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Messages - agierke

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151
Third Party Manufacturers / Re: Art Tool or Art Object?
« on: March 07, 2013, 12:15:00 AM »
its something i think about quite a bit as well even though i don't really do street photography per se.

another classic discussion that overlaps the above is whether photography is capable of truth or if every photo is a perception of the photographer. (i lean towards favoring the latter rather than the former) it sort of nullifies the idea that you could even capture "the true state of human nature" as every shot is both an interpreted "edit" by the photographer and an imposed reaction from the subject.

Dorthea Lange is an interesting one to study as she was known to sometimes heavily direct her subjects to achieve the end goal of telling the story she was assigned. whether her subjects adjusted their demeanor (or how much) in the presence of Lange's lens will never be known.

Lee Friedlander and Gary Winogrand are probably the most well known and accredited "street" photographers and likely more appropriate to use as an argument for capturing true nature. i remember hearing an anecdote about how Winogrand would shoot his rolls of film and then purposefully not label the roll and put aside for more than a year sometimes before developing it. his hope was that when he did finally develop the roll that he would have fresh eyes towards the subject matter and would be without any of the expectations and persuasions that carried over from being in the moment of shooting the subject. an interesting effort to attempt to remain true to the moment but eventually our perceptions enter into the process.

 i think the idea of "storytelling" is a more comfortable way of describing photography but the problem still remains of who is telling the story. the photographer or the subject? i know i become internally frustrated when my subject begins reacting in a way that i wasn't anticipating or in a fashion that is contrary to my preconceived notions. to put it bluntly....goofballing. maybe i should accept the subjects performance as a part of them regardless of how contrived it feels and just move on to the next subject. a subject who becomes irrationally self conscious is equally frustrating.

 these concerns ultimately seem frivolous as the true nature of these types of photographs tend not to reveal themselves until much time has passed. or to put in other terms...what seems mundane today may take on significance when viewed 20 or 30 years in the future.

 bottom line is i should probably think less about it and shoot more....let the photos sort themselves out in time!     

152
Third Party Manufacturers / Re: Art Tool or Art Object?
« on: March 06, 2013, 09:12:14 PM »
nice article. it certainly looks like a fascinating show.

one thing you wrote did give me pause though...

Quote
One alters a physical object at distance while the other preserves that object in time

though on the surface this statement seems true, i would argue that both (gun and camera) can alter the object at a distance and you go on to illustrate how this phenomenon happens in photography with the reactions people have towards the prospect of being photographed.

 public awareness of the power of photography has caused your average person to near instantly "change" when confronted by a lens. whether that change is positive or negative is inconsequential as it is the change itself that is often unwelcome by the photographer. how difficult has it become to document the true state of human nature as compared to the times of say Dorthea Lange, Cartier-Bresson, or Alfred Stieglitz?

 what was also interesting to me is your dismissing of your own qualifications to consume, process, and understand art. whenever someone is so self defacing i feel the need to attempt to demystify the subject.

 if you go back and look at art throughout human history (from cave paintings to the renaissance to the latest modern movements) the common thread is simply an effort to communicate an idea or experience. it is truly that simple. too often a viewer assumes that an artwork is "above" them because they do not understand it but the truth can be any number of possibilities that include that individual not being a part of the intended audience or that the artist didn't effectively communicate the intended idea or that there is no attempt at communicating anything to the viewer at all. in this last case i would argue that the viewer is not actually looking at "art" but instead something trying to resemble art.

 when i studied the history of photography i found it very interesting that early in its adolescence, the medium shifted from a scientific curiosity to avent-garde art form as artists like Julia Margaret Cameron, Henry Fox Talbot, and Henry Peach Robinson employed it during the pictorialist movement. it wasn't until Stieglitz and Steichen championed photography's merits as an artform that the establishment started to take it seriously outside of a documentary role. it was argued that photography relied far too heavily on mechanisms and an "artist's hand" couldn't be present amongst such heavy reliance upon technique. 100 years later and i think it is clear that that is not the case.

 maybe the confusion comes from the waters being ever more muddied....anything is art regardless of the effort or intent. i refuse to accept this myself. there is plenty out there that is definitely NOT art but i think your average person (including yourself) is quite capable and naturally equipped to experience and discern what art is.

 i actually think your article proves your ability to know what art is as the show clearly communicated something to you with which you then shared with us.

