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Messages - Hillsilly

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Lenses / Re: Are you using a filter on your 40mm
« on: February 18, 2013, 01:56:55 AM »
I typically don't use UV filters, but often use IR filters, ND filters, B&W filters and polarizers.  But then, I'm not a pro photographer who is constantly using their camera gear.  I can be a bit more relaxed and careful.  Using a filter affects the image quality.  Sometimes in a good way.  Often in a bad way. If you know what you are trying to achieve (eg a particular look or protection) and understand any trade-offs, then the choice of whether to use a filter is pretty easy.  I just wish the lens was designed with more thought for use with bigger filters.  52mm filters just don't look right.

EOS Bodies - For Stills / Re: Film EOS Body
« on: February 17, 2013, 07:15:48 PM »
I'd also give some thought to an EOS 30 (AKA Elan 7E).  While an EOS 3 is much more robust, feature packed and a better all round camera, the 30 is still good to use and a fraction of the price.  If I was choosing a film camera and I wasn't concerned about size or weight, I think my order of preference would go 1V, 3, 1N, 30.

The Linhof's are an interchangeable lens, rangefinder style, medium format film camera.  You can get a variety of lenses.  It is a high quality camera.  But I doubt they can be used with medium format backs.  (Actually, I think there are ways to hook up a medium format digital back, but you are limited to the width of a standard back, which defeats the purpose.)  Another negative is that you only get 4 shots per roll with the 617.

If curious, Stuart Klipper is one of the better known users.  He has some photos on hs website - http://www.stuartklipper.com.   

I doubt they used this, but a Linhof Technorama 612 or 617 will give you the panoramic look with fairly good corner sharpness.  No stiching required.

EOS Bodies - For Stills / Re: Is it okay to get 1Ds mark ii
« on: February 13, 2013, 05:59:10 AM »
Third party batteries are cheap - $30 to $40.  My current batteries were purchased more than twelve months and still going strong.  I typically get between 1500 to 3000 shots on a full charge depending on my use of AF, photo review times etc.  I wouldn't let battery choice affect your decision.  If you can live without video, high ISOs, liveview, microfocus adjustment, small/bad LCD etc, For $700, it sounds like a great buy.  They are very tough camera that can produce spectacular results.  (Although, I'd be a little dubious about the shutter count).

Canon General / Re: What's your definition of "Pro"?
« on: February 12, 2013, 01:07:51 AM »

You should join the RPS and do one of their Distinctions.

You'd probably have to be a good photographer.  That kind of rules me out.

But that's along the lines that I was thinking.  The Australian Photographic Society is similar.  I assume most countries have similar associations.  Where my idea differs to the honours system is that the photographic societies recognise people that can take exceptional photos.  They may or may not be the same people that you can rely on to consistently produce images of high quality that satisfies their client's demands in a professional way.  Also, membership is open to all, which diminishes the prestige and marketing advantages of being a member.

But realistically, it is these societies that would be the ideal peak professional bodies.  Maybe a new membership category.

Canon General / Re: What's your definition of "Pro"?
« on: February 11, 2013, 11:40:13 PM »
...We're not building planes or perform brain surgery where some kind of board approval may be useful to some degree ...

Surely, bad wedding photography leads to a higher incidence of divorce?  Think of the cost to society!  It's time for government action now to stop these unregulated photographers destroying people's lives!!

But seriously, you're probably missreading this with a negative approach, rather than the positive slant I wanted to portray.  My intention is not to create barriers to entry or restrictions for work, make membership complusory, make only employees of members eligible for membership, promote anti competitve beahviour or price fixing.  Instead, my suggestion is to provide photographers who show a real dedication to their calling a formal pathway to help promote their level of skill and expertise.  They can then leverage upon their extra training and experience to become members of the association.  At the same time, the association will be promoting the benefits of choosing a member.  If this is done successfully, putting the associations logo on business cards, websites etc will subconcsciously help influence the client's decision to approach you for a quote and hopefully lead to more, better paying, work.  It is a way for people to appreciate why your prices are higher than your competition - and will gladly pay it.   

