Using a Ricoh GRD III and a Nikon DSLR to photograph streets, people, architecture and anything else that catches my eye.

Thursday, 28 July 2011

Street shot from my Old Sony Cybershot

Ten years and six cameras ago, when I was starting to take photos with my Sony P9, I had never heard of Street Photography. I did, however, enjoy taking photos in and around London's busy streets and markets.  The results were not always great...  not exactly street photography as a deliberate task or art form; but some of those surviving images are worth a re-evaluation.  Since I have learned to apply post processing to images, I can sometimes bring an old image back into contention.

I enjoy shooting black and white nowadays.  This is because I am learning to appreciate the virtues of good black and white photography. The power of stunning monochrome images taken by professionals is clear.  The use of strong contrast and definition in 'good' black and white photography is not always easy to create.  Before I had ever used any image processing software, I tried the basic B&W setting in the Sony P9.  These images were always bland and flat, and probably forced me to shoot colour for a very long time.

Black and white is not always appropriate, and sometimes a street shot needs colour. Artistic grafitti, for example, lends itself to colour.  B&W is a 'leveller' for the image. It will blend all those messy distractions in the back ground, and concentrate on the people and other scenes. I also have become fond of 1:1 square format cropping together with a slight darkened vignette to bring out the image.

So here is a shot from London's China Town, taken in 2003 using that old Sony Cybershot P9.  The original shot was colour with a portrait format.  I have cropped in closer, and squared it up.  The original image had some scruffy digital noise, which when processed in B&W, has a 'grain' which I find far more acceptable.  Nowadays, I shoot at ISO400 anyway because as well as allowing faster shutter speeds in daytime, it gives quite a nice 'artistic grain' after B&W post processing.  This is an old shot, but I have saved it from the delete monster.

1 comment:

Dennis Ferrol said...

I am glad that you saved it from this 'monster'
Looking forward to your past and present photographs!
Thank you!