It seems that these days I only pick up a camera to photography poultry related subjects. Almost. I still take lots of pictures when fishing, but they're really just for illustrational purposes on my blog. Most of them are taken with a compact. That doesn't mean they are snapshots, I try to frame them like pictures.
The main reason I've not taken many photographs lately has been work. I've simply not had much time to get out other than to snatch a couple of hours fishing of an evening. Now the nights are drawing in that is getting harder to manage. even so, road side egg sales continue to appear in new places. Although travelling the same routes on a regular basis might appear to be destined to result in diminishing returns there are occasional surprises. One was not very far from home. So close that after taking a couple of ropey shots with a compact I went back to make a better effort. I'm not sure I succeeded. In any case, it's one of those pictures which has to be seen large enough to read the notice.
This other one works at a small scale.
I got to the auction mart shortly after it opened on Saturday. After seeing the light early on last time that was something I wanted to work with, and I wanted some more and better pictures of people arriving. The trouble with 'great light' is that you can get carried away with using it in rather ways so that it becomes the subject and doesn't really add much to the story being told. The picture below being a case in point. I could have spent a lot longer than I did with the lens stopped right down to produce the starburst while waiting for the
perfect silhouette in the doorway. That's the kind of thing that street photography tutorials tell you to do. But it's been done a thousand times before.
What I really needed and wanted were pictures that show what it's like being at a poultry auction. That also takes patience and making a lot of frames that don't work, but what it needs most is vigilance for unfolding events. even if that's as imple as someone raising their hand to bid. Then you have to be in the right place to get the framing right, with the right focal length lens!
This time I'd reverted to my original tactic of using two cameras each with a fixed focal length lens. I think this helps me see things better because it forces me to keep thinking about where to position myself rather than being rooted to the spot twisting a zoom ring. Maybe I'm kidding myself, but I don't think so. Although I imagined I'd get nothing new I got one shot I really like. I like the circular way the gazes go round the frame, I like the stripey bits, the colourful bit, and the fact that the two main figures aren't old codgers shows how poultry keeping appeals to all ages. The mobile phone is nice 21st century punctum in a scene that probably hasn't changed much in decades. I might change my mind later, but at the moment I'm satisfied.
Finally I tried to make a sequence about the end of the day when the pens are cleared out.
One thing I have come to appreciate during a long day taking photographs like this is the need to take breaks. Maybe if I did it day in day out my brain wouldn't get tired and lazy, but as I don't I find myself looking as intently at what is going on as at the start of the day. It's surprising how tiring it can be, looking.
Gallery from the auction here
I'm not sure I can take the auction pictures much further. Which is sort of handy as there is one more in December, so I'd have covered one full year if I attend that one. So it seems as good a time to start pulling some pictures together. My plan is to make another blurb book of pictures from the auctions and the various shows I've been to during the summer. A start has been made on selecting the pictures to make a final choice from. There are lots which will have to be weeded out. All in all it's a daunting prospect. That's why I keep putting it off by doing things like writing this blog which nobody reads! I do have a provisional title, and cover, for the book. And I've come up with some page layouts I haven;t used in other Blurb books I've made. Once I get into the swing of it I'm sure it'll be enjoyable. It's getting started that's the hardest part.
This morning I went to the community farm to watch a small mammal survey being conducted. Not as a photo op, but to see what small mammals there were on the farm. I took a camera, of course, and grabbed one lucky frame of a hapless wood mouse that ran the wrong way when released and entered the chicken run! For once I was happy for the extra pixels which allowed me to make this crop.