With an ever growing number of photographers (and a lot of amateurs who are pretty good) this is a way to stand out from the crowd.  It's about having a way to instantly convey that you are probably well above average at what you do. 

Canon General / Re: What's your definition of "Pro"?
« on: February 10, 2013, 10:39:10 PM »
After thinking about this for a few days, I've started to dislike the term "professional photographer".  I think it is pretty meaningless and am not sure where the term would ever be used.  On tax returns, loan application forms, business cards, websites etc, you would only ever use the term "Photographer".  Nobody ever describes their occupation as "professional xxxxx".  The only time I ever see the word "Professional Photographer" is on application forms such as CPS (Canon Professional Services).  I suspect that they only use the word "professional" to make everyone sound important.  The membership criteria for CPS is that you work as a full-time paid photographer and have bought the right quantity and type of Canon cameras.  Your level of professionalism in how you conduct yourself or photographic skills isn't assessed as part of the application. 

Anyway, the reason that I've come to dislike the term "professional" photographer is that photography isn't a profession in the traditional sense.  There is no recognised educational or skill based pathway to become a "professional" photographer. There are no governing bodies.  There is no board which looks after the admission of members.  There are no reviews of people's skill levels and business conduct.  There is no disciplinary tribunal that acts against those bringing the professional into disrepute or to deal with client / photographer disputes.  There are no standards of conduct or recognised operating processes to ensure that clients receive obtain a satisfactory standard of work.

To become a profession, I'd suggest photographers need to: -

1. Set up a society. 

2. Set the minimum educational requirements - eg diploma or bachelor degree in a photography or art related field from an accredited institution.

3. Set up a postgraduate course that prospective members have to complete to be admitted as members.  The course will cover five or six keys subjects and be designed to be completed part time over two years while you are working as a paid photographer.  This course will cover advanced topics and be designed to be hard and challenging.  Many people will fail at least one subject.  Some won't be able to pass as at all.  You will have to be pretty good to become society members.

4.  Set a high annual membership fee.  Much of the membership fees will be directed towards advertising so that the general public knows that using a society member helps ensure high quality.  This also helps society members charge/justify higher fees.  Everyone knows you're not just a person who picked up a camera for the first time last week.  You are a professional with significant training, skills and knowledge.

5.  Mandate continual professional education.  Members have to dedicate 30 hours a year toward seminars, conferences, reading and podcasts from accredited educational providers to improve and update their skills.

6.  Every three to five years, the society reviews your work and your business to ensure you are continuing to meet the high standards expected.

If it is up for a vote, I'm backing mixed card slots.  SD cards might not be the fastest or most secure, but they are universally available.  Every supermarket, tourist attraction and smaller camera shooter carries SD cards.  And they're cheap.  Plus nearly every laptop and tablet has a built in SD card reader.  Mixed card slots give you the CF card slot for speed and reliability and an SD card slot for those "OMG I forgot spare memory cards" moments.

Besides, I thought we were almost at the point where memory card speed wasn't having a significant impact on camera FPS or buffers?

EOS Bodies - For Stills / Re: Upgrade from 40D
« on: February 08, 2013, 02:48:38 AM »

Canon General / Re: What's your definition of "Pro"?
« on: February 07, 2013, 03:32:54 AM »
A pro is a person who can deliver the results that their client is paying for. Most importantly, a pro has the experience, knowledge and temperament to deal with adverse conditions and unforseen problems, can work with a diverse range of clients (and their expectations) and understands the logistical requirements for a succesful shoot.

Money doesn't automatically come into my definition.  But I suspect that you couldn't develop the expertise to be a pro unless you were doing it as your full time occupation.  It would take several years to reach the required level.


Your clients are raising their eyebrows at things you say or do;
Your clients are offering suggestions (and their suggestions work and are better than your ideas);
You don't get a lot of repeat jobs or referrals;
You regularly get the impression people aren't happy with your work;
You turn up late;
You regularly lose files, forget to bill clients, don't have back up equipment, always rely on the sun as your source of lighting, think your 35-80 produces the pinnacle of image quality, turn up with a Nikon, don't preplan but expect to get it right on the day, forget important pieces of kit, miss the kiss, run out of memory cards...

