Travels with my Camera – March 2019

In my last post, I mentioned that I’d put a roll of film through an old Russian FED2 and that I’d got all excited and lashed out £25 on an equally old Voigtlander camera with a broken light meter.  Well, I’ve had the films developed now and I have to say, I am truly stunned.  Firstly, every single shot was well exposed but best of all, the clarity of the pictures means that those old manual lenses really can cut the mustard, even by today’s standards.

I’m going to pop a selection of the shots I took with the FED2 up first.  These are some family pictures I took during the Christmas period.  I took them using Ilford Delta 400 and I will concede that I’ve actually added a bit of contrasty shadow as they were a touch bland for my taste.  Other than the little extra shadow and some cropping to tidy up the compositions, they are ‘Au Naturel’:

Having conquered my fear of using a film camera without a light meter I decided it was time to try out the Voigtlander.  At this stage, I still hadn’t had the film from the FED2 developed but I was feeling positive and convinced myself that it was going to be fine.

The first film I put through was a Lomo colour negative 400.  I chose this film for two reasons.  Number one, I liked the way the film captured the shots – the results of the first film I took on the Leica R4 (see the previous post) were exactly what I was looking for in film photography. Number two, because I could get the film developed super quickly at my local Boots.  I  really, really wanted to know if this camera was going to work and if my exposure setting calculations were on the money.

Eventually, once I’d exposed the whole roll, I whizzed into town and in my excitement, I virtually threw the film at the assistant on the photographic desk! Here’s some of what came back in an hour from Boots:

How excited was I?  Every shot was well exposed but better still, the way in which the Lomo 400 handled the saturation and contrast levels was evident too. Emboldened by this particular success I loaded a roll of Ilford FP4 into the Voigtlander and headed off for a day out in Liverpool. Without thinking about what I was doing, instinctively I guess, I set the ISO on the Voigtlander to 200. Even though it was forecast to be sunny, I was ever the skeptic and figured that 200 was more likely to be appropriate.  Silly me! Remember the non-functioning light meter?  I was going to have to work out the exposure for every shot – I could have set the light meter at 3200 for all the good it would have done – dummy! So, a little wiser for my realisation, I spent the day wandering the northern city and had a ball. Would you believe it? These shots came out as well. I am now feeling like an expert at guessing exposure settings, albeit with the guidelines of the Sunny 16 Rule and a truly handy iPhone app…

Here are a handful of shots from my day in Liverpool:

Just before Christmas, I went into a camera shop down the road from the office and grabbed a couple of rolls of film to try. One of these films was Kodak Ektar 100.  The young guy behind the counter recommended it, saying it was his go-to film – recommendation indeed. We’ve had some pretty lousy weather for the last 6 weeks or so and then suddenly, two weekends ago, the sun came out and bathed us all in unseasonal light and warmth.  Not one to miss an opportunity, I loaded the Ektar 100 into the Leica and headed out.  Our first stop was Greve de Lecq beach.  The tide was out and the beach was overrun with people enjoying the sun. After GdL we made for St Aubin. My favourite eatery on the island is here and perched on a pretty harbour to boot.  Lunch was fab as expected and so was the walk around the harbour afterwards. Needless to say, there were plenty of opportunities for snapping shots and this time I didn’t have to worry about working out exposure settings!

I’m not sure I like the saturation with this film.  In fact, I toned it down a notch when I processed the TIFF’s I got back from the developers. Apparently, this is a Kodak negative film version of Velvia 50.  Maybe it is, maybe it isn’t but either way, I’m obviously more of a muted colours man. Having said that, I do like the colours in the picture of Olive taking the weight off.

This has been the second episode of ‘Travels with my Camera’ and I expect there to be many more to come. So, it seems film is definitely not dead. Perhaps this is the time to believe in film and dig out those old cameras hiding away in your attic.

Remember, if you are a fan of analogue photography and have something to say, speak up, I’m listening. 

Happy snapping!

Travels with my Camera

Given that I’m not on the water so much these days and I’m not one to let the grass grow under my feet, I’ve gone back to another of my passions, photography.

I dabbled with digital for a decade. There’s no denying the fun I’ve had and I have definitely learned a lot about taking pictures – I dread to think how many thousand shots I’ve taken over the last ten years. However, I cut my photographic teeth taking pictures on film so that’s where I’m going to play. I recently became the proud owner of a Leica R4 SLR camera with the most gorgeous Leica 50mm lens on the front. I also, having immediately put a few rolls through the Leica and been totally bitten by the bug, lashed out the princely sum of £24 to buy a vintage Voigtlander Vito CLR (made in the early ’60s). The light meter doesn’t work but then the roll of film I put through a friends Russian FED2 from a similar vintage was exposed using luck, the Sunny 16 Rule and an iPhone light meter app – I haven’t processed that film yet…

Without further ado, here’s a small selection of the shots from those first few rolls:

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I’m really pleased with how these have come out, especially as it’s been such a long time since I picked up a film camera.

