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Foto Fair Post your photos for friendly, non-critical feedback. This is the place to show pictures if you aren't yet ready for full-blooded critique, or simply want to share an interesting picture with other e-group visitors.

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Old 3rd June 2013
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Zuiko Zuiko is offline
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Portraits of Morris Men

I recently took advantage of Ian's E-System hire service to try a 45mm f1.8 over two weekends. The first outing was to Camden, London, to visit the unique and colourful markets and high street shops, where I hoped to get some photographs whilst the females of my family did some shopping. Due to the brightness of the day and my E-M5's restrictive combination of ISO 200 minimum and 1/4000th top shutter speed I was often unable to make use of the large maximum aperture of the 45mm and opted for the convenience of my usual 14-45mm zoom instead.

However, the following Saturday was ideal; dry but cloudy allowing plenty of scope for the f1.8 aperture and providing a nice even light for portraits. I was at the annual Morris Ring meeting in Thaxted, which attracts Morris sides from all over the country and is guaranteed to be a colourful, fun event. I have covered the dancing thoroughly in previous years and, although I still photographed some dances this year, I wanted to concentrate on portraits of some of the characters.

I soon found it is a lens that needs getting used to when used wide open; the actual plane of focus is wafer thin without the more generous DOF latitude of the slower kit zooms to mask any shortcomings of focus technique. Once I became accustomed to this the lens proved to be super responsive and rendered a nice background. At times f1.8 seemed a little too selective in focus so I shot mainly at f2 or f2.5, sometimes f4 when there was more than one subject in the shot.

I had the pleasure of meeting Paul (Smartwombat) from the forum, who was also there to cover the event. I was glad to see that the serious hand injury he suffered some time ago is gradually improving, to the stage that he can now handle his two Canon full frame DSLRs again, albeit with certain restrictions. This is good news for Paul, although it does mean that his MFT kit isn't getting quite so much use now. He's been shooting a lot of motor sport, sometimes as a team photographer, and I've tried to persuade him to post some pics, even though they were shot on C*n*n!

Anyway, enough of the chat, here's some pictures.












































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Old 3rd June 2013
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Re: Portraits of Morris Men

Pictures of some of the actual dancing (shot mainly with my venerable Panasonic 14-45mm) can be found on Four Thirds User http://www.fourthirds-user.com/forum...ad.php?t=12397
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Old 3rd June 2013
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Re: Portraits of Morris Men

This is Jack Brown, who is something of a legend. He is 85 years young and dances for the Stafford side. He enjoys many forms of traditional English folk dancing, not just Morris dancing, and has helped re-establish many forgotten English dances. In 2009 he was awarded the English Folk Dance and Song Society gold badge which is reserved for the recognition of unique, outstanding contributioins and distinguished service. It was first awarded in 1922 and to date only around 160 people have been honoured.





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Old 3rd June 2013
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Re: Portraits of Morris Men

Oh, the beards! The tankards!

Fantastic English madness at it's best Been there.. http://snaarman.blogspot.co.uk/2011/01/mad.html but before I had that fantastic 45mm lens.

Great pictures. A street full of characters..

Pete
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Old 3rd June 2013
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Re: Portraits of Morris Men

I'd say you have mastered the lens. Well done.
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Old 3rd June 2013
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Re: Portraits of Morris Men

Would you kindly explain what the annual Morris Ring meeting is all about.
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Old 3rd June 2013
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Re: Portraits of Morris Men

Quote:
Originally Posted by snaarman View Post
Oh, the beards! The tankards!

Fantastic English madness at it's best Been there.. http://snaarman.blogspot.co.uk/2011/01/mad.html but before I had that fantastic 45mm lens.

Great pictures. A street full of characters..

Pete
Haha, yes - your blog summed it all up very nicely.
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Old 3rd June 2013
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Re: Portraits of Morris Men

Many people mock the Morris Men, but whereever they go they are welcomed and people watching have a SMILE on their faces They bring amoment of rest & relation to all who watch them I think they are GREAT a BRITISH TRADITION

I wonder of their origins ... must go to Wiki info

John A truly GREAT set of images Thanks for Sharing
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Old 3rd June 2013
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Re: Portraits of Morris Men

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Originally Posted by Bill Gordon View Post
Would you kindly explain what the annual Morris Ring meeting is all about.
Hi Bill,

Morris Dancing is a traditional form of English folk dancing that had almost died out by the end of the 19th Century but was successfully revived during the early 20th Century. The Ring is a sort of national association of Morris "sides" and our local Thaxted side host an annual meeting to which all other sides in the Ring are invited. Here's a link with the history of the Ring: http://www.themorrisring.org/about-mr/history
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Re: Portraits of Morris Men

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Originally Posted by Chevvyf1 View Post
Many people mock the Morris Men, but whereever they go they are welcomed and people watching have a SMILE on their faces They bring amoment of rest & relation to all who watch them I think they are GREAT a BRITISH TRADITION

I wonder of their origins ... must go to Wiki info

John A truly GREAT set of images Thanks for Sharing
Thanks Chevvy. Morris Dancing seems to me a great excuse for men to get together with their mates, dress up for a laugh, consume vast quantities of beer and do some very healthy, energetic dancing which is also great excersise. If I was younger I might be tempted, it looks loads of fun!
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Re: Portraits of Morris Men

Wonderful character studies you have there John. You captured some priceless expressions and interactions. Clearly your subjects were entirely comfortable with you shooting them.

Although "Morris Men" rang a bell (intentional ) I must admit that I had only a hazy idea as to what they were until I googled it.
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Old 3rd June 2013
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Re: Portraits of Morris Men

They look like Morris Men, they dress like Morris Men, but I have serious doubts?........................................... .......................... I can only see ONE? beer in the whole sequence? Can't be right
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Old 3rd June 2013
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Re: Portraits of Morris Men

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They look like Morris Men, they dress like Morris Men, but I have serious doubts?........................................... .......................... I can only see ONE? beer in the whole sequence? Can't be right
Hmmmm, that's certainly not normal behaviour. Next year I must try to include more overflowing tankards and frothy beards!
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Old 3rd June 2013
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Re: Portraits of Morris Men

Which one is Morris?

Well it is late!
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Old 4th June 2013
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Re: Portraits of Morris Men

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Originally Posted by Roy Clarke View Post
Which one is Morris?

Well it is late!
Last time I asked them that question I hobbled home with an eye-watering wedgie and a beer shampoo!
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