Thursday, September 06, 2012

I'm just not happy with the quality of the photos I've taken lately, especially the ones from San Francisco, and some others from Shanghai, that I took with the Agfa Isolette. They're crap. 

And this photo confirms it: Could Do Better. See, it's quite a good photo, (taken with the F, a very good camera), but it's fatally flawed because I didn't take the time to see that the subject was properly centred.  Also, maybe f1.8 would have been better than f1.4, just that bit more dof.

All these things, of course, can be forgiven when you're using a Sporti, say, and have little control over the settings, and the viewfinder gives only an approximation - but I really should be getting them right with a Nikon F.

To put it more plainly, if you take a not-very-good photo with an F, you've no bugger to blame but yourself.  You need to look at it, as I am with this one, and say "Wtf went wrong here?"  And when you've worked out wtf it was, work out how not to do it again.  

So, I'm going to stop garnering old flashbulbs and 127 film, and I'm going to concentrate on using the F, getting out and snapping cheap colour 35mm from Poundland, followed by cheap and funky processing from Tesco, and self-criticizing until I get it Just So. And only then will I get back to the Retro/Faulty-Memory project, 127 and 120 on the old amateur cameras: you need to move beyond being an amateur before you can pretend to be one.

And as for the Agfa, as soon as I find it's original receipt, (nice for a collector, but currently MIA, hopefully to be relocated when we pack for the move), then it's going back on eBay. For quality 120, one day I'll get a Rolleiflex, but not before I'm knocking out at least half a dozen quality shots on every roll I shoot with the F.

Voila.  Any thoughts of graduation from the Pig Sty Avenue School of Photography were premature.