The Test Strip Photoblog

The Test Strip Photoblog


The Test Strip Photoblog is the mini-blog for richardflintphoto.com featuring new and archive photography, mobile images, experimental photography and more.

From the Archive: Mountain Rain

By | 2018-05-19T13:41:35+00:00 May 18th, 2018|Categories: blog, The Test Strip Photoblog|Tags: , , , , , , |

Rain over highlands mountains near Bridge of Orchy, Scotland

Photographs are sometimes be a bit elusive. I’d seen this wonderful range of mountains near Bridge of Orchy on previous journeys up to the Highlands of Scotland but the dilemma faced was always the same – where to park! The sheer numbers of people who would stop at the Loch Tulla viewpoint, combined with the size of a car and even the time of day would foil any photography plans on more than one occasion.

One year, arriving at the location the light was just gorgeous. The mountains were bathed in a warm, golden glow with shadows gliding over the mountainside as clouds passed over. Had i been on a motorbike then i’d have probably been able to pull off safely, but in a car there was just no room to get off the road. You win some, and you lose some.

This photograph was taken around mid morning during very changeable weather. The early arrival (stayed locally for the night) helped with finding a car park space, probably also empty due to the rain and wind blowing across the mountains, and just waited for the right moment. The photograph was taken just as another squall of rain crossed the mountain side, lit by a break in the cloud.  The volatile nature of the mountain weather comes across nicely with the light and dark tones of the photo.

This is one of my favourite photographs, a larger print is just above my desk. I love the tone and feel of the picture. I love the mountains too.

The camera was a NIkon D300S fitted with a Nikkor 55mm lens.

From the Archive: Rough Weather

By | 2018-04-16T14:45:11+00:00 April 16th, 2018|Categories: The Test Strip Photoblog|Tags: , , , , , , |

This image was taken in late 1995 along the seafront at Scarborough, North Yorkshire during a particularly rough and cold winter storm. The weather was as unpleasant as the image suggests.

I was amazed to see people, all boys or young men, going down the path to get closer to the breaking waves. The path was slightly back from the force of the waves, the waves were breaking on the edge of a ramp, but had a rogue wave rolled in, the spectators would have had no escape from being washed into the sea. My vantage point was higher up, back away from the waves, but even there the noise of the waves and strong wind was deafening.

The camera was a Pentax Program A fitted with a 50mm lens, a lightweight camera (compared with a NIkon F3/F4) that was also quite small in size which i used for most of the 1990’s. Around 1996 I purchased the Super A model which had more program modes. Sadly my camera was a rather worn version that was reaching the end of its working life – the winding mechanism was very temperamental, but it was a great camera to use. The Program A, however, is always the camera i have fond memories of using. It never let me down.

Film stock was TMAX 400 rated slightly higher at ISO 800.

From the Archive: Salthouse Couple

By | 2018-03-15T23:18:10+00:00 March 16th, 2018|Categories: The Test Strip Photoblog|Tags: , , , , , , |

Another photo from the archive… and yet another image of a couple.

This image was shot in Norfolk near Salthouse, a small village on the North Norfolk Coast around 2008. I was parked in the car park near to the beach and saw this couple, just as i was about to tuck into some fish n’ chips. Sadly the car park no longer exists due to coastal erosion. Gone too is the large pebble sea defence the couple are standing on. Both were claimed back by the sea within the last few years.

The two postures, her intent concentration on using her mobile phone and his gaze out to sea, combined with the line of the sea defence banking compliment, and yet contradict, each other nicely. The lady was distracted by the phone and yet the man was obviously more interested in the seascape before him. Maybe the image says something about how easily we can be distracted by technology or our surroundings  –  the prevalence of the smart phone in recent years has only made the distraction even worse.

Around three images were shot on the Nikon D2H before they moved position – the text message read or answered.

This image is part of the Norfolk project that can be found HERE

From the Archive: Beaumaris Couple

By | 2018-02-12T16:58:17+00:00 February 12th, 2018|Categories: The Test Strip Photoblog|Tags: , , , , , , |

This image of a couple, lost in the moment on Beaumaris Pier, is one of my favourite photographs. It was taken in July 2003 during a visit to the town of Beaumaris, located on Anglesey, North Wales. The town has superb views looking over the Menai Staits towards the mountains of Snowdonia.

In 2003, i’d just started changing camera systems, going from a Pentax over to a Nikon system which limited my lens choices. The camera used was a Nikon F4s with a Tamron 80-210mm zoom set to around 200mm. The Tamron lens were especially useful during the stop-gap transition as the lenses featured the the Adaptall 2 mount system allowing a change of lens mount – just buy the Nikon adaptor to go from a Pentax KA bayonet to the Nikon AI-mount. Very handy and affordable as AI mounts could be found on e-Bay for under £20 each and you could sell the old KA ones!

Film stock was Ilford FP4. At the time i was using a mix of FP4, HP5 and Kodak Tmax 400 for black and white work. I later decided that I preferred the tones of HP5 film instead and went over totally to Ilford. An occasional roll of T-Max can be found in my camera bag though. T-Max dev has remained my film developer of choice , a constant in my black and white photography since 1991.

I’ve always loved the framing and the even use of space within the picture. From the handbag placed on the seat on the left, past the couple to the telescope, and even the harbour buoy on the right hand side, everything seems to be in its proper place. The picture is well balanced. The slight mist that day also helped create this dream like shore across from the couple. The picture just came together perfectly. For me, it represents the special moments within a relationship – sharing moments, places and feelings with someone you love.

The couple themselves were lost in the moment and had no idea i was there. I’d seen them as i approached the pier and i sped up slightly to make sure i caught the moment. The body language was just fantastic. They stood like that for some time, just looking out to sea, and i was able to get around five or six frames before i moved on.

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