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| p.632 #7 · Leica M8/M9/X1 Picture Thread |
Joe, great set! There seems to be so much going on in the first image.
Michael Z: Oh no! Sorry to hear about recurring 50 Lux issues.
I like the steps!
As for changing lenses... not sure exactly what you mean? I.e., because it's cold? Not a big problem. A few years back I found some nice gloves that are thin, but have Windstopper insulation, meaning they're pretty good in most conditions I experience around the freezing point while allowing good dexterity. And they have a very useful grippy silicone-like palm and fingers, which make handling small items such as lenses really easy. For those in Canada, they're available from MEC. I shoot with a small courier bag that probably looks more like a murse, but is convenient for carrying the camera and 4 lenses. The lenses are uncapped, and in individual internal pockets, so it's a pretty simple matter of switching them out quickly.
Charles, the tank is about 7x3.5x1m in size, consisting of what looks to be about six layers of plexi fused together, at about 20-30cm total thickness. As a side note, it would be interesting to read a blurb on how exactly this was constructed. Sharpness through this is surprisingly good if shooting straight on. Tilting up/down/side will induce smearing and what looks like very strong CA, and in some situations, prismatic effects. But it's part of the fun and effect. The first shot in the previous series was looking up the side at an extreme angle, resulting in the smeared effect (the image was rotated 180 degrees to add an element of abstraction).
For a lot of these I basically just pressed the end of the lens hood against the glass and tried to focus as fast as possible. When the air jets are running the cubes move around quite fast, tend to quickly drift out of patches of good light and are challenging to keep in focus with the 50 Lux! Less of a problem with the 21, but then the 70cm minimum focusing distance was a bit of a hindrance. For the 21mm shots I basically just left the focus at 70cm and shot, figuring something will be in focus. Looking back through the take I really like the perspective I got from the 21 and am thinking of going back with the CV12 when I'm there again in a few weeks. I like the 50 Lux shots for the ability to play with focus layers and isolate some details. The 28 kind of fell into a middle area that didn't excite me while reviewing the edit. The perspective wasn't as dramatic, nor was the focus isolation.
In the 20-30 minutes I was there, many others stopped to take their own (smartphone) photos. Interestingly, almost everyone views/photographs the installation facing the wide side, which I guess makes sense, since it's like watching a TV and you can see all the action. But nearly all my shots were from the narrow side, which I found much more interesting because of the depth and the reflections off the sides, which eliminated the distracting background elements (such as the huge illuminated Subway restaurant signage nearby). I was there in the early evening and ambient light was quite low compared to the installation's lighting system, which resulted in about a 3-stop exposure difference from ambient, helping drop out external background elements. I also skewed the WB considerably. 'Normal' WB would probably result in a more neutral, slightly cyan/turquoise colour scheme. Instead, I wanted to go for a feeling of deeper, cooler blues.
Here's a grab shot with the 50 Lux viewing it from the side. The tank doesn't look that dark in person, but because of the in-built spot lights, the cubes were blowing out, so the shot is 3 stops underexposed from ambient, which was then pulled back up in post (basically testing the ISO-less nature of the M9).
Here's one with the 21 shot from the corner, looking down the long side to give an idea of the difference from ambient.
And a few more...
A couple with the 28 Cron that I felt didn't work out as well:
Compared against the 21:
And one more from the 50: