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Messages - GuyF

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Canon General / Re: Bad Photography Rant
« on: July 21, 2013, 10:09:04 AM »
I live right next to a shopping centre and often see some "professional" with a setup consisting of a few boxes and cushions for the subject to sit on. They're armed with an entry-level DSLR and kit lens stuck on a small tripod (hey! they've got a tripod, how pro is that!!). I suppose they're just maximising profits. There is a board with example shots too - you know the type, bland images of kids against a white background. Honestly, it's just a conveyor belt of mediocrity. Plus they appear to charge about £45 a pop.

I'm not bashing entry level gear (clearly you can take very acceptable images with it) but I feel the end product from these goons is so poor yet people seem to lap it up. Is a grandparent really going to criticise any picture of their beloved progeny?

I know I could do so much better but have to consider if people would actually pay more when they're already happy with, for want of a better word, crap? I suppose you get what you pay for, especially at a makeshift "studio" in a shopping centre.

We should start asking these "professionals" how they achieve such bland results. Maybe stand next to him with a t-shirt that says, "Never pay for crummy photos".

Let the backlash begin!.

Sports / Re: motorsport photos
« on: July 21, 2013, 05:19:28 AM »
Nice speedway shot, Paul. Hope you didn't get covered in shale - if you stand in the wrong spot, it'll take the skin off your face!

Got totally covered but loved every second, got on a bit better from the inside of the track when I shot this dslr video:

Great video!

Liked the video, but what's with the thick border used throughout? I guess you maybe got covered in shale and had to wipe a wee spy-hole on the front of the lens  ;)

Call me impressed.

Sports / Re: motorsport photos
« on: July 20, 2013, 03:26:49 PM »
Nice speedway shot, Paul. Hope you didn't get covered in shale - if you stand in the wrong spot, it'll take the skin off your face!

1D X Sample Images / Re: Any Thing shot with a 1Dx
« on: July 17, 2013, 02:29:32 PM »
A couple of recent shots taken on glasgow's back streets

Aye, typical Weegie girls - ootside in their knickers. Brazen hussies.  :P

Technical Support / Re: Canon 5D3 at airshow
« on: July 17, 2013, 01:57:44 PM »
I've attached some shots from last year - these are more or less straight out of camera and uncropped just to show what field of view you may get depending on where you stand relative to whatever might be flying about. I hadn't been to an airshow in over 20 years so my technique was a bit rusty.

All shots are 5D3 with 300mm f2.8 IS and 1.4x converter so 420mm.

As you can see, cropping is required to make the most of the images (though that's down to personal taste). As a consequence I'm hiring a 500mm f4 mk2 next week for an airshow and will be using a tripod and gimbal head since I won't be able to swing it about by hand all afternoon (the 300+1.4 was managable but I feel the TC softened the images just a bit much for my liking). Also I'm thinking of selling the 300mm to get the 500mm so an airshow seems a good field test.

I'll use a 17-40mm for static stuff and the 500mm for what's flying. As I'm mainly going along just to see a P51, F86 and Me109, I'm not so bothered about acrobatic teams where a wider view is required.

As others have said, use 1/1000th and above for jets and around 1/300th for props. I wouldn't go with spot metering as it's too easy to be slightly off target and get a nicely exposed sky at the expense of an under-exposed plane. (Been there, done that!). I'll probably go with centre-weighted plus 1/3rd or 2/3rds of a stop.

Of course the weather will be diabolical and the 500mm will be a liability but isn't that what photography is all about?

Happy shooting.

I'm guilty of having 3 Colin Prior prints on my walls but the more I look at them the more I feel good landscape photography is "simply" having patience to wait for the right light. Nice if you have the freedom to wait for days at a time but for the rest of us it's a case of "I'm here now and have to move on shortly".  Cue the hate mail to say I'm oversimplifying it  ::)

Now portraits, that's the real trick. Who was it said a good portrait is worth three biographies? To capture the true character of a person (either well-known to only you or a megastar) is real photography.

