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  • Possibly not what you had in mind but Christmas Is Awesome by Reuben's always on our family festive playlist...

  • As hard as it might be to accept, customers have the best chance of changing this. If we always buy from the cheapest place and don't ask too many questions, natural selection happens and only companies that are the cheapest by any way possible survive.
  • I used to carry hyperfocal charts around and found them useful at the time (depends on your shooting style I guess) but these days there are countless phone apps which do the calculations quickly and simply and with less chance of error. Here's one for instance DoF Calc but there are plenty of others.
  • The family seems to have got into the habit of mostly just watching streamed content now (Netflix, iPlayer, 4oD, etc) - not perfect but seems to give a far better choice than broadcast channels on the average day. Enjoying Breaking Bad on Netflix at the moment.
  • Totally agree. 7 is miles ahead of Vista, in fact it's almost as good as XP was.
  • Slightly blunt pencil seems to work best for me too - something slightly on the soft side (3B ish).
  • Interesting. Maybe whether mag publicity works or not depends on the genre of photography you do?

  • Quote:one major difference between print and online is linking - if you put stuff on, say, Facebook, you'll add a link to your website (or where ever) - which people may be inclined to click.

    I think Ade makes an important point there - when you publish online, you DO get something in return.

    Personally I haven't ever seen any measurable, significant increase in traffic to my website after being published in a mag, which makes me think the potential publicity benefits the mag states are likely to be small. Successful mag advertising is all about being in front of people month after month, so unless you're published in the same mag often enough for the readers to become familiar with you, I doubt there'll be much impact.

    On the other hand, good links from other websites and social media shares have really helped me (search in google images for swaledale or roseberry topping for instance). Just my personal experiences - I'd be interested to hear if anyone else HAS had tangible benefits from getting shots in a mag.
  • Sad to hear that. I've witnessed a couple of dodgy tractor/bike/car moments around the Dales but only near misses fortunately. I remember standing right next to Gayle Beck Lodge (ruin in your 10th shot) for about an hour in the dark shooting long exposures once and when I got home and took a closer look I noticed there was an enormous crack right round the end of the building. The next time I passed, that end of the building had fallen completely away :/

    I haven't really explored that Settle - Ribblehead stretch as much as some of the rest of the Dales - looks well worth a closer look.
  • Swaledale gets my vote but I agree with the comments on it not being easiest to capture at it's best. I've admittedly had plenty of completely failed trips there but also some real gems. The stretch from Muker to Keld is my favourite, although the unpredictable weather coming down off the pennines can make it a challenge.

    I love Wharfedale around the Buckden area too and the limestone pavements between Ingleton and Ribblehead Viaduct.
  • I like the responsive design too and the overall layout, menu and thumbnails page continued to work well at mobile sizes down to 320x480. Just one observation on that is that once you get to an individual image on mobile sized screens, the left and right arrows seem to take up most of the space, leaving just a thumbnail sized image in the middle.

    I just thought that was worth mentioning because if the image filled more of the screen at that point it would all be nice and usable via mobile, which is a real plus these days. I realise it's a work in progress though.
  • It does remind me a lot of when I was first online (1994 I think) but it does seem to suit it some how. It feels intentionally retro.

    With a commercial eye on it, the lack of styling may be off-putting to some and while I agree to steer away from flash driven sites, tweaking typography and colours will not make the site noticeably slower to load if done correctly. It doesn't have to be packed full of scripts and animations.

    A lot depends on your intention of course. At the moment it feels simple and personal which isn't really a bad thing.
  • P.S. It might be worth adding that your ISO 4000, f/5.6 and 1/50th is pretty much identical to my ISO400, f/4, 1/8s in terms of the ambient light exposure. But as Nick mentioned, the shutter speed's irrelevant to the flash, so the flash part of the exposure in my little test scenario is going to be a couple of stops or so darker than yours for any given flash power. Just in case it helps.
  • I agree totally with Nick and Paul on this one - if you want 80% ambient then get that right first, with as slow a shutter speed as you need to achieve that and keep the flash power low. Obviously exact settings will depend on your environment but if it helps, these worked in an admittedly quick and fairly unrefined test a few minutes ago:

    7 candles on the table. Subject about birthday cake blowing distance away from the candles. Room dark otherwise.
    Camera ISO400, f/4, 1/8s, tungsten balance.
    580EX Flash gelled orange on camera, 1/32 power ceiling bounced or 1/128 direct (Paul's guess above is pretty much spot on there).
    Camera to subject distance approx 2m.

    With those settings I got a correct exposure (maybe half a stop under) for the foreground and a background which was a couple of stops under exposed, i.e. not completely losing the look of a dark room.
  • It always struck me that one of the greatest manipulations of an image is removing colour entirely by shooting on black and white film. It can give a very different mood/impression from what's actually seen, particularly if coloured filters are used. Yet B&W film is seen as a very 'pure' form of photography still.

    Personally, I think compositing, including simply swapping skies is a step too far for my tastes unless the image is clearly meant to be fantasy/unreal but as long as the intention isn't to mislead the viewer it does just come down to personal preference, which in turn would make any kind of 'rules' almost impossible to agree on.

  • Quote:Any image that has been edited on a computer is a manipulation ( not the original )

    It depends if you count the choices the photographer makes during raw conversion and subsequent fine tuning, in which case it's only not the original in the same sense that any image printed from a negative is not the original.

  • Quote:It is more likely to be a sandy colour or brown

    That reminded me that my mate's nine year old son's phrase for diahorrea 'the brown rain'.

  • Quote:no (ordinary) phone line was secure. It isn't safe to say anything over a phone line that we wouldn't write on an open postcard and send through the mail!

