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Messages - Hillsilly

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511
Lenses / Re: "Walkaround" prime for FF?
« on: March 12, 2012, 12:48:26 AM »
I'd go for either an 85, 100, or 135mm.  The 135 would be an interesting choice.  Its slightly longer than your regular lens and therefore you're not doubling up.  It would be ideal for isolating detail.  Its a couple of stops faster, which would be good in low light photos where there's a bit of movement.  Great bokeh and narrow depth of field.  Also very sharp wide open.  Its a fun lens to have.

512
Canon General / Re: Restraint of trade?
« on: March 10, 2012, 12:14:56 AM »
I've seen similar comments about Amazon not paying taxes before and taking advantage of different sales tax regimes.  But their profit before tax for 2011 according to Yahoo Finance (http://finance.yahoo.com/q/is?s=AMZN&annual) was $934m.  On this they paid $291m in tax.  In the prior year, they paid $352m in tax. In addition, they provide employment to 56,000 people.  Sounds to me like they are paying their way.  I'd be thinking we'd want more Amazons?

513
EOS Bodies / Re: The writing on the wall
« on: March 09, 2012, 02:33:54 AM »
The posts above miss the point.  Mirrorless cameras will succeed over DSLRs in the entry level price ranges precisely because they are cool and trendy.  It doesn't matter what argument you put up as to why they are inferior.  As long as the mirrorless cameras are essentially up to the task, "cool and trendy" will generally trump the practical choice. 

People don't need to see a big, fast focusing, full frame mirrorless camera before a major shift occurs.  Looking at the sale figures for Japan and my market research from Australia and Europe  (ie me looking around to see what type of camera people are using, but also backed up by some reports - eg http://www.dpreview.com/news/2012/02/15/Cipa_publishes_mirrorless_sales_and_shipments), the shift has happened.  Its already come.  Doesn't necessarily mean that Canon has to compete or change its line-up.  But I'd be surprised if they weren't trying to figure out how to put an EVF into the G1Xii.

514
EOS Bodies / Re: The writing on the wall
« on: March 08, 2012, 08:13:50 PM »
Tend to agree with the long term premise that Sony will be Canon's main competitor in the future.  Currently, they are second behind Canon in many markets.  They can't be too far off from overtaking Nikon in total camera sales.

But to say that the SLR will be gone within 12 months is a big call.  Then again, for 90%+ of photography, a mirrorless camera could perform as well as an SLR.  And most people that are buying their first DSLR would probably consider a mirrorless camera if they thought it was good enough.  My 12 month prediction is that we'll see a few more sub $1,000 DSLRs released this year. But after that, mirrorless cameras will own that market.  Canon will always have an entry level DSLR, but its sales and popularity will decrease over time.  However, DSLRs will own the over $1,000 category.     

515
Canon General / Re: Restraint of trade?
« on: March 07, 2012, 11:32:06 PM »
In most jurisdictions, its legal. Its only when there is collusion between different suppliers that its a problem.  But with Nikon and other manufacturers implementing similar policies, it could be argues that competiton is being obstructed.  Most countries have a regulatory body that investigates cartels, price fixing and anti-competive behaviour.  Track them down, make a complaint and see what happens.  But like most government bodies, they'll probably be quite useless.

Personally, I think its very poor form.  If you have an online shop and can take advantage of lower costs to supply at a lower price, its in everyone's interest to buy from you.  This leaves more money in the consumers pocket to go and buy additonal things.  The economy as a whole improves as there are more goods being produced.  What's better for everyone? You buying online and having some extra cash to buy a new lens?  Or you paying more for the camera simply because the retail shop has to pay high rent on their high street location to a fatcat landlord?

516
Why would it be too much of a jump?

My thoughts exactly.  You press the button half way down for it to focus.  Press it down further and it takes a photo.  Its a camera and the basics concepts and methods of use would be the same. 

Its not too much of a jump.  In fact, I'd strongly advocate for an upgrade.  I moved from an 8mp 30D to a 16mp 1Ds.  I liked my 30D and really didn't think the change would be that noticeable.  But the extra resolution adds a lot to your photos.  If your mate is the sort of person that is going to hang onto his next camera for the next 6 years, and its in his budget, and he's got some lenses, understands that its the photographer that takes the photo and not the camera, likes the form factor of a DSLR, blah, blah, blah, a 5D Mk III would be the logical choice.   

517
EOS Bodies / Re: Who's in for a trip to the US ?
« on: March 07, 2012, 06:30:02 AM »
Tie it in with this year's International CanonRumors Convention and we can all catch up at the cocktail party. :)

518
Alternatively, depending on where your interests lie, you could also follow Steve Parish's example.  Find something you're passionate about that also has a high level of public interest, then self-publish books, calendars, posters etc.  That way, you don't have to find clients per se - you just have to focus on getting your books into the shops and hope they sell. 

519
There are still a lot of photographers out there making a reasonable living.  Times are tougher now, and there seems to be more and more people setting up photography businesses, but, hey, you don't now how successful you'll be until you try.  Besides, if local photographers are filling you with doubts, maybe its because they just don't want you as competition?

