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Overread's Forum Comments

Overread > Overread Recent Activity > Overread's Forum Comments
TopicRepliesLast Post
Ethics in Macro photography
Brian that's rather shocking, but yes does show the slippery slope that is all too easy to fall down!

Most mouse and similar small mammals shots are done in studio conditions - ergo its a setup that the photographer uses because in the wild they live in dense foliage and even your lightest footfall will have them scurry down to hide. Thus many do use traps to catch and then pose the smaller animals (one oft used setup is to have a water "ring" around a raised stage area - the mammal thus sticks to the land rather than head into the water and the rim of the water container is slippery and steep so they can't escape).

Of course photographers doing this would do so with respect and concern for the welfare of their subject. Providing suitable food during/after the shoot and returning the animal to where they captured it from.

A few humane traps that live-catch would be all you'd need; certainly no need to go digging up hibernating mice!

33 05/03/2015 - 12:00 AM
By Fogey
Ethics in Macro photography
Also don't forget habit. If you develop your skills around shooting specimens then your whole practice can be changed as a result. Indeed if it works well for you then you can find that it might be the only way you'd choose to work - that's fine on houseflies. It's not so fine on anything rarer.

Many institutions also recognise that 1 person doing this is typically not a threat unless they target a specific niche species in serious decline. However if hundreds or even thousands get the idea that "killing bugs is the way you get cool shots the "pros" do" then suddenly you've a much bigger problem. Especially as you know its going to be dragonflies, butterflies, stag beetles which will be hit not houseflies.

33 05/03/2015 - 12:00 AM
By Fogey
x 2 or 1.4 converter
Far as I know pretty much any TC should fit that lens; the limiting factor with teleconverters is that the front element protrudes forwards into the rear of the lens mounted to them; so a lens has to have space in the back; which this lens does have.

From memory and experience:

Sigma - Sigma TCs are high grade and will work well; though their 2*TC is a tiny tiny tiny bit shorter in what it gives than a Canon. This difference is so small you would never notice unless comparing side by side; even then its slight.

Canon - the MII and MIII give you about the same optical performance (though I think the MIII give improved edge performance, but that's unlikely to be visible unless you're shooting with fullframe cameras). Otherwise their biggest difference is that the MIII allow for better AF performance; but only with select lenses (these are typically your MII versions from the 300mm f2.8 and longer - the original version of those lenses and any others won't have any improved AF performance at all).
So if you're on crop and your lens isn't the MII you could go for MII teleconverters.

Kenko Pro - flattest front element protrusion (ergo can fit the most lenses) and high grade optics - but make sure you're getting the pro series as they make two lines; one better than the other.

In general go for what you need; non-L optics are certainly very good and very viable so its really your choice as to what you go for.

In Lenses | Page: 1, 2, 3
7 05/03/2015 - 6:23 PM
By jocneilson
Ethics in Macro photography
The problem is not really related to your common housefly.

It's a matter of principles and habit.

There are insects out there which are very endangered and where the practice of killing for photography would potentially cause great harm to them; consider many rare and endangered butterflies which would be easy pickings for eager photographers.

As such its one of those things you have to consider in the wider context, especially when doing a competition or being high profile. Discouraging killing is a good move. YES we kill bugs every day; heck we probably kill millions in our lifetime; but this isn't accidental killing nor controlling of a pest species in extreme numbers; this is selective premeditated and can risk more vulnerable insects if we don't take it seriously.

33 05/03/2015 - 12:00 AM
By Fogey
Ethics in Macro photography

Quote: I find a lot of very tired bees, photograph them, then give them a drop of honey, which they eagerly lap up before flying away.

I've read that its better to give sugar water over honey because whilst bees will eat it, honey from a different hive can be poison to the bee. Thus sugar water (which is what bee keepers also use as a supplement after taking the honey) is a more suitable alternative treat.

One can also spread it into leaves and other surfaces where it will draw in quite a few bugs over a space of time. Eating being one thing that will render make bugs quite still and focused upon the task and thus easier to photograph.

33 05/03/2015 - 12:00 AM
By Fogey
Ethics in Macro photography
It's an odd thing - flies in the kitchen one can swat away with the fly swatter without worries; yet when it becomes something like photography we can often become discouraged to the idea of killing for our hobby.

I would say its something you'll have to come to your own terms with; but I would say that if you decide that you will kill for your photos then I would advise that you really learn about it well. As such after the event you can maximise the potential of what you have and store it long-term as a record.

Myself I don't; flies are dead easy to find dead (though they can be somewhat dusty) and if you head out in the early morning you can find many insects in a very torpid state where they really can't do anything. After rain showers you can also oft find bigger bugs (like bees) cold and crashed down and still.
A large reason many dragonfly photos have nice warm light is that early in the morning you can find them sunning themselves before they've warmed up.

33 05/03/2015 - 12:00 AM
By Fogey
Photographic Artistic teaching/guides/instruction/bits of paper!

Quote: Quote:This thread assumes that YES it is an artistic form and that as such there are methods, techniques, concepts etc.... which are applicable to it.

Yes, but what form of art is it? Can such a discussion stand apart from such a definition?

