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Messages - Lurker

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1
Canon General / Re: Should we tell them?
« on: June 25, 2014, 11:52:43 PM »
I don't offer advice unless it's clear that someone is struggling and frustrated. 
Like when my dial clicks over and all the sudden the flash is popping up all the time.  I slam it down it pops back up, again and again and again until I start cussing.  Then please point out that my dial may have accidentally turned.

I'm also more receptive to advice if asked if I'm having the problem you think I"m having.  Then give me an out, tell me a lot of your students have issues with that feature/setup.  Egos are fragile things.

2
Photography Technique / Re: The definition of insanity
« on: June 25, 2014, 05:03:03 PM »
Yep.  This is why Canon makes great zooms with IS.

My wife is good about it but it does get boring for her so I try to keep that in mind.  My GF when I first started photography wasn't so patient.

I did have a photographer say he had rules when he went on family vacations.  Something like sunrise and sunset +/- an hour was his time.  He decided where to go and there was no discussion/whinning.  This was his work which made the vacation possible in the first place.  If the others could take care of themselves they could choose to go along or not.  The rest of the day was family time.  Similar could be done with non-photog friends and family, just let everyone know in advance that was your expectation.

I try to do similar.  My wife has realized that it pays to be up and out by sun up and back out later in the day.  More relaxing, no crowds, less heat and almost no kids in ear shot.  Midday is for napping or driving.

3
Canon General / Re: Helen Oster
« on: April 18, 2014, 10:36:11 AM »
Happy Birthday Helen!
Best wishes for your "22nd" year and all the years that follow.

4
IMO you were hired by the pro.  Their payment to you, exactly what you asked for, experience.
You owe it to the pro to present your photos and the brides request and let them close the deal.  Then ask if you can do it again and negotiate your compensation for the next time.

Ask yourself how easy it will be for you to get a paying gig on your own.  How easy was it to get work through this pro?  I've known Wedding photogs that worked for others (with high end reputation) and themselves.  If you contacted them and asked them to do the work you got them at their price.  If you asked them about the much well known company you got the same photog but paid the much higher price.  Sometimes the high end company would call them and ask them to assist on or take over a shoot.  It's a way to get started but you have to play nice.

Quote
Just the cost of hiring a good lawyer ($300/h) or a even a bad lawyer ($100/h) is not worth it.
Not sure if they have small claims court down under but they do here and there are no lawyers.  The limit is like $10,000 and I think that would be a really good day for most wedding photogs.

5
Canon General / Re: Lens advice for macro?
« on: March 20, 2014, 10:58:58 AM »
Lookup each of your lenses and look for a spec something like this (form the Canon 70-200 f/2.8L II):
   Closest Focusing Distance 1.2m/3.94 ft. (maximum close-up magnification: 0.21x)

The shorter the MFD (or CFD as stated above) the greater the magnification, given the same FL.  The greater the magnification the better.  Temper this with the IQ characteristics of the lens.

In your case I'd probably start with the 70-200 then try the Sigma and then the Cosina.

No matter what, your working distances will likely be very short.  For lighting I've used a flashlight to burn certain parts of the subject when shooting longer exposures.  Now days there are lots of "daylight" balanced led or florescent lights that you can pickup at most big box stores.

You may find a couple of inexpensive tripods handy for holding lights in the right spot.  I think they can be had for under $15 each.

There is also a trick about attaching one lens in reverse on the front of another.  I think this works better with wide angle lenses and you can get some pretty hi magnifications.  There are lens couplers available for this.

6
Photography Technique / Re: What could I do better?
« on: March 18, 2014, 01:27:04 PM »
As to the back button focus questions . . .

Once BBF is setup the focus is not connected to the shutter release at all.

If you press the focus button the focus will engage according to the rules for the focus mode selected.  If you release the focus button the focus will not change, not in any of the focus modes.

So, in a situation like yours you would BBF and release, recompose, press the shutter release.  This is essentially the same as single shot mode but you don't have to hold the shutter release half way down while recomposing.

If you hold the focus button then the camera will continue to refocus.  This is where some confusion comes in. What I've read, but the author stated that canon would not confirm or deny, is that the camera will continue to track focus even while the shutter button is pressed.  With the focus and shutter on the same button focus tracking stops when the shutter is activated.  This is a small differance but it has some important implications when working with narrow depth of field or fast moving objects.  We are all naturally unstable and we sway.  Holding the focus button in AI Servo allows the camera to continuously adjust focus to compensate for our movements, even while taking pictures.  Again, based on your results, BBF and AI Servo would not have solved the focus issue you had.  It's hard (impossilbe) to say exactly what happened and why the focus was on the bushes.

In your situation, where you wanted to recompose, holding the focus button would not work.  The focus would be reset as you recomposed.  In order to use BBF continuously, in AI Servo mode, you'd have to select a different focus point and put that point where you wanted to focus.  In this situation you were shooting in full sun so you'd be fine using any of the focus points.  The additional capability of the center point really comes into play in low light/low contrast situations. 

