2021 - How will it affect your photography ? Difficulties ahead ?

WT21

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Sorry to hear about Heather. My kids are of the age in the states where most start working during school for extra money - usually in retail - but we’ve held them away from that for that very reason.
 

PhotoCal

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Aug 18, 2020
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Hi @WT21

I like the idea of a thread for pictures taken whilst we are all in this Covid situation - its so rare to be in a situation like this where the whole world is involved and equally affected
I cant recall if there is a thread of this nature already in place here but I do recall several images from members documenting the ‘The Covid Days’

Perhaps that would be a good name for a thread ? and could include images of our home locations, town centres/malls and the way people are affected during this period or anything that loosely fits the bill

As it was your idea I will leave it to you to give it some more thought and to set up a thread and I will certainly try to populate it to some degree :thumbup:

On a note about that and upon Covid - my sister Heather phoned me last night to let us know that she has suspected Covid 19 and was coughing regularly in the background whilst talking (Waiting for a test result)

She works in (imo) a poorly managed retail situation where several other staff have been off with Covid or are isolating
She is like me in her 50s and with more than one risk factor so I am hoping that her condition does not worsen.
She was taking it in her stride last night but it is worrying knowing what the outcome can be and it really hits home when someone so close gets this horrible virus

Kind regards

Hey Rob,
I hope your sister is doing better.
Her plight is very common, and retail workers seem to be seen as expendable. Anything to keep the stock price high.

However, I've seen a lot of posts on this and other forums about people taking trips were they are (thinking) they are self-contained. I've seen posts mentioning they will only come into contact with grocery store employees, as if these employees have immunity (they don't) or that they can be sacrificed in the name of someone's hobby (they shouldn't).

I have friends in the grocery business and they regularly have customers who are traveling from restricted areas with high infection rates! And they are not allowed to enforce mask "mandates".

As for poorly managed retail, that's a redundant phrase.

I don't know your sister's situation but perhaps she became ill from a photographer who thought they could safely travel because their "only" interaction is with store clerks.

My point is, it's foolish to think your interactions with others have no risk. And your desire to take pictures needs to be measured against the risk to those who also share this planet.

Of course, this is asking people to think of others. I know that's an outdated concept.
 

Robstar1963

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Hey Rob,
I hope your sister is doing better.
Her plight is very common, and retail workers seem to be seen as expendable. Anything to keep the stock price high.

However, I've seen a lot of posts on this and other forums about people taking trips were they are (thinking) they are self-contained. I've seen posts mentioning they will only come into contact with grocery store employees, as if these employees have immunity (they don't) or that they can be sacrificed in the name of someone's hobby (they shouldn't).

I have friends in the grocery business and they regularly have customers who are traveling from restricted areas with high infection rates! And they are not allowed to enforce mask "mandates".

As for poorly managed retail, that's a redundant phrase.

I don't know your sister's situation but perhaps she became ill from a photographer who thought they could safely travel because their "only" interaction is with store clerks.

My point is, it's foolish to think your interactions with others have no risk. And your desire to take pictures needs to be measured against the risk to those who also share this planet.

Of course, this is asking people to think of others. I know that's an outdated concept.

Hi @PhotoCal
Many thanks for asking after my sister who is better now 👍👍👍
 

ac12

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My photography is heavily based upon Motorsports and being able to get to and ‘spectate’ and shoot at various events
Last year there was very little opportunity to attend events as nearly all that did go ahead were closed to spectators
Just as things seemed to be getting better we were hit with the anticipated second wave so all in all I managed only 2-3 events all year

My situation is always compounded by living on an Island and nearly all events taking place on the U.K. mainland - increasing the cost, risk and time required away from home

I have invested quite heavily in additional equipment this year to hedge my bets with all shooting scenarios and am now equipped with FF Nikon Z and 70-200 f2.8 for lower light events at my local Speedway which I am prioritising, M43 for supertelephoto shots at tracks with longer subject distances, run off areas and reduced public access to favourable shooting vantage points and have recently purchased a Fuji XS10 for more casual lighter Motorsports (and perhaps other genres) with an XF 50-200

