I set myself a little goal this year for photography. I have never really taken any really good long exposure images. Sure I have taken a few a while back and I have experimented with long exposure light painting both with still life and some model work. (You can find those on this blog too if your interested). This year I want to learn a test working with ND filters and try a little harder to create some images with more movement, both landscape and urban landscape. I know this is a diversion from the hotel work but I have a small window between the hotel work and some traveling in the camper this weekend to Henley On Thames and Windsor. So I took the time to try out a new 9stop ND filter I purchased from amazon. It’s a mid priced range and will be suitable for my use for now.
I used the X-E1 and the X100 to experiment with. I made an adaptor so that I can connect the 58mm ND filter to the 18-55, the 35mm 52mm and the 49mm X100. This is accomplished using a combination of step reducing rings. I will do a separate blog on the ND filter and rings. For now I will cover this trip and a few first off long exposures..
The settings I used was a little T&E approach. Using a Joby gorilla tripod and the X100 I set up this shot on the side of a wooden walkway. The camera was set to manual, narrow aperture and I increased the exposure time until I found an exposure levels liked. I used a mechanical shutter release and the digital time while viewing the count timer. This is such a simple way of marketing a long exposure shot. Hold open the shutter until you find a goof exposure. 3-4 shots and your dialled in with out too much trouble. This image was taken at dusk and with the X100 and ND. The previous shot was taken mid morning and with the X-E1.
I worked with the XE1 in the same way operating the shutter using the mechanical trigger and from the Joby tripod at all times. It’s was a little tricky in bright sunlight to work out the best exposure but I think with practice I should get better. I am looking forward to taking more shots of landscape like this and possible some urban landscapes when the opportunity arises.
In general using the X-E1 for long exposure is a breeze with this kit. Small, light easy to set up and a super simple mechanical trigger to open the shutter. Very my looking forward to more long exposures. We were heading out to Windsor next in the camper so gear packed away.
Arriving in Windsor I decided to take the 18-55mm on the X-E1 body, its my “tourist” lens. It’s a great lens for street but it can lack some of the crazy depth of field shots I often prefer shooting with the 35mm f/1.4, the shallow dof and dreamy bokeh is stunning but for the street shots of Windsor the 18-55 would do just fine. Windsor castle being the largest residential castle in the world is none too shabby and rather photogenic from a number of angle. Check out the next bunch of images, street shooting is just great to to catch other using their cameras.
As you can see this lens and body combination makes for a fabulous combination in the street. Wide angle when you need capture the a typical snap shot yet 55mm f4 makes for wonderful zoom shots to get close with shallow depth of field. Leaving Windsor and heading north east back home stopping over in Moulton and taking in some field walking I chose to take the 35mm f1.4 taking in some of the flowers in the woodland walks and tracks over the oil seed fields.