Market Portraits (mostly Rokinon 85mm) [IMGS]

Started Mar 31, 2012 | Discussions
RoelHendrickx
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Market Portraits (mostly Rokinon 85mm) [IMGS]
Mar 31, 2012

Last week I wandered on the market of Metz, very early, while the market people were still setting up shop and there was not much of a crowd of buyers.

I shot a number of semi-candid portraits, mostly with the Rokinon 85mm F1.4 on E-3 , all in ambient light.

For such a trip, patience, a smile and an open spirit are key. They are much much more important than the gear.

At first, most people are a bit reluctant. But just stick around, walk around, buy an apple, engage in some small talk, shoot the first portraits and things will loosen up. Pretty soon, news travels between the stalls that "there is a photographer making portraits" , and people become more willing to be photographed, almost calling you over to them. Men are generally easier than women, who are always self-conscious (especially early and without make up).

One Moroccon vegetable seller (a man of a certain age) was extremely shy at first, hiding his face with a crate. We did a little dance of hunter and prey, and he laughed with that, but remained reluctant. But then I shot his son, and neighbours, and after some time he let me take his picture. It has become one of the best. When I passed his stall again a while later, he offered me coffee and I accepted. I will send him a print.

Gallery: http://roelh.zenfolio.com/p612774835

Some samples:

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Roel Hendrickx

lots of images : http://www.roelh.zenfolio.com

my E-3 user field report from Tunisian Sahara: http://www.biofos.com/ukpsg/roel.html

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jkrumm
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Re: Market Portraits (mostly Rokinon 85mm) [IMGS]
In reply to RoelHendrickx, Mar 31, 2012

Some good looking portraits, Roel, and some very good manual focusing. I think I would need to practice quite a while to pull that off.

You managed to get some nice expressions.

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John Krumm
Juneau, AK

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Moti
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Re: Market Portraits (mostly Rokinon 85mm) [IMGS]
In reply to RoelHendrickx, Mar 31, 2012

Excellent photos Roel, you really did good with that lens. Markets can be an endless source for street portraits and you are absolutely right about the attitude. It is very important.

When i lived in Brussels, my favorite place for that was the flee market at Place du Jeu de Balle. it wasn't very easy to start with and there was enen some hostility but the week after, I brought some prints with me and gave it to them and this changed everything. Many of them of them became very friendly and were very happy to have theirphotos taken.

Cheers
Moti

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RoelHendrickx
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John, on focusing
In reply to jkrumm, Mar 31, 2012

jkrumm wrote:

Some good looking portraits, Roel, and some very good manual focusing. I think I would need to practice quite a while to pull that off.

With the big bright viewfinder of the E-3 and E-5 (and the E-1, for that matter), I find that focusing really isn't that hard.

DOF can be tough at F1.4, but if the light is sufficient, I take the Rokinon to F2 or F2.8, which improves general sharpness too.

You managed to get some nice expressions.

Thanks. The expressions reflect the atmosphere of the contact.

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Roel Hendrickx

lots of images : http://www.roelh.zenfolio.com

my E-3 user field report from Tunisian Sahara: http://www.biofos.com/ukpsg/roel.html

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RoelHendrickx
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Moti
In reply to Moti, Apr 1, 2012

Moti wrote:

Excellent photos Roel, you really did good with that lens. Markets can be an endless source for street portraits and you are absolutely right about the attitude. It is very important.

I like markets.

When i lived in Brussels, my favorite place for that was the flee market at Place du Jeu de Balle. it wasn't very easy to start with and there was enen some hostility but the week after, I brought some prints with me and gave it to them and this changed everything. Many of them of them became very friendly and were very happy to have theirphotos taken.

Very good approach.
My prints for the moroccan guys have just gone in the mail to Metz.

Cheers
Moti

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Roel Hendrickx

lots of images : http://www.roelh.zenfolio.com

my E-3 user field report from Tunisian Sahara: http://www.biofos.com/ukpsg/roel.html

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LouHolland
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Re: Market Portraits (mostly Rokinon 85mm) [IMGS]
In reply to RoelHendrickx, Apr 1, 2012

Roel this is a good series but for me the strongest pictures are four and the last one. The last one is stunning and very dynamic with great light. The fourth has a pronounced face and his expression seems slightly ironic and yet open at the same time. Beautiful combination.

Lou

-

Four

Last one

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RoelHendrickx
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Lou, you have an eye for modeling talent
In reply to LouHolland, Apr 1, 2012

LouHolland wrote:

Roel this is a good series but for me the strongest pictures are four and the last one. The last one is stunning and very dynamic with great light. The fourth has a pronounced face and his expression seems slightly ironic and yet open at the same time. Beautiful combination.

Of all those I shot that morning, those two were natural posers.

  • The boy (middle-eastern or north-african descent) knew he had OK looks and immediately had an attitude with mouth and eyes like he had been practicing in the mirror for a long time.

  • The older man sold oysters and kept up the image of a rugged seafarer, complete with little black woollen hat and detached look into the far distance.

Lou

-

Four

Last one

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Roel Hendrickx

lots of images : http://www.roelh.zenfolio.com

my E-3 user field report from Tunisian Sahara: http://www.biofos.com/ukpsg/roel.html

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Jean Ulrich Brer
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Re: Market Portraits (mostly Rokinon 85mm) [IMGS]
In reply to RoelHendrickx, Apr 2, 2012

interesting concept, nice portraits Roel!

