NF-SOOC September 2020

August 21st, 2020
For the past 6 years, I have issued a challenge for the month of September to take and post images using only a 50mm (or FF equivalent) lens and to post the JPEG as captured in camera. Previously a large number of you joined in for all or part of the month so once again, I have decided to issue the same challenge for the month of September this year. Now's your chance to get to grips with the nifty-fifty... and to practice getting it right in camera.

Here's how I introduced the challenge in previous years:

I got to thinking about how photography has changed in recent years: it used to be that 20, 30 or 40 years ago if you wanted an 'enthusiasts camera' you bought either a 35mm range-finder camera or a 35mm SLR, and chances are that in either case it would have come equipped with a 'standard' 50mm lens. So you loaded your choice of 35mm film, took 24 or 36 exposures and then sent your film off to a processing house for the next stage in the process... at some considerable cost. Ten days to a fortnight later, you got your 'snaps' back and, if you were anything like me, you were disappointed with the results. Some didn't 'come out' and the rest didn't seem to exactly tally with your memories of the scenes that you captured.

These days this second and vital part of the process is also handled by the photographer her or himself and this has led, I think, to some blurring of the roles of camera and processing engine. Often, and I plead guilty to this, decisions that should have been made in camera - composition, colour balance, exposure, etc. - get made in processing... such is the power of a raw image file. But I can't help thinking that this is rather sloppy technique - often we'll get away with it and get the final image we wanted... but sometimes we won't. So on balance I think it must be better to do what should be done in camera, in camera.

So this year again, the month of September will be for me NF-SOOC-2020. Every image I post in my main 365 album will be taken with a 50mm (or equivalent) lens and will be posted exactly as it came out of the camera. Yes I know that it will have been processed by the camera's internal processing engine but it's good to get used to this standard result exactly the same as in the film days we had to get used to a standard mass-produced 6 x 4 print. I will do no external processing and no cropping and if I want to zoom in on an image, I'll have to do it with my feet!

So who's brave or mad enough (probably a bit of both) to join me in this adventure? You can play for the whole month - I hope some of you will do that - or just post the occasional image. Remember, JPEG as produced in camera and a 50mm lens. Remember also that a Nifty Fifty is only 50mm on a full frame camera: if you have a crop sensor camera like many of us use, then the lens you need will be a 35mm for an APS-C camera or a 25mm for a micro 4/3 sensor (Olympus and Panasonic). If you don't have a standard prime lens but you would still like to join in, then set your zoom to 50, 35 or 25 as appropriate for your camera and shoot away. (For those who do have a prime lens, there is the added advantage of being able to exploit the wider maximum aperture of those lenses - normally f/1.8 or f/1.4 - and compose with reduced depth of field and/or shoot hand-held in low light.)

Tag your post nf-sooc-2020 and feel free to share your images on here to encourage us all.

Good Luck everyone - I look forward to your joining me in this little adventure and I promise you that all who participate will become better photographers as a result.
August 22nd, 2020
i have a love-hate relationship with this challenge... but i think i will play along this year again... thank you for hosting, and apologies in advance if i end up grumpy 🙃
August 22nd, 2020
i am thrilled to join this challenge. i have been practicing a bit with the lens I have. It is not a prime, but I kept returning to my favourite macro lens. Yes, even for landscapes. Don;t burn me for that!
I thought of buying a 50 mm prime lens, but then I reverted the thought. I decided to practice with the kit zoom lens first, since the 50 mm is there. If I fall in love with the 50mm, I will invest in it during the month to come. Time will tell. I can't wait for September to start.
And, it is not a 50 mm I have, but a 25 mm :D
August 22nd, 2020
I had a little go at this last year and didn't do all that well, so I've decided I'm going to do the whole month with my Olympus as it will be a good bit of learning for me and I will see how much fun I can make it too! thanks Richard
August 22nd, 2020
I always enjoy this challenge, will plan to participate again. I managed 19 NF-SOOC images last year, will try and top it this year!

Sadly I don't have the budget for a prime 35mm (53mm equivalent) les, but I can dial in the zoom.

THANKS for hosting this!
August 23rd, 2020
Thank you Richard for hosting this, I’ll try again this year! 25 mm it is :)
August 29th, 2020
Having just purchased a 50mm lens, this is perfect! This will give me a great chance to practice. Thanks for hosting Richard.
September 1st, 2020
I am going to give it a go - I have 50mm and 28mm and also 35mm for my lens baby - I will probably give each of them a go over a week and then choose one of them for the last week....I start early as I know I often get busy
September 1st, 2020
September 1st, 2020
Probably should’ve used my 24mm with my cropped sensor, but hey ho. Can’t be plateauing too soon :)

September 1st, 2020
@annied Welcome aboard Annie with this nicely composed shot.
September 2nd, 2020
Been away for some time...will see about giving this challenge a go:

September 2nd, 2020
my first attempt
September 2nd, 2020
Been travelling, missed day one, but here's one for September 2nd:

September 2nd, 2020
I'm with @northy on this and, like her, will give it a try.... expect some grumpiness! Thanks for getting this challenge going again Richard @vignouse
September 3rd, 2020
My first attempt:
September 4th, 2020
Whoops, only realised yesterday this theme was up and running. Loved it last year, my favourite theme. Once more will be using Micro Nikkor 55mm lens, looking forward to this one:)
September 7th, 2020
thanks for hosting this Richard. Only just come across link but will give it a go!
September 11th, 2020
I am very preoccupied with your thoughts. So speaks a smart and prudent man. Experienced not only in photography, but in general.

As far as I understand your text, it's about how we view and represent the world. I think, as in all important things in life, it's about the right balance.

The young photographers don't know what photography was like "in the past". They grow up with the computer and the multitude of possibilities, also in image processing. In the past, a photo in a newspaper was considered "proof of the truth" for an article. Many people still follow this idea today - the photo depicts reality, which is why the lens is also called "objective". But we know that this objective truth does not exist. And the computer made it possible to create the most bizarre worlds.

SOOC (please excuse me, unfortunately I don't understand the addition "NF"; maybe you can help me with the meaning of "Nifty Fifty") can educate a little more honesty in photography: Having to get along without the often overwhelming arsenal of effects of image editing programs. This is an excellent exercise.
Sometimes there are superficial goals that are pursued with a picture. It is not easy to break free of it - neither am I impeccable.
Sometimes it's not "style" but manner. Unfortunately, I lack the subtleties of the English language to express myself more precisely. „Stil haben“ -"To have style" means something very cultivated and full of character in German. I'm not sure "Style" is an exact and straightforward match.

I find it very difficult to determine a firm stance on SOOC. I would have to go very far. Maybe you see this as a weakness in my writing and approach. In exaggeration, I say: Sometimes you have to lie in the image design to tell the truth. - I know that opens the door to all kinds of misunderstandings. A frightfully open flank. Which interventions are good, which are bad? Where is "culture"? Culture is always a change in man's "nature" towards himself. One sees: one inevitably gets to the fundamentals; and things do not get the clarity that one might want and demand. One would like to see the world clearly and unambiguously. And yet I think that you can (and must in my opinion) at least trace these things out.

My thoughts keep working. Thanks for your inspiration. I really appreciate you very much.
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