153
Lenses / Re: Lens purchase strategy
« on: March 04, 2013, 12:16:21 AM »
Quote
No one is a profesional wildlife landscape wedding fashion sports event macro architecture photographer.

lol, true....but some of us out there do try to diversify.

currently i am mostly shooting weddings/events, portraiture, and real estate/architecture. that alone has me looking at a pretty hefty lineup of lenses. i am also very interested in getting into product photography and food photography...add a few more lenses to the lineup.

for me, basic needs are covered by the 24-70mm F2.8 and the 70-200mm F2.8. you can cover alot of jobs with just those two lenses.

getting into architecture made the 24mm TS a necessity and i have found that i will greatly be helped by adding the 17mm TS soon. the 45mm and 90mm may not be too far off if i can expand my shot offerings to larger scale buildings that would require a bit of distance and elevation to capture properly. there, i have quickly justified the whole TS lineup.

as far as the event and weddings go...sure i'm covered with the 24-70mm and 70-200mm but going into my 5th year of doing weddings i'm pining to add a bit more flair to my shots. enter the 35mm F1.4. instant love affair with that lens and i still find the 24-70mm quite useful despite that. i then picked up the 85mm 1.8 to test the usefulness of that focal length at a fast aperture (jury is still out) as a precurser to purchasing the 85mm 1.2. eventually i will replace the piece of junk 50mm 1.8 with the 1.2 version but that is pretty far down the priority list atm. throw in the 15mm Fisheye for the obligatory fun shots.

thinking ahead towards my entry into product, i see the 100mm 2.8 macro as something that will likely be necessary. i also see the 90mm TS pulling double duty here as well. 

so considering that i currently do weddings, events, portraiture, and architecture and i am intent on entering the world of product my ideal lens lineup would look like this:

16-35mm F2.8L
24-70mm F2.8L
70-200mm F2.8L

15mm F2.8 Fish
35mm F1.4L
50mm F1.2L
85mm F1.2L
100mm F2.8L Macro IS

17mm F4.0L TS
24mm F3.5L TS
45mm F2.8
90mm F2.8

that lineup would suffice my philosophy of "the right tool for the job".

154
Lighting / Re: Getting by with speedlights
« on: February 22, 2013, 09:39:27 PM »
Strobes will offer more power and better quality of light. the AB units also cost less than a 600 EXRT. i would recommend picking up 1 AB800 (should cost about 280.00) and play around with that. if you enjoy the results and experience then you know that you should build a strobe set.

beware though, acquiring studio equipment is just as addictive as cameras and lenses. only there is much more of it out there....

155
Technical Support / Re: Strange pattern in long exposure images
« on: February 19, 2013, 06:27:15 PM »
Quote
I am NOT going to test my guess because the only laser I have access to now is one used to cut steel.... and shining that at my camera is probably not a good idea.

oooo....pretty please! if we take up a collection to cover the costs of replacement will you do it and post a video of it?

i would love seeing a laser slicing through a DSLR. not mine of course....just someone elses.

156
Lenses / Re: Is the 45mm TS-E good for wedding photography?
« on: February 15, 2013, 11:34:08 PM »
Quote
This would be one of the last lenses a wedding shooter should be looking at


i disagree. my cousin is a wedding photographer and the 45 TS is one of her favorite lenses to use. you can dig through her site for examples:

http://emmafreemanphotography.com/

i dont own the 45 TS but i have taken the 24 TS out on weddings for different creative looks. its not the easiest thing to use handheld but it can be done.

if you have a creative vision involving the 45 TS i would say go for it. scratch that itch. it could definitely give a look that would set you apart from a great deal of other wedding shooters.

157
looks cropped to me. not particularly remarkable in any way.

158
Canon General / Re: Physical Ailments From Heavy Gear
« on: February 12, 2013, 02:49:49 PM »
if i shoot 2 all day weddings on a weekend, i need a full day to recover physically. my back and my ankles are just wrecked after a stint like that.

a few things that i have done to alleviate the soreness:

1. Black Rapid straps - puts the weight of the camera comfortably around my shoulders and allows the weight to shift so that its not pressing down on one point for long
2. Bought several pairs of Clarks shoes...those things are just damn comfortable and have spared me a ton of pain in my feet and ankles.
3. more thoughtful packing of my bag - i don't bring everything i might need anymore. i bring specific gear for whatever shoot i'm doing so i can keep weight down.

159
Lenses / Re: Is this inconsistency acceptable? Sigma 85 1.4 question.
« on: February 12, 2013, 02:42:33 PM »
are you going to be shooting Architecture or Landscapes with this lens? or do you intend shooting people with the lens? if you do plan on shooting people, will you be placing anything in the composition thats worth looking at in the bottom corner near the edge?

again...i am having trouble understanding the thought process here. this level of criticism under these circumstances seems inane.

for an 85mm 1.4 lens shot wide open, what difference does corner sharpness make? what photographic purpose are you trying to achieve that you feel this lens wont be able to cover?