The form of art isn't the important concept here. What is important is the sharing of concepts of art. These might be technical applications - artistic theories - compositional theories - ideas of art itself. The key is trying to build up a resource of information. With that we can put structure to it and toward the general key goal of boosting the general confidence in art and peoples desire to discuss it.

I feel that too often such talk gets side-tracked far to easily into the debate of "what really is art" which quickly moves away from photos.

As for groups, yes we can make groups; but my view is the forums are already very quiet; there's no value in taking what is currently as smaller population and further sub-dividing it even more. Plus for the most part this has applications to all photographers of all skill levels. At its most basic its the good old rule of thirds - at its most advanced its many more.

16 01/03/2015 - 8:56 PM
By StrayCat
Photographic Artistic teaching/guides/instruction/bits of paper!

Quote: What is art? What is artistic? Is photography art? Each of these questions has in one form or another been frequently asked in this forum.

Ahh but this isn't so much a debate on those topics; that is in essence a side discussion/debate. This thread assumes that YES it is an artistic form and that as such there are methods, techniques, concepts etc.... which are applicable to it.

Whether its defined and accepted as art by major galleries; notable people or bored philosophers with too much time on their hands is not really relevant to this thread.

16 01/03/2015 - 8:56 PM
By StrayCat
Photographic Artistic teaching/guides/instruction/bits of paper!
So having done this thread: http://www.ephotozine.com/forums/topic/photographers---are-we-too-easily-pleased...
It seems there are several core reasons why we stick to technical and don't really advance much outside of it when talking about photos; one of which is that many feel they are not skilled nor experienced enough within art to really talk about the subject.

This, to me, is a major stumbling block; sure beginners need a lot of technical help, but we also need more artistic inspiration and guidance for us all as we advance through our hobby/interest in photography. So I thought lets start a thread - lets pool what resources and knowledge we have in the view that we can help teach each other art and thus improve the number of people who are confident to speak about the subject on the site.

16 01/03/2015 - 8:56 PM
By StrayCat
User Awards
For those not getting replies - I think its important to realise that awards on the site don't generally promote conversation. It's almost a very remote way of socialising.

Now if when a user award was given there was the option of writing a little message to the person (like a pm) which then also when received had a "reply" box right underneath I think there would be more chance of a reply (it would then hinge on you writing something into your comment box that was personal not just "FAB SHOT").

In Light-hearted chat | Page: 1, 2
31 05/03/2015 - 1:34 PM
By photowanderer
User Awards
Any award is, to a person, only as valued as the person giving it. So yes getting an award from someone every day isn't going to be that valuable. Whilst if someone you respect gives you an award that will always go further.

There will also always be a social and time based element to EPZ awards; you can't expect everyone to view every upload; so yes people will view friends and also at certain times and thus posting during some hours or networking will nearly always net more awards than not (post at midnight and chances are you'd have to have an outstanding shot to get noticed whilst a higher level but not outstandingly special shot posted at key times will get more votes/awards simply because more people see it

In Light-hearted chat | Page: 1, 2, 3
31 05/03/2015 - 1:34 PM
By photowanderer
User Awards
I think part of the problem is that EPZ isn't focused on one subject nor user-type. It's got everything.

So when you've one award a week you can only award one photo - now might be that week there are several photos from different genres which are equally, within their own rights, fantastic shots; but the limit makes you vote only upon one.

4 a day is a big jump though; but it allows more free-form voting over a larger population spread. It allows more people to feel valued within the community.

It's a tricky thing though and yes the more awards there are and the more freely they can be given out the more devalued they become. Flickr had this with LOADS of user award groups and they have now mostly died off (actually most groups on flickr are totally dead now sadly). It was so easy to get awards and get lots of them that they quickly lost all value for people.

The flipside is that lots of people like getting awards and the "devaluing" doesn't affect them; or they are new to the net and each award feels greater. Indeed just being around for a while and getting "more" awards can make them devalue for the person (which is why sometimes you see multiple justified award winning photographers who heavily question their skill and if they "really are good"). Part of EPZ is generating interest and activity and having more awards might yet help promote more activity.

At the very least its adding another level of interaction between users beyond just "voting" for a community award vote. (A tricky thing as many are like to just view photos and not do anything)

In Light-hearted chat | Page: 1, 2, 3
31 05/03/2015 - 1:34 PM
By photowanderer
Photographers - are we too easily pleased?
Sooty aye those points ring true, though why then have we no discussions on the great works of Anse.... actually no not him he's over done. But its true, why don't we hold more discussions on the merits and problems of "great" photographers in general?

Paul - aye though that is often a niche of the community; surely forums should be more than just technical discussion and the art of photography should not be a niche of it - if its become so then, as a general collective community (and not just epz of course) have we lost something?

41 03/03/2015 - 10:03 AM
By TanyaH
Photographers - are we too easily pleased?

Quote: The OP's ruminations are valid, this is a photography site, but it seems all we want to discuss is equipment.

Interestingly whilst I know that EPZ's forum has taken a shocking hit in activity (and yet the critique section seems more alive than ever before); this viewpoint isn't isolated to EPZ. Even the much bigger sites seem FAR easier to get a tech-discussion going than anything to do with photos or art.