If Covid turns out to be more elusive than we are hoping with the introduction of the Vaccines we may still be restricted in what we are all able to do
If this turns out to be the case then I will be forced to consider reducing my kit to a very basic level and possibly to give up shooting Motorsports

I have made a point of investing more this year partly to compensate for last year’s lack of opportunity but also because I fear that time is rapidly running out with regard to my back injuries allowing me to continue with long stints at trackside which leaves me aching quite badly and recovering over the following days
I wanted to make a point of trying out FF and buying back into Fuji in order to make this a particularly productive year just in case my conditions deteriorates

On this note I am just in the middle of the second recent debilitating ‘episode’ with my back whereby my mobility and ability to carry out routine tasks is and has been severely restricted
Bearing in mind that this latest episode was brought about by simply picking my boot up behind me towards my right hand to pull it on was all that was required to set me back again it’s now getting to the point where I am becoming more than a little fearful of making trips away by myself to track events and having an episode where I may have severe difficulties and may need help

I’m planning to go to Silverstone this year and will camp nearby for a week or so to combine the trip with family holiday so this will be OK as I will have support nearby but otherwise I may need to think again
With Covid 19 still around this would almost certainly be the last ‘nail in the coffin‘ which would curtail my continuing to do what I love and what gives me that break away ‘from everything‘

Not sure why I started posting this but having written this post I feel like I am reluctantly admitting to myself that my time being able to do what I love is coming to an end - at least to the extent that I have previously been able to do anything I chose to do within reason and family constraints

I will hopefully be able to continue shooting local events if they happen in any case and I’m very keen to shoot speedway with FF at least for a few events before accepting final defeat

Some here may have felt that I was perhaps spending too much on gear recently and that may well turn out to be the case if I am unable to make full use of it
My recent purchases we’re perhaps my last hurrah in the field and as such am pleased that I’ve bought my gear for this years season in the hope that I can produce some great results before I really do have to give up

Apologies for a downbeat post but it was a good way for me to think about things and get them into perspective and to admit those things I struggle with having until recent years been very active and highly motivated
Ive been gradually losing the ability to do various things since injuring my back in 2014 and ive been persevering despite the difficulties rather than giving up on being able to do these things

Despite all of the above I’m still hoping that another recovery, a positive outlook, a bit of grit, determination and further perseverance will enable me to continue with my hobby - fingers crossed:th_salute:

On a very much brighter note - Here’s Hoping you all have a good year to come shooting whatever makes you happy for as long as you can :2thumbs::2thumbs::2thumbs::2thumbs:

From another with back injury. Lower back in my case.
If your back injury is lower back, ask your doc about a back belt. When my back acts up, the back belt supports the lower back, where it is injured. One of my back belts is from the local hardware store. Inexpensive, and it works.
BUT, because the lower back is immobile, the mid back, right above the back belt will flex more, the muscles there are worked harder, and may start to ache.

Like you, I have altered my procedure.
I switched from Nikon dSLR to m4/3 to reduce the weight.
When I have to carry for extended periods of time, I leave the pro lenses at home and carry the lighter non-pro lenses. During the day, the 40-150R is good enough, I don't need to haul out the 40-150/2.8. I reserve the heavy f/2.8 lenses for low light. I sometimes also use a monopod under the 40-150/2.8, to support the weight of the camera/lens. I haul everything from the car to/from the site in a wheeled cart, this really helps, but does limit where I go. If I can sit when shooting, I will.
I will also sometime put a cane in the cart, just in case my back finks out on me, which it has.

Do the PT exercises, to strengthen you core muscles.

gud luk
 

ac12

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I like the idea of doing close up/macro.
That has been on my list for a while, I just have not acted on it.

Even still life. Since you like motor racing, how about still life of model cars.
From some of the good pics that I have seen, it isn't as easy as one may think.
 

