Technical details; Nikon D700. AF-S Nikkor 17-35mm, f/3.2, ISO 1250 @1/10s.
“The Legend of the Holy Drinker”*
Summer . Amsterdam . 2014
This photograph feels timeless to me. A friend and I were out shooting late and we’d been trying to capture the atmosphere in this bar on a summer’s night in the Canal district. The trouble is, we were on our tripods and I felt that was inhibiting me. So I took the camera off the stand and hand held. Immediately I felt more likely to get the shot I was looking for. This guy – the Holy Drinker – was nice but I decided that I wanted to have some motion to create interest both inside & outside the bar. So I set my focus point to the doorway, cranked the ISO to 1250, stopped up to f/3.2 and set the shutter to fire at a really slow 1/10th of a second. The reason for the slow slow shutter speed was simple; to capture the motion blur of the cyclist. Finally I set my Nikon to “continuous” mode so I would have been taking 2/3 images in a half second. That way, what seems like a coincidence – the Holy Drinker supping on his beer with the cyclist being perfectly placed at exactly the right moment – suddenly feels like less of a coincidence.
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*With apologies to Joseph Roth