Angle of View – Opinionated Photography 

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Wish List

Like any avid photographer, I have a photographic wish list that seems to continuously grow…

Lenses

Lighting/Studio

  • Alien Bee’s Ring Flash with the Moonunit options (there are 2) for portrait work, the light from it is gorgeous.
  • Alien Bee’s Lite Mod system again for portrait work. They have quite a collection of options, so of course, I want them all!
  • Backdrops! I’ve tried to go cheaper here, hunting through fabric stores, but the reality of the matter is that to get an 8′ seamless backdrop, you pretty much have to go to a photography store. So, eventually, I’m going to acquire some basic ones and probably a few of the fancier ones. I’m also probably going to get some basic seamless paper.
  • Light tent for product photography. Something simple, but able to provide that continuous background look and diffuse the light from the sides, back, and top.
  • Manfrotto 420CSU boom and stand. Actually, a couple of these would be nice as it allows for more creative light positioning.
  • A couple Paul Buff’s Einstein studio strobes. You can do insane action freezing with these lights and they’re compatible with my existing modifiers that I use with my Alien Bees.
  • Pocketwizard FlexTT5-Nikon transceivers x 5 (one for the camera, 4 for the flashes). This is pricey, but it’s also the best.
  • Pocketwizard AlienBees Adapter x 4 (one for each flash). Allows full control of the ABs when using the Pocketwizard transmitters.
  • Sekonic radio transmitter that allows the Pocketwizards to be fired from my light meter.
  • Tether Tools Aero Traveler stand tray for use as a handy table or a place to put my tablet when tethered to the camera.

Wishes Fulfilled

These are the items that were previously on the list that I now have.

  • Nikon AF-S VR 70-300mm 4.5-5.6G IF-ED has actually caught my attention. I’m not a serious birder and I’ve seen good reviews and very good images from this lens on a D800 body. While a little shorter than I might have considered, the price (at $450) is pretty darn hard to argue with given that I don’t sell my photos and mostly publish online (I do have several 24×36″ prints though, so it does happen) and really can’t argue with the weight. So, on the list…
  • Nikon AF-S 85mm f/1.8G as a portrait lens.
  • Nikon AF-S 105mm f/2.8 Micro for macro fun.
  • Pentax DA 18-135mm WR as a travel lens. I was recently in Italy and my 28-105 was practically glued to my camera, but it’s not weather sealed and so a few times I had to duck for cover and wait out some rain. Having slightly better range and weather resistance would be great for sight-seeing photography.
  • Tamron SP AF 17-50mm f/2.8 XR Di II LD IF for studio/wedding photography (was the Sigma variant, but I got this one instead).
  • Sigma 70-200mm F2.8 EX DG APOMacro HSM II for studio/wedding photography.
  • Alien Bee’s Softboxes (with grids) in various for portrait photography. Umbrellas are great, and I use mine, but the light from a softbox is subtly different.
  • Alien Bee’s Digi Kit with Black B800s for the studio. Brings my set up to 4 which I think I now want for studio, speedlights don’t cut it.
  • Alien Bee’s Vagabond Mini for location lighting. To that end, a spare battery and carrying case would be handy too…
  • Rising Pinhole Cap for Pentax because it looks like it would be a lot of fun to use!

Wishes that No Longer Apply

These are the items that previously on the list that I no longer need as a result of my switch from Pentax.

  • Pentax SMCP – FA 50mm f/1.4 as a replacement for my current all manual nifty-fifty (which I really quite like) since I’m terrible with manual focus off the tripod. The alternative would be the Sigma variant but I don’t know that the HSM versus screw drive for the autofocus is really worth the added cost for the Sigma.
  • Pentax FA 100mm f/2.8 Macro WR for outdoor macro in poor weather as well as for indoor macro involving water drops. It’s also a good longer option for portrait work. Mind you, I’m still keeping my Vivitar 100mm f/2.8 macro because it’s a classic beauty and I like it.
  • Pentax SMCP – FA 77mm f/1.8 as a walkabout lens and longer portrait option. It’s a beauty of a lens.
  • Sigma 10-20mm F/3.5 for landscape shots. This is a constant aperture zoom, something I’ve come to determine is definitely worth the added weight (and price) to get.
  • Sigma 500mm f/4.5 for wildlife and bird photography. I sense, given the price, I may be waiting a while before I get this one…

 

2 Responses

  1. I love my sigma 70-200 f2.8… it’s a fantastic lens.

  2. The new Art series 35mm 1.4 looks quite impressive! Probably one of my favorite focal lengths on a 35mm format. However I will be sticking to my Canon 35 1.4 for now.

    I used to be more a strobist but i have moved into the Alien bee stuff and I have to tell you the modifiers and the modeling light capabilities are the real game changers for learning studio photography as you get to see how the light falls on your subject – a MUST have!

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