April 19, 2014, 01:30:25 PM

Show Posts

This section allows you to view all posts made by this member. Note that you can only see posts made in areas you currently have access to.


Messages - vlad

Pages: 1 [2] 3
16
Lenses / Re: Prime vs zoom
« on: March 28, 2013, 08:08:51 PM »
If I know the ballpark focal length I need ahead of time - primes.  If there is ambiguity - zooms.  But not all or nothing, typically my bag will have at least one of each. 

And it's not always about getting that magical prime look or creamy bokeh or whatever - sometimes it's about size and weight.

Why haul around the 70-200 II if a 135L will do (and IS is not needed).
The 16-35 has a great range, but the 24 1.4 is much less obtrusive.

I will admit that with the 5D III the dominance of primes when it comes to low light has been compromised by the higher usable ISO range.

17
Lenses / Re: 50mm: Wich one?
« on: March 27, 2013, 05:12:00 PM »
I got the Sigma 1.4 recently after a few years of shooting with the nifty fifty.  Shooting on full frame, no problems, good focus right out of the box.  Overall very good image quality, the 1.8 can't touch it at 1.8 obviously.  Also, no more pentagon-shaped bokeh.  Haven't had any AF issues - the 5DIII locks it in fine even in low light.

I was calibrating it recently, and noticed that it only needed focus adjustment at 1 meter focusing distance and closer.  As I pulled away, it was sharp at 0, so I just kept it at 0 and will be more careful with focus up close. (Edit, I wonder if that's the schizophrenic focus that was mentioned.  I should try it at longer distances...)

18
Reviews / Re: Review - EF 24 f/1.4L II
« on: March 26, 2013, 02:55:58 PM »
Love my 24.  I actually tend to use the 16-35 II for shots like this due to flexibility, but when 24 is right, it's so right.


19
Technical Support / Re: Sharpening question for Photoshop experts
« on: February 22, 2013, 03:40:56 PM »
Some general sharpening advice:

- sharpen after you size down for web
- unsharp mask-style sharpening (which I now do through PS smart sharpening, not the actual unsharp mask filter) with a low radius works well for sharpening the overall image to counteract the lack of in-camera sharpening for RAW
- unsharp mask-style with high radius and low amount boosts local contrast, similar to "clarity" in LR and better looking in my opinion
- high pass sharpening is great for bringing out edge detail, and personally I prefer to mask it in for areas that I want to draw more focus/attention to (i.e. the eyes in a portrait)

20
Lenses / Re: TS-E 90mm f/2.8 Tilt-Shift for product photography?
« on: February 13, 2013, 03:19:57 PM »
I've been doing some food photography with the 100 macro lately, and the DOF limitations have gotten me thinking about TS-E's.  What are people's thoughts on getting the 90 versus the 45 with a 2X telecoverter?  Seems like the latter would be more versatile, but is there a big IQ tradeoff?

21
Software & Accessories / Re: Pushing LR/ACR past 100
« on: February 13, 2013, 02:29:47 PM »
Thanks, yeah, I've already been doing that with local adjustments, I was just hoping for a shortcut to do it globally.  Usually it's some almost blown-out sky that I'm trying to bring down past -100.

22
Software & Accessories / Pushing LR/ACR past 100
« on: February 12, 2013, 08:22:27 PM »
Let's say I want to bring down the highlights or boost the shadows beyond the slider limits in LR/ACR.  I could export the maxed out image to tiff, import it, and repeat, but is there a more efficient way to do it?

23
Lighting / Re: How to use flash with av,tv
« on: February 10, 2013, 02:56:42 AM »
Ugh, I struggled with this a lot when I was first learning to use a flash.  What you're seeing is the intended design - in Av and Tv, the camera meters as if there was no flash at all.  The idea is that it meters for ambient light (i.e. as if there is no flash at all) and then the flash output is responsible for the exposure on whatever the flash is lighting.  The flash output is either set manually or via ETTL.

This threw me off because as a beginner, I would start with automatic settings, then turn to using manual ones one at a time as my comfort zone expanded.  With flash, however, it's way easier to just go with manual - camera AND flash.

Look at it this way, with camera in Av and flash in ETTL, a slight difference in the shot, say a bit more sky in the frame, will change the shutter speed, unexpectedly altering the ambient exposure.  And with ETTL, you're essentially telling your flash - go head - expose for what you think is right, I trust you!  With that number of variables, it can be hard to just get a sequence of shots exposed consistently, much less have a properly controlled lighting situation.

So my advice is, start with camera in M.  You can even use Av or Tv to first get the ambient exposure you want, then switch to M and dial those in.  As you get more comfortable, you won't need that step - just start in M, set the shutter or aperture that you want, and dial the other one until the meter lines up.  Now that your're in M, at least your ambient will stay the same and not be thrown off by metering.  You can leave the flash in ETTL and use FEC to dial it in, but I wouldn't recommend it - I always found myself spending more time chimping and tweaking the FEC than getting the shot I want.  So put the flash in M, take a few practice shots to find what it needs to be adjusted to, and voila - you have achieved a state of permanence.  If the conditions, the distance/angle of flash to subject, etc stay the same, your shots will remain consistent and not be at the whim of automatic processes that can't possibly guess what exactly you want your shot to look like.

When I'm bouncing the flash or using some kind of diffuser, I'll use ETTL more often - it makes more sense in this scenario since, if you're moving around, the characteristics of the bounced light can change, and ETTL does a pretty good job of figuring out a decent exposure.