Also know, it is 100% ok to shoot a bullseye shot and then crop it to give the desired composition.  I used to think all those other photogs were so lucky or so skilled they always ended up in exactly the right place and time to get that perfect photo.  Now I know better.  Not that there isn't a lot of skill, knowledge, time, and hard work involved but there are also a lot of setup and post processing "tricks" to help capture those perfect shots.

7
Photography Technique / Re: What could I do better?
« on: March 17, 2014, 11:55:45 PM »
If you have a chance, setup the camera prior to stepping out the door. Even if you can't see the deer through a window if you can see an area with the same lighting that will work.

Due to circumstances similar to what you had, with varying amounts of snow (or water, or deep shade, or . . .) I tend to use spot metering and meter a known tone.  In this case I would have tried to meter off the snow or the white tail.  The meter will under expose this situation so I'll add 1-2/3 to 2 stops.  Again,  you could test this through a window.  Verify exposure with your histogram, expose to the right without clipping anything on the right side of the graph.

It looks like this was close to mid day based on the shadows but there is some back lighting.  This means the side of the deer your seeing is in shadow so set the white balance to shade or cloudy.  In LR take the white balance and run it around some of the whites that aren't over exposed.  Most of the whites will have a blue cast (higher % then the other 2 colors).

How far away were the deer?  I'm guessing about 60 feet.  Check out the depth of field chart:
  http://www.dofmaster.com/doftable.html
At this distance and f/8 your depth of field would be about 3 feet.  Which nose did you focus on?  If you selected the right deer then the left deer would have to be within 1.5 feet of depth to be in focus.  So trade shutter speed for more aperture.  With IS you may be able drop as low as 1/80 second and still not have motion blur.  This depends on your stability and skill which will come with practice.

If you focus and recompose you have to keep the shutter release pressed half way which can be hard to do and even harder to realize if you slipped and re-focused.  I +1 the back button focus idea.  Also the Servo mode, even for stationary subjects.  With narrow depths of field our natural front-to-back swaying can impact the in focus area.  IS will take care of side to side motion or up and down motion but it can't correct for front to back sway.  I don't think any swaying would explain the focus shift from the deer to the bushes behind them, the camera just missed somehow.  In this case, if you're trying to get both faces in focus I'd focus on the shoulder or ribs of the right hand deer.  It looks like that is about 1/2 way between the 2 faces.  f you need to pick one to be in focus I'd usually make the front deer unless there is something more compelling about the one in back.

Not sure if these are country deer or city deer.  City deer are more used to people being around.  Country deer are more used to being shot at by people.  I'm in the city and I've found that I can get really close to the deer.  Move slowly and look away from the deer, act like you're not interested in them.  I also tend to talk as I'm moving around, predators are usually very quiet while hunting.  Sitting down in plain view can also help them relax.

I think the grainy look you mentioned is noise due to the 400 ISO, shade on the deer, and under exposure.  It is pretty easy to deal with post processing and there are lots of tutorials about this.  One tool I'm trying to learn to control noise is to use Canon DPP to read the RAW file and convert it to a TIF file.  DPP does a better job of processing the RAW file and produces finer noise which is easier to correct.  LR can import and work with the TIF files.

Don't worry about hardware, what you have is able to make wonderful images.  The only way hardware would have helped in this case is if the lens is actually back focusing.  With some cameras you can do micro focus adjustments but the 60D doesn't let you do that.

You can also setup exposure bracketing.  This will take 3 photos each time with varying exposures, you set the amount of variance for each image.  If you're not sure about the correct exposure this is a good way to "try it" and learn which one worked best.


8
Photography Technique / Re: Can you share your workflow?
« on: March 12, 2014, 12:55:49 PM »
Art Morris at Birds As Art talks about his workflow on his blog pretty regularly.
He also has some instruction sets for sale with detailed settings and processes. 
I know, why pay if you can get it here for free?  Just saying.

One of his latest adjustments, which I am trying to adopt, has been to use Canon DPP to process the raw file and save it as a tiff file.  Then keep and process the tiff.  The reason for this is Canon DPP can process the RAW file better because it's tuned just to Canon files while Adobe has a generic process which works with all cameras.  Canon DPP produces a finer grained noise which is easier to clean up while maintaining fine detail.

Also, at least to begin with, Adobe didn't do a very good job with some of the new cameras, I think it was the 1D X and maybe the 5D III too.

You can process the tiff in LR, PS and likely most other imaging software.


9
Lenses / Re: Advice on Canon lenses
« on: February 12, 2014, 06:24:18 PM »
70-200 and (70-300 or 100-400) seems like duplication (no so much the 100-400).  If you want reach for wildlife/birds consider the 400 f/5.6.  You don't get IS but it is light, not too expensive, and really good IQ.  Rumor has it that a new IS version is coming.   ::)

Also, you mention
Quote
5Dlll kit set - with the EF 24-70mm f/2.8 ll USM lens.
I think the standard Canon kit lens is the 24-70 f/4.  Could be a bundle the seller put together.
Might want to dbl check that.

