Water Art 1

I finally managed to get some reasonable water drop shots. I want to do some more experiments with it, but these came out not too bad.

The world of the “fanboy”

Have you ever seen a message board thread about Apple versus Microsoft? You’ll know what I’m talking about if you have…

I’m not going to specifically talk about them, though, this is more about another arena that kind of surprised me: photography. Specifically, I was reading a forum thread on a Nikon oriented site about the price reduction Pentax made on their dSLR cameras. I gather, based on some comments, that Nikon has recently increased their prices, but that wasn’t really the nature of the thread. There were some interesting comments though…

“desperation and publicity. pentax is as good as dead. noone cares. stick a fork in em”

Based on the superior writing skills of the poster, we can only take his word as gospel. Pentax isn’t dead, this prediction comes up year after year.

“who cares? the pentax brotherhood is as rabid as they come. defending products that are irrelevant to the world today. pentax… we dont care, go away inbreds. even sony is more relevant in todays market than you are.”

Another awesome writer with a bad accusation. As a point worth noting, the products in question are basically something that takes in light in a controlled manner to shine it on a capturing surface such as a sensor or film. In that context, Nikon, Canon, Sony, Pentax, and a host of others are making very relevant products.

“pentax sells crappy cameras today. it’d rather buy a sony now than a pentax.”

Notice a trend in the writing? It’s a bad assertion anyways since every professional photography review utterly disagrees with him.

I could go on, but it’s not really worth it. It’s more to illustrate something: as soon as you see a message like this, you can freely judge the opinion of the poster as worthless. They are not capable of providing any form of useful information and you will only be steered wrong if you listen to them.

Now, in regards to the best camera, I’d suggest you try them out and find what works best for you. For me, that was Pentax, but your mileage may vary. Understand that all of the traditional makers are producing very good equipment, be it Pentax, Nikon, or Canon amongst others. The gear is there, it’s really a question of the photographer and no camera in the world is going to make a bad photographer great, but a great photographer can make a bad camera great. It’s not the tool, it’s who is using it.

Testing my Vivitar 2x multiplier

First off, let me start by noting that this multiplier is ancient. There are no contacts for any automation so when you use it it’s old school photography and you have to control the aperature, shutter speed, and focus. Yes, you can do stopped down metering, but it’s not necessary. Of course, the multiplier causes a loss of two stops, so f/16 had to become f/8 when I added the multiplier into the mix in order to get the same amount of light at the same shutter speed. In this case, I used the Sunny f/16 rule and shot all the pictures at f/16 (or equivalent) and 1/180s.

The baseline shot, at 50mm (approximating the field of view of a human eye) is:

Now, here is the series of a Sigma 70-300m lens (70, 100, 200, and 300):

Now, the series of a Sigma 70-300m lens (70, 100, 200, and 300) using the multiplier:

As you can see, quite the impact! The series with the multiplier is slightly darker, a result of there being slightly less light hitting the CCD for capture, but given I snapped these quickly and didn’t do any clean up other than resizing, I’m pretty impressed at the optics in the Vivitar device as I didn’t readily detect any quality degradation. Of course, my eyes may not be as keen or critical in that regards as a professional might be.

As a side note, I never realized how weather beaten that silo was until I got a lens that close to it…

Opinionated Photography