Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Hey Sugar . . Take A Walk On The Mild Side

Firstly can I say a big thank you to ALL readers whether human or robotic - like Bruce's Online Darkroom plateau of ONE MILLION PAGE HITS, so too have I hit somewhat of a landmark.
It's been hard at times writing FB - this computer is creaking at the seams and I am in definite need of an upgrade . . which might possibly happen this year - watch this space . . .
Anyway, gone are the early days where I bared my all and talked long and slow about everything that concerned me - FB has since turned into an occasional where I get to expound on all sorts of schiite (albeit mostly photographic schiite) for you my lovely readers . . .
When I were but a lad, new to t'game, just typing "Fogblog" into Google got you several pages of blogs about weather, birds, fog and Cartesian Dualism and all sorts.
I was on about Page 3 of Google results which was a little disheartening to a young whipper-snapper to say t'least . . . caps were dragged off heads and wrung dry, clogs were chucked at t'monitors and a right ol' palaver went on with the gnashing of teeth and the wailing of women
However now?
Well go on . .click on this link here
OH YES, Number 1 in the charts, which to me is a sort of little victory as I have always been a bit of a Number Two in a lot of people's eyes! 
So, much happiness, and much gratitititititude is being sent out to yourselves - thank you.

Well, you've dotted the T's and crossed the I's . . (or something like that) on another year of Christmas excess - you've split your trousers, burst your shirt, beaten your Granny, drunk your cabinet dry and generally behaved so hedonistically that you're now sat in your chair in your pants like one of 2000AD's Mega City Fatties (oh how prescient that cartoon truly was) . . .

 . . . well, not quite maybe, but in truth even though I only had one helping of Christmas lunch and one-and-a-half of pudding, I still feel like he looks . . . . eating to excess is I often think really bad for your soul. You enjoy it, but end up feeling so crap that you wish you hadn't.

Anyway, the title of this Blog is a stupid interpretation of what good mate Bruce said that he liked about my colour stuff - apparently it is subtle.
That pleases me - garishness is something I try and totally avoid - subtlety in colour reached a zenith and has since sort of dropped away - my ideal of colour is entirely down to the Kodachrome/Ektachrome look of the 1960's and 70's.
That is my idea of colour.
This is a slide of my father-in-law (in Durham) circa 1972 - the colour is wonderfully understated and naturalistic.

And here's an even earlier one from the late 1960's.

Youch - that's a sharp as a knife isn't it!
It was taken with an Agfa Sillette- a zone-focus camera with a wonderful lens. 
They're both Kodachrome Transparencies, processed by Kodak.
Those wonderful old cardboard mounts have the date printed on them too, just to keep you right on your memories! So for the former it's July 1972 and the latter is April 1969.
I find it truly remarkable that these slides (OK they have been carefully looked after and stored properly) still display a naturalistic colour that is all but missing from today's photography. I guess there's a program to replicate the look out there, but it couldn't replicate the patina on the cardboard mount or the date or the signs of careful handling over the passing decades . . 
Oh how much we have lost.

Anyway, that look and the inspirational work of Ernst Haas, and to an extent Elliott Porter and Stephen Shore are what drive my colour aspirations . . . that and just general Sheephousian Weirdness.
Subtle is what Bruce said.
See what you think.

There's nothing trick about these - they're JPGs straight outta the camera.
Canon AWB was on.
EI's were 200 and 800 and most everything was manual. I underexposed by a half to one stop on most of them, just so everything wasn't Auto 'Dayglo' Exposure . . you know the sort of thing, where everything is correct and nothing looks right!
And that's about it - camera was the EOS 50D and the lens was the 40mm Canon prime pancake.
I like what it is doing, in fact it is this naturalness of colour and slightly muted feel that drew me to a Canon DSLR in the first place.
Now all I need to do is get the bloody things printed!

Well, that's enough o' me guff - you've got to get yourself ready for the intense binge-athon that is Hogmanay . . .oh yes, no matter where you are reading! (Gawd I can still taste Highland Park whisky, 3 years after a Hogmanay wheat beer and three [LARGE] triples excess).
Hoots mon - see you on the other side.

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