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Landscape / Give me your Mountains...lol
« on: November 14, 2014, 05:35:16 PM »
Good afternoon everyone.

Here in Washington State, actually - closer to Portland, Or, we're blessed with having several mountains in such proximity.  Anyways...I wanted to share a couple of mountain photographs I took since moving here. 

If you have any of your own, please feel free to post them.  Oh...and I threw in a waterfall one. 

See if you can guess its name.

Abstract / Re: Beautiful bokeh! Let me see yours!
« on: November 14, 2014, 05:22:21 PM »
Canon 5D MK II/ 70-200 L II, @2.8

Landscape / Re: Beautiful sunsets
« on: June 05, 2013, 03:46:24 AM »
Hey guys...great pictures everyone.  Here's one that I took between Vancouver, WA and Portland, OR on a place called Hayden Island. 

I hope you enjoy.


Canon General / Re: How well do you see color?
« on: February 26, 2013, 12:23:13 PM »
I have perfect acuity, as it stated...lol

I'm 30
on a Dell Inspiron E1705
Uncalibrated monitor ( Laptops are always bad..lol)

Although i've used the X-rite system, I've only found it to work REALLY well with a calibrated monitor....( duh...lol)
Otherwise, you're fighting back and forth with it's profile and your monitor's profile....not good. 

I've used it on Mac's...and found it to work just fine. 

It's just a tool!  If it doesn't work to your liking, either get a better rig or stop complaining.  It obviously works..as many professionals use it...studios...printing labs...it works!

And here are screen shots to prove I have PERFECT ACUITY..lol

EOS Bodies - For Stills / Re: 2nd camera body with a twist -
« on: February 06, 2013, 01:08:37 AM »
Would be a big change but, why not sell the 5d ii and the two 40d's, and get two 5d iii's. The mark 3's would be better for the weddings and the sports with its autofocus and frame rate. And then you have the convenience of using two identical bodies, same button layout, ergonomics, and probably a more consistent image output.

Here's my issue with the 40d's - I have two of them, purchased back in  2007 and 2008.  Well, right now, resale value on ebay and the going rate on craigslist in my area is around 150-200 just for the body only.  The 40d is still a great camera and I would hate to sale it for mere pennies on the dollar.  I would rather save it for my two sons, so when they get older, they have something to mess around with. 

Right now, I did post on CL in my area for a 40d, 28-135 is, sigma 17-70, 2 battieries, 6 different filters for 650.  Let's see if it sells. 

And earlier, someone mentioned that if I could find a 1ds mkiii for closer to 2000, that might be a better option than buying the 5d mk iii.  That's what I was thinking.  If I had to drop 3000 + for a 1ds mk iii....I don't know that I would go that route.  Plus the warranty!!! I don't think I'll find a warranty with the 1ds where I could easily get one for the 5d mk iii. 

Good comments everyone!  I really appreciate it.  Thank you.

EOS Bodies - For Stills / Re: 2nd camera body with a twist -
« on: February 05, 2013, 03:53:11 PM »
I think you guys are right.  I was so at awe with the price being closer to 2000 then the 6000 dollar price it came out with in 2007.  Plus you're right again, I do want newer sensor technology in my camera especially if I'm dropping almost 3000 dollars on it.

My 5d Mk ii has a battery grip practically glued onto it at all times so the bulk of the weight should be very similar to the 1 D series.  maybe I'll just stick with another 5 D Mark 2 and purchase another couple of L lenses to go along. 

I don't care for the 6D however I wish the 5 D Mark 3 had the wifi built into it like the 6d does. 

Thanks for knocking some sense into me as I was getting ready to make the purchase of the 1ds Mark 3.  and although I respect the specs on the cameras I would prefer to have someone's first hand account of how the actual camera feels then just reading about it.  I have found several threads where people have compared the 1ds Mark 3 to the 5 D 3 and say there's very little real world difference.

and because of the little difference they kept and preferred there 1 Ds over the 5dmk III. 

