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Streets in Eindhoven on a hot and sunny day

Discussion in 'Street and Documentary' started by addieleman, Aug 25, 2016.

  1. addieleman

    addieleman Passionate amateur

    Nov 13, 2012
    Netherlands
    Ad Dieleman
    The acquisition of a Sony FE 1.8/50 really put my picture-taking in overdrive, I got accustomed very easily to its field of view as opposed to that of the FE 2.8/35 that always feels too wide. So this morning I decided to take the FE 1.8/50 on a street photography mission. I just read an interview with Joel Meyerowitz in a Dutch photo magazine where he stated street photography as he had done it, wouldn't be possible anymore these days: people are much more suspicious, especially when phones started taking pictures. He stated: "Henri Cartier-Bresson couldn't have worked in Paris these days the way he did". So maybe, just maybe, it's not me! Problem is, when I walk the streets I see a picture about every 10 seconds or so, fleeting expressions on people's faces and their interactions. When I point a camera at people, I experienced reactions can get quite hostile, which is very probably related by the way I behave; anyway, I've given up on that and I decided that I just would take pictures of pretty scenes as the main subject and if people lighten up the scene, that's just a bonus. If nothing else, this proved liberating and I also noticed that nobody reacted to my picture taking. It's been awhile that I had so much fun doing this.

    I regularly watch Kai's videos on Digitalrev, just to see his street photographs, I think he makes some excellent stuff. He seems to prefer 50mm over 35mm for this work as well. Still, I'm quite sure I couldn't get away with his street portraiture style of shooting. Maybe people in Hongkong react differently and/or he has a knack for it.

    Anyway, talked enough, here are my shots of an hour's walk in the Eindhoven city center. I took the A7R2 and the FE 1.8/50 and 2.8/35 with me, but only used the 35mm for a few shots. All shots shown here are made with the 50mm lens.

    i-BjFr2Mx.

    i-dKzNzmb.

    i-57RdZcc.

    i-zFxsjh2.

    i-Zv5hb4b.

    i-xptCjPD.

    i-kbDLDJv.

    i-cL5pr62.
     
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  2. WoodWorks

    WoodWorks Super Moderator

    Dec 12, 2012
    Ashland, OR, USA
    David
    That one! :thumbup: :laugh:
     
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  3. roundball

    roundball TalkEmount Hall of Famer

    Oct 8, 2013
    USA
    The lady on the bench sees you and I think is pulling out her Pepper Spray !!!!!
     
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  4. addieleman

    addieleman Passionate amateur

    Nov 13, 2012
    Netherlands
    Ad Dieleman
    Who knows what I escaped from... Maybe next time I'd better bring a 500mm to keep a safe distance!
     
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  5. fractal

    fractal TalkEmount All-Pro

    Jun 17, 2014
    Southeastern PA
    Chris
    Nice shots! I have to ask though, why so much noise in #4?
     
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  6. NickCyprus

    NickCyprus Super Moderator

    Oct 11, 2012
    Cyprus
    Nick
    I feel exactly the same about street photography - whenever I attempt it, (usually when I see a video of people doing street photography, great fearless people like Kai :D ) as soon as I hit the streets I feel shy to take photos of people...

    Nice photos although what ISO did you use for #4 if I may ask? There's something really strange on that one (at least on my screen)

    Thanks for sharing these Ad! I'm in a dilemma right now where I HAVE to buy an AF 50mm for a paid job in two weeks and I'm torn between doing it for the cheap and get the FE 50 1.8 or pull the trigger for the expensive (for me) Zeiss 55 1.8 :(
    The latter will really blow my budget and put my financials into stress but I've watched every video review on the 50 1.8 and I'm not convinced about its AF speed/accuracy...
     
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  7. addieleman

    addieleman Passionate amateur

    Nov 13, 2012
    Netherlands
    Ad Dieleman
    No. 4 is taken at ISO 100, but it is seriously cropped (2646x1765 from 7952x5304, so about 3x linear) and I had to bump exposure up to +3.40 and Shadows to +56 in Lightroom because the subjects were in deep shade while the background was in the glaring sun, resulting in a somewhat HDR-like look. As you can tell, I don't care too much about some noise.
     
    Last edited: Aug 25, 2016
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  8. addieleman

    addieleman Passionate amateur

    Nov 13, 2012
    Netherlands
    Ad Dieleman
    That's a tough one! I wasn't concerned about the slow AF, but AF-S is really slow, though AF-C on the A7R2 does a reasonable job; AF-S is not only slow, but I missed focus on several occasions which is even worse. I even considered putting the lens up for sale again because of this lack of reliability but I seem to get by well enough when using AF-C. I am gambling that Sony will issue a firmware with improved AF performance, but that won't help you now. I very briefly tried it on the A7 and on that camera AF is reasonable if you set Live View settings to OFF, making the lens focus wide-open; I don't know what loss of sharpness is incurred by that due to focus shift, didn't test yet, but I suspect it's significant, otherwise Sony would have opted for wide-open focussing on the A7R2 instead of what it is now, focussing at working aperture. Reportedly the Zeiss-designed FE 1.8/55 focusses wide-open on the A7R2 and will perform better on the A7 as well. I'll go out on a limb and say that you'll probably be disappointed by the FE 1.8/50, so for a paid job I'd bite the bullet and go for the Zeiss 55mm. If you can find a used one, you can always sell it for the same kind of money you bought it for and fix your financial discomfort.

