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Messages - dr croubie

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Landscape / Re: Pricing of landscape photos?
« on: August 18, 2013, 03:14:25 AM »
Firstly, nice shot.
Secondly, before thinking about pricing, think about printing, as in where and how to get it done. You didn't mention yourself if you had a printer (and how good it is), or were you planning to go to a lab?
If you've never printed (big) before, the best thing to learn is that screens and papers look very different, you might go through a few paper-sample-packs before you find something that matchess well with what you're printing, especially as your buyers saw the shot on their screens. If you've got a printer at home, try out a few papers and profiles and whatnot to see what would look best, or ask your local lab if they can give you some smaller prints for a sample.
(I'm lucky, in that I've got an Epson R3000 which goes up to 13", if I want wider than that my local lab has the larger epson 4800 or something which uses the exact same inkset, so that it'll look the same just larger).

So if you want that big, unless you've got a 20" printer already, you'll be going to a lab to get it done. Start by asking how much it's going to cost you to get it printed. For example, my local lab charges $120 for a 60x75cm (24x30") print onto "fine art" (etching/museum rag/metallic pearl/etc), or $60 for a regular "photo print from digital". Then maybe double or triple that to cover all your work, gear, test shots, etc. (or if you're nice and doing it for friends, just give it to them at cost plus a few bucks)

Depends on your definition of "local publication" too. If it's just going to get printed on a raggy newspaper, IQ won't matter so go with the flexibility of a zoom. If it's getting printed double-page in a nice glossy mag then you might be better off with the legendary-IQ of the Distagon (although whether the 16-35 is good enough for a magazine print is debatable, depends on your camera, lighting conditions, tripod, etc, it could still be more than adequate)

EOS Bodies - For Stills / Re: New Canon Hi-pixel Medium format...?
« on: August 14, 2013, 02:33:46 AM »
Then you also have to make lenses that can project for MF image sensor. Let's say you use the 24mm v2 TS-E as an example (since I believe it does project the size of MF or larger). That's well over $2K. And we're not talking any AF at all. And if Canon chooses to go the leaf shutter route, the lens gets even more expensive.

You don't wanna know what MF lenses cost...
(I took Leica off that list because, well, they're Leica, but they're even worse.)

EOS Bodies - For Stills / Re: New Canon Hi-pixel Medium format...?
« on: August 13, 2013, 06:40:30 PM »
To be fair, the Mamiya RB/RZ are pretty freakin' big and unwieldy. Granted, with MF you often aren't swinging it around like you do with a 35mm format camera, but from the pics I've seen the 6x4.5 format cameras are much handier and easier to shoot with not from a tripod.

Much of a muchness, I think, depends if you're used to Waist Level Finders or Viewfinders, and what you shoot. I started on (d)SLRs, but like I said, I'm getting more and more used to WLF, for full-body portraits and street it's just easier. Headshots handheld the level-prism of the Mamiya is better. I got TTL metering prisms with all my MF gear to begin with, because I was used to my 3 & 7D, but the freedom of WLF and my external meter is very liberating.

I've just compared my MF cameras, the Mamiya 645AF is actually bigger than my 6x6 Hasselbladski (Kiev 88CM). The body is shorter (because of the smaller mirror and shorter flange-distance), but then the viewfinder sticks out further. The Mamiya is wider because of the grip, the Hasselbladski is more cubic. Height-wise the Mamiya's prism is smaller (because it's integrated probably helps), but only by 1cm, and that's comparing the Hasselbladski's 45-degree prism (the level prism is smaller I think, but I don't have one, and with the WLF it's shorter than the Mamiya).
Ironically, given my usage, last big shoot I did with the Mamiya was down the Great Ocean Road to Melbourne and back with a 45mm. 645 for me is landscapes (and conserving film 500km from the nearest shop that sells 120), and landscapes go on a tripod, but as I discovered, viewfinder on a tripod is rather unwieldy, give me Live-View or WLF any day. 6x6 is my street and waist-level full-body portrait machine, it just works better handheld for me.
So yeah, you're right, but the other way. It's not that 6x6 is easier on a tripod, it's that the 645 sucks on a tripod (at least for me, YMMV)

But yes, RB/RZ are bigger, I've never held one but I've seen them in shops, it's a whole world again up from the Hasselbladski size. Partly comes from the bellows focussing, partly from the larger mirror, partly from just the build quality (ever seen a 7D next to a 1000D?). But I know some people who shoot street with them, I've seen a GF680 used handheld, and hell, I've heard from a guy who shoots street with a Speed Graphic.

Anyway, just for a size comparison, here's some shots with standard lenses. Mamiya 645AF with Volna-3 80/2.8 (I don't have a Mamiya 80mm), Kiev 88CM with 45degree TTL-Spot prism and Vega-12 90/2.8, Pentacon Six with Kiev-TTL meter and Zeiss Biometar 80/2.8, Kiev 60 with Zeiss Biometar 120/2.8, and Eos 3 with Nifty Fifty. I don't feel any of them are more unwieldy than my 3 / 7D, once I put a zoom onto the Canons they're bigger than the MF.

