August 29, 2014, 04:19:25 AM

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Messages - Hillsilly

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Portrait / Re: Mobile studio portraits - am I doing this properly?
« on: June 03, 2014, 08:58:04 AM »
I think your lighting is ok.  If it was me, I'd play around a little more with the B&W conversion, and perhaps add some more contrast.  I don't know what the final objective of the photos are, but a few different poses might work well - perhaps it could be a little more masculine?

I'm surprised nobody has mentioned the SL1.   It's well priced and well specc'd.  I know the OP doesn't like rebels, but it is a "cool" rebel and unless you're really into sports and/or wildlife or have some other special need,  I don't see much point in spending money on anything else.  After the rebate, you can get it for $447 with a Pixma Pro 100.  Seriously, you'd go a second hand camera over that?

But if it was a choice of 50D vs 60D vs 7D, they're all fairly similar.  I'd go the 60D and save some money.

As a film shooter, I've read DanG_UE's comments with interest.  But, I wouldn't be so quick to write off current digital sensors.  While sensors can certainly be improved, when I go looking for it, I'm always surprised by the amount of detail that is hidden in highlights and shadows. 

Rather than discussing the DR of the eye (as fascinating as that is), a more interesting experiment would be for the OP (or anyone) to upload a RAW image from a current Canon DSLR shot at ISO 100 where lack of DR is perceived to be a problem - ie an image that appears to have a similar amount of blown highlights and dark shadows and where exposure was set somewhere near the middle  (is that a correct understanding of the problem?).  We can all then take turns to see if these images can be fixed or whether there is a major problem with the current state of sensors.  Getting a few people's input on this could also highlight which programs and post processing techniques work best for this.

Lenses / Re: Traveling to the UK/Ireland
« on: May 26, 2014, 07:43:47 AM »
I've only been to France once (in fact, it was only just Paris).  I had a 10-22mm with me and found a lot of uses for the 10mm end and at the time I wished for something wider.  But these days, I'm much better at panoramic stitching.  Don't forget that it is a great technique if you can't fit it all in.

I only stick with Canon because I'm heavily invested in lenses.  If the cheque arrived, I'd probably just buy a 7D or 5D3, a 135mm, a used 300/2.8 and a 1.4 extender.  I'd spend the rest on Fuji gear.

Canon General / Re: Let's confess our disgusting perversions
« on: May 26, 2014, 05:38:19 AM »
My camera (1Ds Mkii) was made in 2005.  I don't think IQ at low ISOs has improved much since then and have never considered upgrading.

I also have a filter fetish.  I've got over 50 at home.  But I only ever use three or four.

And boobs.

Lenses / Re: Traveling to the UK/Ireland
« on: May 26, 2014, 04:09:28 AM »
I was thinking about bringing the 24-105 and the 50, but I wanted to get someone else's opinion since I have never traveled out of the US before.
The 24-105 + 50 combo would work very well and would cover most things you're likely to come across.

If you're getting a hire car and aren't too concerned about taking more gear, I'd also consider the 70-300, too.  When I've visited the UK, most of my photos are taken at the wider end.  But, I've always taken a 70-200 and am generally glad I did.

8) I am about to head off to the UK and France very soon, I take a lot of photos of churches, buildings, landscapes in fact the only thing I can think of that I rarely do is take portrait photos.
Given your subjects, you'd probably prefer the wider 15-85mm.  Re 50 vs 40, I'm conflicted.  The wider aperture of the 50mm in theory makes it better suited for interior shots.  But I do like my 40mm much more.  Personally, I'd go with the 40mm.

Lenses / Re: The Next \
« on: May 21, 2014, 04:31:37 AM »
With the announcement of the Tamron 150-600 and generally positive reviews, I wonder how much interest there really is in a Canon 100-400 if it came with a serious price jump?  Ok, sure it avoids long term compatibility concerns, will likely focus faster, be better built and hopefully will offer better image quality.  All of that definitely demands a premium over a third party lens.  But how much?  I know  my main use would be at the longer end and apparently the Tamron does ok up to around 500mm.  I'm not sure if the Canon lens would be on many people's radar if it stayed at 400mm and was priced at $2500+ as some are hypothesising.

If you like critique, I like your image a lot.  As part of your collection from the day, I think it would work very well.  But if you gave it to me as "THE" image that encapsulates the qualities and dedication of the volunteers, then I'd side with the organiser.  My attention is drawn to the athlete, not the volunteers.  Its a good supporting image, but wouldn't fit my criteria for being the best image. 

Anyway, good to know its not just me that has differences of opinion with clients.  ALL my clients know so much more about what I do and how I should do it that I wonder why I even bother turning up to work. 