    Maybe I can do some more testing of the FE 1.8/50 on the A7 tonight or tomorrow, will keep you posted.
     
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  9. NickCyprus

    NickCyprus Super Moderator

    Oct 11, 2012
    Cyprus
    Nick
    Thank you so much Ad for this very helpful post !

    To be honest, I had settled in my mind for the 55mm but was basically wishing to hear a different perhaps approach for the 50mm - that isn't the case :D so 55mm it is then ;)
     
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  10. bdbits

    bdbits TalkEmount Veteran

    400
    Sep 10, 2015
    Bob
    I never do street photography, partly because I sympathize with those who do not want someone taking their picture. If I am in a sea of faces or part of the background, I probably am not going to care. But I do not want to be a primary part of somebody's random photo just because I am out running an errand or whatever. For me, it violates my sense of individual privacy. Yes I know, public spaces and all that... Yet I don't want an unsolicited photo featuring me to show up in a local exhibition, competition, or even a newspaper (unless I am the story or just part of the background).

    This is likely not a popular stance on a photography forum, but it is how I look at it.
     
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  11. fractal

    fractal TalkEmount All-Pro

    Jun 17, 2014
    Southeastern PA
    Chris
    Thanks, I figured either majorly cropped or higher ISO. So it's basically a cropped photo at around ISO 1000.
    I also find the noise very acceptable.
     
  12. addieleman

    addieleman Passionate amateur

    Nov 13, 2012
    Netherlands
    Ad Dieleman
    You're welcome! Just did a quick test with the A7 and FE 1.8/50 with Live View settings ON vs. OFF and for the life of me, I can't see any difference between sharpness in the two sets of pictures (made with f/1.8 thru f/8). You can download the raws if you are so inclined.
     
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  13. addieleman

    addieleman Passionate amateur

    Nov 13, 2012
    Netherlands
    Ad Dieleman
    I understand your point of view, that's part of my hesitation to do this kind of photography, even when I myself wouldn't care to be in this kind of photos.
     
  14. Mus Aziz

    Mus Aziz TalkEmount Top Veteran

    566
    Sep 3, 2015
    Mus
    I've always enjoyed street photography, and still do. My favourite lens is a 35mm which forces me to be quite close to the subject or area I'm focussing. I do get the occasional "f&%$ off" but I guess I'm used to it. Lol...
    :biggrin:

    Nice pics Ad.
     
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  15. WoodWorks

    WoodWorks Super Moderator

    Dec 12, 2012
    Ashland, OR, USA
    David
    The only time I've ever taken what I consider "successful" street shots is when I've made contact with the subject somehow, even if it's only a nod. I'm just as uncomfortable as any of you about being a "lurker."
     
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  16. unlo

    unlo Sony ******

    Jan 19, 2014
    Ohio
    Matt
    << guy with beard and long hair.... Also 6'5"..... Try and take a picture anywhere in a public place and try not to look creepy = impossiburrr

    Loved your shots AD. When ever I do attempt street photos, I tend to do what I see most touristy people do and aim the camera in a high traffic area and wait for the right moment.. It can be painstakingly difficult but sometimes it works.

    Sent from my A0001 using Tapatalk
     
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  17. rayvonn

    rayvonn TalkEmount Regular

    34
    Jan 3, 2016
    Very interesting OP and responses. Not sure an A7 and accompanying lens is the most stealthy of setups for street shooting, an A6xxx or Nex camera seems better suited. Sony also has the tools needed to produce a fine GR/X70/Coolpix A fixed focal lens apsc camera as well which I'd like to see.
     
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  18. addieleman

    addieleman Passionate amateur

    Nov 13, 2012
    Netherlands
    Ad Dieleman
    In my experience the A7R2 with an FE 2.8/35 or 1.8/50 doesn't attract much attention; once you mount an FE 4/24-70 with its lens hood, things become different. However, I never feel comfortable trying to be stealthy, I just take out my camera and start shooting. The series I showed here is probably a one-off experiment and I think I'll revert to capturing a scene and wait for people to move away or be in a position that helps the composition; when doing so, people mostly ignore me as I'm just standing there for some time with a camera to my eye not pointed at them.
     
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  19. addieleman

    addieleman Passionate amateur

    Nov 13, 2012
    Netherlands
    Ad Dieleman
    Some of today, more in the vein of trying to capture typical scenes in my home town instead of people. I think ultimately that interests me more.

    Bike park near the railway station.
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    Smaller bike park, the city center is full of them. Bikes aren't always treated respectfully.
    i-JNbVfPt.

    Couldn't pass up on this one. Two guys fidgeting with a bike before leaving on what looks to be a serious tour.
    i-x9VgsxD.
     
    Last edited: Aug 29, 2016
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  20. MAubrey

    MAubrey TalkEmount Top Veteran

    Ah! I was in Leiden for an academic conference in 2011(?). That was my one visit to your beautiful country. I was so envious of your bicycle culture. We're nowhere near that kind of saturation in either of the two countries where I have lived (Canada, US). I can dream though...
     
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