For years now, articles online, debates in magazines, and insistent fellow photographers have all been telling me that there is something indescribably lovely about pictures taken on film. It’s true, just look at the warmth and depth in the picture of the sheep above.  I can’t put my finger on it but there is a difference.

This has been the first episode of ‘Travels with my Camera’ and I expect there will be many more to come (I’ve got two rolls of exposed film ready to be processed right now)! Happy snapping and if you are a fan of analogue photography and have something to say, speak up, I’m listening.

 

 

Schoolboy error #1 (there may be more!)

old-sven-the-tide-checker

Nuff said!

This has been another Captain Corbett’s Adventure.  If I’m not on Jersey teaching a private tuition Day Skipper theory or Yachtmaster theory course, then I’m either spending time with someone on their boat, giving them the confidence to take their boat out with their family and friends on board or I’m off somewhere exotic delivering a boat. Either way, I’ll write it up and put it on the Blog for you all to see, so keep popping back to see my most recent adventure.

Hamptonne Country Life Museum

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Gosh! These posts are coming thick and fast at the moment aren’t they? Anyway, yesterday, being a bank holiday, we decided to do the tourist thing and visit one of the heritage sites on Jersey.  Jersey Heritage are a local charity who protect and promote the heritage and uniqueness of Jersey.  The Hamptonne Country Life Museum is one of the sites administered by Jersey Heritage and well worth a visit if you ever find yourself on this beautiful island.

I’m not going to rattle on about Hamptonne or what we had for afternoon tea.  Instead, I’m just going to put up a selection of pictures, enjoy.

This has been another Captain Corbett’s Adventure.  If I’m not on Jersey teaching a private tuition Day Skipper theory or Yachtmaster theory course, then I’m either spending time with someone on their boat, giving them the confidence to take their boat out with their family and friends on board or I’m off somewhere exotic delivering a boat. Either way, I’ll write it up and put it on the Blog for you all to see, so keep popping back to see my most recent adventure.

2015 London Boat Show

Good morning all.  Just a quick note about my visit to the London Boat Show yesterday.

It was definitely good to go to the show, if only to catch up with some ex-Sealine colleagues and some of my other industry friends and acquaintances but one thing that really struck me was how small the show is now.  I remember when the show moved from Earl’s Court to Excel.  That first year both of the halls were packed to the gunwales with all things boating and if memory serves, the south hall was almost entirely given over to motor boats – how different it is now, shame.

The industry powerhouses, Sunseeker and Princess dominated the show.  Sadly the Sealine stand looked a little forlorn, a shadow of our heyday but nevertheless, it was good that they were there at all. What did surprise me was the Fairline stand; running along the end wall, with some lovely boats on show but again, not a patch on previous years stands – gone are the days of Fort Fairline then…a sensible belt tightening exercise in these difficult times I suspect.

The busiest area was, of course, the usual array of chandlers, sea schools and paraphernalia stands. Squirreled away amongst all this lot, was one particularly pleasing find, Motorboat Owner.  Neale and Claire, who some of you will know from their MBM days have set up a digital magazine aimed squarely at motor boaters.  This new offering is designed to bring insight and comment for all practical aspects of running a motor boat.  What’s more, it appears to be absolutely free – how could you resist not signing up?

All in all a worthwhile visit and an enjoyable day out – if you have the chance to go, do.  The industry is for you, the boaters of this world and if you don’t support it you will lose the flexibility and choice that come from having a buoyant (excuse the pun) industry.  If you don’t believe me, consider the high street shops that we all used to use…

This has been another Captain Corbett’s Adventure.  If I’m not on Jersey teaching a private tuition Day Skipper theory or Yachtmaster theory course, then I’m either spending time with someone on their boat, giving them the confidence to take their boat out with their family and friends on board or I’m off somewhere exotic delivering a boat. Either way, I’ll write it up and put it on the Blog for you all to see, so keep popping back to see my most recent adventures.

The next time you doubt your ability to do something…

Little Tommy Morrissey loves to play golf and he’s not going to let something like not having a complete right arm to get in his way.

I was sent this video recently and could barely believe what I saw when I played it.  This courageous young lad should be an inspiration to us all.

The next time you begin to doubt your ability to accomplish something, think about Tommy’s approach to difficult situations and then think again how you can overcome your own self-doubt.