Robstar1963

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A bit of a blow for my plans for this season - my local Speedway team promoters have made a difficult decision to withdraw from this seasons league competitions for various reasons including the effects of but not solely because of COVID - being located on the Isle of Wight further complicating matters at a time when travel to the venue here is restricted or which people will be reluctant to do
So no Speedway photography this season where I have been one of two official photographers with access to the centre green and up very close to the riders racing past for the past two years
As the earliest any major sporting events can go ahead in the U.K. will be June - (BSB, WSB, MotoGP, F1 etc) I’m now feeling over invested in equipment
I was hoping for local events to go ahead particularly because of my deteriorating back - now looks like being another very lean year for my favourite pastime and genre :(
 

retiredfromlife

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While I hope the COVID restrictions get better this year, I feel it may be a vain hope for some countries.
Even in Australia where we have few cases we are always just one day away from a lockdown where they close the state borders.
So I am only booking holidays in my home state to lessen the loss in they lock down greater Sydney again.

My main hope for the year is that employment comes back as much as possible, thinking of what remains of the airline and hotel / travel staff [and others] who are doing it very hard at present.
 

PakkyT

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Like macro, still life, portrature, etc.

Yes or even things outside the house to stretch ones legs and still be able to social distance. With bad backs, depending on the specific problem, it is sometimes the standing, sitting, or laying in one spot that makes it worse and walking around can help.

I am thinking about things like (one of my favorites I have mentioned in these forums before) old cemeteries (which @Robstar1963 should have plenty of in his area) when headstones were actually interesting when death wasn't sugar coated.

48063740228_ef4c9026bc_o.jpg
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Weep not for me (closer version better lit) by Patrick, on Flickr

Or around towns exploring the various plaques, statues, and other historical stuff that most of us never really notice driving through but when walking around if you stop and cross over to that town center patch of grass that all the major roads surround so no one actually even goes over to it you will likely find all kinds of memorials and tributes and learn a bit of local history while you are at it.

This one is pretty obvious from the road but still plenty of details to get up close and see...

50867515401_1b2b9b4e2f_o.jpg
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2020.12.06-14.16.17 by Patrick, on Flickr

Or actually slowing down and looking up at the old building in town where you may have never noticed that old building has gargoyles up high or decorative stone or metal work, reliefs, etc. that is art in itself but two stories up so no one notices.

Especially if the building was build for one purpose/company where that is literally set in stone but now is something completely different. This former Fire station which now houses restaurants and office still bears the markings of its former life...

38205044091_38922e28a7_o.jpg
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Former Lowell Central Fire Station by Patrick, on Flickr

And then look down. Older manhole covers and other "utility" access points can often be rather decorative in their own right with town seals or manufacturers emblems and such.

42839542001_1860ea289f_o.jpg
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2018.04.28-12.27.30 by Patrick, on Flickr
 

Zman

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A bit of a blow for my plans for this season - my local Speedway team promoters have made a difficult decision to withdraw from this seasons league competitions for various reasons including the effects of but not solely because of COVID - being located on the Isle of Wight further complicating matters at a time when travel to the venue here is restricted or which people will be reluctant to do
So no Speedway photography this season where I have been one of two official photographers with access to the centre green and up very close to the riders racing past for the past two years
As the earliest any major sporting events can go ahead in the U.K. will be June - (BSB, WSB, MotoGP, F1 etc) I’m now feeling over invested in equipment
I was hoping for local events to go ahead particularly because of my deteriorating back - now looks like being another very lean year for my favourite pastime and genre :(
That is sad news. I always was amazed by your photos and the skill of those racers.
 

ac12

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Yes or even things outside the house to stretch ones legs and still be able to social distance. With bad backs, depending on the specific problem, it is sometimes the standing, sitting, or laying in one spot that makes it worse and walking around can help.

I am thinking about things like (one of my favorites I have mentioned in these forums before) old cemeteries (which @Robstar1963 should have plenty of in his area) when headstones were actually interesting when death wasn't sugar coated.

View attachment 875357 Weep not for me (closer version better lit) by Patrick, on Flickr

Or around towns exploring the various plaques, statues, and other historical stuff that most of us never really notice driving through but when walking around if you stop and cross over to that town center patch of grass that all the major roads surround so no one actually even goes over to it you will likely find all kinds of memorials and tributes and learn a bit of local history while you are at it.

