September, 2013 browsing by month


Oxford: Lunch hour session

Monday, September 30th, 2013

The first roll through my Rolleiflex Automat 3.5 (75mm Tessar) that I shot during my lunch hour. The camera is a joy to use, everything works like a brand new perfectly engineered machine so it’s hard to believe that this camera is from the 1950’s. The minimum focussing distance on Rollei TLR’s isn’t all that good so I also bought a set of close-up lenses which I used on some of these shots. There doesn’t seem to be any reduction in image quality that I can tell. I’m going to enjoy using this camera a lot more.

[Tech info:] Rolleiflex Automat 3.5 loaded with expired (2003) Kodak Tri-X film, processed in Kodak Xtol 1+1 for 8 mins.

Oxford: SS20’s 25th anniversary skate jam – part 2

Sunday, September 29th, 2013

These portraits are from SS20’s 25th anniversary skate jam at the meadow lane skatepark. It was getting towards the end of the day and light levels were dropping so I struggled a little with the focus on a few of these but at this size they’re okay. I really like how these turned out considering the flat light and expired film I was using. Classic dignified portraits are what I like to make, no stupid poses or pulling faces – save those for camera phones!

[Tech info:] Pentax 67, 105mm/f2.4 lens, loaded with expired Kodak TMAX 400, processed in Kodak Xtol 1+1 for 9:15.

skatepark portraits

skatepark portraits

Oxford: SS20’s 25th anniversary skate jam – part 1

Monday, September 23rd, 2013

It’s hard to believe that SS20 first opened 25 years ago. I was never a skateboarder but I do remember it was a big deal for the Cowley Road to have it’s first skateboard shop. Whenever I’d pass by I would look in the window to check out the new skateboard designs and the cool looking logos for the companies who’s products they stocked. SS20 is still going strong and still on the Cowley Road and to celebrate its 25th anniversary there was a skate jam at the meadow lane skatepark. I went along to do some photography and it was really nice to see the park so busy with skateboarders which was a first for me as there are usually BMX riders there whenever I visit. No BMX’s were allowed at this event of course. It was nice to see some familiar faces and to hear from people who have been enjoying my photography from the skatepark. I took three different cameras with me to this event, these shots are from the same roll of 35mm film. The medium format shots will follow at a later date.

[Tech info:] Nikon FM2, 50/1.4D lens, loaded with Fuji Superia 200 film, processed and scanned by Asda in Swindon.

skate jam

skate jam

Oxford: Endeavour series 2 filming

Friday, September 20th, 2013

The second series of Endeavour (the Inspector Morse prequel) has started filming here in Oxford and I stumbled upon a scene being filmed during my lunch hour photo walk yesterday. I don’t watch much tv these days but Endeavour is one of my all time favourite tv shows to watch so you can imagine how pleased I was to come across the set. It’s amazing how Oxford can be so easily transformed to the 1960’s with minimal set dressing (I’ve read that series 2 is based in 1966). I only had five frames left on the roll of film I had in my Rolleiflex so I had to use them carefully. Shaun Evans who plays the title role was very down to earth and nice enough to stop for a couple of pictures, others I photographed below were some extras, the make-up artists, sound engineer and one of the guys in charge of the vehicles. I’m really glad that it was my Rolleiflex twin-lens that I had on me because it’s from the 1960’s. Some of these shots were from lunch time and some are from after work when they had moved to a different location. I would love to do more behind the scenes photography of Endeavour over the coming months but it’s impossible to know in advance when and where they’ll be filming around Oxford.

Here are some of my pictures during the filming of the final scene in the pilot episode of Endeavour back in 2011.

[Tech info:] Rolleiflex 2.8f Planar, Kodak Tri-X 400 (expired) processed in Kodak Xtol 1+1.

endeavour filming

endeavour filming

Oxford: large format portraits

Thursday, September 19th, 2013

Here are some large format portraits I made recently with one of my favourite camera, lens and film combos. The camera is from the 1940’s or 50’s, not quite sure, but I do know the lens was used for aerial photography during the second world war and judging by the condition of the paintwork it saw some action. The nice thing about this particular lens is the shallow depth of field and the way it renders everything with a beautiful smoothness but you can’t really appreciate the image quality in web resolution images.

[Tech info:] Speed Graphic 5×4, Pentac f2.9 lens @ f3.5, Ilford HP5 film processed in Kodak HC110 1+31.




Oxford: Lunch hour session

Wednesday, September 18th, 2013

One of the roll film holders for my Mamiya ProTL was faulty so I sent it off for repair. These shots are from a roll I used to check if the repair had fixed the wind on problem but unfortunately it’s still faulty and I only got 11 shots on this roll instead of 15. I’m going to stop using this film holder for now. Martin got a new smart phone and he’s seen here trying to do some panoramic photography (with not much success). In the last shot there’s a new ramp being built to provide wheelchair access into the Radcliffe Camera.

[Tech info:] Mamiya ProTL, 80/1.9 lens loaded with Kodak TMAX 400 (expired), processed in Kodak HC110 1+31.