Watch and be amazed…

http://player.theplatform.com/p/BxmELC/gc_player/select/I_6m3VpqoakQ

This has been another Captain Corbett’s Adventure.  If I’m not on Jersey teaching a private tuition Day Skipper theory or Yachtmaster theory course, then I’m either spending time with someone on their boat, giving them the confidence to take their boat out with their family and friends on board or I’m off somewhere exotic delivering a boat. Either way, I’ll write it up and put it on the Blog for you all to see, so keep popping back to see my most recent adventures.

Pass it on…

This made me smile, in a ‘Grumpy Old Man’ sort of way, so I thought I’d share it with all of you…

***

At the store checkout desk, the young cashier suggested to the much older woman, that she should bring her own shopping bags because plastic bags weren’t good for the environment.

The woman apologized and explained, “We didn’t have this ‘Green thing’ back in my day.”
The young checkout girl responded, “That’s why we have a problem today. Your generation did not care enough to save the environment for future generations”.

 

Was she right – did we not have the ‘Green Thing’ in our day?

 

  • Back then, we returned milk bottles, pop bottles and beer bottles to the store. The store sent them back to the plant to be washed and sterilized and refilled. This way, it could use the same bottles over and over again – they really were recycled.
  • Grocery stores bagged our groceries in brown paper bags, which we reused for numerous things, most memorable, besides household garbage bags, was the use of brown paper bags as book covers for our schoolbooks. This was to ensure that public property (the books provided for our use by the school) was not defaced by our scribbling.  In fact, we were able to put whatever graffiti we liked on the brown paper covers instead of using railway bridges and canal tunnels and everywhere else the young people of today decide is a suitable place to display their ‘art’.

 

But we didn’t have the “Green Thing” back in our day, did we?

 

  • We walked up stairs because we didn’t have an escalator in every store and office building.
  • We walked to the shops and didn’t climb into a 300-horsepower machine every time we had to travel two streets away.

But we didn’t have the “Green Thing” back in our day, did we?

 

  • Back then, we washed (heaven forbid) the baby’s nappies because we didn’t have the throwaway kind. We dried clothes on a line, not in an energy-gobbling machine burning up 220 volts of electricity – wind and solar power really did dry our clothes.
  • Children had ‘hand-me-down’ clothes from their brothers or sisters, not the brand new, ‘branded’ clothing they get every time their current wardrobe starts to stand up on its own.

 

But we didn’t have the “Green Thing” back in our day, did we?

  • We had one TV or radio in the house, not a TV in every room. The TV had a sensible sized screen, a screen the size of a pillow perhaps, not a screen the size of Wales.
  • In the kitchen, we blended and stirred by hand because we didn’t have electrical machinery to do everything for us.
  • When we packaged a fragile item to send in the post, we used screwed up old newspapers to protect it, not Styrofoam or plastic bubble wrap.
  • In our day, we didn’t fire up an engine and burn fuel just to cut the lawn. We used a push mower that ran on human power. We exercised by working so we didn’t need to go to a brightly lit health club to run on treadmills that operate on electricity.

But we didn’t have the “Green Thing” back in our day, did we?

  • We drank from a water fountain when we were thirsty instead of using a plastic cup or bottle every time we had a drink.
  • We re-filled pens with ink instead of throwing the old one away and buying a new one.
  • We replaced the blades in a razor instead of throwing away the whole razor.

But we didn’t have the “Green Thing” back in our day, did we?

 

  • In our day, people took the bus to work or the shops and children rode their bikes to school or walked instead of turning their parents into a 24-hour taxi service in the family’s £50,000 ‘off-roader’, which incidentally, is the same price as you’d pay for a small family estate in our day.
  • We had one or maybe two electrical outlets in a room, not an entire bank of sockets to power the dozen appliances that nobody can possibly do without these days.
  • And we didn’t need a computerized gadget to receive a signal beamed from satellites 23,000 miles out in space in order to find the nearest ‘fast food’ takeaway.

 

But we didn’t have the “Green Thing” back in our day, did we?

 ***

I actually find it rather sad that the current generation laments how wasteful we, the older generation were and all because we didn’t have the “Green thing” back then.

Furthermore, I suggest this must be especially disappointing when confronted with a tattooed, multiply pierced, ideological, tree hugging, dread-lock sporting, going to put the world straight all on their own, smarty-pants, who has to get the cash register to tell them what change to give.

Oh dear, how sad, what a shame, never mind – as a close chum of mine once said!

This has been another Captain Corbett’s Adventure.  If I’m not on Jersey teaching a private tuition Day Skipper theory or Yachtmaster theory course, then I’m either spending time with someone on their boat, giving them the confidence to take their boat out with their family and friends on board or I’m off somewhere exotic delivering a boat. Either way, I’ll write it up and put it on the Blog for you all to see, so keep popping back to see my most recent adventures.