Whilst its a limit of the net in that it is attractive to those with a technical mind its surprising that across many sites we still see the same problem of a lack of, is it desire or ability to talk about art. I put part of it down to the fact that for a good few generations we've had very bad art teaching in general to the point where people view it almost as some mystical power. Something that you're born with and if you don't have it then you can never ever have it. Something that defies discussion and that to do so reduces its importance.
As a society we seem to want to see art to be free - free of anything and any attempt to chain it to reason, logic or discussion is discouraged least we take away that freedom.

41 03/03/2015 - 10:03 AM
By TanyaH
Photographers - are we too easily pleased?
Well now its more a question in my mind right now trying to work out why we are not doing so already Jas. Even within our own work there is not a huge amount of conversing going on.

41 03/03/2015 - 10:03 AM
By TanyaH
Photographers - are we too easily pleased?

Quote: Perhaps we avoid such discussions lest they become fractious?

I find such factious behaviour is rare. However people get drawn into it really easily and a day or so later of intense arguing and they are burned out. It does tend to scare people away and discourages them (although oddly I often see people getting burned out when others don't agree with what they say - let later those same sorts of people will complain that "newbies need thicker skin").
In general this is one of those "fears" people have that isn't really very realistic but everyone is afraid of non-the-less

Quote: I'm not sure if some members on EPZ( if that what you are suggesting?) would be that impressed with groups of people discussing their work without permission?
It's not the same as allowing comments.

Well now I meant it in general terms - either on people asking for discussion on their photos - discussions on works of others - discussions of the "GREAT" works of merit in society etc....

41 03/03/2015 - 10:03 AM
By TanyaH
Photographers - are we too easily pleased?
So it struck me today - we don't really if ever actually talk about photos on photography forums.

We look at them - we advise on technical method - we even give suggestions to newbies asking about artistic theories. But we never seem to really sit down as a group with a photo before us and discuss it.

In the critique gallery we get a little closer, but still it tends to be one-post views of our opinions; sometimes going with a little back and forth; but often only when a point of technicality needs expanding upon. Indeed the only times that I tend to ever see a good back and forth is if someone is new to the community and "disagrees" (oft using rather blunt wording) with viewpoints expressed by those here for longer.

Otherwise we never seem to get into much discussion with back and forth between members on the subject of photos themselves.

So I wonder why this is. Is it that we don't have the time - or the desire. Do people feel that htey need some form of qualification to really talk (type) about things - is it because we don't care to - or because we are so good that we can get all we need to say into a paragraph or two. Are we perhaps too set in our ways - too subscribed to the meta of the site and clubs we are in so that we have one viewpoint - no willingness to expand upon it nor look into it deeper or make changes to it.

41 03/03/2015 - 10:03 AM
By TanyaH
Any Idea what is happening to some of my old images see photo
Basically digital data storage isn't perfect which is why back-ups are of critical importance (it is said that there are two kinds of harddrive in the world - those which have crashed and those which are about to Wink).

In Computers | Page: 1, 2, 3
6 24/02/2015 - 8:11 PM
By Dave_Canon
Any Idea what is happening to some of my old images see photo
It's one of two things:

1) Data corruption.

Basically its dead. You might have some luck with a data restoration company if you send the hard-drive they are saved on in; but if you've been using that drive chances are those photos are lost.

2) The result of a very intense night high on god knows what which you promptly forgot all about till now.

6 24/02/2015 - 8:11 PM
By Dave_Canon
Getting action shots - focusing and framing advice needed
Hob - interesting that you use shutter priority. I'd have thought controlling the aperture and depth of field would be best in this and let the shutter speed do what it wants. If the light is very changeable then auto ISO; otherwise change the ISO and aperture as needed to keep the shutter speed fast enough.

A fixed shutter speed to me is only any use if one wants that speed for a specific purpose - eg enough speed to get most motion crisp but to blur key areas of high motion.

Quote: You're spoilt!Grin

Maybe - but since I don't smoke and hardly drink I consider it more just an alternative form of money draining addiction Wink

15 22/02/2015 - 8:34 AM
By 779HOB
Getting action shots - focusing and framing advice needed
Heh true and I oft feel that with wildlife shots - or anything using more than two flashes at the same time! (or one flash I should really say since I have to pinch my sisters one if I want two)

That said with a 7D and 70-200mm f2.8 I don't have too much room to complain (though when it gets dark I really do want a 5DMIII - it would probably pair with my 120-300mm really well for this).

In Taking photos | Page: 1, 2
15 22/02/2015 - 8:34 AM
By 779HOB
Dust inside Canon zoom lens
Dust on the sensor will produce the dust spots (typically blackish hazy spots) in clear areas of a photo. This will typically be seen best at small apertures; wide open you might not see many if any. Now if you use one lens closed down more than the others you will then see more "dust" with that lens; not because its got dust in it but because you're using it in a way that will show the sensor dust more so. (or more correctly dust on the filter infront of the sensor).

Try taking photos of a clear sky or sheet of paper at f16 or even f22 and see what you get. Chances are you'll see the dust present.