10
EOS Bodies / Re: Canon EOS 7D Mark II in Q2? [CR1]
« on: February 03, 2014, 09:25:03 AM »
Quote
I'm a bit perplexed at the excitement for a 7D II at $1999. At that price point, you could have a 6D, which IMHO, is a superior wildlife camera.

I don't get this statement unless you know something you're not telling us.  You're making a decision on the 7d II based on performance of the 7D.  This is just faulty logic.  No one seems to know what the 7D II will be or if/when it will actually exist.  You're comparing 4 yr old tech to current tech.  I would hope the current tech would be better.

I'll assume you expect the 7d II to be an incremental improvement, similar to how Canon manages the x0D line.
If this is the case there will be a lot of very disappointed people.  The 7D was a huge improvement over the 50D and I expect the 7d II to be a huge improvement over the 70D.

The only thing that seems to be certain is that either you'll be surprised by the 7d II or I'll be disappointed.


11
Third Party Manufacturers / Re: What am I doing wrong?
« on: January 18, 2014, 11:19:51 AM »
When does it droop, right away as your setting up or over time?

I had Manfrotto for a long time and had pretty good luck.  What I found was that as my glass grew the plates couldn't keep up.  The plates weren't long enough and I couldn't get the plate under the center of gravity of the setup.  Add a TC or ET and it got worse.

After switching to RRS and Markings and using long Arca style plates I have no more issues.  You may not need a different head just a long plate if they are available.  You want to get the CG over the ball head.  Note that when shooting up or down you may need to slide the setup forward or backward.

12
EOS Bodies / Re: A New Rebel for CP+? [CR1]
« on: January 14, 2014, 05:11:04 PM »
Quote
That's easy -- the Rebel Yell!!

Billy!?  That you?

13
Canon General / Re: What is the problem with Canon
« on: January 09, 2014, 05:33:20 PM »
Quote
Yes... the incremental cost....

I'm going to buy a 5D3 for $3000..... Canon comes out with a new $5000 camera that I like more and am willing to pay for..... It's not just Canon selling a $5000 camera, it cost them sales of a $3000 camera, so the net gain is an extra $2000 in sales from that $5000 camera....

I'm sure that thier business planners have considered this,.

The flip of this is just as important and probably even more so.  If they don't produce the $5000 camera that you like more but someone else does they may be out any camera sale as well as associated lens, flash, and battery sales.  For most people once they start in a direction it's hard to get them back.  Canon would have to produce something so spectacular that you're willing to forgive and forget and re-invest in their cultcamp.

Look in the toothpaste isle, Crest has been doing this for years.  They introduce a new variation and it takes sales away from some of their existing products.  They live with it because it does more damage to the competition and they don't care if your money is in their left or right pocket.  Look at how much Crest there is and see if you can find Close-up, Pepsident, Perl Drops, or Aim. 

Model-T - You can have any color you want as long as it's black.  By ignoring consumer sentiment Ford basically made their competition and sent their customers over.
If Nikon (or Sigma, or Tamron, or ...) produces glass to rival Canon and can make if more affordable then Canon could be lining up their customers for the competition.

To me it makes no difference, this is a hobby.  I use a 50D so there is plenty of room for improvement within the current Canon lineup.  I would however like a high MP camera.  Not to impress anyone or to make large prints, but to put more dots on small subjects.  I'd rather spend $5000 on an excellent high MP body and use "digital zoom", than to spend $12,000+ on superior telephoto lens (or maybe 2, the 200-400 and 600).  Personally I think that's part of the Canon formula, they'd rather sell high $ glass than high MP bodies that let you zoom digitally.

Because Canon glass holds it's value so well, and it seemes like Nikon has less expensive glass, my next upgrade may well be to Nikon.  I've got a long way to go before that happens though.  I need to take care of soooo many other things before I can make any major camera purchases.  Unless Canon comes out with the perfect camera before then, that's what it will take - my perfect camera, the camera people will have to wait 3 or more years to get any of my $.  If they can live with that so can I.

14
The all new Canon 70
The mature camera.

15
Lenses / Re: Patent: Canon EF 300-600 f/5.6 w/1.4x TC
« on: December 06, 2013, 11:55:20 AM »
I know nothing and am not too bright so be kind.

I see the 200-400 as part of the 24-70/70-200 f/2.8 L II line of lenses.
I expect the 300-600 will be part fo the 24-70 f/4 L , 70-300 f/4-5.6 L line of lenses.

Relative to the 200-400 I'd expect to sacrifice some image and build quality but in return get significant $ in my pocket and a relatively lighter lens.  I'm going to set my flag at the $8000 price point.  I would not be surprised if it was even lower.

Like I said, I know nothing and am not too bright so be kind.

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