This one is pretty obvious from the road but still plenty of details to get up close and see...

View attachment 875358 2020.12.06-14.16.17 by Patrick, on Flickr

Or actually slowing down and looking up at the old building in town where you may have never noticed that old building has gargoyles up high or decorative stone or metal work, reliefs, etc. that is art in itself but two stories up so no one notices.

Especially if the building was build for one purpose/company where that is literally set in stone but now is something completely different. This former Fire station which now houses restaurants and office still bears the markings of its former life...

View attachment 875359 Former Lowell Central Fire Station by Patrick, on Flickr

And then look down. Older manhole covers and other "utility" access points can often be rather decorative in their own right with town seals or manufacturers emblems and such.

View attachment 875360 2018.04.28-12.27.30 by Patrick, on Flickr

I LIKE the sand on the manhole cover. I found it difficult to take a pic of a manhole cover, because it was raised black letters on a black background. Maybe I will carry a cup of sand with me :biggrin:

You made me remember an old challenge from YEARS ago.
Pick a boring subject, like manhole cover, or street sign, or mail box, or the color red, or doors, and see what you can do to make a neat photo.

Or like when I was a kid, how many pics of different state license plates can you collect?
 

PakkyT

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I LIKE the sand on the manhole cover.

It was taken on an island, so there is a lot of sand there. But now that you mention it, it works well. Will also keep that in mind if I run across something like it and sand is nearby.

And it is actually a small cover. It is about the size of when you make a circle by touching your index fingers together and your thumbs together, perhaps a bit bigger. No idea how old that cover is, but can you imagine these days calling up some place that makes these sort of very utilitarian things and they are going to ask you for the dimensions needed. Then you ask, "OK where do I send the artwork to be embossed on it?" These days they are going to be "what the heck are you talking about?". So I always appreciate when I run across something that normally is very mundane and finding a bit of art or other interest purposely added to it.
 

John King

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@PakkyT More boring than yours, Patrick ...

_PM20041.JPG
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Kae1

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So no Speedway photography this season where I have been one of two official photographers with access to the centre green and up very close to the riders racing past for the past two years
As the earliest any major sporting events can go ahead in the U.K. will be June - (BSB, WSB, MotoGP, F1 etc) I’m now feeling over invested in equipment
I was hoping for local events to go ahead particularly because of my deteriorating back - now looks like being another very lean year for my favourite pastime and genre :(

I know we are all different but to some extent I can understand how you are feeling - I love photographing motorsports too and over 70% of my equipment investment is related to motorsports. Whilst I am in the fortunate position of having several circuits locally, and am as happy visiting a club event as a major one, I can understand that the journey from the Isle of Wight to a mainland circuit is neither quick not cheap. I am confident that our favourite pastime will return at some point, but don't know when ..... so don't give up hope! I can't offer any advice how to get through till then, but can only endorse what others have said about photographing locally plus a few other suggestions which may or may not be of help.

I think you'd mentioned in a post last year that you mainly photograph JPEG. Since the start of the year I've tried using RAW and discovering what it can do compared with JPEG. It has helped me to improve my processing skills and confidence in so far as I occasionally enter the Post-Processing competition for a bit of fun. I'm now looking forward to using it when racing's back. Could RAW be worth a try?

For me I am in the lucky position of still ploughing my way through editing thousands of motorsport images I took last year. Since the start of the year I've also got Topaz DeNoiseAI and have been pleasantly surprised at the improvement even on JPEGs. There is a free trial download on the Topaz web site. Worth a try?

Whilst I don't have your skills I've been reflecting on how I've been shooting motorsports. Editing thousands of images have given me a better understanding on different things to try when motorsports are accessible again. I've done a couple of posts of my experiences with photographing motorsports mainly for my benefit (therapy?) but I enjoy reading about the experience of others. I know over the years you have done separate posts on the changes to your equipment but perhaps a post reflecting on what you've found over the years and what you're intending to try differently in the future would be worthwhile. I certainly would welcome your views on your experiences and lessons learnt for both equipment and technique over the years.

Don't know whether any of the above is of any help, and if not .... just ignore!
 
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