In Lenses | Page: 1, 2
12 20/02/2015 - 10:16 PM
By MichaelMelb_AU
Getting action shots - focusing and framing advice needed
Mike - that's certainly a big part of it; but I like to keep checking to make sure that what I'm practising is the right thing to practice. I'd rather pause for a moment, discuss and get some ideas of different methods or improve my method before I end up learning and getting used to a routine that proves to be less than optimal. (bad habits are hard to shake).

Stray - my thanks - now I want a 7DMII Wink IT seems to have just the control I want with the fast motion option mentioned in the video.

15 22/02/2015 - 8:34 AM
By 779HOB
Getting action shots - focusing and framing advice needed
I also found this http://alexsukonkin.com/reviews/Canon-EOS-7D_en.shtml
Which contradicts Canon somewhat, but supports my earlier thinking. Sooo still not much clearer! Though it does support the changing of the second mode I just mentioned.

In Taking photos | Page: 1, 2
15 22/02/2015 - 8:34 AM
By 779HOB
Getting action shots - focusing and framing advice needed
I really must get some of his stuff - you mention him often and I keep meaning to and never do pick it up! Must make a really big mental note to do so!

Also I've learned one thing http://cpn.canon-europe.com/content/education/technical/eos_7D_custom_functions_...
Checking that it seems that I want the sensitivity set to neutral or a lower setting; not a higher one. That way so long as my first AF grab is good the camera should keep track with that recognised feature rather than shifting around. I do wonder if it means that if I'm slightly off with my first AF grab (eg more shoulder than head/neck) that it might be too slow and stuck in its way to change. So a neutral setting might be best.

That said the other element is a change to custom mode C.Fn III -3 AI Servo AF tracking method - which I currently have at default, but which I should set to mode 1 (and indeed considering what I shoot that would seem to be the preferable setting). That way the camera is aiming to stick with the original subject as much as possible.

In Taking photos | Page: 1, 2
15 22/02/2015 - 8:34 AM
By 779HOB
Getting action shots - focusing and framing advice needed
Ok so been doing more action work, in fact quite a lot of high action which is not my typical area; so I've been learning a few new things and refining some of how I work and I'd be interested in hearing others views and methods that you use.

So going right into the basics here are the custom settings I'm currently using in camera on the 7D using a 70-200mm f2.8 IS L MII lens

ISOs - full stop increments
ISO expansion on (max ISO now 12800 instead of 64000

AI servo tracking sensitivity - set to Fast
Enabled all custom AF area select modes
All AF points displayed
AI Servo 1st/2nd image priority - AF priority/tracking priority (default setting).

AI servo mode used and set to single spot AF mode
Evaluative metering

Settings not mentioned at set to default; note not mentioned is that I have all in-camera editing features off (using RAW so no need of them) and I'm also using back-button AF control.

Process of shooting:

Note lens wise I keep IS off - shutter speeds (as mentioned below) are fast enough to avoid handshake and since I might not be tracking the horses motion through the lens over the whole course (some areas are just not worth even trying unless one wants lots of foreground clutter or the back end of rider/horse going over the jump) I don't want to have to get ready early so that the IS can spin up and give its bonus.

I'm typically shooting this indoors so I shift into manual mode and work at f2.8 (enough depth for rider and horse whilst blowing out the background as much as possible and giving the most light for the camera); 1/640sec (slowest speed I find I can use and get sharp details - 1/500sec oft runs the risk of blurred mane/hair/tail/hooves). ISO I set manually since whilst I do have auto-ISO I don't have the ability to set an exposure compensation for it and I find that even though light changes somewhat in the arena, the camera tends to under-expose a bit more than I'd like.

So I typically take a test shot at a bright part of the course and ensure I don't get blow-out and then go with those settings. I've considered using the priority modes; but really what I'd want is an ISO priority mode since I can keep aperture and shutter speed fixed for mostly the whole event (I will tend to drop to f3.2 when a horse with a significant or full white coat comes on since they tend to blow-out more easily than the rest).

Once I've chosen where I'll shoot I've been experimenting with using different AF points on the sensor display to get a shot. I find that if I work with the AF points so that the head of the horse (head/shoulder is what I typically aim for - head when head on and shoulder when side-on) is "over" the middle point I end up with too little movement space on that side of the frame (horse overcrowds) whilst if I use the upper middle point (one just above the middle) I tend to get a decent enough frame.

Coping with a rider is tricky since it means I can't zoom and focus right in on the horse (because then I end up with a headless rider). I feel that this is partly making me shoot a touch loose and then cropping in editing; yet when I'm shooting its one of those things that the shot (through viewfinder and LCD) doesn't feel too open.

I tend to do some pre-focusing on the jump to get the focus in the rough area; but as soon as the horse is getting ready for the jump I'm focusing purely upon the horse itself - whilst trying to ensure the rider keeps their head). I shoot in burst mode and will typically get around 3 shots in a burst and not generally too much more.

So there is a rough outlne of my method; have any here got anything to add to it -to suggest or alter that might help with the workflow in getting a shot.

In Taking photos | Page: 1, 2
15 22/02/2015 - 8:34 AM
By 779HOB
Start salivating all you 'dealer's delights'
What I find most interesting appears tobe the least talked about thing which is that the rumour state the camera has a 1.3 and 1.6 crop modes. This is a first (far as I know) for Canon and is something Nikon has done for a while. Considering Canon killed off their 1.3 crop 1D line this makes sense that they now bring back the feature via a fullframe sensor that can crop itself.

