November 26, 2014, 06:34:36 AM

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Messages - gbchriste

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Landscape / Re: Beautiful sunsets
« on: November 07, 2014, 03:08:25 PM »
My wife suffered a severely broken ankle a few months ago and I have been playing care giver pretty much 24/7.  Consequently the camera gear has stayed stored away for a while.  But she finally recovered enough that I could leave her home alone for an hour or two and these 2 sunset shots from 2 nights this past week represent my reentry in to the craft.

EOS Bodies / Re: Patent: Variable Diffusion Focusing Screen
« on: October 15, 2014, 04:42:35 PM »
And forgive my ignorance but why aren't modern DSLRs fitted with split prism focusing screens.  I shot with a Canon AE-1 and/or A-1 for 20 years and never, ever missed focus on anything.  I was 50/50 in focus with the 5DII and 70-200 2.8 Mk I.  Now with the 5DIII and 70-200 MkII I'm about 90% in focus but still...

You'd have to lay out some money but have you considered virtualization?   A virtualization environment is one that lets you run one operating system within its own application space hosted on another operating system.  Check out VMWare Workstation.  You can run VMWare Workstation on your desktop with a separate Windows 7 or 8 OS inside a virtual machine.  So you would in effect be running two machines simultaneously on the same physical box.  And you can share resources between those such as your network and Internet connection, shared drives, USB ports, etc etc.  So you could run DPP within your virtual Windows 8 OS, and still have full, simultaneous access to your Vista system.

I'm a Mac user and do all my photo processing on the Mac OS but I'm also a Windows IT analyst and software developer and have to have a couple of different Windows desktop and server environments to work on.  I don't keep separate hardware around for those.  I run VMWare's virtualization product for Mac - VMWare Fusion - and have a Windows environment running in its own window on my Mac system.  Works like a charm.

Lenses / Re: I'm terrified of my EF 70-200 f/2.8 IS II
« on: September 03, 2014, 08:35:26 PM »
Another +1 for the Black Rapid with this lens.  My usual outdoor portrait session goes to about 2 hours and I can easily tote it around for that length of period with no problem.  And with the strap attached to the tripod foot of the lens, the mount is not supporting the weight of the lens, but rather the weight of the body.  The weight of the lens is being borne by the strap.

EOS Bodies / Re: Is Canon now two generations behind Nikon?
« on: August 29, 2014, 10:20:27 AM »
The capabilities of any modern, advanced DSLR, whether Canon or Nikon, usually far outstrip the capabilities of the person using it.

Photography Technique / Re: APOLLO missions - image inconsistencies
« on: August 17, 2014, 08:41:23 PM »
Actually this conspiracy theory was debunked by Myth Busters.  They set up a scale model of the lunar landing site, the lunar module. The set construction included accurate representations of the contours of the surface and used materials with similar reflectivity as the lunar surface.  They then positioned the LEM and astronaut models at the correct position and orientation, and a point light source at the proper orientation and azimuth that the sun was at at the moment the photos were taken.  The shadows and light artifacts in the original images that are often sited by conspiracy adherents as "inconsistent" were in fact accurately duplicated in their scale model experiment.

Business of Photography/Videography / Re: Who owns the photo?
« on: August 11, 2014, 07:41:36 PM »
It would be entertaining to see how this plays out.

A big question is whether or not the photographer actually went to the trouble of getting a copyright on the photo in the first place. (Yes, lots of people put the copyright symbol on their photos but never bother to file the paperwork. Doing so preserves some rights, but it's not an absolute guarantee of copyright)

I suspect that in this case, had the photographer actually copyrighted the picture, then Wikipedia would be in quite a weak position because the copyright would serve as an official designation that the government has declared that the right to the photograph belongs to the photographer. If you have an official copyright from the Government, it's unlikely that a court is going to say that is invalid.

But, if the photographer simply placed a copyright on his files and never followed up with paperwork, well, then that's another question. If that's the case, then Wikipedia could well argue what they are arguing now -- which is that he never had the ability to secure the copyright. Under that situation, the photographer is likely to have to prove that he does indeed have the right to a copyright.

First situation, Wikipedia would have to prove he never had the right to the copyright -- burden of proof should be on them to show that the government erred in awarding the copyright.

Second situation, photographer must prove he has the right to copyright the photo -- burden of proof likely to be on him to prove that he should be awarded the copyright.

Now, the other question might be just what exactly does that copyright protect? If the photograph has been widely circulated without any copyright designation, the photographer might be in a weak position to now claim copyright.

Additionally, since the copyright protects the photographer's financial interest and is not an absolute bar to using the photo, court might have to determine what his financial loss is from the violation. He could win the copyright case and be awarded $1.

And, finally, copyright is not an absolute bar to reproducing a creative work. There are exceptions for educational, critical and artistic uses. Might not apply in this case, but it can apply in others.

This may never be litigated, but if it is, it will be interesting.

It's not correct the "filing a copyright" would seal the deal, at least under U.S. law.  In the U.S. copyright is established at the moment the artistic work is created.  From that point on, any actions the author takes to mark or register the copyright are simply means of documenting the copyright that already in fact exists.

If I take a photo and never watermark it or register it with the U.S. Copyright Office, and later discover an infringement, I can take all legal action to enforce my copyright.  The only issue remaining is how to I prove that I am in fact the author of the work.  Perhaps all that is necessary is for me to produce the original RAW, date-time stamped image file.  Of course, the task of proving my authorship becomes easier if I have in fact registered my copyright but it is not essential to establishing my copyright.

Software & Accessories / Re: Insurance is an accessory right? :P
« on: August 10, 2014, 06:42:13 PM »
I've been a USAA member since 1985.  At that time USAA membership was limited to commissioned officers.  In 1996 membership was opened to military personnel of all ranks.

