Daily Inspiration #382 by Alberto Pugliese

Dear Steve
I discovered your great website a few months ago and have been a daily follower ever since. I enjoy reading your reviews as well as the articles and pictures from other people. Some of the shots I have seen on your website are out of this world. There is so much creativity around and the pictures posted on this site are a great inspiration – as well as a reminder of my photographic mediocrity. But it’s good to feel that after 32 years of cultivating photography as a hobby I am still learning and improving.
I have been shooting pictures since 1980, starting with an Olympus OM-1 (sadly stolen in 1986) and later an OM-3 (retired a few years ago because the shutter had become unreliable). In the mid-90s I got a Contax G2, and like everybody else I love the image quality of those Zeiss lenses. Yet I ended up using it very little because soon after (early 2000s) I started playing with digital, via a Fuji 602Z later followed by a Nikon D70 and then a D700. Since going digital I am enjoying new creative freedom through digital editing and manipulation. I am attaching a few shots in case you like to post them in your daily inspiration series. I thought I best picked a theme, which is that these pictures are all B&W/color “hybrids”.
Pic 1 is from 1983, shot in Venice, Italy, with the OM-1; it’s Mick Jagger on a B&W poster, somebody put a cigarette butt on his lips. I did not really manipulate this image, just shot it like this.
Pics 2 & 3 were shot with the OM-3 in 1988, in London, most likely with a Zuiko 21 mm (if not, it would be a 28 mm). Pic 2 (the sax player) was taken around the Portobello market.  Pic 3 (the man with the silver painted face) was shot at Covent Garden, which by then had been developed into a trendy shopping mall. The fun part is that lots of street artists exhibit there every day. I scanned the old Ektachrome 64 slides (ah, the good old days!) with a Konica-Minolta DiMage Scan Dual IV and then played with the colors to have the subjects stand out from the background. In Pic 3, I contrasted with a sepia background.
Pic 4 (a Peruvian Dancer in Miami) was taken with the D700 and the Nikkor 28-200 zoom, in 2010. I emphasized the red color of the lips and the rose. Pics 5-7 were taken in 2012 with the D700 and the Nikkor 20 mm f/2.8. Pic 5 shows the historic Mast Store in Valle Crucis, North Carolina. I played with the image to saturate colors in some areas and used B&W in others. The sky received a bit of attention to enhance the clouds and create a dark, dramatic sky.  I also enhanced the light in the lamppost. Pic 6 was taken in the back porch of the store, where a local bluegrass band was playing. The band players had a sign and even told me that if you took pictures they expected a tip, so I obliged. Again, I preserved colors in some areas but I desaturated to give an old style/faded look.  Pic 7 shows the back of an old rusty car; I only left the red color in the tail lights, and turned the rest into B&W with a slight sepia tone. Finally, Pic 8 (trombone player) was also taken this year, at an outdoor concert in Miami. I used the Nikkor 28-200 mm on the D700, 1250 ISO; again, I contrasted some sepia with color.
I hope you like the hybrids.
Finally, like many other readers of your site I also suffer from Gear Acquisition Syndrome. I am drooling over the Fuji cameras… but like many DSLR users, I would like to have a truly pocketable camera that I can take anywhere but also does not compromise image quality. Basically, I am waiting for a camera the size of the Sony RX-100 with the image quality of at least the Fuij X-100, a viewfinder (just plain optical is fine for me), a fixed 35 mm f/1.8 lens, the retro style of the X-100 and, why not, a red dot on it. If with interchangeable lenses, make it so that I can use my Zeiss lenses from the G2. Is that too much to ask?
Thank you for a great website and best wishes,
Alberto Pugliese
PIC 1 - 1983 - Mick Jagger
PIC 2 - 1988 - London Portobello
PIC 3 - 1988 - London Street Artist
PIC 4 - 2010 - Peruvian Dancer
PIC 5 - 2012 - Mast Store
PIC 6 - 2012 - Mast Store
PIC 7 - 2012 - Old Cars
PIC 8 - 2012 - Trombone Player


  1. Re: UK ‘Tony’ spoke with sister should be geting more Tech RD lab demo of Prototype M10 (Next step after lates M9 not sure but I also asked T if Panasonic Leica M43 is releasing any updated version for us Poor man Leica wanbe’s so I did see some frame grabs of his sisters site from Lab looked like a cross between Fuji X1 body type (more smaller and very thin build simular to Sony full frame)
    Still using a Arriflex Cine lens (Tech tests with HD video) not sue because this team is farmed out thru British Airospace division and this is all pre tests before RD is approved but Yes a model is on it’s way Panasonic is very well aware that we cant afford Leica prices and time will tell.
    I heard that the Next generation of Cameras also may include 3-D HD Projection and hand motion
    interaction in real time…That got me very excited not sure about the last point but sounds good for me.
    Please understand folks I’d love to take pics of this but I’m forbided to do as this is illegal and I will be charged as a criminal posting this stuff. No fooling. As always Steve H. and all the Photo folks out there
    all the best in 13 and from me Film is still my prefered method Hi Hi Hi to all the APUG out there.
    Smile and smell the roses before the roll is done.

  2. I like this kind of pics very much!!!
    i’d like to see more…, do you have a website or photoblog you want to share?

    greets and a happy 2013 to y’all.


  3. That “esso” shot really has great atmosphere, and bare b&w wouldn’t have done that. Thanks for posting, it’s refreshing to see something like this every now and then.

  4. You have some really interesting shots here…and well done. My only beef is with your use of selective colour, just not my thing..reminds me of those shots from 5 years ago or so when everybody was messing with photoshop and using selective colour like crazy..think red rose in an otherwise B&W photo. Ughhh.

    Anyway, art is subjective so do what you like. My favorite shot is the dude with the shades and the Esso gas station..very cool.

  5. I like your images, especially the ones of the Mast store. I’ve been there and photographed it many times. For me the sky in the large shot is over-the-top, but getting a shot with no cars or people in front is an accomplishment. I also like the image of the band on the back porch. If you have a chance to get back there, there are many old buildings to photograph in or near Valle Crusis.

  6. I quite like the art element in these and imagine they would look pretty striking, framed and on a wall. A different take on processing and certainly not traditional photography but effective at what it is intended to be.

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