Ashley’s Song

We all love this (tho the Japanese original presents a much nicer Ashley than the translated version). Still awesome cover from Carlos & friends:

“PANTALONES GIGANTICUS! Oh no, not again!”

If you want to hear more from these talented young guys & girl, please visit insaneintherain‘s, adrisaurus‘, and Thunderscott‘s channels.

One photo from today (July 8th, 2018)

Taken a short while ago, using two studio strobes and my 45mm lens:

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Piano practice in F minor using headphones, Moerfelden-Walldorf 2018

The photo also shows Zuleikha’s new watch 😉

Thanks for viewing.

Three photos from three days

We’ve been to Paris this week. And of course we took all the photos of all the monuments and famous places like everyone else does. Here are three of mine:

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City of Love, Paris 2018

Kunst or just Kitsch – what do you think? I thought of a double take on the “love” theme, showing “love birds” in front of a famous monument in the “city of love”, as we Germans often call Paris. And because I also thought of “street art”, it had to be converted into black & white of course, together with an “artsy” frame 😉 You can buy drawings like this everywhere, but ok, I’ve been there, I’ve taken this shot, so why shouldn’t I show it?

Ok; here’s another one:

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Zuleikha, Paris 2018

One of the reasons Zuleikha wanted to see Paris was to visit the Louvre, which we did of course (and that wasn’t the only museum we visited). Of course you don’t see much in just a couple of hours; someone calculated that you’d need 6 weeks if you stay 30 seconds in front of each exhibit shown in the Louvre. And after looking at lots and lots of art, I asked Zuleikha to stand at a window of the Denon wing of Louvre – a window to the North. That usually means good and soft light because each photon is reflected at least once before entering and falling onto your subject, which makes light from a North-facing window very flattering for portraiture. I also explained this to another woman and mum, who thanked me and then took photos of her daughter. Looking at art the whole day is nice, making your own is even better 😉

Here’s another image:

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Sacré-Cœur de Montmartre as seen from Musée d’Orsay, Paris 2018

As its title says already, you see a famous church (which was actually the very first place we visited) through one of the two giant clocks of another nice museum. Theoretically you could put your camera on a tripod there, with interval timer, and each photo would be different because of the people in the foreground. Of the few I took I liked this one best.

The highlight of the trip, for me? Without any doubt, that is the two (or rather, eight in two installments) Nymphéas in the oval rooms of Musée de l’Orangerie, by Claude Monet. Breath-taking. Cannot be shown in photos, you have to go there to see them. If you can’t, see Paris, France: Monet’s Dreamy Water Lilies for a first and short impression. It’s part of a longer version called “Paris: Embracing Life and Art” from Rick Steve’s Europe series of videos, so if you really cannot go and still get a glimpse of why Paris is a must see, then spend around 25 minutes to see it. But for water lilies? You have to go, and you have to sit there to really get it.

How nice to re-visit the City of Light after some 40 years or so.

Thanks for reading.

A useful software list for Ubuntu 18.04

If you’re using – or planning to use – Ubuntu 18.04 (Mitchie has just upgraded to that), here’s a list of 22 things to do after the upgrade / install.

Of course you won’t have to do all of this, and most people using Linux will have some of that knowledge already. There are however useful hints and programs even for oldtimers like me. Didn’t know that “Gummi” editor for instance…

And even a link on how to configure Conky – my favourite system monitor – is included. Cool.

Recommended reading, maybe also for users of other distributions.

Some more recent photos, birthday presents

Here are some more photos:

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Zuleikha needs glasses, so we went shopping for them. And I took some photos while she tried different frames, to show her how she looks from a slightly different angle. Like here:

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Last Sunday I turned 61, and this is what I’ve got – a book, and a new lens for my camera:

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It’s David Mitchell’s “Cloud Atlas”, and the Olympus Micro Zuiko Digital 75mm/1.8 lens. Both are wonderful. So the rest of this blog post’s photos were all taken with that new lens, either fully or near fully open:

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This one was at f/5, with an overhead octabox and one of my studio strobes:

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As you can see, that 75mm lens is perfect for head & shoulder portraits, and it reminds me a lot of my 135mm/2.8 which I had for my Canon A-1, and which I now also have for my Olympus OM-2N. The angle of view is very similar, with the 75mm being slightly tighter, and comparable to a 150mm lens on a 135 film camera. Might be a bit long for normal indoor living rooms, where our 45mm lenses shine, but outdoors, or for candids, or the mentioned head & shoulders, it’s just perfect. And for cats of course. Purrfect.

As always, thanks for reading.

Some recent photographs

Here are some photos we took since Friday – half of which were taken with my camera, the other half with Mitchie’s:

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Tulips, Moerfelden-Walldorf 2018

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Tuna diva, Moerfelden-Walldorf 2018

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Wolfgang, Moerfelden-Walldorf 2018 – photographer: Mitchie

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Dying flowers and a bass guitar, Moerfelden-Walldorf 2018

Thanks for viewing.

Some photos from an expired film

I had that DM Paradies 200 colour negative film which was in our bookshelf, and expired since over three and a half years. So I loaded it into my camera (see two posts below), and used it. And today I’ve got it back. Here are three photos like the lab scanned them off the film, with grain and not very high-res. I still like them:

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My colleague Arno isn’t in the office at the moment. So today I put some of the prints from that film onto his desk for when he returns. I documented that with the digital E-PL5 and its kit zoom at 14mm:

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Thanks for viewing.

A birthday portrait

Yesterday Zuleikha officially joined the “teenie” club. I took a photo of her in mixed light while she received some greetings and wishes on the phone:

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Birthday wishes on the phone
Zuleikha, December 2017
(just turned 13)

Since it was impossible to correct the colour cast of the mixed (warm) LED and the daylight from outdoors, I tried several options in Nik’s Silver Efex Pro2 software. But in the end, the in-camera black and white conversion worked best.

Thanks for viewing.

Week 48 – and half of 49 – in pictures

I haven’t written anything since over a week. And I also didn’t take many photos, partly because my colleague Arno is off for his holiday, partly because the weather didn’t play nice at times, and I haven’t been out that much during my lunch breaks.

But apart from the usual cat photos, there were some opportunities, like a pre-Christmas concert from Zuleikha and some of her schoolmates. So let me show you some here:

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Don’t stop!

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Power lines, a chimney, and clouds

Me at work, lit by my monitor

Me at work, lit by my monitor

The next ones don’t have titles. They’re all titled “Vorweihnachtliches Konzert der Prälat-Diehl-Schule”
http://praelat-diehl-schule.de/vorweihnachtliches-konzert-der-praelat-diehl-schule/:

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Then I took some high ISO images, with the maximum ISO set to 6400 (and the camera did make use of that at times)…

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And all of a sudden, we had some first snow:

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The making of… a snow cat

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“Your new Mützenständer!” – that is what Zuleikha said to Mitchie when she saw her mum’s cap on my bass guitar…

As always, thanks for viewing and reading.