Monochrome, Rants and discussions, The East English Fens of East Anglia, Zenza Bronica SQ-A


Under the gate. Always a way through. Don’t make your own obstructions. Bronica SQ-A camera. Zenzanon PS 150mm f/4 lens. Ilford Delta Pro 400 120 film. Developed in FirstCall R09.

I recently read an article written by … lets call him Ken.  Ken classified photographers (amateur, semi pro, and pro all falling into and across his classes).  In Ken’s opinion (he has a lot of opinion), the lowest grade photographers were the technophiles that obsessed about the technology of photography, without hardly ever taking any photos.  The best photographers, in Ken’s opinion, the top class, were the artists, that used creativity, and imagination to capture great images – using any equipment at hand.

I really don’t know what category I’d fall in, nor should I really be concerned.  However, I am increasingly concerned about my lack of creativity.  When I browse through the uploads of my highly valued Flickr friends, I’m often struck by the creativity of some of them.  While I struggle to find a subject to capture – they find it in their everyday life.  How do they do that?  An image should belong to imagination.

How do I bring creativity into my photography?  How do I break that pattern of thought, and reach through to this?  I think that should be my next focus.

Monochrome, The East English Fens of East Anglia, Zenza Bronica SQ-A

The Quintessential English Village Church

The Quintessential English Country Village Church. Zenza Bronica SQ-A. Bronica PS 80mm f/2.8 lens. Ilford HP5+. Developed in ID-11

The above photo, taken on the Bronica SQ-A, handheld in poor light at 1/60 s, f2.8, on HP5 Plus 400, developed this morning.  I thought that it rather nicely captured the stereotypical English rural church.  An event was being held inside the church to mark the 150th anniversary of the village school.

Film, 35mm, and scans, Landscape and buildings, Olympus XA-2 - 50p camera project II, The East English Fens of East Anglia

Back to Tight Fisted Basics with a 50p Camera

Capture the Sunset. Olympus XA2 compact 35mm film camera, loaded with AgfaPhoto Vista Plus 200 film from Poundland.

I’m really enjoying the dark room learning curve at the moment, but I still have plenty of cheapskate colour 35mm film from Poundland, which I take to a local independent commercial processor to run through his mini-lab.  He presently charges me £2.50 for developing negs only – no printing.

I’ve used so many car boot sale cameras over ther past year, but it might surprise people, that if I had to choose just one to keep, it would by my lovely little Olympus XA2 compact zone focus camera, that I purchased for 50p at a car boot sale.  It is such a fun camera – great for street fun – capturing odd moments or sights.  Discreet, small, quiet.  Close and open the clam shell lens cover and it defaults to a medium zone focus.  It’s not such a bad camera for the countryside neither.  Here are two photos that I’ve recently ‘snapped’ with the Olympus XA2!

Balloon over Fenland Skies. Olympus XA2 and Poundland film. Some post neg scan touch up using Gimp 2.8 open source software.

Click on either image to view a Flickr set that I’m proud of – Poundland film in a 50p camera.

Olympus XA-2 - 50p camera project II, The East English Fens of East Anglia

Love in a Barley Field

With a 50p camera and Poundland film!

Taken a few weeks ago or so in a local field of barley. Nita cuddles Flint as the barley wraps around them. Using an Olympus XA2 35mm compact camera that I paid 50p (GBP £0.50 circa USD 77 cents) for at a car boot sale. Loaded with Poundland budget film – AgfaPhoto Vista Plus 200.

I love my little Olympus XA2.  It’s a genuine pocket camera that can be carried anywhere, and its a 35mm FILM camera.  Who says that film is expensive?  I paid 50p for this camera with it’s d.zuiko lens and three zone focus simplicity.  It’s my pocket camera of choice, the camera I carry when I carry no other.  I visited a car boot sale at the weekend, and Nita suddenly commented “oh, you don’t have a camera on you”.  I winked, “oh yes I do!”.  Amateur budget photography rocks…

Models and themed photoshoots, Portrait, Sony DSLR A200 and Sony DT 50mm F/1.8mm SAM prime lens, The East English Fens of East Anglia

Fields of Barley

Children of the Corn. Portrait of a girl in a barley field. Sony A200 DSLR camera. Sony DT 50mm f/1.8 SAM lens.

