Fa Yuen Street Market

Night photography poses a challenge for any photographer.

Even with a digital camera, you’ll need a wide aperture, longer exposures, perhaps a tripod, or image stabilization if you’re doing it handheld, and you’ll need to have a high ISO setting.

Auto-focus might be a problem if it gets too dark, as a digital camera may not be able to find a focal point quickly enough.

So if you’re a street photographer with a film rangefinder loaded with Ilford XP2 at ISO 400, the odds are somewhat stacked against you at night. This is one of those times when you wish you’d caved in and bought that Fuji X100s.

A street market at night, as it happens, is one of those wonderful scenarios where everything comes together.

As the light bulbs are bright, you’ll have natural vignetting. The goods might have been arranged to form a perfect frame within a frame.

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The stall hawkers, even when they spot you, would be too preoccupied with selling their wares to their customers, while the customers’ attention would be on those wares.

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This person did spot me…

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Oh well … and to challenge myself, this:

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Thanks for reading.

Grids, lines and colours

I’m now convinced that Hong Kong is a street photographer’s paradise.

I’ve been paying attention to grids, lines and colours and it seems to me that all I have to do is wait a little bit and the composition would fall into place after a while.

Mongkok is rather good for that sort of thing.

For example, the rectangular green grids of this candy store window has a lomography edge to it, and all I had to do was to memorise where the framelines of my beloved Leica M6 would be and wait until someone walks into the frame. Check out the reflections and the Chinese characters – they’re there and yet not so overwhelming:

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The diagonal lines were calling out to me as I was on a bridge:

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And finally, I like the grungy and yet contemplative mood this evokes:

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And I’m keeping a close watch on my diminishing supply of Kodak Portra 400 film with which these were taken…

Thanks for coming by today.