...then you might not be at pro level yet.  But if you are getting most of the above right, you probably are a pro.

Hi.  Don't know how scientific your tests were.  But as a 1Ds Mkii owner myself, I've yet to be convinved that newer cameras offer significantly improved image quality at ISO 100 (where I'm at for most of the time).  The 5Diii might have better dynamic range, but I don't know how noticeable this would be in the real world.  And of course, if you try to shoot at higher than ISO 3200....

Makes you wonder what Canon have been doing for the last 10 years.

EOS Bodies / Re: Canon Confirms 70D; Future of Semi-Pro DSLR is FF
« on: February 05, 2013, 03:57:36 AM »
I can see fuji and sony will take a BIG bite in smaller body models build with ff and crop sensors - X100(s) and RX-1 are great gear on the market.

I agree.  In particular, in the $600 to $1200 price range, there are so many good cameras around that I'm amazed Canon maintains such market dominance.  But they must be getting a little worried.  And this is one of the reasons why Canon will (hopefully) return the 70D to its roots - a more rugged, feature packed, well built, action and wildlife orientated camera for those with around $1200-$1400 to spend.

Great autofocusing capabilities is the only significant advantage Canon holds over many competitors.  I'm pretty sure it will be the foundation of their camera bodies and marketing efforts in coming years.  That way, when people go into a shop to buy their first serious camera, the salesperson will agree that the new Sony or Olympus or Panasonic or Fuji takes great photos.  Just not of anything that moves.  The 70D, however, not only takes great photos, but also has a state of the art AF system.  They'll never miss an important shot again.  Add in weather sealing, WIFI, GPS, dual card slots etc etc and, as long as it comes in different colours, Canon can lock in another three years as market leader. 

Also, it must have hurt Canon's feelings for everyone to say the D7000 was better than the 60D - especially given that it was cheaper.  I doubt they want a repeat of that.

EOS Bodies / Re: Canon Confirms 70D; Future of Semi-Pro DSLR is FF
« on: February 04, 2013, 09:24:52 AM »
A 7Dii has a value proposition problem.  Go back a few years and there was a big performance difference (AF, FPS) between the 7D and the 5Dii, and buying a 7D made a lot of sense to people who didn't want to step up to a 1D4.  But the 5Diii narrows the performance gap considerably.  And given the overall IQ benefits of the 5Diii, I have doubts that there would be many, if any, 7Dii buyers out there. 

We'll only see a 7Dii when Canon develops a next generation of APS-C sensors in which the image quality is noticeably better than a cropped 5Diii image.

Lenses / Re: Telephoto choice for Australia
« on: January 31, 2013, 10:46:42 PM »
With birds, the bigger lens the better of course.  But in most tourist locations, getting close to other wildlife won't be a problems and a 70-200 (with extender just in case) should be fine.  Dingoes have no problems getting close to people on Fraser Island.  In fact, dingo attacks are fairly common - As tourists give food to the dingoes, they have started to expect this.  Keep your eye open for humpback whales on the way over there. 

Living in Brisbane, I don't really know what other people find exotic or intersting.  On the Gold Coast, if you want to photograph some wallabies (and if you're lucky koalas) in the "wild", try the Coombabah Lakelands Conservation Area.  While 500mm will be great, a 70-200mm is a good focal length here.  You mention birds, so if Rainbow Lorikeets are your thing, try Burleigh Heads beach in the late afternoon.  A 70-200 will also work well here.  If you want to get really serious/adventurous, try searching for Lyrebirds in Gold Coast hinterland.  You'd want a 500mm+ for this. 

I guess my final answer would be to say that you'd do pretty well with just the 70-200.  But there will be occassions when you will wish for something longer.  But unless you are seriously into wildlife photography, I'd leave the 500mm at home.   

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