Further I don't see this as a generalist camera. This is a camera focused on the studio photographer (you know those people who might make posters and billboards and stuff Wink) rather than a general purpose camera. So I suspect mass-market isn't its niche; this one is going for the studio/portrait/wedding style photographers.

What will be most interesting though is the release and how the sensor inside stands up to performance against Nikon and such. 50mp is a huge jump and it sounds like Canon wants to take a slice out of the "I want to shoot medium format but I don't have a spare few tens of thousands to buy the gear" market

In Digital cameras | Page: 1, 2
31 12/02/2015 - 9:07 AM
By LenShepherd
Sling and shoulder bags are great for short distances and light gear. They are the kind of bag you slip on and wear for a bit and then slip it off to put it down whilst you shoot; or you're carrying a lighter setup and can easily take the weight for longer. I'd also say that, certainly shoulder bags, are most suited to a typical urban environment - ergo stable ground, easy to traverse and often letting you put one hand on the strap as and when you need/wish to.

All of that basically voids them for nature work - where you want a backpack more secure to your back and where you have a good padded harness (make sure about the padding some have a waist strap without padding which basically means its useless unless you're wearing thick clothes).

Yes backpacks are slower to get into, but on the flipside they will hold your gear secure and with good weight distribution. They will also let you have both hands free, you might use hiking sticks if going a long way or you could be going over rough terrain and want your hands free.

There are some reverse entry (flipside?) backpacks that open from the back rather than the front; some try to say this means you can turn it around on yourself on the waist band to get in without sitting down; however practically you have to take them off. The feature idea is that you put the "front" of bag onto the muddy ground and the bit that lays to your back and body remains clean.

Ideally you really want to take your gear and go try out a few bags; its a personal choice and sometimes you can find that an "ideal" bag has limitations (one big one is that a lot of photo-bags are made for camera gear only and have little space dedicated to sandwiches and other important items when on a long walk(

In Accessories | Page: 1, 2, 3
10 06/02/2015 - 9:34 AM
By seahawk
Thinking of changing my 50mm Sigma Macro to either Sigma 105mm or Canon100mm Macro.
A few thoughts:

1) Most macro lenses today get shorter in focal length as they get closer and closer. Even the MPE is something like only 40mm when at its closest focusing point (and it hasn't even got a focusing system just increasing magnification).
So whilst this is part of lenses I would not worry about it overly much in general.

2) Sometimes bees and insects will fly off because you got close - but a lot of the time its because

a) you shadowed them, sometimes all-but impossible to avoid doing even with a longer lens.

b) They are awake and active and its warm. If its warm and later in the day chances are they are doing what insects do and being active. So they'll be up and off fairly quick, esp if there is any local disturbance (footfalls - breathing - shadowing - flash). This is why a great many insect shots are oft done very early in the day or in the evening when insects are cooler and warming up; or getting ready to rest for the night.
Short showers also cause some bigger insects like bees, to crash down fast because the sudden cool catches them off-guard. So heading out after/during rainfall can help.

3) You made the right choice, 50mm is really getting very short for macro; making not only avoiding overshadowing hard, but also lighting because of the tiny amount of space between lens and subject. I'd typically say 60mm is the bottom limit for practical macro photography for most people - ideally with 70 or 90mm as a sane lowest limit for starting out.

4) Lighting wise ring-flashes work; but they've limitations. Because of their design they give a very even, very smooth, very flat light. Whilst higher end models can let you set one side brighter than the other and thus introduce some shadowing, its still a very flat light. Great for some shots, but not others.
The other problem is that because of their shape and position you can't increase the surface area of the light source relative to the subject very easily, if at all. So you can't soften the light very easily.

I'd suggest looking into a speedlite flash and a small softbox (lumiquest regular softbox is a good start). This lets you have a flash you can use in nearly any field of photography; along with a source you can control and soften.
An off-camera flash cable would be next so you can get the flash off the camera. From there you can look into a flash bracket. I'd personally suggest looking at RAM-Mount - they make sockets and ball-heads for bikes, which means they really do work well and they've screw-thread balls which match tripod screw threads - so you just screw the assembly into your tripod collar/camera tripod plate and then another into the base of the flash and link them up with a few double balls and double sockets.

11 20/01/2015 - 10:02 PM
By tonyb73
New gear suggestions - help me spend money and help against the recession
Hehe why are DSLRs only bought in Russia now?

13 20/01/2015 - 12:12 PM
By Overread
New gear suggestions - help me spend money and help against the recession
I've heard great things of the 135mm f2 lens! Certainly if I were more a fan of primes in that range it would be one to consider. At present though I feel that the 70-200mm spoils me well in that range for what I want and need it to do. I think if I were more used to going out with two cameras at once the135mm might tempt me more so.

Tripod heads I could certainly get a good couple of very high quality ones like a Wimblery and a good ballhead - heck I'd likely even have enough to fully set myself up with arca swiss plates too.

I think the problem is that I see tripods as support rather than opening new doors for me. Plus whilst a few are very pricey I can break out the overall cost over time rather than all in one go.

