Around ten years ago, Hubert told me about a new light-field camera technology that he saw demoed. When that was productized as the Lytro camera, I pre-ordered it. After a bit of thought, I cancelled my pre-order. Why didn’t I do that this time?
It’s because back then, I thought original Lytro was marketed for non-photographers and capturing light fields meant that it would be a long time before it was ready for serious photography. This time, even though the L16 is poorly marketed and may flop, I sincerely feel that this camera is meant for someone like me.
Here is a picture of Grandpa Aboji with his family. To his right is his older sister. This was taken when Aboji went back to Korea for the first time in close to 20 years.
My grandfather is in the middle foreground. He was recently commemorated on a postage stamp in South Korea.
The artist messed up. There is no reason for my grandfather to be wearing a sweater under his suit. 😉
Edit: Letter from my cousin
Oh man I love your blog posts. I scrolled quickly to the one on grandpa and thought you should know… he did frequently wear a sweater under his suit! I have strong memories of a camel colored one and sometimes a soft burgundy cardigan worn almost like a suit vest. To me, it was an extra suave, climate-prepared, and eccentric detail I was glad got captured in the stamp.
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My aunt started an e-mail thread in my family. I’ll include excerpts here periodically.
I am cleaning the house of more pictures — so many. In the album Grandma Omma left, I found some pictures your mom. I will send another email of your mom and dad’s wedding that you probably have seen already.
My mom, like her father before her, loved science. She started in physical chemistry like her father but her heart condition caused by rheumatic fever led her to work in biophysics studying the neural network of the heart and heart arrhythmias.
Part of the same photo roll as this photograph, I ended up processing it also before I noticed the error.
It’s a “tourist snapshot” of the Transamerica Pyramid. From a photographic standpoint there is nothing to write about because I took it the same way any tourist might. Even though the camera shoots RAW, the dynamic range of small camera CCDs back then were just not up to the task of recording anything useable in the shadows. All I could do is use the “pump the blues” trick that any nature photographer knows to do for outdoor photos.
Even though Transamerica has long since moved to the East Coast, because it was built by them and its still in their logo, it’s still called the Transamerica Building and has been a the salient fixture of the San Francisco skyline for my entire life. I read somewhere that when it was built it was considered the ugliest building in the city until the Mariott “Jukebox” was built in 1989. I guess after that the One RinconTower Fan were built, San Franciscans were like, “You know, the Transamerica pyramid actually looks kind of nice.”
I snapped this photo outside my favorite sandwich shop at the time, Giordano Bros, which, like Transamerica, has moved to a different location.
A lot of people don’t “get” the All-in-One sandwich because they didn’t grow up in Pittsburgh, but putting french fries and coleslaw in a sandwich seems the most natural thing to do. Before I even ate at Primati’s I used to put Snyders of Berlin BBQ potato chips in my chipped ham sandwiches when I ran out of Isaly’s BBQ sauce.
Ever wonder why it took a Pittsburgh franchise to popularize the Bob’s Big Boysandwich as the McDonald’s Big Mac? Go eat an All-In-One and then go eat a Big Mac and your culinary mind will be blown.
I may not have the tastebuds of a foodie, but to make up for it when I eat, with a single bite into a sandwich, my mind can travel trans-america from San Francisco, to Oak Brook, to Pittsburgh, to Los Angeles and back again. And that’s why my favorite sandwich in San Francisco when I snapped this photo was Giordano Bros’s Coppa All-in-One.
If I keep processing only old photos, I’ll never get ahead, so I thought I’d process some photos I took recently with four different cameras . They’re all of the same subject so you can see how camera/lens choice affect composition and processing. But since this article is not about photography, I’ll put that discussion the the photo captions.
Instead I’ll talk about a watch I “splurged” on: the Seagull 1963 Re-issue. Here it is after I just opened the box (taken with a Nikon D810):