EOS Bodies - For Stills / 2nd camera body with a twist -
« on: February 05, 2013, 12:29:38 PM »
Hey everyone...I think what i'm after is people's real life experience with what I'm about to ask.  So, please spare me purchasing a particular camera based on just specs.  Only because I've spent the last few days comparing specs and other stuff.  So here goes...

I'm looking for a second FF body - going to be used for weddings, seniors, studio, engagements....typical photo-shoots.

I have a 5D MK II with plenty of incredible lenses to go around.  2 40d bodies I purchased back in 2007 that I use for going on vacation and any sports related job ( or where I don't want to burn the 5D shutter).

So here's what I'm looking at....and then why -

I've been looking on ebay at the Canon 1ds Mark III.  It ranges from anywhere from 1,900 to 3,000.  I know it's an older camera, however, here's what I like about it. 

It too is a 21 mp camera, which means I will spend less time re-sizing images ( to match my 5D) as the 5D mark II is 21/22.  Full Frame, great focusing system, completely weather sealed. 

There are a lot of other awesome things about it, however, I would like people who have/had had/used their perspective as to whether or not it's worth the purchase vs. buying a 6d or even 5d mk III.

I'm only ever going to use it for stills.  If I need a video camera, i'll use my 5d mk II or buy a small video camera.  It's sole purpose is for stills. 

For the price, I could buy a 6d or 5d MK III, however, I'm not really needing all of the bells and whistles the 5d MK III and 6D have.  However, I will be moving to an area that has quite a bit more precipitation and would like a fully sealed camera, but am just not quite sure at the moment.   

I have found 5D MK II's for half of the cost, however, I'm starting to feel what people have said about it's slow focusing and inconsistent autofocus.  I've put up with it so far...and actually have gotten used to it...so I wouldn't mind another one.....

Like I mentioned, spare me the "buy a 5d MKII and spend the rest on lenses" bit.  I have several L lenses and awesome primes that cover the gaumet of what I shoot.  I'm just after a camera body.  The 1dx is out of the question, but everything else is on the table. 

I almost always get great responses, so I thought I would come here first before any other thread.



EOS Bodies / Re: 5D MkIII instructions - Rant !!
« on: December 06, 2012, 12:52:38 PM »
Manuals cover all users, not just the ones who have owned DSLR's before. 

However, for advanced topics, you have to look elsewhere.

I completely agree with Mt. Spokane.

Now, for my two cents - I have a 40D and a 5D MK II.  And to be quite honest, I've read their manuals front to back probably a dozen times or more.  This isn't because I'm incapable of understanding the information...lol It's because I usually stumble upon a feature i'm unsure of and will take the time to figure it out. 

For example - It wasn't until about 4 months ago that I started taking lightning pictures ( Not from my car) but actually setting up under a gazebo (not the best idea either...lol) Anyways, my shots were brilliant.  Just awesome....However, I was running into an issue with something....I wasn't quite sure.

The issue - I would take a 20-30 second exposure and then the camera would take the next 20-30 seconds to ( what I thought) to process the image.  The funny thing the amateur next to me was snapping away without hesitation....

Pictures came out amazing....I then read somewhere on the net to turn off high ISO noise reduction.  So, I turned back to my manual and had another look at it.  I had already read that section many many times....and didn't think twice about it. 

Long story short...I learned something!  When I'm on a paying gig, and I run into an unusual situation, I don't have time to sit there, during the shoot, pull the manual out to figure it out. It's best if you KNOW...really KNOW your equipment so that it's always second nature. 

So yes....including what seems like idiotic general information - HAS to be there.  If it weren't, someone would find a way to sue canon for their own lack of understanding.  Use it as a reference, not an end-all be-all. 


EOS Bodies / Re: One friend want to Buy my 24-70L... but...
« on: October 24, 2012, 11:37:23 PM »
I haven't personally known any wedding photographers, nor have I ever done a wedding without, the 24-70L lens.  I use plenty of light during weddings so f/2.8 is plenty wide, it is as sharp as the 35L at f/2.8, and it offers far more flexibility.  Going all prime is not anything special, in fact, it's a way to miss a lot of shots if your are not very careful.  My vote is no.