13 20/01/2015 - 12:12 PM
By Overread
New gear suggestions - help me spend money and help against the recession
Chris - I did and I got lots of possibilities - hence asking Smile

I kinda feel that the short-range zoom is the "gap" that should most properly be filled, but at the same time its just not a gap I use all that often which makes me want to start thinking about exotic things

13 20/01/2015 - 12:12 PM
By Overread
New gear suggestions - help me spend money and help against the recession
Stray yep its the f2.8 OS version - the one just before the new and current "sport" version of the lens. And yes I already use it with teleconverters to good effect (though I find that with it the handholding theory breaks - 1/600sec is not fast enough for handheld sharp - even with OS backing its iffy so I find I have to push the shutter speed faster - monopod and tripod area for certain for me).

The 18-135mm IS STM looks like an interesting lens, though I'm not as big a fan of its variable maximum aperture range.

Drummer - I've looked at the whole m4/3rd market and I'd like one I really would (Olympus OMD series I think). Thing is its a new system and whilst its compact and compliments a DSLR system well I'd kind of like to get my DSLR setup to a state of "got most of it" before branching out into another whole system.

13 20/01/2015 - 12:12 PM
By Overread
HDR Bible?
I can't recommend any books or websites nor articles, but it might help if you outline what it is about HDR that you like and do with it. It's a very variable method and the process itself is used to give effects from those so subtle you'll hardly notice all the way up to full blown "cartoony" effects.

Now of course breadth of understanding helps; so I'd certainly not advise avoiding any books that detail methods or approaches that differ from your own; only to say that it might help provide focus and some idea as to what you're really after which might give some prompting to others to think about artists who use similar methods in their work which can be recommended.

8 27/01/2015 - 5:15 PM
By Jestertheclown
New gear suggestions - help me spend money and help against the recession
Stray a good point regarding stuff I already had.
Currently got:
Canon 400D - 7D
Tokina 35m f2,8 macro
Canon 18-55mm - 65mm f2.8 macro - 70-200mm f2.8 IS L MII
Sigma 8-16mm - 70mm f2.8 macro - 150mm f2.8 macro - 120-300mm OS -

Raven - I've already got a 35mm and I do like the range when dealing with closer situations, but I'm not sure in a zoom if 18-35mm is "enough" for me at the long end. I just don't see myself as someone who uses that focal range extensively at present.

13 20/01/2015 - 12:12 PM
By Overread
Travelling with a pistol grip tripod head
I've not heard of anyone having problems.

Anything is possible, but generally I wouldn't expect trouble; its not shaped like a gun even a casual inspection should clearly show that its a tripod not a gun. If you are still worried take photos and ask the airport directly via email for some confirmation.

7 09/02/2015 - 2:31 PM
By CanonMan
Canon lens from Taiwan
Lenses are all made in the same factory for each lens. If yours is made in Tiwan then they all are of that make (with the exception of some made in Japan before the tsunami). So the origin of the lens itself is always going to be the same no matter what country you buy it from.

Plus there isn't (or doesn't seem to be ) much of a market in making knock-off own brand lenses - there is a lot of 3rd party market options but I've never read of there being any knock-off lenses on the market (least in a big way).

What changes is the warranty you get really - I think Canon honours warranties internationally; but things have changed in that in the last few years so they might not. You've got Amazon warranty though so that should cover you without worry.

5 18/01/2015 - 11:36 AM
By KingBee
Infrared Filter by Cokin
As Lens says digital cameras have an IR filter fitted infront of the sensor which cuts out a lot of IR light that comes into the camera. An IR filter on the lens will cut out all but the IR light, however because of the filter blocking it over the sensor what happens is that you have to take a very long exposure (slow shutter speed) in order to get enough light into the camera.

You can have the IR filter removed and some companies do do this service; if you want you can also get an IR blocking filter to put infront of your lens if you want to use your camera for normal shots again (although typically unless you're very keen, its the kind of mod most people use for an older DSLR that they used before)

7 18/01/2015 - 7:32 PM
By PatrickElsender
New gear suggestions - help me spend money and help against the recession
so a while back I did a chat on a good "regular" lens to replace the 18-55mm lens that I kinda don't and never really have liked in my setup. So I did some hunting around and some chatting and sooort of kind of settled on the idea that a 24-70mm f2.8 MII is a nice idea - even though there are some 18-85mm type lenses as well and also a 24-105mm f4 as well.

Then there are some other shiny things too that I'd like - soo whilst I'm being indecisive come help!

Budget - around 1500ish (might end up less I can't be 100% sure).

Interests - wildlife (generalist) - macro (bugs mostly) - equine (events, might branch into other areas - depends on opportunities).

My ideas/things I need:
24-70mm f2.8 L MII
24-105mm f4 IS L
Tripod heads (currently I've only got the geared head) - wembly - ball heads - etc.. http://www.cognisys-inc.com/store/insect-system.html : High Speed Insect Capture System (I'd warm to this and exchange rate means its the same as the 24-70mm - but that's without import tax being paid)
Lighting - I'd rather like to get a pair of the new radio controlled flash guns and maybe sell my 580EX2

Other things - go ahead suggest useful ideas!

