Photoessay: Workers, in the style of Sebastiao Salgado

This is a continuation from an earlier post with one image. The back story is not quite what you’d expect: I was killing time at a culinary academy in Singapore while waiting for one of my classes to start (I was teaching food photography, not cooking, though at some point I’d love to attend a proper cooking course, however, I digress) and happened to notice a building site out of the window. The 6th floor was a great vantage point to get far enough away to see the entire scene, but not so far that you’d miss out the details. Add in that wonderful directional light that comes immediately after rain when clouds just clear and the sun starts poking out (plus the textures and wet reflections) and the light was utterly gorgeous. Colors were still muted, and this was one of those occasions that just screamed ‘B&W’. Just another example of one of those times when you don’t plan to shoot, but somehow an opportunity presents itself – enjoy the results for yourself. On an unrelated note, I’m really loving the square format, too. Or maybe I’m just lazy to turn the little camera sideways. MT

This series shot with a Leica D-Lux 5 Titanium.

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  1. parameteres says:

    great series 🙂 it’s a test of photographer’s skill to get more than half a dozen of good shots in a tight construction site and taken from 6th floor

  2. I have the Panasonic LX5 and the Crop Dial is one of the functions I use all the time. I too, love to go with a square aspect. I think for this reason, I will never get rid of this camera. (Planning to buy the X2 before the end of the year.)

  3. Are those photos really square? Well I bet they are. It is just that because they are tightly on a vertical row some sort of visual illusion makes them look higher than their width is 😮 Rather distracting, I say. Had to say this since you are so close to perfection that such small things can become a major distraction actually 😮

  4. bspooner says:

    I really enjoy the square format. Reminds me of seeing things through the Hasselblad viewfinder.

    Thank you for your comments about B&W photography in your Monochrome M review. I agree completely.

    You have a great eye and I truly enjoy your images.

  5. I really enjoy the square format. Reminds me of seeing things through the Hasselblad.

    Your work is truly wonderful. Great eye. I agree with your comments about B&W photography. Thanks for the Monochrome M review.

  6. And why do you ALWAYS these black frames? What is it for?

    • Many functions. Holds the watermark without putting something distracting in the image. Isolates the shot and provides a visual border from the rest of the page, in much the same way as a frame would do on a physical print. And generally allows you to pick out one of my shots, until a whole bunch of other people copy the idea. (This was a *serious* question, right?)

      • Thank you for the explanation, Ming. Yes, sure, this was a serious question (although I forgot the word “use” in my question). So when printing your images, you don’t use these black borders, right?

        • No problem. Absolutely not – the borders are just for web use. When printing, I like to keep a small white border or matte usually.

      • how can I create borders like yours (unless, you don’t want folks copying). Are you using Lightroom for this?

  7. Question, what does the square format do a picture like this? I mean, what is the intended effect?

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