I agree....my 24-70 is my goto lens about 90% of the time during weddings.  With that in mind, I do use primes throughout the entire day....but it depends what type of shot I'm going for.  It's not because I dislike my primes..the 24-70 is just a versatile lens...and especially when your in an environment like weddings, where things just happen, I would rather catch the shot and it be not 100% "perfect" than miss the shot all together. 

EOS Bodies - For Stills / Re: Once you go "L" you'll never go back....
« on: October 06, 2012, 04:56:48 AM »
I won't post anymore on this topic....people either understand or they don't.  And those that don't, chances are haven't had the opportunity to work with great equipment....So be it...

It's like a race-car driver.  The driver wants the best equipped vehicle to win the race.  He doesn't want a jalopy and with his magnificent driving technique....and hope that he will win.  He wants to win.   

Someone that is not a race-car driver, not driving in the race doesn't care about what type of car he has...because he will drive whatever and be happy. 

More than likely, the non race-car driver will not aspire to be a race-car driver and therefore does not see the merit of having a race-car. 

Look around at your favorite photographers.....which of them use sub-par equipment? If you're unsure about yourself as a photographer, then take a class...hire a mentor....read more books...practice your technique...learn to be a better photographer. 

You'll quickly learn the limitations of your equipment.  And if you're happy with them....then so be it....But on the other hand, there are a lot of photographers that require the best for their clients and Sub-par equipment just won't cut it. 

So...Buy "L" lenses... don't buy them...I don't care!  I really don't.  If you loose customers because you continue to "Get-buy" on your equipment and don't continue to learn your craft as a photographer...then I have no pity for you. 

I'm sorry for being so condescending...and a little snipe...Although everyone is entitled to their opinion....I realize I don't care anymore....I continue to achieve beautiful and beautiful results time and time again....And although my technique continues to get better, I have found that my results are skyrocketing...because of my equipment's ability to physically produce a quality digital image....I have people all over that request one on one's with me and continue to ask about my "Secrets" to achieving a stunning result...and my answer doesn't waiver...

Learn your craft.....use the equipment that will not hinder your ability to achieve the very best results.  If you're not sure about how your results stack-up... choose a few of your favorite photographers and compare your results to them.  If you're happy...then great...If you feel you have some work....then get to work to be a better photographer....whatever that means to you.!

EOS Bodies - For Stills / Re: Once you go "L" you'll never go back....
« on: October 06, 2012, 12:33:58 AM »
sorry,  i am not and will not believe it though :) i do own some L lenses, plus 50 f/1.4, one of them is the one that you were using to take that pic which is 70-200mm is ii.  why do i not believe it? very simple to me since i am having been studying about digital zone and lighting (still continue to learn with flash).  i do not have that much experience but i might be able to tell what exposure should be used by taking a look at current lighting condition (will force myself more into this area when having more time.)

i am not talking about white balance, i am talking about skin tone of your subject (unless there is a problem with his skin), his outfit and black color on chair makes me hard to believe it.

Lol...I don't know what to say..lol  other than hopefully you find a combo-match the wields the results you're after.  As for me, I get this kind of result with my 40D/70-200 2.8 II just about every time.  Because of the crop factor, I don't generally use it often as it's too long of a focal range for some of the work I do.  Plus, with my 5D, there's no need for me to use it...as my images with the 5D and 70-200 are just brilliant. 

I like Charlie B's comments about L Glass....especially the last part of "Get the lens that does the job"  I completely agree...100%

I love using my 70-200 for portraits, however, to be honest, unless i'm trying to impress my clientele or something...I generally stick with my 85 1.8 - and shoot between F2.0 and F4.  It's a magnificent lens!  It's quality rivals and surpasses just about any "L" lens.  Plus, unless I feel the need to constantly use it at F1.2, then there's no need to get the 1.2 and spend an extra 5x's the amount. 

