B is for Black

No birds that I noticed today. Sorry. I am still captivated by my look back at our Antarctica trip. Most of my bird shots were taken with DSLRs. However it is fair to say that many times it was incredibly useful to have a pocket camera. Many landscapes / seascapes were taken with what is rather disparagingly called a Point and Shoot. These are nowadays anything but P&S. They have the capacity to produce RAW files, they have good lenses and they are often highly customisable. Indeed one blogger I follow bemoans the end of the ‘simple’ camera, the one without all the bells and whistles. Their failing continues to be poor image quality at higher ISOs. This is gradually changing. My Fuji X100s has excellent high ISO image quality but has a fixed 35mm equivalent lens. But for Antarctica I took a camera that was not new. The thinking being that I was likely to expose it to seawater and sub-zero temperatures. If it packed up, so be it. I took my Lumix DMC LX5. Made my Panasonic but with a very decent Leica lens built in.

I set it to take RAW and jpeg files of each shot so if Mrs. Ha wanted to nip down to Fotomax to get some printed she could do so without waiting 3 years for me to process them. When I looked at the RAW files I decided they were a little grainy. That meant of course they were ideal for the black and white conversion treatment. So to prove that you don’t need super-expensive gear to take half decent scenic shots, here are 4 I chose this afternoon.

BW-landscape Outlook-BW Whaling-station-BW BWseascapeAnd finally, if you got this far……….. drum roll:




24 thoughts on “B is for Black

  1. We all know it’s the photographer what makes a good image and these are good, Mr. Ha. It is a pleasure to continue to enjoy your Antarctic trip with you. And one can never have too many penguins, can we? <(")

  2. The last B&W one is gorgeous, lots of drama and Antarctica atmosphere. And – drum roll… – the King penguin is wonderful and a very intimate photo.
    Keep the Antarctica shots coming, Andrew – no matter which camera you used ๐Ÿ˜‰

    • Marylin, the houses are an old whaling station, actually in South Georgia not the Antarctic itself. Grytviken is the place where Sir Ernest Shackleton is buried. Wonderful place.

    • We are keen to go again, Bruce but the cost is astronomic from HK. Its about 40 hours door to door just to get on a boat. I refuse to do that in economy. I am 6′ 3″ tall and not designed for long haul travel. The smaller boats fill up quickly – ours was max 100 pax – and are more expensive each year. I don’t think we had change out of US$50k. Once in a lifetime………. but I want to go again.

  3. I really like those black and whites, especially number two – very evocative of how I imagine Antarctica to be. And of course, the penguin. Think I’m going to have to go out and get me a toy one…

  4. Jaw dropping stuff. The monochrome ones ooze atmosphere and the last one deserves not just a drum roll, but a standing ovation – the colour and clarity is amazing. Fabulous photographs, Andrew, really terrific.

    • Thanks Lottie. I just wanted to disabuse people of the notion that I always use heavy (and expensive) kit. I have better landscapes shot with the 5D3 but for ease of use and peace of mind the Lumix was a godsend. I didn’t take any bird shots with it that I can recall but I may have done.

      • Personally, I don’t give a stuff what camera someone uses, it’s what they do with it that i’m interested in. Just for the record though there is a human quality in analogue photography that I really admire and which I think is missing in digital You are one hell of a photographer, Andrew. Your the sort of person that could make a masterpiece shooting with a pin hole camera.

      • Hahaha! I promise you, that dog was SO nearly sent back to the dog pound! Pete was not at all happy. These are his drawing books from his days at the Royal College of Art so they are very precious to him. Mr CS is in the dog house

      • Tell Pete that dog pee is imbued with archival qualities. The drawings will last much longer now. They may smell a bit but they will age better.

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