13 20/01/2015 - 12:12 PM
By Overread
Places in England where you can photograph big cats with no glass
Few thoughts:

1) Barring some specialist sites like the Kent centre mentioned above, most zoos are not geared up for photography especially. In fact big cats are one of the more tricky because where there isn't viewing glass there is nearly always double fencing. That is you have an inner "cat proof" wire mesh fence and then an outer "people proof" fence to keep people back (I assume its to save fingers).
Downside is it means you can't get the lens close enough to the wire to remove it - so you've got to rely on a really long zoom and the cat hanging back into the enclosure.
Marwell has a vantage point where you can get up high to the Tiger pen - though generally that just means you get a shot of wire tops and the cat lazing on its platform.

2) Glass can be t ricky with reflections, but if you take a cloth to clean it up a little (finger smudges) and then get the lens right up close (those cheap rubber lens hoods sold on ebay are good for this) you basically block any light behind you getting onto the glass you're shooting through - so no reflections. This also works for letting you use flash through glass.
Another way is to attach a large bit of black card around the end of the lens - again blocking the light behind.

3) Getting zoo shots with the enclosure are hard. They are hard because often the enclosure physical elements are rather unattractive. But its also hard because it generally is very very hard to tell anything but a sad story with such shots. The "finger through the wire sad face shot" is easier to get, but can send the wrong message regarding the zoo and indeed the animal itself.

14 10/01/2015 - 2:57 PM
By Overread
Lens Sharpness
When one wishes to test a photographers still one takes them out to shoot photos

When one wishes to test a lens one takes it into the lab and shoots test shots

Trying to compare one lens to another by comparing photos is not going to work because you're not comparing the lens, you're comparing the photographer. You can sort of do so if you keep the same photographer and the same composition and the subject and lighting all remain the same - however then chances are that you're going to be looking at the same properties in a landscape of a mountain that you would in a brick wall - and the wall shows these things easier and simpler without distracting aesthetics getting in the way.

It's interesting that he also mentions that you must use a lens wrong to test it - however in my view that is simply reinforcing a common element Ken has in that he has a very monotone view to shooting. He's the kinda guy who if presented with the idea of taking a macro photo will use a small aperture and never even consider using a wide one. Creativity is not just in the frame and subject; its also in the choice of how you present that using the tools you have.

I guess his main idea of the article is "forget about the test charts go shoot photos" but its wrapped up in comments and views that is not very helpful to any who don't already have the answers

10 04/01/2015 - 11:46 PM
By Sooty_1
Macro lens help
But Justin some people take a reeeeeeally long time to choose!

15 31/12/2014 - 2:30 PM
By justin c
Close up filter on step rings
Raynox optics have a screw-thread on them as well, so you'd just needs rings to fit it. They are pretty small but you won't suffer vignetting problems.

In Lenses | Page: 1, 2
7 30/12/2014 - 5:25 PM
By LenShepherd
Close up filter on step rings

i think your lens goes to 1:1, and if your Nikon is a 'C' sensor, that's another 0.5 magnification. How close do you want to go!

To a macro shooter there is no such thing as too much magnification http://www.ephotozine.com/user/overread-82735/gallery/photo/creepy-crawly-132706... 5:1 magnification (on crop sensor as well). Full frame shot of a springtail - try that at 1:1 and you'd never see the hairs and not much detail on the little critter.

My views:

1) Close up lens attachments/diopters/macro filters (they get called a bunch of names - I believe the first I've stated there is their correct name).
These come in two broad sorts, single element cheapies and multi-element. The Single element are the ones most people use first time around and because they are cheap and single element they are often low grade. As a result many try them and then speak nothing but scorn of them - yes they work but optical performance takes a significant hit.

The more expensive multi-element options are a whole other ballgame. They are more than capable of matching up to the high grade optics in a lens (in fact the sharpest 5:1 setup I've seen uses a Raynox close up lens attachment and beats the Canon MPE 65mm macro lens - a lens purpose built for that job). I would recommend Raynox series (they make a whole range) and the Canon 500D and 250D (note the 250D is the more powerful of the two Canon). Raynox I've used and have got a very good track record of providing fantastic results - yes you will get some image quality degradation, but:

a) Increasing magnification typically results in increasing the effective aperture, as a result diffraction kicks in a lot sooner. So whilst you could get sharp shots at f13 at 1:1 - once you start increasing the magnification (no matter how you do it) you'll end up wanting to shift to wider apertures to retain sharpness. Even with the MPE by the time you're out at 5:1 you might be shooting at f5.6 or even f4 because the effective aperture is already well below f20.

b) Any modification be it extension tubes - close up lens attachments - reversing - teleconverters - all result in you changing the lenses optics from its ideal. Many times the degradation is minor to insignificant (esp in macro where you're already typically closing the lens down to sharper apertures).

2) Extension tubes - these work well, but you won't get to 2:1 with a 100mm lens and extension tubes sold in typical sets of 65mm. In fact whilst you'll get a meaningful boost you won't get a vast difference. As a result you'd have to add way more which would have a more serious impact on image quality and also make the setup longer and harder to use.