    That might be true but certainly when it comes to desktop-based internet payments, the whole system is designed specifically to transmit data securely between two parties across an insecure/hostile/unknown environment. This happens by a series of exchanges which essentially secretly share strong encryption keys. The encrypted data is visible but not readable. That's what's going on behind the scenes when the little browser padlock appears.

    While I know mobile phones can carry out similar encryption between themselves and websites, none of this is good enough protection if the device itself (computer or phone) has already been attacked/compromised in other ways. In that scenario the attacker has direct access to what you're sending, not trying to snoop it en route, so any encryption in transit or security of the website at the other end of the link is irrelevant.

    So that's really what I'd like to understand more about. I know how to secure my desktop reasonably well but my impression is that my phone's more vulnerable. Until I know it's secure, and more importantly, how and why it's secure so I can keep it that way, I don't trust it for payments.
  • I realise I found this a little late too but since the thread's been resurrected, here's a quick go at a toned version.

  • I'm suspicious of this too, because of the issue above about phone security rather than the security of websites taking the payments. My desktop sits behind a firewall/router, is well locked down security-wise and is regularly scanned, whereas my phone is essentially connected straight to a public network with all sorts of random possibilities for attack as far as I can tell.

    If anyone knows better, it'd be good to hear just how secure or not phone payments are and why, because making payments via mobile would be convenient at times.
  • I don't really have the facilities to make mechanical stuff like that (I could get quite into it if I did) but I've built various bits of camera control electronics, partly just for the sake of having a project and partly because there were things I wanted that didn't exist. The latest is a programmable time lapse controller which shoots various patterns and automates scenarios like sunset to night transitions.

  • Quote:The thing is, newfocus, that you assume that all of the world is like wherever you live. It isn't. England is a country, not the world.

    If you got that impression that from my post, I've not phrased it well. I appreciate lots of places aren't well connected yet, enjoy cultural diversity and don't for a second think the whole world is like England. I spend at least a day in the average week totally out of any mobile signal too Smile

    The point I was trying to make is that smart phones are fundamentally designed to be connected devices. I do a bit of mobile app development from time to time and whether we like it or not, that always connected philosophy's built into the architecture of the products at every level. I'm not doubting that you could make good use of offline information on a phone, just that the phone manufacturers and vendors are selling connectivity rather than storage.

  • Quote:Your phone is jack of all trades and master of none

    Smart phones aren't really phones any more. At least not primarily.

    They're personal computers. Not the kind that sits on your desk but the truly personal kind that's always with you, and that you install the software on that helps you be more efficient, more connected, more entertained, whatever suits you best. Taking pictures and making calls is just a tiny part of that mix.

    Quote:There is no technical reason that the largest and most comprehensive dictionary possible should not be put on a smart phone.

    There'd never be a need to - it's a connected device with access to the largest and most comprehensive set of information the human race has ever created Smile
  • I used an E-PL1 for a while a year or two back as a smaller alternative alongside a 5D II and enjoyed it with some reservations. My thoughts on the format were:

    - The image quality for casual use and documentary stuff was excellent, definitely way beyond a compact.
    - The lenses I used (mostly a 14mm prime, i.e. 28mm equivalent) were probably above the quality I'm used to for equivalent SLR lenses.
    - Onboard B&W processing combined with good lenses created some great in-camera images.
    - I missed the overall SLR image quality for anything I was putting a lot of effort into. I wouldn't choose the smaller format personally for commercial work.
    - I missed a proper optical viewfinder (admittedly didn't try an additional electronic viewfinder).
    - I actually found I preferred the stability of the larger size when shooting hand held.
    - The E-PL1 plus a couple of lenses still wasn't small enough to be in the pocket portable.

    Just my personal views - I release a lot of this is down to individual tastes.
  • Thanks - I'll take a look.
  • Just to be clear on the file copying thing, moving/copying files does not degrade quality in any way. You can lose quality if you open a jpeg and save it again, e.g. via 'save as' because the image is being decompressed and recompressed again but not simply by transferring the file. For anything important, remember that any device, no matter how new or old can fail at any time, so backups are important.

    I think your current thinking of a netbook for this is wise. iPads are great machines but my feeling is the storage they provide is too close to typical flash card sizes to be right for what you have in mind.
  • Thanks Brian - possibly a little bit out of reach but otherwise, yes Smile

    Quote:interested to know what advantages flash offers if any in this scenario

    Flash is generally brighter for any given size of unit and power consumption and better colour balanced but it feels like these differences are gradually narrowing. In the small product indoors in a light tent scenario I'd personally go for continuous every time and just make sure the light source used gives you a full range of colours. It's not just about colour balance but also making sure there's a full spread of wavelengths in the light. For instance, fluorescents with high 'CRI' have a much better range of wavelengths than traditional cheaper fluorescents, which achieve 'white' by blending just a few different peaks of colour.
  • My wife is a lampwork glass artist and photographs her creations using a popup light tent similar to this but I guess you might need a bigger version? Lighting is via one of these which seems to give good accurate colour representation, which is obviously important with this kind of product.

    It seems to work really well for her and is nice and quick (all her items are one offs so she's continually adding new products to her website and speed of working through that is important). There are some examples of photos using the above setup here .
  • If you really do need the option to be mobile, just plug an external monitor into the laptop as a second screen for serious work back at base and use the laptop screen when you're on the move. Best of both worlds.

    Quote:decent IPS panel

    Often overlooked when choosing a machine but well worth it IMO if you have the budget.

    Regarding Chris's recommendation above, I've used a couple of Lenovos in the past (not that one specifically) and they've been decent machines with a good build quality, which counts if you're actually wanting them to be portable and usable on the road.
  • 60 inch minus the amount needed to wrap would probably be close enough. I have found a few places that come close, e.g...

    Point 101