EOS Bodies - For Stills / Re: New Canon Hi-pixel Medium format...?
« on: August 12, 2013, 07:17:04 PM »
Square was the format for Hasselblad and no one else.

Hasselblad / Kiev 88, Pentacon Six / Kiev 60, Rollei 66, Rollei 6008, Rolleiflex and Rolleicord TLRs, Zenza Bronica, Mamiya C330 and variant TLRs, Mamiya 6, Minoltaflex, Yashica Mat, not to mention all the other ones I've never heard of. Hell, you can still buy a Rollei Hy6 brand new.

I've used my Mamiya 645AF in portrait mode. It sucks, big time, especially handheld. I'm not sure if there's a vertical grip for the 645AF but I sure could use one (although it's already unwieldy, a grip would make it a monster). I find myself using my Hasselbladski more and more these days with the WLF and external lightmeter, so much more comfortable. Cropping is actually easier from square, you can decide later if you want to crop to portrait, landscape, or leave it square (which I do most of the time).

The biggest downside to square formats is the cost. With 120/220 film, getting 12/24 square shots to a roll wasn't that much more expensive than getting 16/32 645-shaped shots, especially for a decent-sized modelling studio. But turn that into a digital sensor and suddenly an $80k 645-sensor is a $150k 6x6-sensor, costs increase exponentially with sensor size (ie a FF-sensor is a lot more than a few APS-C and a few FFs are miles cheaper than an MF sensor).
Rollei got it right with the Hy6, a 6x6-sized hole in the body for 6x6 film, rotatable back for 645 sensors, and future-proof for a 6x6 digital sensor. (But leaf, phase one, and mamiya being all the same company, digital 6x6 is just never going to happen because it won't fit on their 645DF).
Mamiya's RB/RZ67 is the same deal, but it's a 6x7 rotatable back, that can also take digital backs. Biggest problem is that Mamiya killed it off to focus on 645, even though the lenses and bodies are excellent.

Canon buying Rollei (or at least the Hy6 from whomever owns the name) makes more sense than buying Leaphasemiya, they'd get great glass and great bodies, leaf-shutters are one thing canon don't do, and a slowly-dying Hy6 community looking for an upgrade-path. Canon can bring in more lens experience, in-house sensors and AF, the capital to be able to compete with leaphasemiya (and above all, fanboys on internet forums to drool over the new stuff).

EOS Bodies / Re: Could "dual pixel" help DR (HDR)?
« on: August 05, 2013, 12:22:44 AM »
People concerned about "weird bokeh" need not be. Just think about a (non-Xtrans) bayer array, there's only red and blue in alternate lines. Does the bokeh turn out with weird colours? No, it's all interpolated and corrected in software. (Unless you're the type who likes taking pics at 3200ISO of the inside of your lens cap and pushing 5-stops in PP).

Think of using 'dual pixel' the same way that Magic Lantern just hacked the 5/7D to use alternate ISOs on different lines with the dual-readout thingummy. Assuming that you could hack the firmware to allow readout from each individual half-pixel at a time, then I see this working exactly as the ML hack does right now.
That assuming that it's possible in hardware, maybe there's only one readout transistor for each double-half-pixel, in which case this whole discussion is moot.

It might turn into a RAW processing nightmare, but if ML can hack it to produce nice in-camera Jpegs then it might just be popular.

Also, read this. It is definitely possible to get extended DR using funky high/low sampling. The main reason the Fuji wasn't successful was (afaik) the fact that not many (available) programs could decode the RAWs

Lenses / Re: Lens flare.... I want it! :)
« on: July 31, 2013, 09:03:56 PM »

Bottom two photos. It includes a helpful photo above it to show you how to create that flare using any lens and a concrete slab.

Technical Support / Re: Not Windows
« on: July 30, 2013, 12:21:30 AM »
I've been running Gentoo for the last 10 years at least.
I've got DPP working under Wine, it's not perfect but it gets the job done. I shoot RAW and then use it to batch-convert to jpeg, I use Gwenview to view all the jpegs and pick the keepers.
Then for the 1 in 100 special shots, I got back to DPP and maybe give it the occasional highlight/shadow/contrast sliders and noise reduction.
Then I use GIMP to edit the jpeg, but not much. Normally just crop and resize.

ps, DO NOT judge GIMP by trying the windows version. I've tried it and it is one of the most horribly annoying interfaces ever. GIMP on linux is a pleasure to use. Don't ask me why they're different but they are.

I've just recently had to install a Vista virtual machine using Virtualbox though, to be able to use my new Epson R3000 printer to its potential (I know you can print from linux but I've never tried). I also run Silverfast AI on it for my Epson v750 film scanner (I've been scanning in linux for a year but silverfast is so much more powerful and it came free with the scanner).
So I scan on vista, take to GIMP on linux for cropping, curves, a bit of Smart Sharpening, and maybe colour-correction (although I've calibrated the scanner for slides and I'm getting better at scanning colour negs correctly as I learn silverfast), then I take it back to vista to print. The virtual machine makes it easy to copy/save files to the same location. Too easy.

