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Messages - benperrin

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Software & Accessories / Re: To filter or not to filter
« on: July 14, 2014, 10:18:35 PM »
No filters are used to protect my lenses. Unless I am out shooting in sand or something where I figure that I need protection from the elements. I often use a circular polariser or ND filter though but that has nothing to do with protection. I used to use b+w uv filters for protection but one day realised that they were unnecessary for my style of shooting.

Very well written unfocused! It is one of the best responses I've seen for a long long time!

Lenses / Re: RLPhotos first impressions of the 16-35mm f/4L - Video
« on: July 04, 2014, 10:08:50 AM »
Great review. My 17-40 is being sold tomorrow and I'm just itching to take out my new 16-35 f4. Also thank-you for mentioning that tripods aren't allowed everywhere. Some people just don't seem to understand that point. The 16-35 seems to be better in every scenario so I'm already thinking I made the right choice. Thanks again for the effort you put into making these videos.

Third Party Manufacturers / Re: D810!!!
« on: June 26, 2014, 02:00:11 AM »
I hope it is a really great camera, and sets some new standards.  Will I switch?  Nope.  I love the competition that will make things better for us all.

Frankly I wish Nikon well, but I'm not that interested in what they do.  To be honest, I have a lot invested in lenses, bodies, giizmos, etc., and I spend a lot of time and effort improving my photographic skills.  What I have discovered is that it isn't the hardware that is my limiting factor. 

Improvements in technology will help me get better, but so far, my beloved 5DIII, pooped on or not, still has plenty of head room for me to improve.



Seems a bit of a stretch. I wouldn't mind a camera in the 45ish MP range however. But others have said that's definitely not enough focus points!  ;D What are these? Focus points for ants? It needs to be at least 3 times bigger!

Lenses / Re: The sharpness curse!
« on: June 24, 2014, 03:34:15 AM »
Sharpness is important and for sharp pictures you need the right gear. But what do you need most for sharp pictures?

* exact focusing,
* optimal aperture,
* either fast shutter speed or heavy tripod,
* clear sunlight or flash,
* if available big format (the bigger the better, film or sensor is unimportant)
* and experience in developing and printing (unimportant whether files or film).

Lens design is only one factor, perhaps a minor one, most important in case of the lens is, that it is perfectly centered and adjusted to the camera.

Don't forget correct exposure and optimal contrast play a part in sharpness. There are plenty of people who don't need or want lenses so sharp but I'd rather have mine sharp and have to soften it in post (which I'll never do) than to need it sharper and not be able to.

Having said that, I do agree with the OP that sharpness is by no means the only characteristic people should be looking at when choosing a lens. There are many more factors that go into that decision and in the end it's up to the individual to decide if it's worth it.

If the 5DIV releases next summer that will be a neat and tidy average for the 5D lifecycle.
I'd love it to be the case. I have the 5d2 and the upgrade to the 3 wasn't worth it to me so the mark 4 will definitely be on my radar.

Lenses / Re: The sharpness curse!
« on: June 22, 2014, 04:34:59 AM »
Sharpness to me is the cherry on top. It is an important consideration when choosing a lens but like others said not the only thing to think about. Obviously things like lighting, exposure and composition have a far greater impact on an image than sharpness but sharpness will make a great image that extra bit better.

I was just looking through an image from a recent wedding with the second shooter. We both loved an image (shot with the 24-70 2.8ii) and were remarking how clear and sharp it was even when zoomed way in. Then we started discussing how the 24-105 would've never produced an image so good. The point is that I'll always pick the image with the extra bit of sharpness if everything else is in order.

It gives me peace of mind that I don't have to worry about the quality of the lenses that I use. I focus on what I am shooting and just try to make the best image I can. But that's me and I can certainly understand when others say that it's not a consideration for them. I will say this though, all these modern lenses aren't going to make a great deal of difference if you are just viewing your images via laptop or dare I say, a smart phone. Get those images to the print lab and enjoy your work on display for everyone to see!


I think we might have scared him off.

Don't take the advice given here as an attack on you or your photography. Take it as an opportunity to learn and to grow your business and skills. You'll be setting yourself apart from your competition and you won't be worrying about them anymore. It's all about perception. You can perceive everything written to be an attack on you, get defensive/hurt and nothing will be done to help grow your business. Or you can take the advice given and implement some changes that will make you stand out.

