It’s that time of year again, when the sun never really rises high and dusk sets in at 2pm…
Almost 20 years after it was built, Potsdamer Platz still divides opinions. Some hate it, some shrug it off, some like it. For some, it’s a symbol of Berlin’s post-reunion megolamania, a failed wanna-be Disney-Manhattan. However, for a city that does not take many chances on cutting-edge, innovative architecture, Potsdamer Platz is remarkable in that here at least are a few designs which did not originate in a Lego box. Personnaly, I like it.
This year, one particular focus of my photography was street portraiture, i.e. posed portraits of people encountered in the street. Apart from this, I did continue to capture candid pictures of people throughout Berlin. While 2016 is not quite over yet, I have recently posted a selection of this year’s best such images: Streets of Berlin 2016.
The set is a combination of different styles of street photography. When capturing people on the street, I usually approach them closely enough to capture emotions and expressions, but I also try to include context and background. Depending on the setting, though, it’s also fun to take a step back and let the scenery take center sage, so to speak, such as in the image depicted below.
People sometimes ask me if I prefer to shoot in colour or in black and white. My answer: if there is colour, I prefer colour; else black and white. What this means is: I do love working with colours, so if the colours in a scene are right, I capture them. It’s one of the reasons why I love photographing in places like India or Italy: the colours are just gorgeous. But in settings where the colours are drab, distracting, or just not interesting, I go for black and white. Black and white also seems to add intimacy to a portrait. Sometimes, though, the distinction isn’t that rational, and I go with my mood. However, I usually decide how to shoot beforehand – I very rarely change colour to b&w in post-production. About two thirds of the photos in this set are in colour and the rest are monochrome.
Most of the photos were taken with my two Fuji cameras, the X-T10 and the X-E2; which have become my cameras of choice over the past year. However, there are also a couple of iPhone photos inclouded in the set. As the saying goes, the best camera is always the one you carry with you….
I may have mentioned this earlier, but I love the combination of the Fujifilm X-Series cameras’ low light capability coupled with the 35mm 1.2 lens. Here are a few more shots taken around Berlin at night with both the X-T10 and the X-E2. While black and white works better on account of the higher ISO settings, coming out incredibly sharp and noise-free, the colour ones aren’t so shabby either ….
Here are a couple more examples of night time photography:
One of the perks of being friends with street musicians: you’re often treated to impromptu concerts and jam sessions. Here three members of the Illegal Boys, a Polish group performing around Berlin, rapper Kool Kasai and Malte on accordion got together for a little fun. Being utterly devoid of any musical talent, I’m always amazed how fast and without much of a prologue these guys manage to fuse their different styles into a coherent, convincing whole that makes people stop and listen.
One of the facets I enjoy hugely with the Fujifilm X-T10 camera is shooting at night. Pairing the older 35mm f1.4 lens with the camera’s high, relatively noise-free ISO setting makes it possible to get great results at low light settings.
Here we are again at Berlin’s Südstern. The weather in Berlin has recently once again been very summery, considering it’s already September, which means that we are able to enjoy a few more balmy nights before the onset of the long grey season that once used to be called Autumn and Winter.
There is always something fascinating about watching people in museums and exhibitions….
(Photos from Castle Sans-Souci in Potsdam, Germany; the National Gallery in Oslo, Norway; and the Louvre in Paris)
I have recently uploaded a selection of the photos of sculptures which I took in Oslo, Norway. Entitled “Among the Naked People”, its focus is the Vigeland Sculpture Park, a park featuring more than 200 sculptures in bronze, granite and wrought iron by Gustav Vigeland. As the name I chose for the set implies, the sculptures are all nudes; but more than that, it features groups and couples of varying gender make-up in various poses, from the mundane to the dramatic to the erotic. The scultpures are in themselves very powerful, but gathered together in this park, the overall effect is even more powerful and awe inspiring. I went to the park late in the evening at sundown, and the setting sun made the figures appear even more spectacular. I hope the photos reflect this.
Additionally, I also selected images of a few more sculptures from around Oslo, only a small sample of the numerous statues spread all over the city.
All photos were taken with a Fujifilm X-T10 camera.
Enjoy Among the Naked People.
Click here for Street Photographs from Oslo.
It is a wisdom repeated elsewhere, and a fact that I have experienced often enough to know it is true: a vacation is worth more than new camera equipment in terms of raising one out of a creative slump. When I feel like I have covered every corner of my city, photographed every situation there is to be photographed, then there is nothing like visiting a new place to let me refocus and get motivated again.
As one can guess from some of my previous blog entries, I recently went to Oslo, Norway, for a brief vacation. Against all expectations, the early May weather was lovely. It was sunny, people were out and about, relaxing and relaxed. In other words, the time was perfect for street photography, and I took ample advantage of this.
I now uploaded a set of people photographs from that great city. Most are candid shots but there are also a couple of portraits in there where I asked people’s permission before shooting. However, much like in Berlin, I found that many folks were reluctant to be photographed; to the point where I saw one photographer being accosted by people in a square where he had been shooting, and having to show the photos in his camera to prove that he did not capture those people …
Oslo also features some stunning modern architecture, images of which I will share at a later point as I am currently working on a new series of modern architecture; but some of the architecture is on display in the street photography set as well. A few pictures were taken in the impressive Vigeland Sculpture Park (or, more accurately: the Vigeland Installation in Frogner Park), where I chose to go just before sunset, when Vigeland’s sculptures shine in striking colours – as can be seen from the photo at the top. I will post a separate set of images from the sculpture installation in the next few days.
Meanwhile, enjoy Faces of Oslo.
I used a Fujifilm X-T10 throughout, mostly with a 35mm lens, and a 16-55mm lens for the architectural, wide-angle shots.