I know GIMP and Gwenview aren't as powerful as PS or Lightroom or anything, but it works fine for me. Not being able to do all the fancy things is actually making me learn my cameras properly, getting it right in-camera precludes the need for too much PP.

Third Party Manufacturers / ...and now Smugmug.
« on: July 24, 2013, 01:46:15 AM »
This just landed in my inbox:

In seven days, on Tuesday, July 30th at 10:30 a.m. PDT, we're unveiling the new SmugMug. We will be streaming our announcement live and direct from our headquarters in Mountain View, California.

Join us for a 30-minute webcast with our CEO and Chief Geek, Don MacAskill. See the new look, catch a live demo, and be a part of the biggest launch since SmugMug started in 2002.

We’re so grateful you found us. Thank you for entrusting us through the years with your priceless photos. We consider you part of our family and can’t wait to show you what we’ve been working on. We think you’re gonna love it.

Chris & Don MacAskill
Founders, photographers, regular guys
Ready to be amazed?

The reason I started with smugmug, and willingly pay good money for it (for that price I could get an extra box of 20 sheets of 4x5" Velvia 50 a year, even at the new prices), is that I like the customisability. I hate flickr with its white backgrounds, I wanted black.
I like smugmug's ability to change almost everything, make galleries look different from each other, all of my public ones (as empty as they are, I should upload more) look the same title-bar and all that, but some privately-shared ones look different, I've stripped all identification and links back to my public galleries.

Still, I'm giving them the benefit of the doubt until I see what they've got in store. If they change the way custom galleries work, they're going to lose a lot of customers, I hope they know that and aren't mucking with what works. So maybe they're just changing the home-pages and maybe shared/group pages, in which case it won't affect me (or maybe it'll be a good thing and encourage me to share more).

Lenses / Re: Sleeper Lenses?
« on: July 18, 2013, 11:28:20 PM »
There are some older lenses that are not commonly found any longer that are low cost, yet do a good job for their price.
The old EF 70-210mm F/4 does a fair job, as does the old Tokina 400mm f/5.6 and the Tokina 17mm f/3.5.

I've got the Tokina 17/3.5, and it certainly does the job, especially on film (there's no point using it on my 7D, it's not as good as my EF-s 15-85).

And my Super Ozeck 28mm f/2.8 Macro is great (even if it's only 1:2 macro), i've never found much on it by googling so it can't be too common. Small, sharp, and light, makes a great street-lens hyperfocalled on my EOS 3, I bring it together with my Shorty McForty and swap either between camera and pocket.

I'm more interested that it can work at an incident angle of up to 60 degrees.
Finally, I might be able to use my 21mm Skopar (or the 12mm or 15mm Heliar) on a digital sensor without it going all purple on the edges...

EOS Bodies / Re: Canon Dual Pixel Liveview Autofocus
« on: July 03, 2013, 07:09:42 AM »
If this thing is already doing pixel-binning for 40 half-pixels, wouldn't it be trivial to have it pixel-bin 4x and make a very nice noise-free 10MP image?  I'm sure that Digic5+ can handle that...

I'm pretty sure that's what the C300 does (I'm not sure if it straight-out bins them or does something else fancy, but yes, it can be done...)

EOS Bodies / Re: EOS 70D a New Benchmark in ISO Performance?
« on: July 01, 2013, 08:28:11 PM »
How about a new benchmark in Low ISO performance? Like ISO 50 or 25?
(I don't care if the DR/Noise/whatever curves taper off to horizontal below 100 or 200, it would just be nice to be able use slower ISOs sometimes, like wide-open portraits in full sun without resorting to an ND)

Lenses / Re: The ULTIMATE Canon lens
« on: June 25, 2013, 04:25:12 AM »

It already comes with lens and sensor together, not even interchangeable lenses.

Sounds like a cheap crappy Point'n'Shoot to me.

I love talking about gear  and I really love talking about the  four year journey  it has taken me to get here.   but nice camera is on par with,  some weather,  huh?   it is vapid  and  lacks depth.

I was shooting on the streets of Melbourne a few months ago, Bessa L, 21mm f/4 Skopar, and 21mm external viewfinder (the Bessa l has no viewfinder built-in).
Some guy comes up and just says, "hey, that's a really nice camera you've got there".
Before I could respond (I wasn't sure if he knew what it was, or if he thought it was a Leica or a Fuji X), even before I'd figured out if that was going to be followed up by a "... give it here!", he'd already walked off...

Walking around elsewhere with my Hasselbladski and other Medium Format gear (P6, K60, M645AF) I've had looks and comments to each other, but noone's ever really said anything to my face (who didn't already know me, that is).
Maybe when I get my Travelwide and start shooting 4x5" street shots I'll get some questions, or then again, maybe not...

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