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Messages - Cali_PH

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1
Photography Technique / Re: Monument Valley
« on: January 24, 2015, 08:00:08 PM »
I'd suggest sunrise and sunset for classic views of the Mittens/Merrick's Butte from The View's parking lot.  And I personally don't mind splurging for a stay in The View hotel, as opposed to the few other nearby locations. 

A lot of people tell you they wouldn't take their own cars down the main tourist loop, but I've done a couple of times without incident as opposed to taking one of the paid tours.  It can get rough, especially after a rain parts can get washed out, so you'll have to decide that yourself.  Note that if you're driving a rental car, your contract may restrict you from going off paved roads, so if you do have a car problem down there, it could get expensive.

You might want to consider a paid tour to get access to locations off the public loop, such as Hunt's Mesa.  The only time I had reserved a spot for that, there was a thunderstorm that night and we cancelled; figured we didn't want to be up there if lightning struck.

For a list of guided tour providers:
http://navajonationparks.org/htm/monumentvalleytours.htm

Have fun!  Are you planning on other spots in the area, such as Antelope Canyon or Arches/Canyonlands?

2
Post Processing / Re: Choose a Monitor?
« on: January 20, 2015, 04:44:18 PM »
If you're willing to go up to say, $700, you could get that in a 27".  Dell P2715q.

Some people shun Dell, and go toward Eizo or NEC or whatnot.  But that's out of your budget.  Dell makes a decent middle of the road (but still far better than standard) monitor, in my opinion.

Been doing some shopping myself lately. Just noticed the P2715Q is on sell for $524.99, so I jumped on it yesterday.

Wait, where?

Edit - nevermind.  Wow, straight from Dell, who would have guessed.  A good $100 cheaper than online retailers.

Yeah, sorry about that, wrote it a bit too quickly while eating lunch.

Anyway, I run a dual monitor setup so I figure worst case, if I'm not satisfied with the Dell I'll use it for my secondary screen when I buy something pricier/better.

3
Post Processing / Re: Choose a Monitor?
« on: January 20, 2015, 03:37:42 PM »
If you're willing to go up to say, $700, you could get that in a 27".  Dell P2715q.

Some people shun Dell, and go toward Eizo or NEC or whatnot.  But that's out of your budget.  Dell makes a decent middle of the road (but still far better than standard) monitor, in my opinion.

Been doing some shopping myself lately. Just noticed the P2715Q is on sell for $524.99, so I jumped on it yesterday.

4
Technical Support / Re: LG 27MB85Z-B
« on: December 05, 2014, 04:16:30 PM »
Currently Dell  U2713H is $680. I just ordered one myself

The Dell P2715Q has just been released for $699...wondering how these would be for photography work.

5
Landscape / Re: Give me your Mountains...lol
« on: November 14, 2014, 07:41:29 PM »
See if you can guess its name.

I know it, but I recently got back from a 12-day trip to Oregon, so I'll see if anyone else knows.  ;)

6
Canon General / Re: seeimpossible.usa.canon.com?
« on: October 06, 2014, 11:11:44 PM »
I thought the rather grandiose title sounded vaguely familiar and it was perhaps related to a recent Canon ad I'd seen online, but I was wrong; the ad was "To the Ends of the Earth," but still a cool watch if you haven't seen it yet:

To the Ends of the Earth Ad

7
...
I wonder if the low shutter speed issue will always exist. It is probably the single biggest issue...once you get down to 1/30th of a second or slower, it really has a major impact on the EVF frame rate. I got down to 1/4 second at one point...and WOW. I figured the camera would simulate exposure, but it actually seems to really do the exposure you've chosen, even for slow shutter speeds. It really kills the user experience.

Doesn't behave like that for me, surely you must have set something somewhere in the menus.

I agree with msm, mine doesn't act like that either; I just pointed it at my TV figuring that would make the effect even more obvious, but I didn't notice any issues with EVF frame rate.  I'm wondering if I'm just not noticing it, since above I saw you discuss how you may notice things others don't?

8
Normally I stay out of these convo's as people tend to get childish and borderline rude, as well as I don't think people's opinions are going to change, right or wrong.  But I wanted to correct a few things I noticed:

the shutter was noisy and vibrated significantly. put anything long than 100mm lens and the images blurred from this.