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tomh1000
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Re: Market Portraits (mostly Rokinon 85mm) [IMGS]
In reply to RoelHendrickx, Apr 2, 2012

Nice shots along with an interesting story behind them.

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RoelHendrickx
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Thank you, Jean Ulrich
In reply to Jean Ulrich Brer, Apr 2, 2012

Jean Ulrich Brer wrote:

interesting concept, nice portraits Roel!

actually not much of a concept : just a walk around the market really.

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Roel Hendrickx

lots of images : http://www.roelh.zenfolio.com

my E-3 user field report from Tunisian Sahara: http://www.biofos.com/ukpsg/roel.html

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Jean Ulrich Brer
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Re: Thank you, Jean Ulrich
In reply to RoelHendrickx, Apr 2, 2012

yes Roel, sometimes the best concept is to have no concept

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RoelHendrickx
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I agree completely
In reply to Jean Ulrich Brer, Apr 2, 2012

Jean Ulrich Brer wrote:

yes Roel, sometimes the best concept is to have no concept

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Roel Hendrickx

lots of images : http://www.roelh.zenfolio.com

my E-3 user field report from Tunisian Sahara: http://www.biofos.com/ukpsg/roel.html

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Kokomo O
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Re: Market Portraits (mostly Rokinon 85mm) [IMGS]
In reply to RoelHendrickx, Apr 2, 2012

Roel, I find your work, like the other commenters, very nice indeed. I also find your choice of lens to be interesting, because with the small sensor, the 85mm lens used at portrait distance should give the same depth of field as an 85mm lens used with the same framing on a body with FF sensor--and it seems to have done so. But then, you had to have been twice as far away from your subjects, which creates either a challenge or an advantage, perhaps depending on the subject. I suspect that some of these folks might have been more comfortable with you further away from them, since they apparently didn't know you, while others might have given you a better shot from closer, although you seem to have done well anyway.

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cleverinstigator
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Re: Market Portraits (mostly Rokinon 85mm) [IMGS]
In reply to RoelHendrickx, Apr 2, 2012

Great job, I love that lens if you can deal with manual focus then it's fantastic. I love using mine.
--

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MarceloLI
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Re: Market Portraits (mostly Rokinon 85mm) [IMGS]
In reply to RoelHendrickx, Apr 3, 2012

Nice portraits.

I had the Sigma 30mm f/1.4 but I sold it, too soft and the focus was very inconsistent.

Your pictures looks great.

Regards.

Marcelo

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RoelHendrickx
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glad you liked them, Tom
In reply to tomh1000, Apr 3, 2012

about the story : just trying to help people get out and shoot strangers!
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Roel Hendrickx

lots of images : http://www.roelh.zenfolio.com

my E-3 user field report from Tunisian Sahara: http://www.biofos.com/ukpsg/roel.html

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RoelHendrickx
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a bit about the Rokinon
In reply to Kokomo O, Apr 3, 2012

Kokomo O wrote:

Roel, I find your work, like the other commenters, very nice indeed. I also find your choice of lens to be interesting, because with the small sensor, the 85mm lens used at portrait distance should give the same depth of field as an 85mm lens used with the same framing on a body with FF sensor--and it seems to have done so. But then, you had to have been twice as far away from your subjects, which creates either a challenge or an advantage, perhaps depending on the subject. I suspect that some of these folks might have been more comfortable with you further away from them, since they apparently didn't know you, while others might have given you a better shot from closer, although you seem to have done well anyway.

The Rokinon is nice especially in low light because of the aperture.
That aperture allows for very shallow DOF, if you want.
In better light, I don't necessarily use F1.4, but rather F2 or F2.8.
I also like it because it is a prime. I enjoy more and more working with those.

For portraits, it helps me make those tight-around-the-face portraits that I like, without the need to be really nose to nose. I am however, quite close to the subjects.

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Roel Hendrickx

lots of images : http://www.roelh.zenfolio.com

my E-3 user field report from Tunisian Sahara: http://www.biofos.com/ukpsg/roel.html

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RoelHendrickx
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Ditto! - and I don't feel manual focus is all that hard (nt)
In reply to cleverinstigator, Apr 3, 2012

cleverinstigator wrote:

Great job, I love that lens if you can deal with manual focus then it's fantastic. I love using mine.
--

“Any fool can criticize, condemn and complain and most fools do.” Benjamin Franklin
http://www.awaitedmoments.smugmug.com

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Roel Hendrickx

lots of images : http://www.roelh.zenfolio.com

my E-3 user field report from Tunisian Sahara: http://www.biofos.com/ukpsg/roel.html

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bridgebolt51
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Re: Market Portraits (mostly Rokinon 85mm) [IMGS]
In reply to MarceloLI, Apr 5, 2012
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i dont find the 30mm f1.4 sigma soft.... im using it for my portrait shots

here the sample of 30mm f1.4

olympus user

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MarceloLI
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Re: Market Portraits (mostly Rokinon 85mm) [IMGS]
In reply to bridgebolt51, Apr 5, 2012

bridgebolt51 wrote:

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i dont find the 30mm f1.4 sigma soft.... im using it for my portrait shots

here the sample of 30mm f1.4

It is a sharp picture and the exif info shows it was shot at f/5 (not f/1.4 as you state) but all the lens at F/5 are sharp. You can do the same with the 14-54mm or even the 14-45mm (at 30mm f/5).

Can you post a picture of this lens at f/1.4?

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