Disclaimer - there are a lot of ways to shoot with flash.  My experience is based mostly on shooting people outside with off-camera flash.  I chased what I believed was the ETTL holy grail that would do it all for me, buying the fancy PocketWizards, etc, but it seems that the more proficient I get, the more manual I get with my flashes...

24
Lenses / Re: 100mm 2.8L Macro IS as a portrait lens
« on: January 25, 2013, 06:55:31 PM »
I bought the 100 Macro (USM) first, precisely for the versatility mentioned by others, but a couple years later ended up getting the 135L as well.  It's probably been said before, but it bears repeating - the macro lens is more versatile and is pretty good at portraits, but once you start using the 135 for portraits, it's hard to go back to the macro.  The 135 is great at f2, which along with the tele compression lets you achieve DOF and background separation that 100 @ 2.8 just can't do.  If you don't find yourself craving more background blur at portrait distances, then the macro will be great for you.  I'm not going to make a big deal about compression - sure, it helps, but it's not like you can't take a great portrait at 85mm...

25
Thanks all for the tips.  Since there were more people for magnets than against, I gave it a try last night without much luck - no sight or sound of the screw.  I've come up with another theory to torment myself with - what if the screw came out as I was trying to shake it out and I didn't notice, and now I'm spending all this time chasing after it... anyway, I think my next step will be trying to find a replacement screw, as well as try to focus on making photos to get my mind off this madness :)

26
Coming from a 5Dc with an EE-S focusing screen, I was pretty disappointed that the 5D III didn't have a similar alternative.  Doing some searching, it appeared that focusingscreen.com is currently the only option around.  In short, a guy in Taiwan gets original Canon screens and modifies them - there are various microprism/grid/etc screens, but since I like the freedom to manual focus anywhere in the frame, I went with the S Type.

It arrived yesterday, meticulously packaged, and I got to work using their online instructions:
http://www.focusingscreen.com/work/5d3en.htm

As I was finishing the installation, I accidentally dropped one of these screws inside the camera, and as luck would have it, it dropped into the hole on the side of the mirror, where I can't see or reach it.


I turned the camera upside down, tilted it, shook it a bit - I could hear the screw rattling around for the first minute, and then it just stopped - I guess it got lodged somewhere.

Thankfully, the part that's held down with the 2 screws seems to be solid enough with just 1, but I'm not really happy about literally having a loose screw inside the camera, just waiting for the right time to break free and go exploring inside a lens...  Maybe I should register screwloosephoto.com and capitalize on my mistake.

As for the focusing screen - it works great, same as my previous EE-S screen.   To me, it makes the difference between trusting myself with manual focus through the viewfinder, and using it for emergencies only.  A bit pricy, but totally worth it in the long term.  Despite whatever reason Canon gave for not having swappable screens in the mk III (something about how it's a side effect of their new AF), the various AF modes continue working fine.

If anybody has any ideas on either getting the loose screw out (I was thinking of trying canned air) or at least finding a replacement for it, I'd be eager to hear it.

27
Wow, very nicely done!  It's amazing how music can set the tone.  I like the descent into darkness.

28
Lenses / Re: 100mm macro VS 180mm macro
« on: December 06, 2012, 07:09:36 PM »
I'd really recommend considering the TS-E 90mm f/2.8 for food/product photography - it's really the lens of choice for that application.  The problem with a macro lens is DoF - it's either too thin, or you have to stop down well into apertures narrow enough to soften the image with diffraction.  The tilt feature of a TS-E lens gives you control over DoF, and allows you to get a deeper DoF at wider apertures.

+1 on this.

I've been using the non-L 100 for food photography recently, and as long as it's on a tripod, it's amazingly sharp.  At 1:1, it can be a little too much detail, with every piece of fuzz, every spec of dust, every pore visible.  But to get more than a couple of inches of sharp DoF, I need to stop it down to F13+.  I haven't really seen the image quality degrade much, but it does make the flashes work harder, or forces an ISO bump.  This is why I'm seriously considering the TS-E 90 now.

29
Lenses / Re: Visualising focal length perception.
« on: November 28, 2012, 03:48:22 PM »
I saw this collection of faces...
I saved it because the person that did this ...did it right - IMO

That's great, very telling.  Goes to show that there is no "best" focal length.  You learn the characteristics of wide vs. tele and then use the range for different artistic effect.  50mm is often claimed as the most natural, but since we are working in a visual medium, sometimes we want an interpretation different from "normal".  A classical portrait is usually more compressed than what we would see normally, whereas a wide angle shot can give a better sense of environment and "being there".  And as much as I love my 50, I'm not going to claim that it represents how I actually see things, since for better or worse I don't see things through a rectangular frame :)

30
Software & Accessories / Re: LR noise reduction in comparison to DPP
« on: October 31, 2012, 08:57:14 PM »
its mainly looking at the very underexposed ends of a bracketed sequence, and seeing that the shots are not usable for making a HDR due to the amount of noise. I find that the HDR process then amplifies the noise and the results are useless.

Aah I see.  What software are you using for HDR?  Theoretically, the HDR software should use your underexposed shots to get the highlights (i.e. sky/clouds) and your overexposed shots for the shadows (which should have little noise since they were exposed to the right originally, not pushed in post).

In practice though, it doesn't always come out as expected.  I use HDR Efex, and yeah, sometimes there is noise in the "shadows", even though I can look at the overexposed shots of those areas and see that they're not noisy.  I've always chalked it up to my general inexperience with HDR and possibly not having enough +EV bracketed shots...

Pages: 1 [2] 3