BTW, bit surprised about some of the comments from others about volunteers.  Nearly every event relies upon volunteers, and I don't see any problem in giving them a lot of credit for taking part.  Even if they are the local business people trying to show how civic minded they are for a bit of self promotion - great!  We should be encouraging more of it.   Across the world, there is a steady decline in volunteers, and that's a bit sad.  No volunteers = no events (or ridiculously high entry fees).  If the solution is as simple as few good photos, let's get out there and do it.

Pleasantly surprised by the $299 RRP of the 10-18mm.  I sense a sales winner.

Animal Kingdom / Re: Cuteness Overload
« on: May 08, 2014, 02:44:51 AM »
I once heard that Ken Rockwell wanted something to distract the lesser photographers, and lo, there were ducks.  But I like ducks.  So what does that make me?  Nice Work!

Third Party Manufacturers / Re: Landscape Filters
« on: May 06, 2014, 02:33:44 AM »

and last but not least... most serious landscape photo competitions will disqualify you for doing such editings. for a good reason.

What reason? It's the exact same thing as using a grad ND.

Just google "Lindisfarne Boats".  A great photo, but outside the rules and ultimately disqualified.

Every competition is free to have its own rules, but many landscape competitions apply FIAP "nature" type rules, in which "No elements may be moved, cloned, added, deleted, rearranged or combined.  No manipulation or modification is permitted except resizing, cropping, selective lightening or darkening and restoration of the original color of the scene."  Under these rules, using a neutral grad (or applying a similar effect in PhotoShop) is fine.  Replacing whole skies isn't.

But there are many other competition categories where anything goes and extreme photo manipulation is often expected. 

Back to the OP, my everyday kit consists of: -

Hoya NDx400 (a 9 stop filter and a viable alternative to the Lee filter for those who prefer screw in lenses)
3 stop ND
R72 Infra Red

When shooting B&W film, I also include Red and Orange.  When shooting colour, I'll typically throw an 81B on. 

Only because I'm feeling particularly argumentative :)

Canon has never chased anyone. They never chased anyone in the past, and they are not chasing anyone now.
Canon were pretty quick to chase Sony's camera division (previously known as Minolta) when they introduced auto focusing SLRs.  The Minolta Maxxum 7000 came out in February 1985.  By the end of 1986, Auto focus SLR's accounted for more than 50% of SLR sales and was dominated by Minolta and Nikon.  And where was Canon? (hint: The T80 doesn't count...) would be a wonderful day if everyone could just be happy with the fact that pretty much every single camera on the market today puts nearly every camera from the film era to complete and total, utter shame when it comes to IQ. Even when it comes to drum-scanned large format film, while you gain in resolution, even that can't really touch the color depth and brilliance of a high resolution digital sensor these days.
If you look at the popularity of instagram, camera phones and software from places like VSCO, NIK etc you get a strong impression that image quality isn't a high priority for a very large percentage people.  Over the last year, I've noticed a huge trend in photographers moving away from image quality perfection towards quality destroying film and art filters in an attempt to give their photos a less clinical/digital look and add more "feeling".  I'm left wondering if a rejection of perfection is part of our human psyche.  I'm going to side with Canon's APS-C development team on this - IQ, DR, color depth etc are vastly over-rated. 

Sony's problem is that cameras are a fairly mature product.  Apart from some minor tinkering, there isn't a lot that is going to make a large segment of target purchasers (ie those who will likely buy multiple lenses) sit up and pay attention.  This new Alpha 77ii is a classic example.  It looks like a nice camera and seems well specc'd.  But I struggle to see how it differs noticeably from, say, a 70D.  Given that most serious camera buyers have an entrenched "Canon (or Nikon) is best" attitude, the new 77ii won't win a lot of converts.  In many ways, its no different to the Pentax K3 - another nice camera which few people seem to care about.

Although, if you were starting afresh, it might be a different story.  The Sony "G" and "Zeiss" lenses are very nice and the lenses can be used (with an adapter) on the a7/a7r.  And almost everyone seems to like the image quality from Sony sensors.  I can see why people would be interested in buying into the Sony system.  But if you had the budget for their top of the line lenses, would you really be buying a 77ii?  I doubt it.

Canon General / Re: $10,000
« on: April 22, 2014, 06:26:00 AM »
...still, its a fun exercise.  I'd go with: -

Fuji X-t1 + 56mm - $2180
Fuji 14mm - $772
Fuji 23mm - $919
Used 1Ds Mkii - $1000
Canon 40mm - $169
Canon 135mm - $1204
Tamron 150-600 - $1226

That's $7470.  With the balance, I'd pick up some flashes, tripod, printer, filters, flash triggers etc.

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