Grab yourself books from these people for inspiration:

Yousuf Karsh
Anton Corbijn
Patrick Demarchelier
Jeanloup Seiff
Herb Ritts
Andy Gotts
Uli Weber
Ross Halfin

United Kingdom & Ireland / Re: Best for Rental in the UK?
« on: July 10, 2013, 01:13:44 PM »
Hiring a 500mm f4 mk2 from Calumet  - about £100 for Friday to Monday. Lensforhire were about £250! Yikes.

United Kingdom & Ireland / Re: Camera Insurance (U.K.)
« on: July 10, 2013, 01:09:46 PM »
Maybe a bit of a late reply but it's simply a case of talking to your current insurance company. Most places require you to specify individual items if they are over £2500 each. My policy with RBS covers £8000 when out and about as that's the most I'd have with me at any one time - everything else would just be covered by normal house contents.

As every company is slightly different you'll just have to shop around. I've never made a claim so can't offer too much advice. It's only when things go wrong that you find out how good a company is - instant pay-out or months of phone calls and anger?

If you have business needs, that'll change things.

Good luck.

Animal Kingdom / Re: Show your Bird Portraits
« on: July 10, 2013, 01:02:12 PM »
When gannets move in next door, property becomes hard to sell....

Awesome shots Guy. I especially like the second and last one. Good control of the light, nicely done.

Thanks Click. Just for info 5D3 and 300mm 2.8 IS centre-weighted metering plus a third of a stop.

Animal Kingdom / Re: Show your Bird Portraits
« on: July 09, 2013, 01:41:28 PM »
When gannets move in next door, property becomes hard to sell....

Lenses / Re: Monopod for 600mm II - advice needed
« on: July 06, 2013, 07:55:54 AM »
Cheers Neuro.

I did kinda wonder what Canon were on about by saying it has to be done by a service centre. Probably just covering themselves from law suits - "I removed the tripod foot myself and poked my eye out! Gimme $100m!".


Lenses / Re: Monopod for 600mm II - advice needed
« on: July 06, 2013, 06:15:49 AM »
I'm in the middle of convincing myself to trade my 300mm for the new 500mm and read that Canon says swapping the tripod foot for the monopod one requires going along to a Canon service centre - what the...?

Just how difficult is it to swap the feet or are they just creating additional revenue for themselves?

Thanks for any insight!


Animal Kingdom / Re: Show your Bird Portraits
« on: July 02, 2013, 06:11:45 AM »
A young Shag. Amazing green colour and the eyes. Emerald green.

Mick - great shots of the Shag. Where did you take the shots? I could've taken something similar on the trip I was on last week but time was short and I headed up to some clifftops rather than staying down by the water's edge where the Shags and Arctic Terns hung out.

I'm thinking of selling my 300mm to get the new 500mm mk2 - any comments or tips on using the lens? I plan on hiring one a the end of the month for an airshow (I'll be using it with a gimbal head).

Last few shots attached....

Animal Kingdom / Re: Show your Bird Portraits
« on: July 01, 2013, 09:53:13 AM »
Some pics from a recent trip to the Isle of May in the Firth of Forth, Scotland.

I love your first picture of the Atlantic Puffin at the top.

Very nice shots Guy.

Thanks Click. A few more...

Animal Kingdom / Re: Show your Bird Portraits
« on: July 01, 2013, 05:54:35 AM »
Some pics from a recent trip to the Isle of May in the Firth of Forth, Scotland.

As the sky was full of puffins, it was hard to focus on just one in the hope it would come towards you. Too often they would zip off in the opposite direction as soon as you had focus locked on. Clearly it's a conspiracy.

I also just want to say Arctic Terns are vicious bastards and they have no respect for carbon fibre tripods.

5D3 and 300mm f2.8 IS.

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