Most of December 2021 saw rain and cold weather – at last! It doesn’t change the drought situation here in California, but it does help. I hope the bits of green here will soon spread over the hills, which have been dead and brown for far too long. Rain in the single-digit percentage points shows up on the weather forecast, but with the climate situation it is impossible to predict anything.
This is from the Chumash Trial area near my house. It is the same area where I spotted the Acorn Woodpecker in yesterday’s photo. I love this area because of the wonderful oak trees down this trail. Sadly, many were lost in the Woolley Fire (I think that is the one) from a few years ago that swept through this area.
One of the fun things about digital images, or digitized film images, is the playing around in post and creating presets. This one I rather like – it gives a sense of the softness that new growth brings to the world. Spring is coming, early of course in my neck of the woods, and the rains are the reason for the rainy season.
Corona virus and social isolation! In Northern California, 6 or 7 counties around San Francisco have issued “stay in place” orders. The only exceptions are to go grocery shopping and for medical appointments. Maybe some exercise. And, of course, keep your distance. It could be a crime if you get busted.
Where I live, there are similar, though not as draconian, edicts. Starting today, a few stores are offering special hours for those over 65, pregnant, or disabled, which can help those who might have a problem getting things. The rules here in Ventura County are that anyone 75 or older must stay home. People 70 and older must stay home if they have special health issues which put them more at risk. I am not in any of these categories, but can creep in for special hours!
So, for social distancing, going for a hike is a great option. Peaceful. People won’t be out so much. I went a few days ago, X100V in hand, and tried it out in various ways. One thing I did end up with were a lot of blurry pictures. Realizing that, I upped the iso and dropped the f/stop a tad. Little things like that are all part of learning a camera. And the 23mm focal length – equivalent to 35mm – is a bit of a learning curve, too.
Photography is a great way to get out of the house and enjoy the isolation!
Another film image from the 1930s Voigtlander Bessa Rangefinder, using Fuji Pro 400H film. There is an Impressionist painting which keeps flitting across my mind every time I look at this picture – hence the title. I think it is a picture by Renoir, of a lady in a white dress looking around a tree in dappled sunlight . . . .
I’ve been on quite a roll using my older cameras. This is one of maybe 2 or 3 images (out of 8 possible on a roll) taken with my only 6×9 camera, the classic Voigtlander Bessa RF from the 1930s. This my first experience with Fuji Pro 400H 120mm film. My scans were not the best, but worse was the amount of crud on the film. Processor or me?
Overall, pleased with both film and camera, especially how dark the trail was from being underneath so many trees, the fact that it was early morning, and that I had to handhold the camera – no tripod! – to get what I wanted. Oh, I guessed at all the exposures too!
The other morning – the first of the time change – I headed out with my Nikon V3 (which took this picture), my 6×9 Voigtlander Bessa, and Olympus XA4. I used the Nikon to consider exposure, as well as to catch a few for here. The film will go in to the lab for processing later this week.
It was an incredible morning. The Chumash Trail is a trail along a corridor of native oak trees, which overarch the entire trail, spots and splotches of sunshine breaking through. The trees are hundreds of years old. In some trees, small flocks of black and white birds would land, and all of a sudden it was as if it were raining acorns. It was quite odd, but restful, like rain pattering on leaves.
A panorama of about 45 images using the Nikon 105mm f2.5 AI-S lens and the widest possible aperture to gain a very narrow depth of field – a la Ryan Brenizer. Process in PS6 to merge and blend the images into one, and finished in PPS9 and LR 5.7. Click on the image to see it full size.