Just back from a week in the Azores, a destination my wife and I had long wanted to see.
Full set here: Azores
We had an unscheduled stop in Angra do Heroismo on Terceira, as the airport on Sao Miguel was fogbound. Time for just a short stroll round a very interesting town.
Vasco da Gama statue by Martin Connolly, on Flickr
Angra do Heroismo by Martin Connolly, on Flickr
Some highlights from Sao Miguel in no particular order:
Near Furnas by Martin Connolly, on Flickr
The water here really is that colour due to volcanic activity:
Furnas Lake by Martin Connolly, on Flickr
More hydrangeas! by Martin Connolly, on Flickr
Towards Povoacao by Martin Connolly, on Flickr
Salta do Prego waterfall by Martin Connolly, on Flickr...
I recently spent a week on the beautiful Portuguese island of Madeira and in particular the main city, Funchal. These are some monochrome impressions of my trip, taken with X-Pro2 and X100T with a couple of guest appearances by my trusty GR. The macro shots, and a few of the others were taken with the Carl Zeiss Touit 50mm Macro - a surprisingly flexible and usable travel lens.
Let's start with a bit of "car porn" - A beautiful Austin 12 and a 1960s Opel:
Madeira Funchal May 2016 X100T Austin and Opel 2 mono par Lightmancer, on ipernity
A real REO Speedwagon:
Madeira Funchal May 2016 XPro2 Car Show 3 mono par Lightmancer, on ipernity
and a temperature gauge:
Madeira Funchal May 2016 XPro2 Car Show 6 mono par Lightmancer, on ipernity
A beetles reunion:
Madeira Funchal May 2016 XPro2 Car Show 28 mono par Lightmancer, on ipernity
Then off to the market for some fresh fish:
Madeira Funchal May 2016 Xpro2 Touit 50mm Mercado 7 mono par Lightmancer, on ipernity...
My girlfriend and I got back from our 3 week vacation in Indonesia almost a month ago, and I'm slowly getting around to sorting through the photographs. Used the RX100 for all the underwater stuff, and the A7r for everything 'topside'.
We spent one week in Raja Ampat, in Papua, eastern Indonesia. Fantastic, breathtaking dive destination, but expensive to reach and to dive. But worth every penny! We dove for 1 week, 19 dives.
Underwater photography is really quite a big challenge for me, because it combines requirements for situational awareness (diving well and controlling bouyancy/position in the water), flash use (at depth or for smaller stuff, available light makes things difficult) and positioning, and use of so-called 'wet lenses', which is what makes the RX100 a really great, relatively affordable diving system: everything from extreme wideangle to macro during a single dive, in a package that's travel friendly and 'affordable'. This was the second ever trip with a strobe, with new dive gear (finally bought my own), and occasional current diving, and the first real dives in almost a year, so the learning curve was pretty steep.
- Original Sony RX100
- Acquapazza aluminum housing
- INON wet lenses (macro and fisheye)
- Single INON strobe
The fisheye (UFL-165) is the weak link for me, due to vingetting a soft corners if I forget to stop down quite a lot, and I have now bought what should be a better lens (UWL-100 with dome), but it is a lot heavier. Which means fiddling with floating devices to make sure the camera is relatively 'neutral' underwater, making it easier to hold and use. Underwater photography is a whole different ballgame! Overall, the camera itself is a fraction of the cost of the system, and that's buying the wet lenses second hand (housing 800, strobe 400, wet lenses 300 total), but compared to getting a housing, ports, etc. for my a7R or even E-M1, it's downright affordable overall, and travels much lighter.
My daughter was finishing up her final medical school rotation in Brooklyn this last week (with graduation and the start of her residency in June) and I went up for a few days to get in my NYC fix and to make sure she had someone around to celebrate with when she finished up what has been a pretty gargantuan four year undertaking...
So the purpose of the trip wasn't photograph, but I brought some gear along and did a fair amount of shooting anyway. I was staying in a part of Brooklyn without much to shoot, but made it into Manhattan and some of Brooklyn's more interesting neighborhoods as well. Almost everything I kept was street stuff, plus a few scenics from the Brooklyn Heights promenade. I mostly ended up walking around with either the DF and a single prime (a 24 or a 35) or with just the Coolpix A. For 95% of what I shot, I could have gone with just the Coolpix A.
The most interesting thing for me were the ultra-orthodox Jews in the Borough Park area where I was staying (my daughter's hospital was just around the corner). I'm nominally Jewish myself (raised as a reformed Jew, but only hold onto a few cultural vestiges as an adult), so somewhere waaaaay back in my ancestry, these are my people. And yet, when I'm in their midst, they're as foreign/alien to me as anyone on earth could be. They remind me a lot of the Amish, who I live around, the key difference being that the Amish live and work on farms and the the ultra-orthodox are more urban creatures. And many of them, from what I can tell, spend their days and nights studying Torah. Even the little kids, while acting like any other little kid, dress and wear their hair in the traditional and mandated ways. I must say I'm aware of a connection more than I actually feel one. Here are a few from this neighborhood, which I was somewhat reticent to shoot, but I did anyway...
NYC 2016 - DF-21-2-Edit...
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