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A Few “Autumn in Kyoto” Mood Shots
NOTE: Images with an icon next to them have been artificially shrunk to better fit your screen; click the icon to restore them, in place, to their regular size.
Waiting for a Taxi in front of some stupid bike illegally parked the front entrance to my place Okazaki area of Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2009 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D700 + Nikkor 70-200mm f/2.8 @ 200 mm — 1/320 sec, f/2.8, ISO 200 — map & image datanearby photos
Waiting for a Taxi
in front of some stupid bike illegally parked the front entrance to my place
Okazaki area of Kyoto, Japan

Returning from an errand today, I liked how the late-afternoon brisk autumn sun was hitting some old cozy (read “dilapidated”) Machiya houses near my place, so I grabbed the camera and headed out for a short photo-hunt stroll.

I'll share the pictures of the houses another day; in this post, just a few “mood” pictures from the day, which was sunny and brisk, much nicer than the overcast gloom of yesterday (which was photogenic nevertheless).

The picture above was the last I took of the day, just as I was returning home, of two ladies (likely a girl and her mom) about to get into a taxi that was doing a U-turn just out of frame to pick them up. I was immediately struck by their beautiful kimono, their obvious class (compare against the low-class garish display or the unbridled cuteness seen in other posts), and the splash of color provided by the background.

Unfortunately, with all the foot traffic going past and the taxi about to pull in frame, I didn't have much time to set up and execute a shot, and the picture above was the best I could do (with, unfortunately, the girl having noticed me and my big lens, just starting to form a perplexed “why is someone taking pictures of us?” look on her face).

But I really like their seasonal kimono, so here's the only other shot I got, which shows them a bit better.

Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2009 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
D700 + 70-200mm f/2.8 @ 200 mm, cropped heavily — 1/320 sec, f/2.8, ISO 320 — map & image datanearby photos

As I walked by them heading into my place and they into their taxi, the girl, still with a perplexed look on her face, I smiled, and the girl gave a tentative little “I don't know what's going on” wave. It was sort of funny. I would have liked to take a proper portrait.

Here's the first photo I took of the stroll, from pretty much the same spot, but looking back the other way....

Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2009 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D700 + Nikkor 70-200mm f/2.8 @ 150 mm — 1/320 sec, f/5, ISO 200 — map & image datanearby photos

The little posts sticking up in the middle of the river have slots in them, and many years ago, apparently, the townsfolk used to put boards in them to block the stream, creating a public swimming pool for the kids. This practice apparently ceased a few generations ago after some kind of fatal accident, but vestiges of the practice remain.

A couple of unrelated photos:

Alone and in Groups -- Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2009 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D700 + Nikkor 70-200mm f/2.8 @ 155 mm — 1/640 sec, f/2.8, ISO 200 — map & image datanearby photos
Alone and in Groups
Moving Day -- Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2009 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D700 + Nikkor 70-200mm f/2.8 @ 110 mm — 1/500 sec, f/6.3, ISO 200 — map & image datanearby photos
Moving Day

Comments so far....

That 70-200mm lens has distracting swirling bokeh (top of “Waiting for a Taxi”; top-right of “Alone and in Groups”). (Do you use right hand over the camera & left hand under in portrait mode, by chance?)

Could you tell what is going in the second photo (of two females) with “smeared”/fringed green leaves?

I have the vertical grip attached to the D700, so hand positions are generally the same in either orientation. I’ve noticed the “swirl’ effect more and more lately, and at first thought it was sort of nice, but it does get a bit pronounced sometimes. The old 70-200 is well known for its vignetting on a full-frame camera, and I always just figured that this is related. But it could be specific to my lens, I dunno. A few years ago my camera bag fell two feet off a chair onto a carpeted floor, and the 70-200 got a slight deformation at the end that’s not noticeable visually, but it’s enough that you can’t screw a filter onto it. Maybe something got outta’ whack inside, too? Have used it for thousands of shots since. —Jeffrey

— comment by parv on November 17th, 2009 at 12:45pm JST (5 years ago) comment permalink

I noticed this ‘swirling’ too. The out-of-focus highlights in the upper part of the first photo, especially, are ellipses rather than circles as nearer the centre, which maybe does suggest that something internally is displaced. They’re lovely shots, for all that.

— comment by Peter in Wales on November 17th, 2009 at 7:25pm JST (5 years ago) comment permalink
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