‘OK Glass.’ California Landscapes #ThroughGlass
It began with answering the question ‘If I had Glass’ and evolved into a photographic journey around San Francisco and the Bay Area, discovering some new and revisiting some older, more familiar landscapes to photograph using Google Glass,
Earlier this year, James Bareham of The New Cruelty was fortunate enough to be selected to participate in the Google Glass Explorer Program. After collecting his device in New York (in ‘Shale’), James set about practicing the art of using Glass to shoot pictures and record video.
He discovered that it’s not as easy as it looks. It's difficult to align Glass to capture images with straight horizons or plum straight verticals; peripheral vision makes framing rather hit and miss; it's very easy to take a picture of your own hand when using the shutter button (as opposed to saying "OK Glass"); and the lens is not that great–at least in comparison with the latest generation of smartphones. But, as James wrote in his recent feature for The Verge, optical quality is not nearly as important as it once was. The fact is that any negatives are far outweighed by the positive that Glass opens up a completely new way of taking pictures. In the words of Oskar Barnack (inventor of the Leica) it is literally an "integral part of the eye".
In early September 2013, James journeyed to San Francisco for a 12 day shoot for TNC client SVB, and decided to use the opportunity to shoot a complete portfolio of images on Google Glass. To create an even greater ‘Googly’ experience, James also decided to test the latest photo editing features of Google Plus to process and grade the resulting images. The only work that was not done within the Chrome browser was sizing the final image and the very occasional straightening of the horizon line. Yes, keeping the head dead straight when shooting is REALLY tricky.
Google still have a long way to go with the Glass device, but there's clearly a wealth of photographic and video possibilities, and the equipment will only get better. It's just going to take a lot more practice to use.
Creative Director / Photographer: James Bareham
Retouching: The New Cruelty (using Google+)