street photography

Letting mother nature do the drawing.

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Wondering around London and found this interesting spot to take photo. Actually I saw photos of this place online before, when I look up and realised that I have stumbled upon a very nice photographic point. I then set up my tripod in the middle of the walkway ignoring every one around me and starts to take photos upwards. I can’t get what I wanted for the first few shot, the sky are too gloomy and covered by thick clouds. I decided to stay there and wait for awhile, after around 10 minutes, the clouds started to clear and they are moving quite fast across the deep blue sky. Finally my patient pays off, since I am already set up for the shot, I just press on the shutter and let mother nature paint a background for my shot. 🙂

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Another day at 12-Bar

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So we went to 12-Bar again since they are having a meeting and Frank Turner will be performing.  There are more people around today, even people playing electric guitar infront of the 12-bar.

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A glimpse of the entrance and their barricade.

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Saw some people interviewing Dan. Got some photos of them doing that.

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It’s very dark inside, I wonder how the Ipad video copping with it.

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People can’t seems to get into the meeting room.

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At the back of the bar, there is a meeting, and there are lots of people there, exchanging opinion and thoughts.

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After the meeting, Frank Turner showed up and performed standing on a pool table. Because it’s a small venue, even without a mic we can hear him clearly. And he is actually quite awesome. 😀

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People are enjoying, some of them found a great ‘high ground’ to enjoy the performance.

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Halfway through Frank’s show the place got way too crowded, so I decided to get out of the space to get some fresh air. Then I found something cool is going on in the other room, they are standing up and giving speeches, poetry, and some rapping I think. They are good speakers, in stayed in the room and listen to them for quite some time.

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It was getting late so we decided to go home, as we are outside the 12-Bar, the guitarist is still playing. As we are taking photos of him from across the street, he asked us to not to be shy and go nearer.

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Hes name is Shane i think, hope I am not wrong. Great guy, and I like the way that hes enjoying himself playing and creating some melody with the guitar. 😀

My first roll of film. HP5

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With the great facilities that I can use in my school, I decided to venture into film photography. I borrowed a Pentax K-1000 with a 50mm and a 28mm lens from our Kit Room at school. Then I bought a roll of film, Ilford HP5 400 from our campus shop.

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At first using a fully manual camera isn’t that hard but one thing is manual focusing. As I wear spectacles, it’s so hard to see clearly in the viewfinder, and if I try to find the focus for a longer period then my specs will start to fog up. Very irritating, but other then that shooting film on a manual camera is fun.

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Shooting film makes me think so much more before I press the shutter. Unlike digital I can shoot first then see what setting to change from the camera playback, while when you are using a manual film camera you need to know what you want and what to chose before every shot. It’s challenging but surely a good exercise for my photographic knowledge.

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It’s hard to capture that ‘moment’ that you are not expecting with a film camera, maybe I just need more practicing. For example the photo above, I saw the couple walked pass me and into a path, I thought it would be great to take a photo of them holding hand from their back in this surrounding. But after struggling to focus on them and the insecurity of pressing the shutter even-though I think it was a great composition, made me missed that moment and only manage to get them small in the photo.

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I think is much more easier to get that ‘moment’ while I am ready, I framed, set the exposure and focused then I just wait for my subject to get into the place I know hes going. I remembered from a documentary I saw of Henri Cartier-Bresson, he said that sometime he will wait for hours before someone to get into hes photos, even waited days for some.

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zone focusing are also useful when you are dealing with manual lenses.

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I also developed a film for the first time, as I was using a black and white film I can’t use the machine to develop it. I need to do it manually, which is very challenging, luckily my course mate, Tiddy helped me a lot. It took so long to develop a roll of film, I underestimated the time need and it made me missed a class. 😦

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Overall a great experience trying out shooting film for the first time for me. So I checked out 35mm film photography on my list, whats next? Medium Format of course. 😛 Okay, I’ll go and check for the price for a roll of medium format film now. 😀

#SaveSoho

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Venturing London around the National Portrait Gallery with Wendy, after checking out the gallery for one of our mini assignment we went out for a photo-walk around that area.

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The day was gloomy and it is very cold, everything outside seems to be dull today. So we went to have a Thai lunch to spice things up. 😀

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After lunch, we started walking around Soho area. As we are walking, Wendy realized this weirdly looking shop and went to see whats up. As we are getting nearer to the shop we are approached by one of the guys there- Dan. He came up to us to say hi and then starting to tell us whats happening there.

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Dan had something to do and Mordecai (in photos above) came up and continued the story. Basically they are standing up against big developers, that are profit-centric and are trying to destroy a place with great culture and history. Do check this check out this article about them and the situation.

After telling us whats going on, Mordecai invited us into the building to have a look, and they allowed us to take some photos while we are inside.

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It is very dark inside, they don’t have proper electricity and water supply. As they say we can help by bringing some food or water for them next time. They seems to be a bunch of friendly people, so if anyone interested do check them out on twitter ( #SaveSoho, #Bohemians4Soho, #SaveDenmarkStreet, #SaveTinPanAlley ) or you can watch some of thier videos here.

It was a great experience for us, maybe we will go there again. 😀