Portraits at Limoncello

Limoncello Delicatessen is a small Italian shop downtown Szentendre (Hungary) named after a lemon-flavored liqueur for some reason. They sell really good coffee, ice-cream and a wide sort of premium Italian grocery.

I visit the place quite frequently because of the truly remarkable coffee they make which is quite unusual in Hungary unfortunately.

I have quickly realized that this place is a really good spot for portrait photography as many nice and interesting people used to come together here. On top of it, a huge white wall on the opposite side of this narrow street acts as the perfect reflector many times during sunny days. As I almost exclusively shoot using available light, this is a really nice feature to have.

I shoot people only who I know enough as I don’t want to ruin the business by acting as a paparazzi. Still, I have managed to put together a small pile of portraits already I shoot there. I think the shoots can reflect a bit of the atmosphere of the place as well as the emotions and personality of these lovely people I asked being model back.

This time all images are digital, but as usual, you can find the names of some manual lenses among the descriptions of the images.

Eszter (Limoncello, Szentendre, Hungary) Canon EOS 450D, CZJ Pancolar 80mm f/1.8  @ f/1.8

The following collage is published here in color for the reason that colors really contribute to the overall look and sensation of these images which I missed so much when I tried to make good a B&W version. The matching colors of her eyes and the scarf, as well as the warm tone of the hair light on the left image, were obliviously last at every attempt of B&W conversion.


Eszter (Limoncello, Szentendre, Hungary) Canon EOS 450D, Hansa 135mm f/2.8 @ f/4

Light pollution

After the rather technical post about the true beauty Exakta Varex II, I thought it is about time to come up with something easier to digest.  I looked into my photo-stream on Flickr and found these shoots I took back in 2009. I had such a great fun by doing these I decided to share them again here.

I was in Girona (Spain) and I did many night shoots by the time so I waited for getting dark and I climbed up to a small hill nearby the town. I was pretty much amazed by the colors of the sky painted by the lights of the city.  The sky must have been covered by clouds and most of the light was reflected back to earth. This combination resulted this deep orange glow which I liked so much and gave me the sensation of walking on another planet.

In the meantime there was a big celebration in the city because as it turned out the Football Club of Barcelona won an important match that night. Therefore at some point strange sounds, sirens of alarming cars, voices of yelling people and violent explosions of fireworks broke the inner peace of my faithful photographic ritual. I am not a huge football fun so I had no idea what was going on. I thought that these people must had gone crazy down there which increased of my strange experience a lot.

Next day I thought the whole story over and I realized that I was not a tiny bit less crazy than the football fanatics. I was out alone at night on an abandoned construction site relatively far from the city  in a foreign country armed with a crap tripod and a compact camera. It sounds not so safe despite the fact that I was not really attractive and the place is generally very calm and peaceful. Well, who is crazy is always just the matter of the point of view, right?

Post apocalyptic atmosphere

Edifici Narcís Monturiol

I am a huge fan of post-apocalyptic movies, games, and atmosphere overall. In fact, I really would like to participate or work on such a movie one day. Of course being a mortal I have very little chance to do it, but I had to realize that the receipt of post-apocalyptic scenery is actually very simple.

My main ingredients are some early morning mist, a high tech solar cell covered concrete building (very easy to find), an old Exakta loaded with  Kodak Gold and 2 vintage glasses (Zeiss Jena Tessar 50mm f/2.8 and Meyer Optic Trioplan 100mm f/2.8).

For some reason, these shoots remind me of the movie Delicatessen which I can faithfully recommend to watch. OK, there aren’t any high tech in that movie, but the fog creates a similar sensation to me at the opening scenes.

This building, by the way, is a member of the Technological Park of the University in Girona in Spain and I am lucky enough to work in this strange complex. I took these photos a morning during my regular walk to work.

Interesting note that this building is named after Narcís Monturiol i Estarriol who invented the first fully functional submarine. Also interesting the fact that (as far as I know) the solar cells were actually never in use even though the construction has finished around 2009. I hope they will be operational one day. I guess there must be a bit expensive for decoration purposes only. I love the way they look like anyway.

