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I take pictures of things. Mostly with film. Mostly with cameras. I am an engineer by trade. What really makes me happy, though, is to find an old camera at a swap meet or antique store and bring it back into working order with a few hours at the workbench. I then like to take them out and shoot some film. This blog is in large part the result of that activity.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

f-16, hillsboro, August 2011


I just returned from a short trip to Portland, Oregon.  My parents, sister and brother-in-law and nephews live in the greater Portland area. Every couple of years I manage to get up there in the Augusty time frame and see both them and the Oregon International Airshow at Hillsboro airport.   This was the year for that.  I happened to get up there during summer.  Both days of it.  It was 97 degrees at the airport on the day of the airshow.  I said "I can't move up here, it gets too hot" much to the amusement of the Portlanders.  Well, it was funny the first couple of times.  Then I'm pretty sure it got old.


I took a couple of cameras, of course.  My new and mostly unexplored Nikon D7000 and a pair of F3s for black and white.  It will be a few weeks before I develop the black and white, but digital is instant, so here it is.  Now, I have a tendency when shooting digital to over do it.  As an example, I took over 500 frames on Saturday.  Of course, in my defense, I had the Nikon set on 'fast', which sounds like a machine gun.  As long as I hold down the shutter button, it takes five frames a second.  dat dat dat dat dat.  This is pretty useful when shooting a fighter jet when it is cruising by at 500 knots or so.  Less useful when shooting something on the ground, unless you like to always get three nearly identical frames of a parked airplane.


I took a couple of lenses, of course.  Manual focus for film, Autofocus for digital.   My normal trio for the 400 speed black and white film body, i.e. the series e 50, 28 and 100mm.  I also snuck an 85mm f2 in there just for fun.  For the 100 speed film body I brought the 35-200mm zoom which is what went to the airshow.  It certainly seemed good, but I'll know for sure when the film is developed.  For the digital I brought the 18-55 vr and the 70-300 G zooms.   I also managed to get over to Blue Moon Camera and Machine which is a really cool little shop that specializes in older film cameras and manual typewriters.  I sold one of my Spotmatics through them and I've got another one (an sp1000) on consignment there, so I wanted to visit it.  While I was there I managed to pick up an 18-200 vr zoom for a really good price, so I had to bring that home along with four Spotmatic bodies that Blue Moon didn't want to consign.  Needless to say the camera bag was packed on the trip home.


The shot above was taken with the D7000 and the 70-300 zoom.  The F-16 is zipping by at something just under supersonic.  He has the afterburner engaged; you can see the diamond shaped shock waves aft of the tailpipe.  You can also see a little bit of vapor cloud on each wing right over the fattest part of the wing just aft of the leading edge from about halfway to nearly the wingtips.  This means that he is just scooting right along.  Sadly, you can also see some chromatic aberrations, also called purple fringing around the highlights on the canopy and the pitot tube.  This happens when the different wavelengths of light are refracted differently by one or more of the lens elements.  It is exaggerated by shooting wide open, which for this lens at this focal length is f6.3, which doesn't seem particularly wide, but apparently is.    Were I to pony up for a more expensive lens I could reduce that, but, uh...Oh, yeah, I did.  I just didn't bring it with me on Saturday.


Clearly I need a new camera bag.

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