Saturday, 14 April 2012

Tropical Point and Shoot Fun

Pin It Canon's IXUS300HS or Powershot4000 (as it's known in the US) is not the greatest of the ultra-compacts even if it looks pretty handsome. In fact, many of the recent compact cameras offer mushy and smeary images and seem to have taken a step backwards. However, sometimes you have to make the best use of what you happen to have with you, especially if it's all you have at the time. I think the layered nature of tropical plants and the contrasts in light and colour lent themselves best to the camera's inbuilt miniature effect, and detract from its lesser qualities. All in all, it was fun trying to work around the magnificence of this tropical greenery and achieve something that doesn't rely on technical perfection. I think the secret of owning a point and shoot at a time when some smartphones can work just as well, and when there are lots of larger sensor small cameras, is to either use them for simple family fun, or to try to do something a bit different with them. And they look a bit better when you click on them to make them bigger...

Tuesday, 3 April 2012

Waiting for the movies

Pin It I took this picture at the site of an old Drive-In cinema near Heilbron, a small rural town in the heart of South Africa. In the age of cable TV, DVD's and iPads, the drive in stands deserted literally as a dead skeleton, in a field, devoid of its flesh. Sad, in a way. I liked the Drive-In as a kid, all dressed in pajamas with popcorn in the back seat. Guess it's an age thing!

Both these images are the same. The first one has been traditionally processed, whilst the second had been given the Plastic Bullet treatment I used for the Italy images a few days ago on the blog. The second image looks as if it was a scene taken at the turn of the century and dug out of a museum archive.

Which do you prefer?

Monday, 2 April 2012

Man reading, Cape Town

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Alternative Italy

Pin It One of the current photographic fashions is to process images in a style that imitates the plastic film cameras of an era gone by, and which have now been made available again in the form of the Lomo and a remake of the famous Diana Camera with its plastic lens and leaky light body. The popularity of this style has a new take in the age of the smart phone in the form of Hispstamatic, an app for the iPhone and Instagram which is an experience sharing platform with a built in processor which creates the leaky light bad exposure look, amongst others. Its all the retro rage right now.

It's probably a bit of a fad and a fashion, so provided one doesn't take it all to seriously, it can be a lot of fun. The Apple Macintosh application store has a similarly based piece of software called Plastic Bullet, the results from which you can see here. The intriguing thing about Plastic Bullet is that as you page through ever changing options and versions of your images you have to save them on the way, because once you have moved on there is no going back to one you might have previously liked, but not saved.

Anyhow, I have not really found the time to do the serious post processing of images from a recent visit to Italy, which included Rome, Florence, Bologna and Venice, but in a moment of whimsy, I did decide to run a few of them through Plastic Bullet. It was all rather fun, and the results are here for you to judge. The more serious output from that trip will go on my website at

They look more funky enlarged. Just click on them to do so. They were shot with the Nikon D7000