Theme and

By woolybill1
This is our friend Tom: classical musician, music teacher (retired), bon viveur and camera addict. We have known Tom for almost 40 years, much of which time has been spent in his company round the coffee tables, beer halls and tapas bars of western Europe. He has kindly given permission for me to upload this series.

I am aware that Tom has owned a number of classic cameras, notably at least one Nikon F2 and a Leica R3 (or maybe R4), but for the past few years he has relied on a Canon digital compact while considering the options for his main digital camera. In March he decided on a Nikon D600 plus a few lenses.

We met up with Tom at Beamish Museum a few weeks later; it was his first opportunity to put the camera through its paces. By lunchtime we had got as far as the pub whose roaring fire encouraged us to hang around a bit. While there Tom asked me to check a couple of settings* as he hadn't yet got to grips with the handbook; after all, I use a D7000 and the D600 is just a big D7000, isn't it? In return I asked his permission to fire the shutter just once; he agreed.

Back at Woolybill Towers that evening I downloaded the raw files, converted them to DNGs and played with a couple in PS to show Tom 'how it was done'. I extracted this one later and played with it to produce this week's uploads, an exploration of the various moods that can be obtained from a single original by using different crops, proportions and processing.
This is by no means a scientific experiment for the simple reason that it was not premeditated: having processed today's picture (the full frame) I switched the computer off and only returned to the DNG file a week later, so the toning from frame to frame may appear uneven. The files are so huge compared to my Micro 4/3 and APS-C files that they reveal unexpected detail and subtlety even with the kit lens wide open and at minimum focusing distance. And yes, I now want a D600.

I'm not showing the lot all at once as I believe each will stand alone. Naturally today's is presented as the Theme; the four Variations occupy the next four days. Then I can get back to being daft on Saturday Smile

*Tom doesn't agree with setting the date and time in his cameras, as the exif shows!

Tags: Photo journalism Black and white Portraits and people

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LynneJoyce Plus
13 22 101 United Kingdom
20 May 2013 7:18AM
Well done for taking time off from being daft for this one. A fine portrait in just the right context for the man as described.
woolybill1 Plus
15 38 78 United Kingdom
20 May 2013 7:26AM
Thank you, Lynne: much appreciated.
Ray42 14 3 England
20 May 2013 7:27AM
Love it - looking forward to the rest
SUE118 Plus
13 8 1 United Kingdom
20 May 2013 7:33AM
A superb portrait and he has a lovely interesting face.
20 May 2013 7:39AM
I love it too. Perfect DOF not to distract but to let us see where you are. Great detail on that craggy quizzical face. The information which gives the picture even more interest.
Jasper87 Plus
12 3.0k 162 England
20 May 2013 7:39AM
Strange to see you in a bar, Bill! GrinGrin

Reminds me of David Bailey portraits. Well posed and exposed, and an excellent background, although I do find myself looking more past the sitter than at him. The bright light from the mirror draws your eye and the gent on the left of the image directs your attention towards the bar. That's not a criticism, it works beautifully as a whole.

cats_123 Plus
18 5.1k 30 Northern Ireland
20 May 2013 7:40AM
an interesting exercise...a pint in his hand would have helped? WinkGrinGrin
20 May 2013 8:20AM
This composition works wonderfully Bill, a subject full of character and a triangle of background faces to keep the viewer in the frame.

Nigeve1 9 1.4k 101 United Kingdom
20 May 2013 8:45AM
Superb mono portrait in an interesting location.
Nikonuser1 Plus
9 172 16 United Kingdom
20 May 2013 8:47AM
A great mono portrait Bill great background.SmileSmileSmileSmileSmileSmileSmileSmileSmileSmileSmileSmile

franken Plus
19 5.4k 4 United Kingdom
20 May 2013 8:57AM
Excellent character study Bill. I look forward to seeing more.

barbarahirst 13 27 12 United Kingdom
20 May 2013 9:52AM
look forward to the rest
saltireblue Plus
12 13.0k 82 Norway
20 May 2013 10:08AM
The setting, with its inherent distractions in the bg combine to make this a very natural, well-balanced portrait, Bill. Far more than merely an isolated face with no sense of the surroundings.
Looking forward to the variations on a theme...


(not sure being sensible suits youWink)
20 May 2013 10:17AM
A good start. This is going to be interesting indeed.....
20 May 2013 12:02PM
Excellent mono portrait and interesting b/g.
helenlinda Plus
14 374 22 United Kingdom
20 May 2013 12:19PM
Looking forward to seeing how the mood will change over the week. An interesting project SmileSmile
Joline Plus
15 38 59 United States
20 May 2013 12:34PM
I am looking forward to this educational series.....I agree that one picture can speak not only a thousand words, but a thousand moods depending on the artistry of the photographer.
TrevBatWCC Plus
13 13 19 England
20 May 2013 12:59PM
A great portrait, Bill, and very nicely composed to show the setting of the pub too - a very inviting and traditional pub, from what I remember of it! Wink
Trev Smile
Daisymaye Plus
13 23 23 Canada
20 May 2013 1:08PM
OK, Bill. You figure that camera out and let me know. Set the date too, while you're at it. Great detail in this mono. I think I want one of those cameras too.......Sandy
SlowSong Plus
13 10.3k 30 England
20 May 2013 4:22PM
He stands out from the b/g really well and even the bright mirrors don't detract from the subject.
jaktis 18 84 Sweden
21 May 2013 4:07AM
Interesting information

Canonshots 11 206 13 United Kingdom
25 May 2013 8:26AM
Having now seen all five images I am very impressed. They make a splendid mini-series.
25 May 2013 4:48PM
I wrote and thought I had posted a comment about this set, saying I would be back later to comment, I wonder where I sent the message???

As you will have gathered by now I was pleased and impressed by the series of great crops from the one photograph.

A lesson for many on pressing the button at the right time.

8 Jul 2020 8:15PM
Wonderful photo and variations. Love the setting and the story behind the picture..


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