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Writer. Photographer. Wanderer.
Recent Activity
Well this is a novel use of Amazon's Mechanical Turk! I daresay it's not a representative sample though - if you look at the amount that is being paid for the tasks requested you'll see that the pay scale is very very (let me add another one...) very low and thus likely attracting people from a very thin socioeconomic sliver of society. Take a look - It will be interesting to see this theory tested by other researchers to ascertain it's real value. If it pans out, it will be even more interesting to point the machine at the works of Cartier-Bresson, Kertesz, Eisenstaedt, Lange, and others.
Toggle Commented Aug 25, 2016 on Markers of Depression at The Online Photographer
While researching the first person to go 100mph I came upon this film from 1905. It's auto races at Ormond Beach, FL, and where the first car broke 100mph: Relevant to the topic at hand, fast-forward to 3:00 and watch the seated gentleman in left side of the frame. He's also photographing from 2:00 onward. I'd love to see the photos that he took! The driver, Arthur MacDonald, may not have been the first human to 100mph though, as an electric train in Germany may have topped "the tonne" in 1901. Our man Glenn Curtiss did not break 100mph until 1907, but he did so in spectacular fashion, running over 136mph with his V-8 powered motorcycle!
I had a Kodak DC260 which had the word "Megapixel" proudly printed on the body. No number, just "Megapixel"
In my youth I trained for marathons to fill the void left by cratered relationships. Last year I tried something different; I trained for and ran a 50k trail ultramarathon. And then she left.
Holy Internet synchrony Batman!
6. Buy what you need when you need it.
I used to be in the "As long as I can reliably get a good photo from a camera I don't care if it's OVF, EVF, or rear LCD" camp. But I just got a Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge with a stunning 5.5" Quad HD AMOLED display. The display has a mind boggling 534 pixels per inch, which actually exceeds a high quality print. When I'm taking a photo (with the 1/2.3" 12 megapickle sensor mated to a 26mm F1.7 lens) the great screen literally draws me into the scene. It's like composing while looking at a high res print. I'm now of the mind that camera makers have to get on board here and really start upping the resolution of their EVFs and LCDs. I don't know how the GX8 2.36 million dots converts to PPI, but the Samsung has set a new benchmark for me.
I'm still trying to find thy self....
Toggle Commented Mar 30, 2016 on Know Thyself at The Online Photographer
My favorite note-taking, idea-saving, and short-form writing tool is Evernote. It's folders and tagging combined with a good search engine (it will search through PDFs that you save and will automagically OCR any JPGs that have text in them!) makes it easy to save something and find it later. My favorite longer form writing tool is Scrivener. It takes some learning (it incorporates both an outlining and index card metaphor), but it's ability to help me organize my thoughts, re-organize them, and then re-organize one last time is unparalleled.
This seems to be a really insightful essay with plenty of thought provoking comments. Pity I don't have the time to read them.
Toggle Commented Mar 24, 2016 on Open Mike: Eight Hours at The Online Photographer
Taughannock Falls. Ulysses, NY. What do I win?
Toggle Commented Jan 20, 2015 on Scenic Photography at The Online Photographer
"1. C'mon. Do I really have to tell you? You can't guess? Seriously, you already know, right?" You've put yourself in quite a pickle, Mike, upsetting either the Sony A7 fans or the Pentax 645Z fans. Such is the nature of such a list though, isn't it? I've got a solution...a tie!
I started my motorcycle photojournalism odyssey ten years ago with the Nikon D70. And I've used the Nikon 1 V1 on several trips. They are very close in capabilities, except that the V1 has better AF, faster FPS, more megapickles, and is considerably smaller. The 1" sensor is the future.
Toggle Commented Oct 8, 2014 on Sensor Size at The Online Photographer
That was touching and sad and wonderfully told.
As a former owner of a '90 and '99 Miata, I don't think that I'd call the GX-7 the Miata of cameras. What we're looking for here is affordable fun with just a handful of revisions in the last 25 years, each a small step forward, each with its soul still intact. I can think of just one camera line that fits that description–Ricoh GR.
