Monday, February 27, 2017

Five Frames, Olympus XA1, Street Scene Abstracts

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Olympus XA 1

Film photography favorites, five frames with an Olympus XA1, post-processed street scene abstracts.

I recently did a hipster-style walk-through of a public place, taking snapshots of the people and activity with the Olympus XA1 held at hip level, with image framing done visually without looking through the camera's viewfinder.

Olympus XA1

The resulting images are quite interesting and diversified. While some are sharp and properly framed, others turned out unframed, unfocused, and blurred by camera and body shake. Getting these images together into a visual storyline was done with the tone curve tool in post-processing.

The Tone Curve tool, as available on Olympus Viewer 3 (OV3) as well as most image editors, is a graphical representation of the tonal range of your image and the tool allows you to manipulate the brightness and contrast of the RGB color gamut of the image or the individual red, green and blue channels by picking the color separately from the drop-down list.

The tonal range of an image can be changed by first placing cursor points on the diagonal representation of the image and then by dragging the points up or down from their original location. The line can be removed at multiple points along the line for varying results, and curves are controlled by using several anchor points placed along the line.


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Monday, February 20, 2017

Five Frames, Half-Frame Photography, The Portrait Format

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Olympus Pen EF

Five frames with a half-frame Olympus Pen EF, looking at the 3:4 image aspect ratio.

I am dedicating this and other posts in this series to the 3:4 image aspect ratio, as photographed on the Olympus Pen EE-S, Pen EF, Pen FT, and other half-frame format film cameras that I have or may collect along the way.

Olympus Pen EF

A half-frame camera, also known as a single-frame or split-frame, captures images at half the size (18x24mm) of a standard 35mm negative film (24x36mm). You can shoot twice as many pictures and get 72 exposures on a 36-exposure roll, and 48 on a 24-exposure roll. Most half-frame cameras are manufactured with a vertical film framing setup, meaning that they shoot in a vertical (portrait) orientation as opposed to the horizontal (landscape) orientation of standard 35mm cameras.

Operating the camera, not unlike any other point-and-shoot, is equally easy and can be done one-handed. Metering is by the standard Selenium 'electric-eye' system with the red pop-up flag that locks the shutter in low light conditions. With the Olympus EF, however, you can override this lock by activating the level to power the flash unit, cute.

The scanned images were post-processed on Olympus Viewer 3 (OV3), which includes cropping the doubled-scanned images into single images, and tweaked with edits including Auto Tone Correction, Brightness & Contrast, Gamma, Hue & Saturation, Sharpness & Blur, Unsharp Mask, and Noise Reduction.


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Monday, February 13, 2017

Five Frames, Zuiko OM 300mm F4.5, Trial Shots

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Olympus Pen E-P5, Olympus OM Zuiko 300mm F4.5

#VintageLensTest - Five frames with an Olympus Zuiko OM 300mm F4.5, trial shots on the E-P5.

Took the Olympus Olympus Zuiko OM 300mm F4.5 out of the dry box and mounted it on the Olympus Pen E-P5 with the OM Adapter MF-2, just to see how it feels and handles, and what will it takes to lug it around on a shoot or assignment.

Olympus E-P5, Olympus OM Zuiko 300mm F4.5

On the Olympus E-P5, the lens will be equivalent to an f/9 600mm super-telephoto lens. Lined the combo up on the front porch, and grabbed a few test shots, wide-open, of my immediate environment.

The combo looks and feels great fit the E-P5 rather well, and for a lens that is light on the budget (comparatively), and super sharp even at wide open, the 300mm F4.5 is the one to look at if you are into wildlife or mountain photography. On the E-P5 the lens is still handholdable though it normally comes with its own tripod collar which allows for a free rotation for both horizontal and vertical shots.

With a simply outstanding build quality, the lens also features a built-in retractable lens hood and comes with a large filter attachment that accepts threaded 72mm filters. Images as you can see here, are tack sharp all around with little or no diffraction, and good contrast and saturation with the colors. The lens can also be used with the Teleconverter 1.4X-A.


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Monday, February 6, 2017

Five Frames, Olympus Pen EE-S, Moments

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Olympus Pen EE.S

Five frames with a half-frame Olympus Pen EE-S, memories of a place often frequented.

Moments brings me back to my favorite hangout where I frequent when selling used and vintage 35mm film cameras, manual focus lenses, and other film camera accessories. Those were the days, I enjoyed my time there, and with the half-frame Pen EE.S, a fixed focus point-and-shoot camera with a 28mm f/3.5 lens with a shutter speed of 1/60 second, images to reminisce the moments.

Olympus Pen EE-S

The Pen EE.S is a bit of a gem, and a true classic, easily recognized by the selenium meter window around the lens. It is well built, feels solid and robust, fits snugly in the palm of your hand, and has a very quiet shutter that is hardly audible beyond a short distance. Shooting and working both the film advance and the shutter release with one hand is as easy as eating a pie.

Images were tweaked on the Olympus Viewer 3 (OV3) for Auto Tone Correction, Tone Curve, Brightness & Contrast, Hue & Saturation, Sharpness & Blur, and Noise Reduction.


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