I’ve been busy with a few photography related projects and it’s cut into to my blogging time. I’m hoping to resume regular posts soon. I have a lot to talk about.
I gave a HDR lecture last Thursday that took a good deal of prep time. Not just creating the slides but the mental energy thinking of what to say and all the angst associated with public speaking. I’m happy to report that it went well and several people had complimentary things to say. We had a larger than normal turnout and a healthy 15 folks continued the discussion over a late dinner and drinks. It was a good time.
Surprisingly, a few thought I was a veteran public speaker but this isn’t so. It’s the first time I’ve talked in front of an audience for nearly 2 hours. I’ve been in front of a small group for a few minutes during business presentations at work, but that’s about it. My biggest observation? Between the 2 hour live talk and the 1 hour practice at home, my throat was sore. The larynx is made partially of muscle after all and I have never stressed it so. I suppose, like any muscle, with practice it will get stronger.
HDR is a good topic for me, I guess. After more than 4 years of practice, I should know it cold. I’m glad it’s over though — it frees up time for other things. I’m thinking of how I can deliver this HDR content through the blog. A few followers suggested that I tape the lecture but I wasn’t ready to take on that challenge. Time is always a constraint but I’m thinking of covering the content through a series of blog posts. Let me know if that interests you. Your feedback may determine how motivated I become.
On to my other projects.
I’m working on getting my film negatives scanned to digital. The highest priority was the first 2 years of my older son’s life. I shot film with a point and shoot until 2002. Those scans are finished and I’m going backwards in time through my wedding and pre-wedding photos.
Quite unexpectedly, the scanning project has really altered my perspective on film. I was never a serious photographer until digital, so despite being 50 years old, I’ve never truly experienced film. I have no nostalgia for it, in fact, and I generally despised it. The smaller 3 1/2 by 5 inch prints never looked that great and it was always a crap shoot of how well a photograph came out. I merely took snap shots with a fully automatic point and shoot to document key life events.
As recently as four years ago, I first got my son’s newborn pictures scanned. They didn’t look great and it just reinforced my already negative view of film. But something changed.
My recent scans are different. The colors look better and the resolution, higher. Scanning technology has improved as well as my post processing skills. I started to unlock color and details that I never knew existed in my humble negatives. Keep in mind that I used inexpensive consumer grade film with a modest point and shoot. And these negatives are 15 years old or older. Who would’ve thought?
So because of the film scanning project, I’m taking a fresh look at film. I’ve started down that road and I’ll talk more about it in upcoming posts. Yes, film is grainy and it has many disadvantages compared to digital but I love the color — It’s a very different feel. Like many parents in Central Texas, I have photos of my baby sitting in a field of Bluebonnets, Texas’ official flower. My boy was wearing a bright red shirt, surrounded by blueish-purple flowers and green grass. The colors are awesome. I’ve never seen colors like this coming out of my digital cameras. I’m curious what fresh film in a better camera with my photography skills can do.
Film maybe old news to some of you, please excuse the diversion. I just have to see what it can do, to satisfy my curiosity. It’s a brave new retro world, at least for me. The two photos above are scans of Maui shot from helicopter 17 years ago, during my honeymoon. I post processed the negative scans to bring out more color.