for makeup and location as well as getting the right clothes different light and so on.

 

I wanted to do some fashion shooting all along and thinking about traveling, trains and time to relax I came up with an idea which I didn't follow up as I was asked by a local fashion designer to help her out in getting images for her look book and fashion spreads about the theme  “Fly me to the moon”. This exited me a lot as it involved some great ideas for editorial work as well.

 

She created a mood-board from various magazines, pinterest and fashion sites on the web for inspiration regarding poses and lighting. Wow she was really trying to get some fancy images. As I didn’t have to worry about all other parameters involved it was a no brainer to agree. It is always a pleasure to work with professionals from fashion designer, to make up artist and last but not at all least the great models. It was just fun all the time.

If you find the garments in the images attractive don’t hesitate and walk into the fashion store Double Dose hear in Hanoi at 35 b Nguyen Binh Khiem.  You'll surely will find some special garment made for you.

Time to get ready for more with designer Giang Diễm Quỳnh, make up artist Doan Phuong Thao and model Luu Van Phung.


Interview on VTC 10

Some time ago I was invited by VTC10 a Television Channel in Vietnam to give an interview and talk a little about my endeavor into photography especially here in Vietnam. If you like to see and hear my humble appearance you can have a look here:

 

An interview at the Vietnamese TV Chanel VTC10 of my endeavours as a photographer in Vietnam.

Monster handling

A colleague and friend of mine had the heart to introduce me to a monster which I eventually got hold of due to his generosity. Now I own this screw monster, traditionally known as "Bokeh-Monster" this lens has been produced and built in the former German Democratic Republic (GDR) in different versions. One of them by Meyer-Optik Görlitz known as Orestor 2.8/135 mm. Other versions were produced by Carl Zeiss Jena, Pentacon and Sigma Japan.  Later Pentacon sourced zoom lenses from Cimko and Cosina. 

This is one of the older lenses still build to German standards, as one might expect from such a German lens, it is impressively splendid. You could easily use it as a weapon against any mugger without incurring even the slightest bit of damage upon itself.

When this Praktica lens system was launched it was accompanied by different lenses named Prakticar. They were made by different manufacturers as stated above. After German reunification the Carl Zeiss Jena Prakticar lenses production was closed.  Then the Korean manufacturer Samyang was chosen, by the new owners Schneider Dresden, to supply Pentacon with zoom lenses.

Meyer-Optik Görlitz was one of the companies fully integrated in the VEB Pentacon works. When the Praktica lens line was created the lenses were no longer badged Meyer-Optik, but "Pentacon Prakticar". 

The Pentacon 135 2.8 is a very compact telephoto lens which offered and offers good image quality at a very reasonable price. It was the standard telephoto lens from Pentacon and was at the beginning manufactured extensively in east Germany. 

The early version I got is actually based on the Meyer-Optik Görlitz 135 2.8 Orestor. This version often referred to as “king of bookeh”, "booker monster" and alike. It has a 15 blades diaphragm which can close to f/32. This helps the bookeh and the overall performance. The minimum focusing distance is 150mm. 

I have seen later build models which have been produced with 9 or even 6 blades diaphragm but no wonder that the first generation feels more solid and balanced. Compared to the later model the focus ring is wider and the aperture is set further up the lens. The first generation had in my opinion not been improved later on.

Here some images I took with my Sony. I'm glad this mirror less cameras came as it gives us a wide range of older lenses to use as well. As it is all manual you have instantly to slow down. think more about composing your image and hopefully get some good results.


Womens Day

This weekend has been the yearly event of "Women's Day" and the story of women's struggle for equality and collective efforts is being told of various platforms and events through out the world. There is a dedicated website for the International Women's Day to be found here.

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The celebrations here in Vietnam have been manyfold as well. Apart from all the meaningful and great efforts which are being made their is an effort all men, boyfriends and so on are doing to please their loved one. You could see the invitations to restaurants, treating their woman with food, giving their woman some health and fitness vouchers and so on.

 

Their has been as well a very good executed idea by a local Designer, Ms Quynh at her fashion house at Double Dose at 35b Nguyen Binh Khiem in Hanoi. If you were lucky and got the information you could treat your loved one there for a day with a unique treat.

 

Being instructed about style and make up, getting a professional make up, try the newest and hottest fashion just out of the design shop and getting the event captured as a memory on some photos and the more generously got even a new dress or collection from their loved one. Just a great outstanding idea.

