So here I was, on my way back from Las Vegas, and I came across a run-down old building that has a certain "character". I pulled over and took a few pictures with my A99 II and Zeiss 24-70 f/2.8, then started to head back to the car. Then I hesitated.
"These conditions are pretty good. Strong light, so I can shoot at a low ISO with a small f/stop. I wonder how the RX-100 V compares in these ideal conditions?". I went back to the car and tried to duplicate the shots I just took using a small-sensor point-and-shoot. Then I drove home.
The subject matter and the lighting were so good that I suspected enlargements from the two cameras would be indistinguishable. (Click on any image to see a larger version.)
(Okay, that's a misleading headline, since you also need a camera and a
macro lens as well. But it works and the results are great!)
This method works
much better than the dedicated film scanners that were once available: Using a
24 megapixel camera, you get a larger file size: 6000 x 4000 pixels versus 3779
x 2522 of the Nikon Coolscan LS-2000 (which continues to gather dust under my
desk). If you use an even higher megapixel camera, you can easily see just how unsharp your old film lenses were.
Iceland seems to be the hot place for photographers to go this year. All of the internet photography celebrities have gone there recently, including Scott Kelby. Dpreview.com went there to shoot some test images for the Olympus E-M1 II. And now Carol and I are here as well.
I write about the trip more in the next edition of Cameracraft magazine, but I'll give you the short version here:
A lot of the world's high-end cameras have been boasting about the lack of optical low-pass filters in front of their sensors. And while most hail this as a wonderful thing to help increase the detail in your images. it comes with a theoretical downside: your images might become more susceptible to a phenomenon called "induced Moiré".
There is a traditional classical dance in India called the Bharatanatyam. It takes years of study to perfect it (11 years in this case), working with an accomplished guru. Every dance tells an epic story, and every movement has significance. When the guru feels the student is ready, the first "coming out" performance called an Arangetram ensues. I was hired to take the invitational and "publicity" shots for this event.
Normally this wouldn't be worth blogging about, since these look just like ordinary shots taken in a studio. But they weren't - I took these shots outdoors, on the front porch, in the daytime. Here's the setup I used:
In this issue:
* Expose to the Right Revisited
* f2 Cameracraft digital edition available for FREE!
* Pioneering Website Design
* Unobvious Things about the Fujifilm X-Pro2 (video)
* Various Updates
Expose to the Right Revisited Once upon a time there was an esoteric technique for reducing noise at high ISO called "Expose to the Right". It worked like this: You overexpose the image by about a stop or so (but not so much that you'll blow out the highlights!), and then bring the exposure back down in Photoshop. This technique reduced the noise by about 1-2 stops' worth, which was pretty good. Since those days, modern camera manufacturers have changed the way brightness values are represented in RAW files for efficiency, and some have claimed that this makes the ETTR technique less effective.
In this issue:
What Does a Photographer Bring on Vacation?
What RAW Corruption Looks Like
Unobvious Things about the Sony Alpha 6300 (video)
Fujifilm X-Pro2 ebook out!
Updates on other books
What does a Photographer Bring on Vacation?
Because of all the books I write, I probably have more cameras than should be allowed by law, which makes it especially challenging to decide what to take when going on vacation. (I know; none of you feel sorry for me. I'm OK with that.) In the past I'd take the best equipment I had just because "Hey, how can I NOT do that when I'm going to exotic places like Australia and New Zealand?". Then I end up schlepping a backpack full of E-mount lenses and bodies which, despite the bodies' smaller size, still ended up weighing a ton.
So when going on a personal vacation (as opposed to a working one), I don't want to be burdened by my equipment like that. I just want to bring something small that can do pretty much everything pretty well but won't weigh me down. The Sony Alpha 6300 (whose ebook is out, and a video for which appears later in this post) would be an obvious choice here, but because of where I would be I really didn't want to mess with changing lenses either.
So what did I bring? One of the most underloved cameras Sony has ever produced:
I had a most unusual request recently - a mother-daughter pair came in for some head shots. The mother had recently been cast in a movie, and was told there was a market for older actresses (something I had never heard coming out of Hollywood! On the other hand, she was from Arkansas). Could I take some photos to make her look old?
Focus Tracking on some E-mount cameras (seeking more data)
Live Vicariously through this travel photographer (no, not me...)
Seminar in Halifax, Nova Scotia in May!
A6300 and Fujifilm X-Pro2 ebooks coming!
Ever since Anne Geddes raised the bar on the newborn photography genre, an entire legion of people shooting newborns in this style has arisen. And this seemingly simple style of photography is considerably harder than it looks. Not only do you have fussy subjects, narrow windows in which to get the shot, uncooperative siblings (for family shots), and un-photogenic skin, but you also have extremely high expectations from your clients. Unlike traditional portrait photography, you can't always guarantee that perfect photo.
I've been doing newborn photography for awhile, but for this latest session I wanted to up my game and duplicate the kind of uber-processed newborn photography fad that's sweeping the world. Here's what I did to address each of these classic problems of newborn photography.
Neither one of these portraits at the top of this blog was done in a studio. The first used natural light (something I'm always on the lookout for), and the other used The 5 Dollar Studio which I blogged about a few years ago.