Girona (Spain), Exakta Varex IIa, Meyer Trioplan 100mm f/2.8, Kodak Gold 200, Canoscan 9900F
Girona, Exakta Varex IIa, Meyer Trioplan 100mm f/2.8, Kodak Gold 200, Canoscan 9900F
Girona, Exakta Varex IIa, Carl Zeiss Jena Tessar 50mm f/2.8, Kodak Gold 200, Canoscan 9900F
Girona, Exakta Varex IIa, Carl Zeiss Jena Tessar 50mm f/2.8, Kodak Gold 200, Canoscan 9900F
Girona, Exakta Varex IIa, Carl Zeiss Jena Tessar 50mm f/2.8, Kodak Gold 200, Canoscan 9900F
Girona (Catalonia), Exakta Varex IIa, Meyer Trioplan 100mm f/2.8, Kodak Gold 200, Canoscan 9900F
Girona, Exakta Varex IIa, Meyer Trioplan 100mm f/2.8, Kodak Gold 200, Canoscan 9900F

Roll diary

Introduction

Being a camera addict I usually carry around at least 2-3 cameras of different kinds. Most of the time I have my actual favorite film camera in my bag plus a small compact for measuring the light. This set is mixed up with my medium format madness and the expectation of my family members of having good digital images about family occasions so I frequently bring my budget DSLR.

The fact that I always acting like a packman packed with cameras and lenses has 3 main consequences:

  1. I cannot easily write a “What is in my camera bag” type of post since my bag transforms every week. (Ok, I have 3-4 different setups I  used to carry around depending on my mood.)
  2. My bag is very often reaches the mass of a medium size star with a huge gravity field which attracts more cameras.
  3. I use many different kind of films and sensors so it is hard to select matching images to create unified looking set for a thematic series. It is also happening because I love casual shooting during pointless walks without a concept.

To overcome on the 3rd consequence I decided to use the images of my very last roll of film and present it as a diary recorded in photos. Even though there are different topics covered in this series and the photos were taken during several walks in the last couple of weeks, it has a quite unified look due to the same roll of film.

Diary details

  • Camera: Cosina CSM
  • Lens: Cosinon 55mm f/2.1
  • Film: Fomapan ISO100, 36
  • Developer: Kodak D76
  • Scanner: Canoscan 9900F
  • Period: 2012 Jan-Feb

Morning at the river

We are living very close to the biggest river of Hungary (Danube) and I like so much to have a walk early morning (before work) at the side of it. There is a tiny island I used to visit because it is really quite and peaceful at the mornings especially at this cold part of the year. You can hear an army of birds using twitter though. These shoots were taken on an extremely cold day at the temperature around -20 degrees Celsius.

Afternoon downtown

The place we live in is a quite lovely little town with a great history which I don’t even try to introduce here. It almost all the year filled with tourists and their cameras. Seriously, I could start the local …camerastyle.com site focusing on tourists’ equipment. (I do love these sites: tokyocamerastyle.com, saopaulocamerastyle, csmcamerastyle) Anyhow there are tremendous amount of photos  taken about the town every day so I don’t really feel like to shoot there as much. Still I always find a little detail worth to capture.

Business plate made of shadow 1.
Business plate made of shadow 2.
11

 Bus stops

Bus stops are great contrast against the downtown, they are regularly dirty, covered by graffiti and offensive adverts about products I will never buy (because I spend all my money on film of course).   These are places used by everyone but seemingly belongs to nobody and therefore nobody really cares the way they look like.

Cosina CSM, Cosinon 55mm f/2.1, Fomapan 100, Kodak D76

This photo is digital, taken with my Ricoh GR Digital camera. Please consider it as a “making of” photo.

Sunbath

Cosina CSM, Cosinon 55mm f/2.1, Fomapan 100, Kodak D76