 

Did you miss it? Your own fault. But don't despair. Even if it's a whole year to wait for the next Women's Day, why not just give her a nice present in between. Send her to the store, give her your credit card and in return get a happy woman (and a less burdensome account).

Here a little video treat of the event.

Masters of Photography

Masters of photography

As posted earlier I’m addressing the history of photography and will do so once in a while and just today I was reminded of the early beginnings of photography. I met with a Japanese friend as she showed me some photograms she got from a collection lately. I was reminded of two things. first my own stay in Japan and learning about a Japanese Photographer and of one of the forefathers of photography - William Henry Fox Talbot (1800 - 1877).

Talbot was an English member of parliament, scientist, inventor and one of the pioneers of photography. His findings and inventions of the early 19th century brought me to find out something about Hiroshi Sugimoto when I lived and worked for four years in the Osaka-Kobe area.

Hiroshi Sugimoto (here the link to his website) is an avid collector of old Talbot photograms which he included in an exhibition called Photogenic Drawings. He is not only taking photos but he experiments a lot with different photographic techniques. One of this techniques brought him back to the very beginnings of photography. in his exhibition Photogenic Drawings Sugimoto showed prints of original 19th century negatives made by the former mentioned British pioneer, William Henry Fox Talbot.

Fox Talbot invented the method of producing a positive image from a negative that we use in modern photography. In 1835, he created the earliest known negative using a camera, a "photographic drawing" of a window at his family home of Lacock Abbey.

Back in the beginning of photography Thomas Wedgwood had already made photograms - silhouettes of leaves and other objects - but they faded very fast and couldn’t be made permanent. In 1827, Joseph Nicéphore de Niepce had produced pictures on bitumen, and in January 1839, Louis Daguerre displayed his 'Daguerreotypes' - pictures on silver plates - to the French Academy of Sciences.

A little bit later Fox Talbot reported his 'art of photogenic drawing' to the Royal Society. His process was based on printing on sensitive paper. Fox Talbot realized he could repeat the process of printing from the negative.

Unlike the Daguerreotypes he could repeat the process over and over. He called this the 'calotype' and patented the process in 1841. The following year was rewarded with a medal from the Royal Society for his work.

You can find out more about Fox Talbot at Wikipedia for a start and more about Hiroshi Sugimoto on his website.

 

My humble approach of a calotype photogram

My humble approach of a calotype photogram

History of Photography

 

Victorian Fashion

Victorian Fashion

 

Some friends and members of the Hanoi Photo Club asked me about different techniques in photography and thought they had discovered very new techniques. They were quite astonished to learn, that this had been already done with different gear in the beginning of this art. 

They asked me if I couldn't give them more information and where to get some good sources on the net. 

So I decided to write a little bit about the history of photography, give you once in a while some introduction to photographers who I find inspiring and worthwhile to have a look on. 

I'll not stick to a precise time line but pick what interests me. If you like to have a more historical approach I can recommend a pod/video cast from an American instructor who lately retired. 

From introducing the pioneers of photography starting with the work of Daguerre and Fox Talbot through the history of photography towards contemporary photographers you'll learn a lot. All visuals for each class session are available online at this site:

http://photohistory.jeffcurto.com

The History of Photography podcast is now in video format; a little longer to download, but all the visuals are embedded in the podcast itself!

Have fun!

100 year old cemetery in Germany

100 year old cemetery in Germany

Did you have a bite today?

Today there has been no rain - incredible. I took one of my cameras went out and strolled through Hanoi. I hear some times on the go some podcasts about photography. Today's podcast was talking about Robert Cappa (you can find out mor about him )

I was thinking about two of his quotes at I decided what to shoot today. The first quote coming in in my mind was:

 

The pictures are there, and you just take them.
 

I'm on fire

I'm on fire

OK that's quite a statement and soon I was shooting some contemporary scene in the streets of Hanoi. I took my Sony body with an old wide angle lens and as I had to get close in order to get an appealing image I was reminded on another quote of Mr. Cappa:

around the corner

around the corner


If your pictures aren't good enough, you aren't close enough.

That's mine

That's mine


That in my mind I took a different approach and can add one of my quotes:


If you are not close enough there was no danger for a bite!

I only want to play

I only want to play