From what I read the issue is limited to a certain range of slower shutter speeds ( only around 1/50 or something?), but I haven't tested it since I mainly use 14-50mm on my A7r (landscapes).  I just put my 70-200 F/4 on my A7r for the first time to test this and shot from my tripod at 200mm, F4, 1/320, iso100.  Results were sharp (well, as sharp as can be expected when I  can visibly see heat shimmer coming off the roof I focused on).

Quote
A simple example is I do use the EVF panel at 10 times magnification on the DSLR to get focus on landscapes.  the A7R won't do this unless you use Sony branded lenses

I bought the A7R for landscapes too, and in my experience this is not true.  Note that I mainly shoot landscape, so my typical setup is on a tripod, zoom in, manual focus, hit the shutter release, which is what you describe.  Technically, you're right, it won't zoom in at 10x with Canon lenses; it zooms at 7.2x and 14.4x ;)  I just tried it; you DO have to remember to flip the autofocus switch to manual if your lens has one.

And since I wondered if there were brand-specific issues, I also just grabbed my Rokinon 14mm, Sigma 35A & 50 1.4, and I could zoom in on all of them.  Note that I have the Metabones adapter (VIII I think), so it could be possible there's some issue if you used a different brand or version adapter.

Quote
no remote shutter easily available so make your own etc etc.

Here in the US Sony's RM-VPR1 remote shutter release is readily available on Amazon, Adorama, B&H etc. I'm not sure about outside of the US.  Granted, it's expensive and basic, similar to Canon's.  A quick glance at Amazon.com shows me there's some cheaper third party ones too.   There's also the built-in wireless option, but I'm sure that would reduce the already bad battery life.

9
Third Party Manufacturers / Re: Favourites of Photokina: Peak Design
« on: September 20, 2014, 02:48:15 PM »
Just did the test, 3 of my 4 springs failed on the slide...not too happy, but glad I found out before I put them on my cameras, unlike the unlucky people that actually had their cameras drop.  I hope PD is paying for any repairs necessary.

10
Landscape / Re: Post your light painting landscapes
« on: September 20, 2014, 01:58:25 PM »
Hi Cali.
Very nice, bet the models love those sparks dropping on them!  :o
Thanks for sharing.

Cheers, Graham.

Thanks very much Graham.  I'm actually the model in the shots as no one else wanted to try it.  I had another shooter stand in place so I could manually focus on the spot, and then would have someone press my shutter release for me as I spun.  I did end up with a little hole in a jacket from the Utah shoot, and try to use hats/hoodies etc. 

11
Landscape / Re: Post your light painting landscapes
« on: September 16, 2014, 01:41:02 AM »
You did say you'd define it 'loosely,' so does steel wool count?  :P  ;D

This past weekend in Morro Bay, California:





Earlier this year in Utah:


12
Canon General / Re: Who's on Instagram?
« on: August 08, 2014, 08:56:30 PM »
When Instagram first came out, I thought it was pretty lame and was just a way for mobile photographers to add filters to make their lousy photos look better.  A while back, I signed up and was surprised to see National Geo and others posting real (i.e. not mobile) photos.  After realizing that you can upload your own photos, I began doing so and just uploaded my 99th photo today.  I don't like the square format - I don't like 4:3, either, I'm definitely a 3:2 or wider guy, but I'm having fun with it.  I like seeing others photos and sharing my work with people from around the world. 

First, I applaud you for having an open mind and checking it out despite your initial assumptions/reservations.  Judging from many posts on this forum and other photography-themed ones, it seems to me many photogs tend to be a bit close-minded and not likely to change opinions on many subjects.

I haven't used Instagram in over year, mainly due to it being a big time-suck if I let it (not only browsing other's photos, but I tried to respond to each and every person's comments on my pics, which led me to start dreading posting...haha).  That, and having several pictures 'stolen' with other users posting them as their own pictures. Not that I sell my work, but just having them stolen was frustrating and annoying.

Other than that my experience was extremely positive, probably partly because I joined before it blew up into a selfie/celebrity popularity contest.  I actually had pics hit the popular page a number of times before it became full of selfies and had a few thousand followers, most of whom were actually interested in photography.  That's not any big statement on my pictures or ability as I'm still just an amateur, I'm just saying things were different a couple of years ago.