160
EOS Bodies - For Stills / Re: 5D III Dynamic Range
« on: February 12, 2013, 02:32:32 PM »
^ this...ty.

i would add, learn about good light as well. that is what photography is supposed to be about.

161
Lenses / Re: New Member / Lens Recs
« on: February 12, 2013, 11:01:52 AM »
Quote
I've gone from an ignorant to almost completely grasping the theory behind taking photos in about 4 weeks

really? lol...do tell!

162
EOS Bodies - For Stills / Re: 5D III Dynamic Range
« on: February 12, 2013, 10:56:41 AM »
Quote
You miss the point, she is a way more successful photographer than any of us for whatever reason, but she has the budget to use anything that might get her an edge, she still chooses gear which is regularly denigrated and lambasted on here as being past it. Clearly either she is misguided or the complainers are

no, i was pretty much agreeing exactly with that point.

there seems to be a certain degree of nonsense that comes out in these types of conversations. to suggest the 5D mrk2 is a garbage camera for any reason only serves to discredit those making that claim. stop the nonsense or post a picture proving that the camera is the sole reason holding you back from taking great pictures.

the DR conversation is a bit of a non starter for me for two reasons.

firstly there are a number of work arounds to increasing the dynamic range of a scene that have been around for a long time. i can get all the range i need in my 5Dc. i do the same on the Mrk 2. would extra DR in camera be nice? yes....but it doesn't come even close to negating the cameras usefulness.

secondly, most great photographers seek out great light. the gear they use to record the image is almost superfluous if great light is not present! i have to shoot in all kinds of light due to circumstances and i accept that not all shots i take are going to be the pinnacle of my ability. not because my gear is the shortcoming...but because i am not afforded the luxury of finding the quality of light i know will create a phenomenal photograph.

14 stops of DR will not turn crappy light into great light. it will only marginally improve a photograph that is taken in crappy light. why is that so exciting? you are still left with crappy light.....

i dont get it.   

163
Lenses / Re: Is this inconsistency acceptable? Sigma 85 1.4 question.
« on: February 12, 2013, 10:34:56 AM »
whats it look like when you take pictures of people?

i really don't see the concern here.

164
EOS Bodies - For Stills / Re: 5D III Dynamic Range
« on: February 11, 2013, 07:43:35 PM »
Quote
It is funny, for all the histrionics that these threads throw out, the highest level pros are still using Canon cameras and 24-70 f2.8 MkI's, just today I came across this video of Patrick Demarchelier shooting Beyoncé for Vouge
Behind the Scenes Beyoncés March 2013 Vogue Shoot   Small | Large


Or look at any of a multitude of videos of Annie Liebowitz,
Behind the Scenes: Meryl Streep by Annie Leibovitz for Vogue US January 2012   Small | Large
that show her happily working successfully for the high end of the photo industry with her faithful 1Ds MkIII's and, again, the 24-70 f2.8 MkI.

I got in several disagreements over the "upgrade" the MkII 24-70 gave, these people have more money than God yet they are more than happy with the quality they are getting from "outdated, outclassed, second rate" gear, well if they can do it with what they have surely we should look to ourselves a little if we can't regularly get exposure to within two stops of normal.

In too many instances increased camera capabilities are used as an excuse, by people with ever lower photographic capabilities, for their inadequacies. Rule 1 get your exposure right, rule 101 for RAW shooting Canon users, ETTR

thats because Subject > Quality of Light > Gear. (i could be swayed to put QoL first but i did this order because Leibovitz is renown for her handling Subject matter above all else) 

165
Lenses / Re: 70-200 f2.8II + 2xIII on 7D vs 300 f4 + 2xIII on 5D3
« on: February 11, 2013, 07:34:14 PM »
one thing that hasn't been discussed is that if you go with the 300mm for reach on the 5d3 then you lose the ability to zoom.

that leads me to ask for more specifics towards whats water sports are you shooting in particular and what kind of access can you get during these events? are you stuck in the stands with the rest of the parents or can you get down to ground level and close to the field of play?

i shot swimming and diving a few times (all indoors) but had access to anywhere i wanted to go...even right up to the edge of the pool if i wanted. never had a problem with reach on the 70-200 under those circumstances. the bigger issue was not being able to use flash and trying to find enough light to get a decent shutter speed.

more specifics please...i feel there may be better solutions than to tie your horse to the 300mm cart.

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