I've been fortunate enough to work as a Studio Photographer and work beside the manager who studied at the Art Institute of Seattle and learn how to approach people and get the facial expressions....the posing...the lighting...everything. However, it was not easy!!!  Let me be very clear - here was a lesson on lighting I received:

"Luis - How do I get the lighting to look like this magazine?"

"J, take this light and put it here....take that light...put a grid on it and place it here...your fill light, flip it around so it bounces off the wall at 1/2 power, place your hair light off to the side...Oh...I'm getting a phone call, Um...J, let's continue this lesson in a few days from now...?

These were my lessons. lol ....So after he left, I would practice that light set-up for about an hour until I achieved the look I was after.  And so on and so on...until I realized I didn't need him or anyone else to show me how to light a subject.  I could just look at a magazine and instantly know how and what was used to achieve the lighting. 

Now, to get back to the topic....When I would use a non fixed zoom lens, for indoor studio work, the fluctuating FStop between different focal lengths drove me CRAZY!!  I wouldn't use a 50mm on a FF Camera, because I would be right up in their face a few feet away to get the same perspective/ on a step ladder shooting down....the 70-200 would've been great except I wasn't just shooting headshots all day long...It was a full Studio...They didn't have an 85....instead they figured EF-S 18-135 lenses would suffice....Don't get me wrong...that's a wonderful lens, however, the fluctuating F stop on that drove me crazy.  So until I started bringing my lenses because I couldn't stand theirs....image quality was decent....Once they saw the brilliance in quality with the 85 or heck..even my 24-70 ( I don't care what people say about this lens...my copy is TACK-SHARP) they went bananas. 

Some people take wonderful images with mediocre equipment...and that's OK.  But one lesson I learned early on....is that if someone is paying you $2,000 + for a photo-shoot, you ought to have better equipment than the they do.  Otherwise...unfortunately, they start telling everyone that they have the same equipment as you and that they should've taken the photos themselves...and saved a few thousand dollars.  This happened to one of my friends and they got some bad rap for it.    If you're a professional and use mediocre equipment, then make sure your  ( you know what) doesn't stink, because I guarantee they will look and hire someone soley based on their equipment.  And if you think i'm wrong...than prove it!  Take a $400-500 camera to your next $3,000 wedding and see what kind of looks you get. 

Anyways, great posts everyone!  I appreciate all the wonderful feedback!

J     ( And i'm based out of Washington State.)

EOS Bodies - For Stills / Re: Once you go "L" you'll never go back....
« on: October 05, 2012, 09:13:37 PM »
Here's some exif info on the two pics...

1.  Pentax K-x, Tamron AF70-300, 1/1600, F4.5, 148 mm, ISO 400
2.  Canon 40 D, Canon 70-200 2.8 L II, 1/400, F2.8, 70 mm, iso 100

These images are untouched out of the camera...After all is said and done...we're really only about a stop 1/2 difference. 

 This is about the closest of a shot between us I could find...

it is hard for me to believe that the second one is out of camera jpeg... and it is just based on my experience and what i have learned in these months...  if you live very close to me and show me that you can capture similar image with your 40d in front of my eyes, i will promise that will work for you FREE in three years (weekend only).

Lol...I promise, this is straight out of the camera...How do I know...I'm editing the pictures for this wedding right now.  All i've done so far is imported them into lightroom and created a few collections...I haven't even touched the white balance. This picture was pulled straight from the CF Card

The only lens I've found that gives me "To-die-for" images with my 40D's is my 70-200 2.8 II and believe it or not....my 70-210 FD F3.5 to..something lens with an FD to EOS Adapter. 