Another (belated) vote for Scrivener. It does take some time to learn its ways, but the investment in the learning curve is worth it. It's not perfect, but it's really helped me in the 5+ years that I've used it. Another tool that I use for organization (and for jotting down notes on the road, something Scrivener doesn't do so well) is Evernote. Not only is it great for note-taking, but it's great for finding that bit of info you jotted down two years ago and now can't recall. It's great not only for text, but also for pictures of text (i.e., receipts, signs, etc...) You can, for example, take a photo of a written passage that you like, and Evernote will automagically OCR the heck out of it while you're not looking. Then, when you do a search, Evernote will search the OCR'd version of the text. We must have the same penchant for disorder, because I've also been thinking about using a blog for non-linear written kind of thing. Best of luck!
I only dabbled in enthusiast audio, stepping back when I realized that I was listening to the system, not the music. The Rolling Stones on a cheap car AM radio is still, after all, The Rolling Stones.
Try It's a pretty good news reader. After a little setup, you can efficiently peruse as many sites as you'd like. It's still a deluge, but a more controlled deluge.
And you thought that you had it bad, Mike. Alec Weinstein lives in a cave where they pipe in "jazzy" drum beats!
If you invest the time migrating the whole site, and then invest some more time categorizing and tagging your posts, then the next time you write about the Pentax FA43, all older posts related to the FA43 (or Pentax, or lenses, depending upon the taxonomy you choose) will be just a click away. For your readers and for you. That's powerful stuff. Make no mistake-it will be a PITA. But if well-executed, it will boost your traffic from search engines, Pages per Visit, Ad Impressions, and likely your Ad Revenue. Most importantly, it present the collected wisdom of Mike Johnston in a clear and cohesive manner, something that readers today and photo buffs/historians decades from now will appreciate. Like it or not, Mike, your a treasure to the photographic community, and the decision should be made with that in mind. [FWIW, I do this sort of thing for a living and can assist.]
If camera companies would get their acts together and integrate editing and data plans into their phones then I wouldn't have to do this whilst on the side of the road during a RoadRUNNER motorcycle travel assignment. Seriously, posting pictures on Facebook/Instagram/Etc.. while on the road lets readers come along for the ride while at the same time getting them primed for the story in an upcoming issue of the print magazine. It's fun having them along; some will have been to the area and will share their own memories or give tips on things to see that I was not aware of. 1980 isn't coming back.
Toggle Commented Apr 15, 2014 on Small Joke at The Online Photographer
I always chuckle when I read practitioners of the most democratic means of visual expression (photogaphy) claim with a completely straight face that it has somehow become too democratic. It's a story that seems to be repeated every 20 years or so. Photography changes and morphs every time new technology is introduced. The definition changes for each generation. But as long as humans have eyes, they will always have pictures to view and people that will want to make those pictures.
My brother loaned me his DP2M. There is a certain verisimilitude in the photos that I don't get with any of my other cameras. And I don't think that it's just sharpness. I returned it as quickly as I could so as to avoid temptation.
To those that feel excluded and marginalized in this little contest—imagine going through your whole life and professional career feeling that way, except that the exclusion and marginalization isn't usually explicit or documented but, like someone looking over your shoulder, is very much there. Make no mistake, we've come a long way in just 100 years—it's amazing to think that a woman's right to vote is less than 100 years old. And in many ways the US is among the most progressive nations with regards to the rights of women. We're on the right path but we're certainly not beyond sexism quite yet.
Toggle Commented Mar 30, 2014 on For Women Readers at The Online Photographer
I feel like the odd person out here, as I have no nostalgia for cameras. Yes, I've owned some great ones and have been lucky enough to capture some timeless moments with them, but my adoration of them is ever fleeting. As long as they continue to get better, faster, stronger, I will always gravitate to the new kid on the block, which makes me, I guess, a Serial Infatuationalist. My current flavor of the month is (no surprise) the newest in the bag, a tasty Pentax K-3 in "I'm tired of black" silver. Feels great in the hand, familiar controls, and with a heft that makes me think that I can get out of a heap of trouble in a dark alley by swinging it over my head with the lovely brown leather strap. Ask me next year and the answer will likely be different.