In the end I suppose that's what people are saying. You need to elevate everything you do so that you aren't competing in the same market as the amateur. As you've found out most people just want the cheapest prices and don't have an eye for the art. Don't market to those people.

Hope this helps and doesn't hinder you.


Yeah, I'm tending to agree with the previous critiques posted. Basically make your website look a bit more professional and remove some of your weaker images that are bringing the stronger images down.

I have looked at local photographers too and I really don't see how one of my studio shots perfectly exposed (metered) using a Lastolite Hilite box and four Elinchrom guns can be compared to someone who is using, basically, a sheet and a light.

Don't get too caught up in correct exposure. Correct exposure is an artistic choice defined by the photographers vision not by a tool like a light meter. Joel Grimes has some really good knowledge that he shares about this subject in his videos on youtube.

I also agree with the others when they say it's more about marketing and people skills than it is about talent. This is one of the reasons I don't think I could ever go professional. So I'm just booking gigs now to pay off my expensive hobby.

I was on prostituterumors.com the other week... and there were some prostitutes complaining about the same thing.  Something about "just giving it away"... so photography isn't the only industry affected by an influx of amateurs.

Best comment ever!!!

Lenses / Re: What was your first L lens?
« on: June 17, 2014, 11:21:25 PM »
First was the 17-40L then it was the
100L Macro (had the non L version but sold it to buy a 1dmk3)
24-70L 2.8 ii
and now the 16-35 f4 on order

I'm going to sell off the 17-40 and 24-105 though. I won't need them anymore. I feel like I'm well covered now unless I want to go on safari  ;D. After going through the 17-85 and 50 1.4 I can safely say that I'll never buy a non L lens again. Unless it is made by a guy called Carl.

EOS Bodies / Re: Ye Olde Film Photography
« on: June 16, 2014, 01:25:28 AM »
Here we go again with the purist mentality.  I knew it was coming...

If it weren't shot in full M, manual focus, and with film, it wasn't good.  I know the argument isn't that extreme, but there is absolutely and objectively nothing better at all about film shooting vs. digital shooting.  If you think digital produces less than 1% great shots, tell that to Peter Read Miller.  Remember, he shot with four EOS-1V's and now shoots with four 1Dx's.  Does he get less than 1% of his original great shots from when he shot with film?  If you're talking burst mode, who cares?  He's getting the shots and he's simply using technology to MAKE SURE he gets it.  The exposure and composition are still correct, so who cares how many "bursts" it took to time it correctly?  If anything, we have MORE great shots because of that, not to mention AF locking.

People make assumptions and that's what the OP stated and feared.  Assumptions that aren't backed at all and the biggest assumption is that digital photographers aren't as careful or creative or don't work very hard to get a great shot, when that is biggest load of bull ever.

In my opinion, if you know what you're doing, are careful and creative, there is nothing special or more "pure" about film than digital.  Get a digital camera and don't waste money on film, unless you love doing film specifically.

+1 :)

I think you just have to go on flickr or 500px or wherever to see the amazing work that people are now developing. Sure there's probably more average/bad photos now than ever but the learning curve has been cut dramatically with digital. People are creating amazing things never created before and surely that's all that matters. People need to stop with this 'purism' and go out and shoot something different.

Thanks for your suggestions, Ben! I think one of my issues is that everyone has his own taste in terms of skin tones, saturation, etc. And I personally don't know whether it's better to make the image slightly warmer/colder, etc. Maybe it sounds silly but that's how I often feel. But practice makes perfect, so I hope I'll develop my own taste  :)

Yes, it is very important to develop your own style and shoot based on your own taste. Unfortunately it sometimes takes longer than we would like to get to that place but if you keep going you'll get there sooner or later. Keep it up!

I think if these are the first pictures you've asked to be critiqued then you've done very well. Most amateurs usually end up having way more issues than this. I think your composition and posing are fine. The main issue I see is white balance. I think number 2 is the only acceptable one here in terms of white balance. Number 1 is too cold but this is easily corrected. The others have some bad colour choices happening.

Go to kuler.adobe.com and what you want to look for is either analogous or complementary colour schemes. I'm not saying that you have to always use these but it's good to at least understand the basics.

Also bring a grey card with you to the next shoot and use that as a starting point to get your white balance right.

Honestly though, you're off to a great start and I think you have many many more great photos ahead of you. So don't give up. I hope that helps.


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