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Messages - Hillsilly

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Canon General / Re: Is it worth *really* studying photography?
« on: February 14, 2012, 12:15:02 AM »
With many jobs there is often a big disparity between the number of people studying and the number of potential job opportunities.  Photography is one of them.

I also work in such an industry, and it took me several months to find my first decent job.  Now, I run my own business and the job market is still as tough as ever.  Twenty years ago, similar businesses wouldn't think twice about hiring a promising undergraduate.  Now, I've got applicants with Masters degrees and PhD students applying for entry level jobs.  In Australia, during the Howard era, there was a 50% jump in university enrolments along with significantly increased TAFE participation.  Now it is virtually expected that people would do some additional formal training after completing high school, even when the job you are targeting doesn't really require it.

If a lot of people are currently studying photogrpahy as university, then employers will start expecting it and it will become tougher and tougher to get that first job without a degree.  The degree becomes the key to entry.  And even then, it still doesn't guarantee a job.

But, realistically, two years after you get your first photography related job, nobody will care if you have a degree or not.  They will be more interested in your character, experience and how you perform.  Therefore, you're probably in a catch 22 situation.  You probably don't really need to study, as on the job training should be sufficient.  But its harder to get a job without the study.  The easy option is to get a year or two's study under your belt and see how you go on the job market.  As an undergraduate, you'll find work experience opportunities easier to obtain, and who knows what might come from that?

Site Information / Re: Tutorial Section
« on: February 13, 2012, 09:33:08 PM »
Love the idea.  There are some very knowledgeable people on this forum, that already write great articles (for example, I read through Neuroanatomist's article on autofocus yesterday and thought it was very good).  I suspect that that's one of many of his articles.  Given some of the information posted on this site, there must be many others already writing great content (or capable of it).  It would be great see some of these articles listed on this site.

But playing devil's advocate, chances are that if you are good enough to write tutorials, then you're good enough to get paid for it, or develop your own site and have control over your intellectual property and, if you wanted, generate some income from it via advertising or through promotion of your own business.  It would be interesting to see how many people would voluntarily contribute detailed content.  But prove me wrong.  Don't let my negativity affect things. I think its an excellent idea and worth trying.

EOS Bodies - For Stills / Re: Does FF make your photos pop?
« on: February 12, 2012, 11:54:01 PM »
I know, just having some fun.

EOS Bodies - For Stills / Re: Does FF make your photos pop?
« on: February 12, 2012, 10:41:29 PM »
ok JT13.  You wanted a blind test, here is your blind test.  Is this image from a FF or crop camera?


As mentioned above, I like the photos from FF.  But I also like the photos from my old camera.  In a side by side comparison, you could probably identify which camera took which photo, but for 90% of my photos that doesn't necessarily make the FF photo "better".  Just different.  Unless you're shooting wide open and looking for more background blur, or want to shoot at high ISOs, the real world difference is immaterial. 

EOS Bodies - For Stills / Re: Does FF make your photos pop?
« on: February 12, 2012, 08:35:05 PM »
I'm a recent convert to FF.  After using a 30D for a while, I picked up a cheap, used 1Ds mkii late last year.  As mentioned by others, there's noticeably less Depth of Field when shooting with wide apertures and you are generally shooting with longer lenses.  Combined these help to give images more "pop".  Photo's from the new camera seem to have more of a realistic / "3D" look.  Colours seem "better".  The photos have more detail.  Of course, this could be due to a lot of things - my imagination and twice the megapixels being the main things that come to mind.  But overall, I definitely prefer the photos from the FF camera.  In my first week with it, all I can remember thinking was "Wow, I should have grabbed one of these earlier".  Even now that the initial excitement has worn off, I still think that there was a big quality gain by changing cameras.  And given that my camera is 7 - 8 years old, I'd have to assume that a newer FF camera would be even better.

Now, that was going from an 8.2mp crop camera to a 16.7mp camera.  I'd like to think that the sensor in a 7D would be significantly better than a 30D and the increase in megapixels to a FF camera isn't as big.  But there would be a slight difference.  Given that you'd have to change some lenses and buy a new body, you'll just have to decide if a minor gain is worth the price. 

A simple, cheap experiment - Pick up the cheapest working Canon film SLR you can find off ebay (maybe $15), a projector ($20) and a roll of Provia ($6).   Take some photos and project them onto the wall.  That's what FF versions of your photos would look like.  Do they look better?  If so, make the switch to FF (then sell the film camera and projector and get your money back).     

Lenses / Re: Best lens for photographing product...
« on: February 10, 2012, 09:51:51 PM »
What a coincidence.  There was a $15 "L" upgrade for your lens that was mentioned yesterday .  The results look spectacular.  Surely, this would be your first option.  :)

Lenses / Re: Best lens for photographing product...
« on: February 10, 2012, 04:03:11 AM »
I think your photo looks fine.  The "1864" is visible.  Looks quite sharp (but being compressed, it's difficult to tell).  Just wondering where you feel it falls down?  Most Canon kit lenses should work fine for product shots.  You're generally shooting stopped down a bit (maybe f/8 or f/11), using a tripod and have full control over the light.  (BTW, if you're using a tripod, try turning IS off and see if that improves anything).  I doubt that a more expensive lens would give you noticeably better results.  If sharpness is the issue, I'd try moving back a bit and using a longer lens (at least be at the 55mm end).  For an object so long, if you're shooting at only 3 feet away, it would be difficult to get the whole thing in perfect focus.  Whereas, if you were three metres or further away, it's a lot easier.

