JAMES CRAIG PHOTOGRAPHY

b&w images • blog • easter island journal

since May 2006

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Pushin' the Rock

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First First Friday of the Year

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

First Fridays in Havre de Grace can be a lot of fun, and hold numerous opportunities to shoot. It had poured rain here for two days, ending just a couple of hours before 5 when things come alive on the streets. It remained a little cloudy, but nary a drop fell all the way til things petered out. I’m posting the first batch of “street” shots from it this week and will follow up with the second batch next week – had a lot to do this week-end, including mowing the lawn (right up there on my list of least-favorite things to do). In fact I still haven’t gotten to printing my bridge shot from a few weeks ago for the Gallery in town.

First Friday in Havre de Grace is pretty heavy on food and entertainment, though there are a lot of booths lining the street. Bands set up about every half-block, just out of earshot of one another. There are plenty of food trucks and local restaurants sport fence in areas in front – for a reason. If alcohol is served, one has to remain in the enclosure to drink it. I call the second image here:

"I think we’re gonna need a bigger corral”.

The opening shot is of a Flash Mob performance – Relay for Life Flash Mob – in one of the closed off intersections on Washington Street. Evidently they practiced at least a couple of times. What they may have lacked in formal training, they greatly made up for in exuberance. They were all wearing dark purple shirts representing the local Relay for Life fundraising effort of the same week-end. I almost never use the back screen viewer on my X-T2, preferring the eyepiece. But this gave me a chance to tilt the screen down and shoot holding the camera way above my head, still able to compose. Cool.

Two High School Girls raising money for their softball team. This shot cost me $5. Because of their age I held off remarking on the very odd naming of thie particular game referenced on the sign.

Street Chess – one of three public-use chess boards set up in front of a local coffee shop, Concord Point Coffee.

 A High School Band group – I could find no circulars or info on the band’s name. I would define their sound as at least a little on the hard rock side.

Looking Down Washington Street Towards the River – just to give an idea of the crowd. And since Havre de Grace has no parking meters, one can always find somewhere to park – even if it means a little bit of a walk. On top of that the town has cool public restrooms placed around town – with his, hers and unlabeled doors.

Next posting will be mostly or all on one of the “bands”:  Red Alert. Mostly the singer, Jet Blaq. I have a shot of her from last year in my Havre de Grace Street section HERE. The only problem is that she is so good, and so entertaining, that one tends to just stand there and watch, forgetting that there is a lot of street to cover elsewhere.

Site Notes…

Getting there with the conversions to new way of posting my Folios. Started on the last page of the Acadia National Park images. After that, all there will be left is the portraits. When I finish with this maybe I can get to a little sight redesign. And by THEN hopefully EverWeb will have fixed a bug in the software (what, software has bugs??) that has me sometimes pulling my hair out. It’s still great, and this bug is one that 99.44 percent of people will never run into, and therefore took me a month just to demonstrate it to their staff and get them to promise a fix. Great, highly rated html software. 

Camera Notes…

Really happy with the Fuji X-T2 for this – with the 18-55 lens (27-84 equiv). I had read spreads from a couple of photographers who do this kind of shooting with the 55-200 (84-305 equiv) so tried it first. Hated it. Fast getting a real feel for the camera though, for everything except videos. With the new auto-tracking (5 different settings with more for custom), etc. it’s a whole new ball game.

A photographer friend went with us shooting her Leica D-Lux. Probably the sweetest pro-level point-and-shoot there is, with an impressive 1.7 lens. Nan’s camera is the Lumix LX100, the exact same model as the D-Lux with a different name on it. I can use it as a back-up but am looking forward to trying it as a prime under some circumstances. Interesting thing I observed between the the “twin” cameras is that the Firmware is slightly different, occasionally using different symbols, etc. This model is a couple of years old now, but is still so good that there should be some good “used” opportunities out there for picking one up. I highly recommend it.

On the side trying to learn the LX100 to the level of intuitive use too, BUT there is a slight hang-up: in an industry where instruction manuals are known for their inability to convey how-to clearly, Lumix holds the award for the least comprehensible I have ever seen. Fortunately the camera is intuitive enough where I’ve figured out the basics – but I’m going to have to take the route on this one designed for the un-savvy camera users who follow video instructions on YouTube (lots for this model). It’s that dense. Arrgh.