Green on Film

One more short trip through green fields, this time with my Plaubel Makina 67, a favorite camera of mine. Loaded with Kodak Portra 160 film, a newer emulsion film which replaced the NC and VC versions in 2011. This is great emulsion, which resembles more the NC version, great for scanning with very wide dynamic range and fine grain. I usually shoot with the 400 version since the optimum apertures of the Makina are f/8 and f/11, but for landscape work on a sunny day, the 160 works better.

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I shot the whole roll handheld (which is something I don’t really do with medium format film and landscape work), but this camera really was made to be shot without a tripod. It is one of the smallest 6×7 cameras ever made, and the folded mechanism makes it a very portable camera. A fragile construction to be honest, but when used carefully it will last forever.

The 80mm f/2.8 lens is actually a 40mm (full frame equivalent), and this is a perfect focal length for a travel camera, including landscape work.

The Portra 160 is a wonderful film, and together with the 400 version have become my main choices these days.

Enjoy the rest of the images.

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©2015 Konstantinos Besios. All Rights Reserved.

Posted in Analog, Landscapes | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 7 Comments

Green

Since I got the Sony a7s, it has almost replaced any other camera I was using both for video and stills. Being a very small full frame camera with insane high ISO performance, means I can carry it all day long and be able to cope with almost any photographic situation. The A7s with the 24-70mm, Voigtlander 15mm, and Voigtlander 50mm f/1.1 weights about 1.5 kg and fits in a very small camera bag. This is a very light and comfortable bag to carry around all day !

I got so used to the images I was getting from the a7s, that I almost forgot about the image quality of my “serious photographic workhorse”, the Nikon D800E. So, yesterday I took the Nikon for a few landscape photos.

 

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Well, all I can say (for one more time), is that the images produced by the D800E are at a completely different level. This is a wonderful photo camera bested only by the newer D810. It’s large and heavy (for my standards), but for serious landscape work (and not only!), this is the camera to choose. I also think is a camera that can last for many years since both the resolution and dynamic range are still top notch. ISO performance is OK, but for my landscape or portrait work, this is not really an issue.

So, it was great to shoot again with my Nikon, and I’m sure I will have new images from the D800E soon.

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©2015 Konstantinos Besios. All Rights Reserved.

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , | 2 Comments

Street images with iPhone 5s

A few street photos I shot with the iPhone 5s.

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©2015 Konstantinos Besios. All Rights Reserved.

Posted in iPhone, Street | Tagged , , , | 1 Comment

Wide angle on a snowy day

A few images taken with the Leica M6 and Voigtlander 15mm lens, using Fuji Superia XTRA-400 film.

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©2015 Konstantinos Besios. All Rights Reserved.

 

Posted in Analog | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Infrared photos with Leica M8

After my unsuccessful efforts to shoot infrared images with the Sony a7s, I’m back to my trusted “IR camera”, the good old Leica M8. Clearly, the best (non modified) camera to shoot good infrared photos !

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©2015 Konstantinos Besios. All Rights Reserved.

Posted in Infrared | Tagged , , , , , | 4 Comments

Infrared images with Sony a7s (part 2)

This is my second effort trying to shoot infrared images with the Sony a7s. As you will see form the results, I am staying with the Leica M8 for IR photography !

 

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This time I brought my tripod and shot at ISO 100 and 200 to get clean images. With an aperture f/4 I had to use 30 seconds exposures on a bright sunny day in order to get proper exposure. As you can see, the infrared look is not much visible.

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Depending on the subject, I got from “no IR” to “close to IR” photos. A kinda of IR look, but nothing that can be compared with the photos I get from the Leica. Conversion to false colour didn’t work, so black and white was my only option. I think that the IR filter on the a7s sensor is too strong to be able to produce decent infrared photos. So, I am going back to my M8 “IR camera” !

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©2015 Konstantinos Besios. All Rights Reserved.

