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Software & Accessories / Nice Folks at Flickr
« on: February 14, 2013, 04:09:24 PM »
Some here may recall I got a Powershot A1200 on clearance from the Canon refurb shop a couple of months ago. For $35, it was too much good technology to resist.

I quickly joined the group for that camera at Flickr, and I posted a note letting people know it was on sale. Last week I posted my first picture from that camera, and I got this surprise Flickr message a few days later:

"When you joined the Canon a1200 flickr group you were our 100th member as pointed out to me by Wayne, another group admin. We waited to see if you became an 'active member' and you you have now done so by adding image(s) to the group from said camera: you win a prize.

"Wayne and I discussed doing this ages ago and as I started the group I get to choose. I thought an 8gb memory card and some Duracell batteries for your A1200 might be useful.

"This is not a scam and feel free to check with Wayne Wilkinson also from the states.

"All I need is A postal address to post the prize to. Nothing more. It doesn't even have to be your address, just one that you have access to.

"I live in United Kingdom so can't deliver personally I'm afraid!

"I wish you much continued success and use of the A1200. It's a great little cam when a dslr is just too much!

"Kind regards

Paul gallagher"

While the "prize" doesn't mean a lot, what does is the active management these guys are doing to run a good Flickr group. I've not seen another group like it.

And the fun part is the challenge of making good images without high-end equipment, RAW files, virtually limitless post processing, etc.

Makes for some good, clean fun!!

Canon General / Re: Canon 1D X on the Street
« on: February 13, 2013, 10:46:13 AM »
If you're traveling for pleasure and are even a little bit serious about photography, I can't understand why you would leave your best photo equipment at home. If you're so afraid of losing it, spend a few bucks on insurance.

I take pictures in Camden, NJ -- the most dangerous and violent city in the US. I'm careful and take necessary precautions, but I paid a lot of money to be able to take the best pictures I can -- it would be dumb to go there with only a P&S.

Reviews / Re: Review - Canon EF 40 f/2.8 STM
« on: February 13, 2013, 10:25:56 AM »
From a magazine editor's standpoint, this is pretty blah with uninspiring images. Very little useful information.

Roger, at LensRentals said all that needs to be said in four sentences:

"This is really an amazing lens. Little pancakes are cute and all, but usually aren’t of very good image quality. This one has exceptional image quality and does it at an amazing price. Probably the best bargain of a prime lens that exists, anywhere, for anything."

EOS Bodies - For Stills / Re: DPReview: Canon EOS 6D Reviewed
« on: February 13, 2013, 09:49:53 AM »
Left handed compliment:

A criticism or insult disguised as a compliment.

Canon General / Re: Lone protester takes on the camera companies at CES
« on: February 12, 2013, 10:04:39 PM »
Welcome to Capitalism.

It's a hard and ugly thing.

Lenses / Re: suggestions????
« on: February 12, 2013, 07:57:28 PM »
I'm not really sure what to suggest, given what you've said. That said, I have some thoughts.

I have no experience with the Sigma version, but I do use the 70-200 f/4L non-IS. It's a great lens, dense color, excellent clarity, etc. throughout the range. However, I've had little success using it for street photography. It's generally too slow and too long for me. I'm planning to upgrade to the IS version this year.

You have the 40mm, I'm presuming it's the Canon f/2.8 pancake. I use this a lot, and it's very satisfying. It's brilliant sharp at f/2.8, it provides an almost ideal coverage for most street photography. However, I'm also wrestling with the notion of getting the Sigma 35mm f/1.4. I've seen a lot of great images from it, and it has superb reviews. I have a hard time justifying it though because how well the 40mm performs. But those extra two stops and the enhanced isolation capability are a strong sell.

Good luck. Let us know what you do.

EOS Bodies - For Stills / Re: Chikadees in flight
« on: February 12, 2013, 01:24:28 PM »
I totally agree with your comments on the chickadees. They never sit on the feeder for more than a second and my wife says they look like a piece of music when they fly.