Now before I start and get flamed all over the place, let me preface by saying I was an enlisted airman from 1977 until my commissioning as a 2nd Lieutenant in 1985.  I was in a demanding and difficult career field and that period of my service is something I'm particularly proud of.  So I have no class biases here.

Having said that, in my view, the quality of service offered by USAA has steadily declined since the membership changed.  I've had occasion to finance and refinance homes as well as file several auto claims during those years and while the service started out on a stellar level that could not be matched, my recent transactions (a home refinance and auto claim) have left me feeling like I was dealing with a run-of-the mill insurance company in which the agents and adjusters were just in it for the paycheck rather than really interested in helping me.  I won't go in to all the details of why.

Again, no class bias here, but simple actuarial science would dictate that when you take a risk pool that consists exclusively of older, degreed professionals (i.e. commissioned officers), and add to that an entirely new population that consists in large part of young kids, many who barely made it out of high school, with little to no prior work or professional experience (i.e. young enlisted troops), then the insurance risk profile of the entire pool is going to go up significantly.  And when that happens, costs go up as well.

It's just a theory but I believe USAA is now reaping the harvest for the decision they made in changing the membership criteria.  Costs go up, losses go up, and as a result, they can no longer be the premier service provider they once were.

This year I've actually started thinking about moving away from USAA to another insurance provider after 29 years of membership.  I don't mind paying more money when I receive superior service but it's becoming somewhat debatable as to whether USAA can provide that superior level of service to justify any higher rates I might be paying.

Photography Technique / Re: 85 vs 135 for portraits
« on: July 08, 2014, 10:39:38 PM »
Either will excel at both head/shoulders and half ( or even full) body shots. The real discriminator is how the lens treats the background perspective relative to the subject. If you compose the subject and take the shot with the 85, then switch to the 135 and move back to achieve the same view of the subject, the background will be drawn in closer to the subject.  Works in reverse if you start with the 135 and then switch to the 85.

Lenses / Re: 70-200 f2.8ii or i
« on: June 28, 2014, 12:30:21 PM »
I've owned both and used both on the 5D2 and 5d3. No contest that the MK2 lens is the one you want on the 5d3. The MK2 lenses have been optimized for the 5d3 and 1dx bodies.  The difference in AF accuracy alone makes the cost difference worth it. I'm also a portrait shooter and stay at f2.8 pretty much all the time. Night and day difference between these 2 lenses on the 5d3.

Photography Technique / Re: Shoot from the rearend of the subjects.
« on: June 01, 2014, 02:53:05 PM »

Canon General / Re: How To Water Proof?
« on: April 02, 2014, 09:34:34 PM »
I kayak and have a small pelican case just big enough for my camera and most used lens.  It rides between my legs in the kayak where I can get to it quickly.  I carry two other lenses in a dry bag in the hatch.  I rarely ever change lens, but I have them if needed and will stop to retrieve them and change them out.


Canon General / Re: How To Water Proof?
« on: April 02, 2014, 09:34:14 PM »

I do a lot of trekking and have found the best solutions for keeping camera gear absolutely dry is to use Beta Shell cases for your lenses (see for info) and to use the large Wanganui case from aquapac: to store your DSLR. I have found that if I remove any tripod mount, I can even keep my 5D Mk III in the wanganui pouch with a 24-105L or 16-35L II mounted on the camera.

All of these products will survive submersion for several minutes if used in accordance with the instructions. For extra protection I put the betashell cases inside a kayak dry bag (in my case the dry bag is used as a rucksack liner). Hope that helps.

Thank you!

Canon General / Re: How To Water Proof?
« on: April 02, 2014, 09:33:53 PM »
As one who has made a career photographing from water, I know from costly experience there is no way to be "totally waterproof". But, you can vastly improve your odds if you take a few precautions.
The hard plastic case (Pelican or similar) is one of the best solutions, but, as pointed out, is probably too bulky to be useful when kayaking. Same goes for what I usually use, a large cooler, in which I fit two or three bodies and a few long lenses.
I also kayak quite a bit and, when I do, I use a dry bag. While it would be smaller than a case, I'd make sure it was large enough that your equipment could be quickly taken out and stowed inside. (Not sure what is worse, missing that important shot because you didn't get to your camera fast enough or ruining it because you couldn't put it back before the big splash.)
Before you set out, I would make certain that your dry bag is truly dry. I'd run a test each time you use it, without any gear, just to make sure the all the seams hold and there are no pinhole leaks. It might have worked fine the last time, but setting the bag down on a rough surface, like rocks or gravel, even a small piece of class hiding in what you thought was a safe spot, can cause a puncture (likely one you can't see, but will still let water in).  Also, avoid quick changes of temperature, as taking the bag from warm to cold, or even cold to warm, yields condensation.
Just to be extra safe, carry a towel in the bag as well, and use it to wipe up any moisture before it has a chance to find its way to your gear.
And, one more thing, make sure your bag is well-sealed, so give it at least three turns.

Many thanks!

Canon General / Re: How To Water Proof?
« on: April 02, 2014, 09:25:50 PM »
Either do it right or be prepared for the worst.
Do you have a recommended approach other than those already suggested that you consider to be the "right" way?
And keep in mind, you are not after the best solution, you are after the best solution that will fit into a kayak.....

There are also deck bags that you can bungie onto the top of your kayak.... but the seal isn't as good as a dry bag. They are more convenient though...

I won't be home until late tonight, but when I do, I'll try to remember to post some photos of various solutions... expect to see them tomorrow evening.

BTW... are you talking about a sea kayak or a river kayak?


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