Posted in Infrared | Tagged , , , | 1 Comment

Infrared images with Sony a7s

Today I shot my first infrared images with the Sony A7s using the Hoya R72 IR filter. I knew that the a7s has a strong ir filter but i was hoping that the superb iso performance could compensate for that and allow me to shoot infrared photos handheld. As it turned out, I was wrong !

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As you can see, I had to use crazy ISO values ranging from 32000 to 409600 (which is the limit of the a7s) in order to shoot at shutter speeds of 1/15. Noise is very evident and the images produced are not good.

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The image above (converted to both b&w and false colour) seems better in terms of showing the infrared effect, but the 409600 ISO used has produced messy artefacts and colour noise.

So, no handheld IR shooting for the a7s. Next time I will use a tripod with more logic ISO values, and see how it goes, I’ll even compare it with the Leica M8 which for me, still remains my favourite (and only) IR camera!

©2015 Konstantinos Besios. All Rights Reserved.

Posted in Infrared | Tagged , , , | 3 Comments

Night images with Sony A7s

Night images I took with the Sony A7s. The high iso performance of this camera is well known, and although I prefer not to push ISO values too much, since even a camera like the A7s has it’s limits, I took a few images during a video shoot with extreme high ISO values (images shown in this post are between ISO 10000 and 128000).

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(Sony A7s, Sony FE 24-70mm f/4)

I was using the Sony FE 24-70mm f/4 lens for shooting video, since the image stabilisation and auto focus features can really come in handy in certain situations. A aperture of f/4 at night is not a good choice, but with the A7s I managed to make some good video footage. I had forgotten to remove my UV filter from the lens, so there is a significant amount of flare on the image above.

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(Sony A7s, Sony FE 24-70mm f/4)

Conversion to black and white always helps when using highs ISOs !!

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(Sony A7s, Sony FE 24-70mm f/4)

I really like the colour on both images, despite the difficult lighting conditions. These are images that could benefit from the use of a tripod, but I don’t carry a tripod with me during my usual walks ! This is where the A7s is really helpful.

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Finally, I post the two images above, as a reminder of what I must avoid when taking images. The black and white conversion gives a character to the image, but still everything looks messed up due to crazy high ISO value. The same goes for the second image, which is taken in very dark lighting conditions and still looks very bright. An impressive image showing the extreme low light performance of the A7s, but at the same time an unreal and pretty bad photo.

So, having a camera like the A7s is really helpful in dealing with difficult light situations, but at the same I find that there should be limits set. Still, the advance of technology is really impressive, not long ago I used to get through all day with a ISO 400 film or the Leica M8 which has a practical ISO limit of 640 !

©2015 Konstantinos Besios. All Rights Reserved.

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , | 1 Comment

Infrared Seascapes

Back to my occasional infrared images. As usual, taken with the Leica M8, Voigtlander Skopar 21mm f/4 and B+W 092 IR filter. I also used a Hoya ND8 filter to shoot long exposures during daylight.

Infrared Seascape

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©2015 Konstantinos Besios. All Rights Reserved.

Posted in Infrared | Tagged , , , , , , | 3 Comments

“Rhyme of the False Orchestra” music video

“Rhyme of the false orchestra” is a song by the band Black Fate from their new album called “Between Visions & Lies”.

A few months ago, me and my friend Jimmy Pats were contacted by the band in order to make a music video, and now it’s finally on air.

A few technical details for those who are interested.

Outdoor scenes were shot with the Nikon D800E and hacked GF1 and GX1 cameras. At the time, I had not purchased the Sony A7s. Thankfully, when we started shooting indoor, I had the A7s with me. The right thing would be to shoot the whole video with one camera for obvious reasons (a7s is the best camera of the three, and it’s much easier to color correct footage from a single camera), but we needed many takes and the amount of time on the specific venue was limited (and we could not find any A7s to rent and use as a second unit). So, we used all three cameras.

Editing and color grading was done in Final Cut X Pro.

Many thanks to Black fate band, for making this music video possible.

©2015 Konstantinos Besios. All Rights Reserved.

Posted in Projects, Video | Tagged , , , | 2 Comments