street photography

NOLA and Travel Cameras

Back in January, Jenn and I visited New Orleans for the a quick two day visit to see how much of the city we could eat and drink our way through.  Whenever I travel, my biggest dilemma is which cameras to bring. I overpacked and brought along 4 very different cameras all with their own quirks and after sitting on the photos for a few months, I decided to re-start my blog to post images that wouldn't normally make it to Instagram.

The cameras I am showing here are the Voigtlander Bessa R3A, Leica Mini, Sony A7ii, and the Canon 1D-X.

Check out the galleries below for each camera where I write short impressions on each camera and what I think about them. 

Sony A7ii with Canon 50mm 1.4 and Voigtlander 50mm 1.5

The biggest appeal to me when I bought the A7ii was the ability to use all my Canon and M-Mount lenses on a full frame sensor. It is great in low light, the focus peaking is super clean and responsive, and the built in wi-fi makes transferring to my phone very simple. The worst part is the shutter squeak when it fires but it's not a deal breaker for me.

After a year of owning this camera I still have not tried an actual Sony lens so I can't comment on the autofocusing on native lenses, but with the Fotodiox Pro adapter I have, I would never trust any of my Canon lenses. I also occasionally have issues when switching to video where the aperture will glitch and have to be removed before it works correctly.

Voigtlander Bessa R3A with Voigtlander 50mm 1.5 Nokton

This Bessa is my first film rangefinder and after some intensive research I passed on buying a Leica to save a little cash and also to get the option of shooting Aperture Priority. The rangefinder patch is not 100% accurate which is the biggest drawback, but most of the time I shoot with it I am zone focusing for street photography anyways.

The 50mm 1.5 is a more recent purchase and is great. The build feels solid, and the aperture and focus rings are great. For this trip, I kept TMax 400 in it and other than some photos with soft focus, it performed good enough for the money. 

Leica Mini

Jenn found the Leica Mini for me at a thrift store stuff inside a beat up Pentax case and surprised me with it. It has a 35mm 3.5 Elmar lens on it and only has autofocus. The biggest bummer is that every time you turn it on, the flash is automatically activated but I've gotten used to immediately turning it off when needed. Its best use for me is with 400 speed Portra and I don't overthink. When traveling it is also nice because Jenn will carry and shoot with it or my Sony A7ii.

Canon 1D-X with 50mm 1.4 and 100mm 2.8

I bought this a few years back after I had a Canon 1D mkiii stolen and thought I needed to upgrade. For my purposes I don't use it enough now that I don't shoot a ton of skateboarding anymore. That being said, this thing is a beast. It's high iso capabilities mixed with it's great autofocus makes it great for night shooting on the street if you don't mind how loud the shutter is. On this trip I really enjoyed shooting with the 100mm for its extra reach. I haven't really used this lens for anything other than macro before this, but after this trip I think I will be using it much more.

Thanks for checking out the latest update to my blog, let me know what you think!

Passayunk Italian Festival 2016

Today on East Passayunk was an Italian Festival celebrating all things South Philly. There was food, beer, a moon-bounce, and a pasta eating contest that was shockingly decided in SIX seconds (although I could have done it in five). 

Although the Festival only spanned two blocks of Passayunk, there was enough to keep anyone occupied for hours. Luckily the rain held off and music filled the air while people from the area filled the streets to patron the local shops and sample the local cuisine that operated out of curb side tents for the day.

Covered in gravy shrapnel, I headed home to look at photos while wondering what the next event would be. Stay tuned.


Columbus Farmers Market

Early today I headed to a flea market in Columbus, New Jersey in hopes of finding some new cameras. Although I didn't find any gear, I did come away with some candid shots with my Fuji X100S which I'm really starting to enjoy due to it's size and discreet qualities. 

The sun was brutal and I'm currently sporting a pretty good sunburn(minus where my neck-strap was). Vendors come from all over the Tri-State area with wares ranging from socks to saxophones to antique seed sowers and everything in between. Some vendors are strictly business and don't take kindly to haggling, while others just want to share their life story and don't care if you buy a thing. 

The smell of chargrilled chicken filled the air while nostalgic video games brought me back to my childhood as I hunted for deals and fought back the urge to buy renaissance style broadswords.

Almost every item I came across had a unique story and it was clear that at some point it was held dear to someone in the past. The vendors rugged exterior faded through conversation and I got to catch a glimpse into their lives.

Although many of the vendors change from week to week, there are staples with loaded tables and a seemingly never-ending back stock in their vans to last through the weekend. This ensures that every time you go, there will be something different to see and experience, which I hope to do again very soon. 

Italian Market Festival 2016

        Today was the last day of the Italian Market Festival on 9th Street in South Philadelphia; full of food, fun, and grown men crawling up a greased lightpole. I was able to push through the crowds for a few hours to take in the sites and smells and try out corn on the cob smothered in mayonnaise, cotija, and chile powder which is as amazing as it sounds. The rain held off and the bands were in full swing while people from all over Philly and the surrounding areas filled the streets to come together for a great experience.