In the Barley Field with Mum. Sony DSLR, as above photo.

The barley was so beautiful near to ours, that it had to be used for a piece of photography yesterday evening.


Olympus XA-2 - 50p camera project II, Rants and discussions, The East English Fens of East Anglia

Colour Test on Poundland AgfaPhoto Vista Plus 200 35mm film

Fenland Fields. Olympus XA2 compact camera. AgfaPhoto Vista Plus 200 35mm film from Poundland

I’m no bloody expert.  Piss off to a proper review if that’s what you are looking for.  The above photo is a scanned negative of AgfaPhoto (Agfa) Vista Plus 200 35mm film from Poundland.  Rumoured to be a rebrand of a variant of Fujifilm C200 on the great Internet.  My review?  Looks bloody alright to me for a quid per film.  Taken using an Olympus XA2 compact zone focus camera, set to ‘landscape’.  This camera cost me 50p (75 US cents) in a recent car boot sale (sort of a collective front yard sale, that we enjoy on our side of the puddle).  I’m a cheapskate mean bastard aren’t I?  The photo still looks good though don’t you think?  Stuff that up your full frame Canikon DSLR!

Film, 35mm, and scans, Olympus XA-2 - 50p camera project II, The East English Fens of East Anglia

Cheapskate Photography

How we use to do it. Olympus XA2 camera. AgfaPhoto Vista Plus 200 35mm film. Scanned negative.

Not a great photo, and I suspect Nita wont like it, but I’m using this as an example of the quality of ultra low budget photography.  The camera cost me 50p (GBP £0.50).  The film cost me a quid (GBP £1.00).  With film cost and development, it works out 8p per exposure.  There you go, a 50p camera, and 8p photos.  Can you do it cheaper?  What do you think of the colours and rendering?  All of this in a World of photography where the consumer is brainwashed by multinational companies to spend and spend on must-have cutting edge technology and accessories.  You don’t need that to make good photography (not that the above image is a particular good example, with Nita squinting in the sun).

It’s also a good example from the Olympus XA2 zone focus compact camera, and from the AgfaPhoto Vista Plus 35mm negative film from Poundland.  Only post scan enhancement was a touch up of dust and hair using the Heal tool on Gimp 2.8 free open source software.

The Olympus XA2 ande the tight fisted photographer. Taken with a Sony DSLR.

Film, 35mm, and scans, Olympus Trip 35, The East English Fens of East Anglia

Suits you Sir!

Evisons, Wisbech. Olympus Trip 35 camera. AgfaPhoto Vista Plus 200 35mm negative film from Poundland. Gimp 2.8 enhancement post scan with free open source software.

Evison is a traditional drapery and outfitters store, located in the North Cambridgeshire town of Wisbech.  It’s two floors are stuffed with goods – work boots for the brickie, compasses for the explorer, deer stalker hats for the gentleman, aprons for the butcher.  You’ll find a smartly dressed salesperson or two on each of it’s floors … “can I help you Sir?” .  Should you find what you are looking for (and there is a very good chance that you will), the smartly dressed sales assistant will hand write a little invoice from his book, for you to take down to the lady on the till.  It’s like stepping back fifty or more years.  I hope it continues to open.

Taken with one of my 32 year old Olympus Trip 35 cameras, on el cheapo Poundland 35mm film of course.  Suits you Sir!

Dogs and animals, Monochrome, The East English Fens of East Anglia

A very rural scene.

This is HIS farm yard. Pentax K110D D-SLR. Tokina-Special Auto 28mm F/2.8 mf prime lens.Gimp 2.6 software.

This is one of many photos uploaded to Flickr that never had a roaring success – a mere 45 views.  Doesn’t really matter though, because I sort of like it.  A farm yard at Friday Bridge, Cambridgeshire, the farm dog wandering out to check us out.  A very rural scene I thought.