Wednesday, March 27, 2019

Sunny Avila, then Salamanca

From Toledo we made our way to Avila, via Madrid.  By train, Avila is a couple of hours away and on the way to Salamanca. It's a beautiful walled city, relatively untouched, but sophisticate enough to offer to a traveler bits of history, folklore and enjoyment.  We enjoyed a remarkably sunny weather, which helped created these images (again, Leica M4-P with an Elmarit 28mm f2.8).

Legs, sunny Plaza Mayor in Avila (cropped)
Selfie in the Plaza Mayor, Avila
At the Mercado in Avila
Bar hardware, street in Avila
Lady back from shopping and walking across the Plaza Mayor
Bar, near Plaza Mayor
Tourists in front of the Avila cathedral  

Photo above... from a café in Salamanca that was next door to our hotel (this place served excellent food).  Not a whole lot in terms of privacy, but then, during the summer and eating at a restaurant terrace, privacy is rather hard to get. More with the same rig, but this time from the college town of Salamanca, some distance away from Avila and far more populous and active. 

ATM line in Salamanca. Almost only women...
Popular place for a bocadillo or snack: Viandas de Salamanca offers bocadillos de jamón, queso and both. Their answer to American fast food... but faster and better.
I am really happy this image turned out. So much that I may have posted it before. Dancers in Salamanca's Plaza Mayor.  In case you care, the exposure was 1/8 at f2.8 on Kenmere ISO film.
Young lady assessing her shopping choices in Salamanca
On the way to the river Tajo, one finds this corner that tends to create a dramatic contrast at almost any time of the day.  I wonder if this building existed in the Lazarillo's day...
Here we are for now.  If I don't find any more images from Spain, I promise to post something new, be it local (from DeKalb) or from any other trip.  Who knows, I still have a nice inventory of images from the M4-2 and its Hexanon. In the meantime, feel free to comment, share, gossip or guffaw. 

Thursday, March 14, 2019

Back to Toledo, Spain

Just for the sake of posting... and because I like looking at my photos in this blog (hopefully, some of you too).  Later edit: all these photos were taken with my Leica M4-P and an Elmarit 28mm f2.8 lens, unless otherwise noted.

Pedestrian on Calle Sto Tomé
Street light (with Konica 90mm) on Sto. Tomé
Dook knocker, Calle Sto. Tomé
Ugly spot in town... still prettier than many places elsewhere (Judería)
Alley near Sto. Tomé (my favorite street in Toledo, it seems)
Map reading woman
Musician on Calle del Arco
Vinos y cervezas
Friends on Calle Nuncio Viejo
By the way, the last image shows two friends who remember us every time we return to Toledo. On the left, the owner of the store "Aladin" (across the street), and next to him, in white, the owner of a small souvenir bazaar who sells great t-shirts and small crafts (cannot recall the name of his store).  They're both nice people, who make our lives in Spain pleasant and enjoyable.  And on that note... I leave for now.  Soon, new photos from Avila and Salamanca!

Monday, March 4, 2019

Two Days in One Roll

During our last stay in Madrid I was a bit more cautious with film.  From experience, I have seen that the more I return to the same places, the more I take the same photographs, and there's only so many shots of the Plaza Mayor in Madrid one can take, no matter how eerie the light effect.  In past visits, I had burned two, or even two and a half rolls in a single 10-hour day.  This time—summer of 2018—I felt a lot less generous and more selective, as you can see here: here are some selected photographs from one single roll of film (Kenmere ISO 100), spanning two days in Madrid.  As you may have surmised, the camera used was a Leica M4-P, with an Elmarit 28mm f2.8.  

 Not too early, not too late... at the post stamp market in the Madrid Plaza Mayor.

 Buyer, Post Stamp "mercadillo" at the Plaza Mayor, Madrid.

 The market actually offers a vast array of used or antique items, and browsing can be fun.

T-shirts in another institution of Madrid: "El rastro"

Backstore in "El rastro"
 Musicians parading/performing at "El rastro"

Abundance of things strange... "El rastro"
"La casa de las navajas" bar, near where "El rastro" gets assembled on weekends       

 "Chotis" dancers in Plaza Isabel II, Madrid, on a Sunday afternoon. 

 Young opera singers, Calle Arenal

Magician at the Puerta del Sol
 Feminist demonstration at the Puerta del Sol

 Young women walking down Puerta del Sol at dusk.

 Young patrons at Café de la Opera

Man checking cell phone on Campomanes Street, following day

 Young woman on Gran Vía, following day (hip shot)

Young woman, Calle San Isidro
Here's the end of that roll (Sunday and Monday, if I remember correctly).  These are, to me, the ones that deserve some attention.  As for the rest... they'll do fine as long as they stay buried in my computer.  So long!

Sunday, February 24, 2019

Darkess and Some Light

For those who may believe that night shots can be done only with a fast lens, here's proof of the contrary.  In fact, my Elmarit 28mm (along with my Konica 90mm f2.8) performed admirably under the circumstances.  Here's something to ponder...

Light on Calle de Comercio, Toledo (Konica 90mm)

 Light and Cathedral tower, Toledo

Walls in Avila at night

 End or beginning of Calle de Comercio, Toledo

Bench in the dark, Avila

 Still challenging lighting... Man in Viandas store, Toledo

 People at the Plaza Mayor, Salamanca

 Plaza Mayor, Salamanca

Dancers at the Plaza Mayor, Salamanca

Again, the proof is in the pudding.  The last two photographs were done with the lens wide open at f2.8, and at a shutter speed of 1/15th of a second.  The final product got a little enhancement in Photoshop (just a tweak in exposure).  Do we absolutely need a Noctilux for this kind of images?  Not really... but a steady helps quite a bit. 

I'll do my best to post more soon!  

Thursday, February 21, 2019

Spain through the wide angle

I am back from Spain, from surgery, from a long hiatus... and ready to post some photographs taken with my Leica M4-P, and an Elmarit 28mm f2.8, in Spain, during the summer of 2018 (quite a while ago!).

First of all, I must say I'm not much of a 28mm shooter.  It's too wide for my taste, and I find that I'm wasting a lot of the frame in every photograph.  Granted, I want some atmosphere in my photos, but I'm not entirely able to do what I want, and enjoy it, with this lens. 

See for yourselves...


Calle de la Trinidad

Locals in the Ayuntamiento Plaza


People in the Ayuntamiento Plaza


Texting while walking down Sto Tomé (with Konica 90mm f2.8 lens)


Shopping for souvenirs on Calle Sto Tomé

Girl and her family on street


Chispita, the dog, and her owner


Steps of the Iglesia de San Ildefonso

Performer in front of Alex Restaurant

Toledo cat (with a Konica 90mm f2.8 lens)

Of course, I will add more shots later, from other places I visited in this trip.  For now, these come from Toledo, during my first week.  Again, thanks to the light, a lot of these images were shot with very small aperture on relatively slow film (Kenmere ISO 100).  

Until the next upload!