What a wonderful, lyrical thing to say. Give her a big hug for me!!

Lenses / Re: Is this inconsistency acceptable? Sigma 85 1.4 question.
« on: February 12, 2013, 11:28:40 AM »
Nothing personal, but I see so many of these first posts about some non-Canon product. There's just something fishy about them to me. I no longer take them seriously.

If you have a lens that is not working correctly, send it in for repairs. As Roger at LensRentals just pointed out, lenses sometimes get out of whack (and they can come that way from a factory):

Worth a read, I think.

Landscape / Re: Transmission tower
« on: February 11, 2013, 03:10:01 PM »
That's an arrest record I'd be proud to have.

At my age I'm fed up with a life of people telling me I should be afraid of everything.

People see me carrying a camera and sometimes ask what I'm photographing. I usually tell them, "Anybody or anything that gets in my way."

When I was young I always said if I got to be old, I'd be a cantankerous old geezer.

Have camera. Will use it.

A person locally tried photographing Electrical Towers and was promptly arrested and tossed in prison, the Police told him it was illegal, and when he disagreed, they arrested him.
Later, the city paid out $$$ to settle a lawsuit, but he still has a arrest record, and even worse, the Mayor of the small town is defending the arrest and it sounds like he would support doing it again.

Canon General / Re: Post-Processing Woes
« on: February 10, 2013, 03:35:34 PM »
Great tip. Thanks!

It helps to have a reference image up on the screen and to compare the image you're working on to the reference image.  If you work on pictures of people, the reference image should be a correctly exposed and processed portrait.  The white balance should be right on.  There should be a good skin tone and a neutral white or gray.  Because the reference image is a known constant, it keeps your eyes from getting fooled.  Otherwise, it is easy for your eyes to get fooled if you've been staring at the screen for a while.  Just pop the reference image up on the screen next to your current image and you can instantly see if anything about your current image is technically off (including brightness, color and contrast). 

Helpful advice and reference image here:

Oh yes, and it is essential to calibrate the monitor using a calibration device.  But even with a calibrated monitor, it is easy for your eyes to get fooled.  A reference image is a constant, so it is helpful even if your monitor gets mis-calibrated after a while, or if your brightness setting is way off one day.

Video & Movie / Re: The Blizzard of 2013 Time Lapse
« on: February 10, 2013, 01:48:01 PM »
I remember seeing this one a few years ago. Still my favorite:

December 2010 Blizzard Timelapse: Mike Black on Vimeo

Software & Accessories / Re: Where are you posting your photo's?
« on: February 10, 2013, 01:38:52 PM »
I use Smugmug for bulk storage. Since I don't have a lot of interest in display, I just dump them in galleries -- no showy opening page or glittery display of five great pictures. It's sort of like a warehouse. Make sure you don't get hit by something falling off a top shelf up there!

Once in a while, I'll put something on Flickr, but mostly to keep active in some groups I find useful.

Canon General / Re: Post-Processing Woes
« on: February 10, 2013, 01:34:15 PM »
Happened when I first started using Lightroom.

I'd process a lot of pictures in my dimly lit room at night. Next day they all were too dark.

So, I've learned to keep the light as good as I can get it -- and always be aware of it.

Once in a while I have to go back and straighten a crop, but that's about it.

Landscape / Re: 2013 Vistek Emerging Photographer
« on: February 08, 2013, 01:55:05 PM »
And here are the 5 photos I submitted for judging.
I nearly said "Great photographer, but lousy at maths", glad I didn't now! :-\

Cheers Brian
haha.. I am pretty lousy at math though.

Lot of good pictures in that competition. Yours are a bit tricked out for my taste.

As for math, it's interesting that you can be lousy at history or sociology or music, but with math, you're either good or you're wrong.

Good luck, and congratulations on being in the competition.

Lenses / Re: I can't stop thinking about A MONSTER!
« on: February 08, 2013, 12:54:43 PM »
If you get the lens, may I borrow it next time in Austria??

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