Perfection is an ellusive goal.

Lenses / Re: come on, make an affordable 600mm or 800mm!!
« on: February 09, 2012, 03:01:14 AM »
Sir Frans Lanting started off with a mirror lens.  Didn't seem to hurt him.

I've got an old MF Minolta 400mm f5.6 lens that I connect to micro four thirds camera.  This essentially becomes an image stabilised 800mm f5.6 (in 35mm talk when you factor in the 2x crop factor).  Image quality is very good for a cheap-ish option.  But its not perfect.  In a lot of high contrast situations I get some noticeable purple fringing.  But with a 2x teleconverter, that's 1600mm and its still ok.  With two 2x teleconverters, you get to 3200mm and you can take some identifiable pictures of Venus and Jupiter (although they are still very small, and the image quality is ordinary).  I should buy some Canon teleconverters and see how the old lens with cheap teleconverters compares with a newer lens.   

I'd love for Canon to make an affordable 600mm or 800mm with autofocus.

Australia / Re: How does trs work?
« on: February 09, 2012, 01:04:58 AM »
If you're bringing back equipment over $1000, it is declarable and customs will try to charge duty on it if they believe that you purchased it new overseas.  To avoid problems, just complete a "goods exported in passenger baggage" form before leaving. 

EOS Bodies / Re: Childish Behaviour
« on: February 08, 2012, 06:54:23 AM »
Canon, why do you insist on giving us cameras with either too few or too many MPs?  Wouldn't it be easier to just give us a camera with the optimal amount of MPs that will please everyone?

EOS Bodies / Re: Specialised cameras or a good all rounder?
« on: February 08, 2012, 04:17:09 AM »
I'd agree that a middle of the road approach is generally better than a choice of cameras on both extremes. 

But I assume Nikon have done their market research.  Imagine a situation where you had a choice of three cameras - low light / allrounder / big MP count.  I'd suspect that most people would choose the big MP option.  Some would choose the low light option.  The allrounder would probably be a sales flop?

Don't forget the Canon 1V!

But I doubt that there will ever be a new, high selling, film camera released in future.  If anything, existing manufacturers will pull out of that market.  Therefore, I guess I'm referring to the 99.99% of future cameras that won't be digital medium format cameras.

But I agree totally with the comment above.  There will always be a market for a product that does one thing exceptionally well.  But given the ease with which video features can be incorporated into digital cameras, I just can't see any mainstream future camera lacking this feature.  And this feature set will continue to grow over time.

Lenses / Re: Dust, is it myth or fact?
« on: February 07, 2012, 10:17:28 PM »
The story of my 100mm macro... 

The AF-MF and the focus limit buttons fell off a few years ago.  I didn't think much of it at the time as I was able to change the setting using a pen or other sharp object if needed.  What I didn't realise was that this was giving dust an easy entry point into the lens.  My lens is one of the early versions where the barrels extend a lot while focusing. 

When I did notice a bit of dust inside, I wondered if blowing some air into it would clear it (or at least move the dust away from the centre of the elements towards the edges).  Turned out to be a bad idea - a lot of dust had been sucked into the lens through the hole but hadn't yet made it onto the elements.  By blowing air into it, I ended up distributing a lot more dust over the elements.  When I saw what I had done, I was very disappointed.   But I still use the lens a lot and if the dust is causing any image degradation problems, it's not obvious to me.  I sometimes feel the photos lack saturation, but it could just be my imagination. 

Sorry about my anecdotal story, but I just had to warn everyone.  Blowing air into your lens to move the dust off the elements will probably make matters worse!  Who'd have thought that?  And to Canon - why can't you build decent buttons?

So, dust in lenses?  With an easy entry point, these things definitely suck in a lot of dust.  But if it is reasonably sealed, it's probably not much of an issue.

Is it a problem?  You'd have to have a lot of dust in there for it to be a problem.

Lenses / Re: Three New Lenses~~~
« on: February 07, 2012, 04:40:56 AM »
If it's f/2.8, it's not fast enough relative to the 24-105mm f/4 for me to really consider it, and I'd wait for the Samyang 24mm f/1.4 to be reviewed.

Smaller, lighter, cheaper, faster, reduced minimum focus distance, possibly better image quality.  They've definitely got some positives.  I say, "well done Canon!" for giving these guys an update.  They might not be everyone's cup of tea, but I'm keen to read some reviews on the 24mm. 

In their respective price brackets, I also feel Canon's offerings are as good (if not better) than their competitors.  Plus, one of the consistent reasons in the "Why Canon" thread related to Canon's extensive lens range.   Why would Canon be making lenses for people they hate?

I'm not going to pretend that Canon is perfect (ok.... they are perfect - I'm just being diplomatic), so why not be a bit more specific in your criticisms?  If you don't say exactly where Canon fails to meet your expectations, then nothing is likely to change. 

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