3) Teleconverters - yep you can use these. They boost magnification by the same factor they increase focal length. So a 1.4TC gives you a 1.4:1 (a setup I often use as I find it lets you get the segmented eyes to appear clear on most flies - over the 1:1 where some of the smaller species appear more a blurry haze than clear segments).
Of course the bigger bonus here is that once the TC is attached you retain all your lenses normal properties - infinity focusing - normal minimum focusing distance.

You can also combine the options - personally I've used a teleconveter (1.4) and a close up lens attachment (Raynox DCR 250 - a popular starting close up lens attachment of decent power) to good effect in the past.

Shorter working distances are also part of higher magnifications - they make things harder, but not impossible you just have to get more varied in how you work and sometimes choose the moment well. Eg not chasing bugs in the middle of a hot day but waiting till early morning or late evening or going out just after a sudden downpour (sudden quick rainfall events often send things like bees crashing down for a while as they get torpid from the cold and have to recover).

How you choose to approach things is your own choice, but I'd say that for a 100mm lens if you want a serious boost to magnification then close up lens attachments are the most practical approach - the other is to use lens reversing, a method I've not dabbled in but can have significant effects (magnification is basically focal length of the lens on the body - divided by the focal length of the lens reversed onto it - so a 300mm on the camera with a 50mm reversed onto it is a 6:1 magnification potential - of course that excludes practicalities of things like the working distance).

7 30/12/2014 - 5:25 PM
By LenShepherd

Have a great time! Smile

26 26/12/2014 - 12:04 PM
By peterjones
Trade in/part ex.
Just remember if you part exchange/sell through a retailer you get less than you would if you sold the item yourself. Shops have to sell on at the market rate so what they'll offer to trade/buy at will always be under the market rate.

The bonus is that a shop is typically quick, safe and easy to sell to. Where-as selling yourself might take time to get the price you want and can have some risk factor (though so long as you approach things sensibly you should have minimal risk).

8 27/12/2014 - 7:18 PM
By gingerdougie
Photography Magazine Opinions
Few things I'd like to see that are not present:

1) Less adverts or at least better placement of them. Yes I know that they've got to make money and that in todays market adverts ARE a major source of their income; but at the same time when I flip through a magazine I shouldn't be feeling that over half is advertisements. This isn't the ad-trader its a hobby magazine it should at the very least have more hobby than advertisement.

2) More intermediate to advanced content. Most magazines do beginners pretty well - but they really don't do much for anyone else in the photography side. There really needs to be more information, more elaboration and more diversity so that intermediate to advanced users can have the potential to learn and at least engage with the magazine.

3) More content that isn't just how-to or gear reviews - linked to point 2 is the need for more additional content types. Interviews - history - etc... Things that are linked to photography but go beyond just gear and how to change the aperture

4) Photoshop elements - ok this one is abit weaker of an argument today with the 10 per month Photoshop and lightroom subscription - but certainly before that more magazines would have done well to have their beginner level how-to edit articles made using elements. Most beginners were not going to spend as much/more on the editing software than the camera!
Any magazine that was photography beginner focused using full photoshop was a waste since many times elements wouldn't have all the functions present (of course photoshop magazines and more advanced editing methods would be full photoshop based).

6 21/12/2014 - 12:46 PM
By cuffit
Road Traffic Accident.

Quote: [quote]Thanks all.....I think myself I'll go with the 6 points and resitting her test option as it's the only one that makes sense. Strange but if I find out more from my insurers I'll update as I go.

not sure why you feel that she needs to resit , points are awarded for breaking the traffic laws, having an accident is not a traffic offence.

She'd only have to resit if she gets 6 or more points on her licence - so if she has any already it could add up and then she's got to apply for a new re-test. Other times some situations let you do a top-up driving lesson (sometimes with test) but its not always the case (I know some speeding offences can waver the points if you pay and attend a course).

What is happening we can't tell, but hopefully things clear up soon - nothing worse than having a case hang over you even if you're not in any way in the wrong.

21 19/12/2014 - 9:12 AM
By Bridgelayer
Road Traffic Accident.

Quote: My insurance company have confirmed that all details are correct.....is it possible that she could be a new driver and could be forced to resit her test after a bump?

Depends - I know that new drivers only have 6 points on the licence rather than the normal 12; which thus encourages re-sits if they quickly gain those 6 points (I suspect the logic is that if you gain 6 points in a year that fast chances are the other 6 are not far behind so best to nip it in the bud now rather than later).

Another option is that they might have taken legal advice which is to say nothing. Not to say that you would, but sometimes people do say things which whilst they might mean one thing in common parlance, can mean something very different in legal terms. So they might just wish to avoid any potential worsening of their situation by saying anything - esp since recording a phone call these days is pretty trivial.

Or they could just be the kind of people who leave their mobile phone off a lot (heck I know I do).

21 19/12/2014 - 9:12 AM
By Bridgelayer
Rubber grips
Small blob of superglue (ordinary regular super glue) behind a small tab of leather on my camera fixed the job. The leather is typically not part of the weathersealilng, its stuck on the outside and generally there for visual effect and to provide grip when holding. A dab of superglue will fix it up and that's generally what was on there in the first place holding it in place.

If its glued back on firm water shouldn't get under it anyway.

In Nikon Cameras | Page: 1, 2
5 16/12/2014 - 10:08 AM
By Kool_Kat