Go and visit a good local accountant.  Most offer a free initial meeting and they'll discuss some of the regulatory requirements (such as having an ABN, trading name registration), business structure (sole trader vs company vs trust), things you should consider (public liability insurance, merchant facility with a bank, contracts with customers) along with marketing and business growth strategies.  A good accountant is an essential source of information. 

They'll also help you decide whether you've go enough money to get started (bearing in mind that most service businesses can take three or more years to gain enough clients before showing decent profits).

How do you get people to pay you money?  Welcome to the real world!  I'd focus on one area - eg weddings, catalogues, e-commerce, real estate, events.  What are the growth areas?  Is there a niche market you could tap into?  Then I'd start a multi-pronged marketing approach.  I'd get a website set up initially and follow that up with a facebook and google+ page. To a large extent, this can just be brochure type sites initially - set and forget while you focus on getting in front of people and making personal contacts.  Obviously, you'd have a gallery of photographs and maybe some testimonials on your website.  If possible, I'd compile a list of potential ideal customers and call them up or post them a brochure - ideally both.  If your target market is easily identifiable, find out if there are any conferences or expos that are relevant where you can set up a stall.  If you are looking at weddings, consider advertising in wedding magazines.  Grab the yellow pages, find possible customers and give them a call.  Walk through the city showing potential customers your portfolio.

Once you have a customer or two, ask them for referrals.  Don't be shy about asking for them and make sure you follow up.

Repeat customers are probably going to be your main source of income.  I don't fully subscribe to the "customer is always right" philosophy, but I find if you treat your customers with respect and offer a good service, they should keep coming back (and ideally tell their friends).
 
Obviously, keep your customers contact details and give them a call occasionally to see how they are going. 

Make friends with every graphic designer, web designer and marketing person that you meet.  Have a reasonable coffee budget for taking them out every few months.  Pass on referrals to them and see if anything comes back.  If you're doing weddings, obviously focus on stationers, wedding dress shops, celebrants etc.

There are so many options and ways to get customers.  But, no matter how hard you try, some businesses just don't work.  Set a reasonable target about where you want to be in 12 months and 24 month's time.  Don't be afraid to pull the pin if things just aren't working.  You can always try again in a few year's time.  In the worst case scenario, at least you'll have some experience and some marketing know-how.

Lastly, treat it like a real job.  Put the hours in.  If you're not actually taking photos, you've got to be out there looking for customers.   

Lastly, lastly, have you considered a job in the mines?  The income is good, so you can afford anything you want.  With the fly in fly out arrangements, you'd have plenty of time to focus on photographing anything you want wherever you want whenever you want.  Plus you can save up some money to kick start a photography business of properly.

520
EOS Bodies / Re: Hugely Disappointed In 5D III Price
« on: March 02, 2012, 03:12:53 AM »
I'm more annoyed at US$850 for the WFT-E7A wireless file transmitter.  And am reading this right - you need the ST-E3-RT transmitter (US$470) to wirelessly trigger the new flash?  Plus another US$390 for the GP-E2 GPS receiver if you want GPS data?

Seriously people, it's 2012.  We're in the age of connectivity and the cloud.  You'd expect all of the above to be built into a new, $3,500 camera.

521
Site Information / Re: Record number of members online
« on: March 01, 2012, 11:26:43 PM »
IT'S A NEW RECORD!!!

Most Online:1863 - March 01, 2012, 10:04:22 PM

Congratulations CR! 


522
EOS Bodies / Re: What is the difference between "good" AF and "bad" AF?
« on: February 29, 2012, 02:06:57 AM »
I'd say a good AF system: -

1. Works reliably in subdued lighting (this is the EV thing you see mentioned - the lower the better)
2. Has autofocus points across most of the image (not just the central portion)
3. Has more "cross type" autofocus points (these are more accurate)

From there, a good AF system would have a number of options relating to tracking objects better and choosing groups of sensors to use.  If you have a chance, download a 7D manual and you'll see the different options available and what's possible.

523
Lenses / Re: Canon 400mm f5.6 L lens - upgrade needed.
« on: February 28, 2012, 09:51:40 AM »
The 400mm is well placed price-wise.  I'd be sad to see Canon make changes that might significantly increase the price.  If the rumoured $3,000 price of the new 100-400mm is true, there won't be many affordable options in the 400mm focal length range.  This would be a bit disappointing for a company that enjoys a lot of support from amateur sports and wildlife photographers.

524
EOS Bodies / Re: Eye Control Focus
« on: February 27, 2012, 02:40:41 AM »
D'oh.  Of course.   Thanks.

525
EOS Bodies / Re: Eye Control Focus
« on: February 27, 2012, 12:22:44 AM »
Canon could also tie eye control with contrast detection autofocus.  If you look at one of the focus points, the camera could use phase detection for fast AF.  But if you look anywhere else (ie corners), contrast detection could kick in and the camera can do its best to focus. 
 
Canon sold more eos 30s (aka 7e) than 33s (the same as a 30 but lacking eye control).  Given the choice, the marketplace seemed to like eye control.  And why not?  Its a system that works well for most people. 

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