But please keep in mind...I have found very very few lenses that give me this type of brilliance with 40D's.  I honestly think canon screwed up when manufacturing the 40D....IMHO

EOS Bodies - For Stills / Re: Once you go "L" you'll never go back....
« on: October 05, 2012, 11:59:50 AM »
Brought1... I think all the nikon fans will soon pipe up saying (look at the DR of the pentax) lol.  With that being said, Different camera systems will do that to ya, but even more, depending on the settings and how each camera is shot, 2 different canon bodies could be that different, especially if one was shot jpeg and the other raw...  In the end, everything falls under your name and your brand, and if their shots dont meet your requirements for your brand, dont use them... Tough going but lesson learned.

Thanks for you comment.   As for the "Tough lesson learned..." One thing you may not know about me is short of the unforeseeable, i'm always prepared.   So, if you read back through my recent post, you'll see my process of assuring I capture the shot i'm after.  And going thru my images, I'm not bothered one way or another about the other photographer's shots.  Why...because I already have the images I'm after, without his images.  And with the amount of weddings i've photographed over the years, I know better than to completely rely on an amateur assistant.

 ( sorry...I know this may come across as being cocky..I promise i'm not trying to be.  Early on in my photography career, I was burned by another photog at an important session because of two different systems...)

As for your different camera systems, Let's start with two different cameras from the same system. 

Yes, chances are they will have a different look.  I'll give you that one - even with the same settings.  So you designate one camera as your primary and the other as your backup.  In my case, my 5D MK II is my primary and one of my 40D's as my secondary.  At weddings, I have my 24-70 attached to the 5D and my 70-200 2.8II to the 40D.

I only use "L" lenses with my 40D because I need the quality of the digital image to be close to my 5D.  I don't care so much about the size....I'll crop if I need to.  I know my results when I use to use secondary lenses...Terrible - Fringes/CA, less vibrant, less color, less contrast.  Also, when I worked as a studio photographer for a local studio, they had a plethora of 28-105 lenses that non-studio photogs would use...and when I would review their images, it was like Night and day.

I have all of my cameras set to Neutral to begin with and like nikon shooters, I tend to shoot to the right...knowing that Canon does very well in bringing back detail from accidental overexposure....not so much from an underexposed image.  ( with nikon...I've found the opposite...They can bring detail out of the shadows better than anyone...sad to say.  But an overexposed image was ruined...)

The point i'm trying to make is that I am very happy with the results I get from my 40D when I have superior lenses attached.  It really does make a world of difference, even if it's only a 10.1 mp camera.  lol 

Someone had mentioned that I ought to place a prime on my other canon 40D and let him hammer out the shots with that.  It didn't even cross my mind, as I wanted him to be comfortable shooting, whereas him using my other body...was a wreck. 

And I had good laugh with the DR of the Pentax.  Years ago, before I bought into canon, I almost pulled the switch and went with a pentax.  Only because they had a button that no matter what settings you had up....if you pushed it, it would give you a decently exposed image.  I thought I needed one of those..lol 

Thanks for your comment!  Have a good day. 

EOS Bodies - For Stills / Re: Once you go "L" you'll never go back....
« on: October 05, 2012, 04:02:45 AM »
Hey guys.....Brought1 here...the originator of this thread....

Wow...I love the comments!  Thank you everyone for your imput.   With that being said, here's my follow-up -

Early on someone posted about - "Regardless of the equipment, ultimately it's the image that matters."  This is very very true. 


A little more info on this wedding -

This was a paid gig.  I knew that he was an amateur and "More than likely" would have issues with the varying lighting conditions.  He was not there the entire time, just through the First-look...ceremony....and part of the reception. 

With that being said...Somebody mentioned that I should've set him up with one of my canon bodies with primes.  Honestly, it didn't even cross my mind to do so.  I'm very touchy with my Nifty-fifty mark 1, just because it took me a while to find a very good one...( Sorry - I prefer the metal mount)

ALL BESIDES THE POINT.  He did great!  No question about it.  He was respectful...did as I asked...took the shots I requested and did them quite well. 

