Category Archives: Black and White

A Favorite Tree at Filoli

Camperdown Elm - Filoli - 2014

At the end of the Bowling Green at Filoli is this beautiful Camperdown elm tree. I’ve shot it many times – with leaves and without, in morning and afternoon light.

This image is a recent one shot in afternoon light with my Fujifilm X-T1. Converted to monochrome using Nik Silver Efex Pro 2.

Cosmopolitan San Francisco

Cosmopolitan - San Francisco - 2014

Here’s another iPhone 5s image shot from a bench in front of San Francisco’s Pier 3 with my iPhone 5s. Actually, this is three images overlaid on each other.

I selected the three images based on the placement of the people in the frame. I used Photoshop’s auto-align layers feature to get them into alignment and then applied layer masks to isolate the subjects. The monochrome conversion was done using Nik Silver Efex Pro 2 along with some dodging and burning to adjust highlights, shadows, and contrast – along with a touch of toning.

The image isn’t perfect – if you look closely, you’ll see a few flaws. It’s one of those 90 percent complete solutions!

San Miguel Church in Santa Fe

San Miguel Church - Santa Fe - 2014

Here’s a late afternoon view of the San Miguel Church on the Old Santa Fe Trail. This church claims to be the oldest church building in America.

Image taken with my Fujifilm X-T1 and post-processed in Lightroom 5 with VSCO Film and Nik’s Silver Efex Pro 2.

Alone along Canyon Road in Sante Fe

Alone - Santa Fe - 2014

Walking along Canyon Road in Santa Fe late in the day last week, I came across this sculpture – reminds me of Jack London.

Shot with my Fujifilm X-T1 and post-processed in Lightroom 5, Photoshop CC and Nik Silver Efex Pro 2.

New Tool: Fujifilm X-T1

Fujifilm X-T1

Cameras are just tools in the photographer’s trade – capturing moments of time and light onto a sensor. Frankly, there’s not that much of a noticeable difference in the results from cameras across a range of cost. It’s much more about the moment, the composition, and the light – than it is about the camera.

But, how the camera enhances the experience for the photographer does matter. Some cameras are a struggle to use – lots of menus, etc. Others are a delight and make things simple – easing the photographer’s workload rather than increasing it.

The Fujifilm X-T1 is one of the latest cameras that eases the experience for the photographer. Compared to a traditional DSLR, it’s delightfully small – with front and back grips that make it a perfect fit in the hand. The image quality of the Fujifilm X-Trans II sensor is superb – as is Fuji’s in camera JPEG processing and film emulation.

I’m looking forward to exploring a new world of photography with the X-T1 – and sharing my results. So far, just a few images in, it’s just superb.

Going Ear to Ear along San Francisco’s Market Street

Ear to Ear - San Francisco - 2014

Part of the joy of street photography for me is how unpredictable it can be. You turn, see a good opportunity for a shot and try to capture it – in the decisive moment as they say.

Here’s an example – the shot I composed was waiting for the distant fellow talking on his iPhone to get into a certain spot against that wall – acting as a stage. I was shooting with a telephoto from the curb of Market Street. As I’m waiting, this guy closer up walks right in front of me just as I’m snapping the image.

At first look, I thought the image was a throw away – he’d ruined my shot. Instead, considering it later, I actually like the image – they’re going in opposite directions, the closeup guy provides some sense of depth to the image, etc.

I processed it in a high key style using Lightroom 5 and Nik Silver Efex Pro 2. Shot with my Fujifilm X-E2.