Instagram is different things to different people, but there are serious photographers on there, pros and amateurs.  I used to get feedback on my work which drove me to try to get better (at least a little ;))  and to connect with other photogs, just as it sounds like you're doing.  My interest is mainly landscape, and after I got past the fear of meeting potentially psychotic strangers, I joined a few photo meetups and even led a couple (California coast and Antelope Canyon).  Along the way I've been extremely fortunate to have made some great friends, one of whom plans 1-2 trips a year with me with no end in sight as we're trying to check things off our bucket lists.   ;D


13
Landscape / Re: The Antelope Navajo Under ground cave, ARIZONA, usa.
« on: August 04, 2014, 04:41:53 PM »
Thanks. Did you also see the Horseshoe Bend? Which is the closest airport?

I'm not sure if this was directed at me at all, but I'll answer what I can.  Unfortunately I'm not sure what commercial airports are the closest; there are small municipal airports all over, including in Page. I've flown in to Vegas and Grand Junction as part of longer trips which included page, and had friends fly into Phoenix and Flagstaff to meet me in Page. 

A word of warning for anyone going to page from the south: part of 89 was shut down over a year ago due to a landslide or collapse. As of April or so when I was last there, that road was still closed.  I tried to quickly google current conditions and can't verify it's re-opened, so you may want to check.  Locals told me the alternative roads took much longer. 

Horseshoe Bend parking lot is less than 2 miles outside of town. It'll probably take about 10-15 minutes to walk to the actual bend. 

I'd also second whoever mentioned Coyote Buttes (sorry, on my phone).  North (The Wave) and South are both worth doing if you're fortunate enough to win the lotteries.

14
Landscape / Re: The Antelope Navajo Under ground cave, ARIZONA, usa.
« on: August 04, 2014, 04:30:47 PM »
The color tone seems to vary quite a bit in the photos I've seen for this place. I've never been there so I don't know what it looks like in real world. Is it because of the time when the photos were taken or due to post processing techniques?

I would venture it's been a combination of both.  Some people do have a bit of heavy hand with PP'ing, and WB selection can be a big factor.  But regardless of that, colors can definitely vary quite dramatically depending on lighting conditions, including time of year, weather, and time of day.  I've found I tend to like the under-exposed shots if I bracket, as that brings colors out, as well as controlling for blown highlights.

15
Landscape / Re: The Antelope Navajo Under ground cave, ARIZONA, usa.
« on: August 03, 2014, 11:03:55 PM »
Do we have to apply for permits? If yes, how far ahead of time? I guess you are kind of rushed due to the summer rush and limited time to view these?

You don't have to worry about that, they're included in the tour fees. 

Quote
If one were to plan both upper and lower canyons, how much time does one require at the minimum? What does the Photography tour offer that others don't?
Thanks again for these awesome images.
Ray

I'd say about 5-7 hours, depending on timing; tours are roughly 2 hours as I recall, although I suppose this may vary from tour group to tour group.  I *think* all Upper tours, either from on-site or off-site groups, go at set intervals, so chances are you'll wait at least a little for your tour time.  Reserve ahead if you can, or time slots may be filled.

At Lower, the non-photography tours seem to go at set intervals because they need guides to return in order to go back out, but if you pay for a photography tour you can go immediately.  They put a paper around your neck with what time you're supposed to be back (guides will check it in the canyon as they pass you) and off you go, no guide.  I've had good luck where they just tack on an extra 10-15 minutes to make the return time at a "00" or "30."  Years ago they used to just let you pay an extra $20 of you stayed in longer, but they've cracked down since some photographers abused it and caused a problem.

NOTE - The drive between upper and lower is nothing, basically across the street, but as I understand it, most Antelope Canyon tour groups are in town, so they ask you to meet them at their location in Page to be shuttled out.  Since most do NOT also do Lower, that means after you're done with Upper, they'll shuttle you back into town to your car, increasing the time to do both on the same day.  If you're shopping tour groups, I'd ask them about this, maybe some will meet you at the Upper or Lower parking lots.

Personally, I've always either driven up to the gate and joined the on-site tour group so my car is right there, or joining Carol Bigthumb's group, Adventurous Antelope Canyon Photo Tours.  Her family (or some members) live near Upper, and their meeting/parking location is near there, maybe a mile or two.

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