Street Diary: May 30, 2014

Today marks my last day of the first job I ever had...  It was a good ride for two years.  To end the day, I decided to shoot some street after work!

Here are a few photos from earlier:

I posted a First Impressions of the Olympus 25mm f/1.8 prime, but this is the first time I've shot actual, non-test-esque photos.  I was shooting between seven to eight in the evening, so the summer sun was still out, and quite golden.  I could shoot wide-open without using an ND filter!  Of course, the EM-5 was the body of choice for the outting.  My setup consisted of solely the camera, lens, hood, and backpack (for work).  Fairly lightweight, though the bag gives me a wider silhouette.  I'm going to be honest, I'm beginning to doubt that I know how to use my camera correctly.  Usually I leave the camera in single-point AF, focus, then recompose and release the shutter.  That works fine for still shots or normal portraits.  When I'm street shooting, though, I'm often "running and gunning" (well walking) and my subjects are walking as well.

I think that split second between focusing and recomposing is enough for the subject to move enough of a distance to be out of focus when I finally get to taking the shot.  It occurred to me change the AF-point in camera and "pre-frame" the shot in my head as I'm approaching subjects.  I couldn't get into the hang of that method as I'm not used to it.  Even  using this technique, I still can't just get myself to fully press the shutter without waiting for the camera to autofocus... or do you wait for it to autofocus then fully depress the button?  I've been so used to focusing via a rangefinder patch and hyperfocal distances that I may be forgetting the godsend of autofocus.  Granted, the lens was stopped wide open, so the camera had a pretty shallow depth of field to work with.  All I know is that I just need to shoot more and become more comfortable with my camera.

What's really good news is that I'm starting to become less camera-shy!  And by camera-shy I mean sticking the lens right up in front of somebody's face.  It's so rewarding getting that shot of the subject looking right into the lens the moment just before they realize I'm holding a camera.

I'm really satisfied with this photograph.  It may not be the best composed thing ever, and I may just have the case of the ikea effect, but I love how the man is staring right into me.  I can't tell if it's a confused look or more of an angry gaze.  This couple was obviously on a couple-shoot of some sort with what I'm guessing was a professional photographer.  Totally fooled me if he wasn't.

So, I've been quite obsessed with VSCO presets for the last month or two.  I absolutely love them and they're amazing.  I have noticed, because of the presets, I haven't been shooting as much black-and-white.  Editing the photos I took today in post, I decided to go black-and-white for most of the shots..  I forgot what I was missing!  As much as I loved the raised-blacks, contrasty colors, grain, and greenish casts of film presets, there's just something that gets me excited at looking at black-and-white.  Maybe the loss of colors  presents a more pure representation of the light and situation?  By the way, the black-and-white photos are either the Tri-X 400 (-), Ilford HP5 (-), or the Agfa 200 (-) VSCO presets.