June, 2012

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Oxford: Lunch hour session

Monday, June 25th, 2012

These images are from the first test shoot I had with Helen during my lunch break. At this time of year the light between 12 noon and 2pm is not particularly flattering so it can be a bit of a challenge to find nice natural light to use during my lunch break which falls between those times. My mantra is there’s always good light to be found, you just have to find it so it’s something I’m constantly looking for on my photo walks around town. A slight difficulty for photography at this time of year in Oxford is the volume of tourists around so it can sometimes take a while to wait for them to clear from the background of a shot and because I only usually have around 30 mins for photography during my lunch break after I’ve travelled to and from the centre of town from my office my test shoots are usually fairly rushed. There isn’t much time for my subject to ease into the shoot but fortunately Helen was ready from the first frame and a complete natural in front of my camera. It was difficult to reduce the amount of shots to post here.

I’m very pleased with the tones in a lot of these images and I put that down to the possibility of using a slightly different agitation method when I processed the film. There seems to be slightly more contrast. I also scanned these images slightly different from my normal method so that’s probably a factor too.

[Tech info:] Mamiya M645 1000S, 80/f1.9 lens, loaded with Fuji Acros 100, processed in Kodak HC110 (dilution b).



Against the wall.

Around the corner.



Bottom step.

I really like this kind of light where you're in the shade but there is bright sunlight being bounced up from bright stone.

Last frame.

Test shoot: Helen

Sunday, June 24th, 2012

Some images from a test shoot I did with Helen in a local park recently. It was a nice change compared to photographing on the street with architectural backgrounds. Usually I tend to arrange my test shoots during my lunch break but this one I did after work and immediately I noticed a difference in the colour and quality of the light. To say the conditions were perfect would be an understatement. Helen is one of the easiest people I have ever photographed and seemed completely at ease in front of the camera. As a photographer you can’t ask for any more than that. Often when I’m photographing people they’re waiting for me to tell them what to do but with this shoot it was more of a collaboration which is something I prefer. I hope we get to collaborate on more shoots in the future. I tested a number of different types of film on this shoot so more images will follow once I find time to process and scan them.

[Tech info:] Pentax 67 loaded with Kodak Tri-X 400, processed through Kodak HC110 (dilution b).

At the edge of the tree line.


Dappled light.

In the shade.

In the open.


Oxford: Ready for the ball

Saturday, June 23rd, 2012

Yesterday evening I had a fun photo shoot with some Oxford University students that were all dressed up to go to the Oriel College commemoration ball. I had photographed one of them before at the opening night of Cabaret at Keble College a while back and it was from those images that I was contacted for this shoot (thanks Gen). It was a bit rushed towards the end as they all had to make their way over to Oriel College but I thoroughly enjoyed it. We used three different locations – a back garden, the grounds in Teddy Hall and the middle of the High Street where they were all literally stopping traffic. All of that fabric fluttering in the strong wind looked amazing. I was half expecting to be told to move along because of health and safety!

I contacted Oriel about photographing at their ball but no one replied to me. Magdalen College also had a commemoration ball happening at the same time but the President of the ball committee turned down my request for photography. Such a shame and a missed opportunity to create some great images as they only happen every three years.

These are all scans from Fujiroids (Polaroid). I also shot some film images which will follow on when I’ve had time to process and scan them.

[Tech info:] Mamiya RB67, 90mm, Fuji FP100C instant pack film.

Stopping traffic on the High Street.

In the back garden before the taxi arrived.

I like the colours of the dresses in the shade.

Teddy Hall quad.

Last shot before leaving.

Behind the scenes
One of my Flickr contacts happened to be walking past while I was photographing on the High Street and he sent me these two behind the scenes shots. We’ve never met in person and this is what he had to say: ‘When I saw a photographer last night in the middle of the road with a medium format camera I knew it just had to be you. I’m surprised the police didn’t move you on, you had traffic tailed back up to Carfax’.
Photography by Darrell Godliman.

In the middle of the High Street.

Me at work, light meter in hand.

Oxford: Pandora’s Box

Thursday, June 21st, 2012

You may recognise some of these students from my Keble College Ball images but then again you might not because of the cool outfits and make-up they’re wearing. I really enjoyed photographing this creative group as they prepared to go to a party where the theme was Pandora’s Box but it was a shame we didn’t have much time for photography before they had to leave for the party. Hopefully we can collaborate on other future photo shoots.

These are all Fuji instant pack film prints (similar to Polaroids). I did also shoot a little bit of film but the rolls aren’t finished yet.

[Tech info:] Mamiya RB67, 90mm lens and sliding Polaroid back.

The evening light was fantastic by our local lake.

Lit by the setting sun.

In the garden of the house where everyone was getting ready.

The wings ended up getting coloured in a little later.

Another shot in the back garden.

Oxford Union Society Summer Ball 2012 (film)

Saturday, June 16th, 2012

Here’s a gallery of images that I made with medium format film at the recent Oxford Union Society 2012 summer ball. It was a fun event and the weather was perfect for a summers evening. Please email me if you’d like to order any prints. Prints look much nicer than looking at images on a computer screen and they’re all hand printed by me.

[Tech info:] Mamiya C330f and 80/f2.8 lens, loaded with Kodak Tri-X film, processed in Kodak HC110 dilution b (1:31). Processed and scanned by me. I think I used some expired Tri-X for these which accounts for the lower contrast in most of them.

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Oxford: Lunch hour session

Thursday, June 7th, 2012

These images are from the first roll of film through my Rolleiflex SL66 on the day that I received it. As I bought the camera sight unseen it was clear to me early on that the camera and I were going to get along just fine. One of the many nice things about using manual mechanical film cameras is not having to spend time navigating unfamiliar menus or having to trawl through an instruction manual just to change one simple setting. You just set the exposure, compose, focus and then *click*.

[Tech info:] Rolleiflex SL66 camera with Zeiss Planar 80mm/f2.8 lens, loaded with expired Kodak Tri-X film. Processed in Rodinal (1:50) by me.

Estate agents' window, Walton Street, Oxford.

Walton Street, Oxford.

Walton Street, Oxford.

Right after the previous fruit and veg shot I turned around and grabbed this shot. There was a coach blocking this Mini from turning, that's why the driver looks so unhappy.