The way I approach all of my photoshoots, especially when I'm team shooting or have an assistant shooter is as such: 

1.  Let me get the shot I have in mind ( the classic...traditional shot)
2.  After that is done...usually in one or two shots, let's get creative.  For those of you who will argue with this, please don't.  As a working professional, I would rather have 1 shot that is completely usable and sell-able than a bunch of extreme creative shots that are just mediocre and don't capture the "Essence" of the moment.
3.  As long as I have achieved step 1..and am happy with my result ( just a quick glimpse to the lcd screen) then I allow the second shooter to step in and try to get what they had in mind. 

This way, it doesn't matter if I have the newest amateur photographer or a seasoned veteran, in the end I have the shot I need!

Around my area, photographers are just brutal to one-another and therefore I don't associate with them ( I try not to) and because I have a teaching-heart, I would prefer to make connections with amateurs with great potential sooo...when I'm in need of a second gunner, I know their style and commitment to the cause.

Sooo..back to the main point.  Equipment -

In college my roommate purchased a 10 thousand dollar trumpet.  Did he "Need it"...that was completely up to him.  His response to me was.." This is the last trumpet i'll ever buy."  He's a professional in England, Ph.d. and is a professor.    The point is, professionals know the equipment they need in order to get their best results...

They can still get them with lesser equipment, don't get me wrong, however, if this is your calling, then you ought to get the equipment that will not HINDER your creativeness...what do I mean.

If I have two different cameras that both take pictures, same settings...same everything...however, one of them produces much higher quality images.  ( i'm not going to argue about what makes a good picture) stictly talking about overall digital quality...Naturally, I would prefer the camera that achieves the end goal.  Whether that be Canon, Nikon...pentax...sony...OK... If you're on the other extreme and prefer the camera that takes poor quality images and can't really tell the difference...then please stop reading and move on to the next thread. 

I need the best tool for the job I'm doing!!  If it's a prime, then it's a prime...if a zoom works best..then it's a zoom...T/S...macro...Tripod...Whatever.

He is an amateur so I didin't expect him to have the best or nicest equipment, however, as a working professional, I have a workflow that is 2nd to none...and is customized for my needs.  When I have to break my workflow to completely adjust for a poor quality image, it's time consuming and not beneficial.  This is why I use the equipment I do.

I AM NOT COMPLAINING ABOUT HIM.  I promise.  I enjoy working with amateurs....they have spirit and vigor that is lost with some professionals. 

What hit me most...was how different in quality the images are. 

I'm posting two images. 


Here's some exif info on the two pics...

1.  Pentax K-x, Tamron AF70-300, 1/1600, F4.5, 148 mm, ISO 400
2.  Canon 40 D, Canon 70-200 2.8 L II, 1/400, F2.8, 70 mm, iso 100

These images are untouched out of the camera...After all is said and done...we're really only about a stop 1/2 difference. 

 This is about the closest of a shot between us I could find...

EOS Bodies - For Stills / Once you go "L" you'll never go back....
« on: October 04, 2012, 02:56:43 AM »
Ok...This is more of a rant than anything....so here goes!

NEVER EVER...EVER...EVER have an amateur, shooting with a different camera brand and very poor quality lenses shoot a wedding with you  ( you had sympathy for this person and wanted to help them grow as a photographer and allowed them to assist you, photographing)

Holy smokes!!!  I'm using L glass plus a 5D MK II  and in order to get the quality of their picture to something half decent and that looks like a hint of my pictures, talk about POST POST POST...Geesh!

They were using a Pentax K-X and a Tamron AF-70-300.  Now before everyone jumps on my case, I did provide a canon 40D with Canon Lenses ( NON-L) for him to use, however, it was sooo different than his own camera, he couldn't figure it out within the few hours he was there.

This is not a rip on the photographer, he actually has a great eye for composition....he just needs a better system....sorry..

Short of great canon (non-L primes) 85 1.8, heck the 50 mm 1.8 Mark 1....I don't know I'll ever buy poor quality lenses...

sorry....more of a rant...lol

Have a good night.

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