Oxford: Thursday market

Tuesday, September 17th, 2013

Some images I made at the Thursday Gloucester Green market to test out my Rolleiflex twin-lens camera. I don’t often go to this market but I think I might change that because there are lots of interesting stalls and people there. My Rolleiflex seemed to attract a lot of attention, I’m not sure if that’s because of the name written on the front in large letters or because it’s a twin-lens but I don’t mind chatting to people about it. The lady in the bottom images was very nice to chat with and I think she has great style, she used to work with photographers as a stylist and it was her stall of vintage goodies that caught my eye because it was so well laid out (the two middle images). Regular visitors to my blog might recognise Martin in the top two images, he features in quite a few of my blog posts when I have a camera, lens or film to test out. He used to play in a local rock band named Targa who were big in the 1980’s and a little known fact is they were the first band to play live on the opening night of Oxford’s ice-rink. The word around the camp fire is there could be a new band forming with a few of the original Targa band members but that’s just a rumour at this stage.

[Technical info:] Rolleiflex 2.8F Planar, 80mm lens, Ilford FP4 (expired) processed in Kodak Xtol.

Oxford: St Giles’ fair 2013 – day 2

Monday, September 16th, 2013

On day 2 of St Giles’ fair there was less rain than the previous day but the sky was a lot more overcast which made the light level quite dark and dull for photography. Here’s a selection of my shots from day 2, there will be others to follow that I made with 35mm once I receive them from the lab (aka Asda). You can probably tell that the Rotor is one of my favourite rides to photograph and I think it looks great in both black & white and colour.

[Technical info:] Pentax 6×7, 55mm and 105mm lenses, loaded with Ilford FP4 (expired), processed in Kodak Xtol.

st giles' fair oxford

Oxford: St Giles’ fair 2013 – day 1

Sunday, September 15th, 2013

Just before St Giles’ fair rolled into town this year the weather turned autumnal which was a bit of a shock considering we had warm summer weather the previous week. On the first day of the fair it rained on and off which limited my photography so I only managed to do a fraction of what I hoped to. This set of images is from the same roll of film through my Rolleiflex tlr which I decided to use because of how pleased I was with the shots from my Mamiya C330f tlr I used at the fair last year but something I hadn’t factored was how limiting the fixed 80mm lens on the Rolleiflex would be. With my Mamiya I was able to change to the 65mm wide-angle lens to get just that extra bit into the frame without having to back up too far. I’ve noticed a strange anomaly in some of my frames which I hope is not a fault with the Rollei – a narrow light band across the bottom of some of the frames, visible in the top left frame and the one below it. My guess is that it might be linked to a certain shutter speed because it’s not on every frame. I’ll look into it.

[Tech info:] Rolleiflex 2.8f, 80mm Zeiss Planar lens loaded with expired Kodak Tri-X 400 processed in Kodak HC110 1:31 for 7:30.

St Giles' fair oxford


Oxford: St Giles’ fair 2013 – setting up

Friday, September 13th, 2013

The fair rolled into town last sunday and I went along to photograph some of the rides and stalls being set up, more specifically the people doing the setting up. St Giles’ fair is always held on a monday and tuesday at the beginning of September and the set up is always done on the day before. Last year I went along and saw the potential for lots of great portraits but I only had a small camera on me and from past experience that dramatically reduces the chances of me receiving a positive response when approaching strangers on the street to photograph. It was then that I decided I would go better prepared this year and so I did with my Rolleiflex twin-lens medium format camera. I’m still trying to get comfortable with handling it and I’m not 100% with it yet so I’ve been trying to use it as often as I can. Overall I think I only received a handful of rejections from people that didn’t want to be photographed which was a shame because there were lots of guys there that would have made really interesting portraits in black & white. Maybe next year. This is the entire contents of a roll of film that I shot, all 12 frames.

[Tech info:] Rolleiflex 2.8f loaded with Kodak Tri-X (expired), processed in Kodak HC110B for 7:30.

st giles' fair, oxford

st giles' fair, oxford



Oxford: backstage at the Ashmolean Dress Up event

Wednesday, September 11th, 2013

The Ashmolean Museum had a fashion themed event a couple of weeks ago and I went along to do some backstage photography for Clements & Church, the awesome tailor’s on Little Clarendon Street. The schedule didn’t allow much time for photography before the models had to head off to the catwalk but I did manage to make some portraits on Fuji instant pack film with a Polaroid passport camera that I’m beginning to really like – here are a few of them. Others to follow. It was nice to see some familiar faces at the show from previous Oxford Fashion Show events, you might recognise some of them from my blog. Please note that as this film expired in 2006 the colours are not 100% accurate.

[Tech info:] Polaroid passport camera, expired Fuji FP-100C instant pack film (bleached negative).

Oxford: St Giles’ fair 2012

Monday, September 9th, 2013

The fair has just rolled into town along St Giles so I went along there yesterday to see some of the rides and stalls being set up. I can remember the images I made there last year, one of which was a man on a coconut shy stall who is back here again this year. When I saw him setting up yesterday I stopped to say hello and he remembered that I had photographed him last year. After looking back at my previous posts I notice that this shot of that man didn’t get posted for some reason so I’m posting it here so that he can see it. I’m hoping the weather will stay dry long enough for me to do some more photography at St Giles’ fair over the next couple of days.

[Tech info:] Rolleiflex SL66, 80/f2.8 lens, Fuji Acros 100 processed in Rodinal 1:50 for 10 mins.

st giles' fair in oxford