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Mickld
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A mint (used) Canon EOS 3 coupled to the 50mm f1.4 lens. Coming from the Olympus OM1, it's shockingly big. Looking forward to putting a roll through it once I venture out of the house. And I got the Vivian Maier book too. Bit of a trend there?
Thanks Ctein. I was looking for something a little different to buy my wife for Christmas and a introductory collection of fine teas from raretea.m6.artlogic.net in the UK seems to fit the bill nicely. I'll have to help her decide which is the nicest of course...
Toggle Commented Dec 12, 2012 on OT: Teas, Please! at The Online Photographer
Just wanted to add my appreciation for a great article about photography & art - there is so much noise on the online forums about this that your essay (and blog in general) is a sensible, rational breath of fresh air. I think I can extend that appreciation to your readers comments too. I don't think I've seen comments on any of your essays disintegrate into the usual childish name calling that surrounds discussions of art attempted in other forums. Perhaps you are keeping the sh*t out of the comments too :-) I'm definitely in the shoot-for-myself category and have developed a much deeper relationship with photography since I moved from digital to film photography, specifically because it has allowed me to fall in love with the craft & art of darkroom printing. What a joy. Not in any way trying to raise the tired old film-v-digital debate. But the comments above that discuss role of craft and artisanship really resonated with me. I find physically making prints with my hands rather than an inkjet creates a relationship between me and the image that just was never there when post processing on a computer. That has definitely helped me filter the sh*t from keepers.
The short answer is that the different brands do matter - stick with the big names like SanDisk and Lexar. I wish I could give you the long answer, but I can't remember the details. I listened to a podcast a few months ago about just this subject. It was quite technical, but not too technical, and revealed the various engineering compromises that have been made to boost speed and capacity. One of the main areas compromised was in the longevity of the memory - that is, some of the faster/higher capacity (or cheaper cards) seem to have reduced life spans (limited number or read/writes before failure). The differences in the quality of the implementations of firmware between cameras that deal with the FAT file system was a bit of an eye opener! Definitely always format the card with the camera that is going to use the card. I'm on vacation this week - I'll try and dig out the podcast I'm referring to next week. Although I suspect you will have your answers by then.
Toggle Commented Aug 21, 2012 on SDHC Quandry at LensWork Daily
Sad news indeed. I was taken by your choice of photograph - the wedding on Tory Island. I happen to be going to my favourite holiday location tomorrow in Donegal which looks onto Tory Island, an island I've been taking pictures of for years but have yet to visit. My mother, who also passed away this year after a protracted illness, painted the beach and harbour from which a ferry services the island. This was a recent gift from her which has pride of place on my livingroom wall. Seeing Martine's photo on your site makes a small world feel closer, and the familiar view a little more poignant.
Mickld is now following Michael Johnston
Jun 8, 2012
Mike - you had the honour of seeing the Pogues in concert? The lead singer, Shane McGowan, is a horribly sick alcoholic yet one of the greatest lyricist/poets of our age (says me). I grew up on the punk/Irish-trad of the Pogues and Shane is a bit of a tragic hero of mine. But an acquired taste, for sure. http://www.pogues.com/
Toggle Commented Jun 9, 2012 on Pogue's Teaser at The Online Photographer
Haven't seen any of them in person, but the cameras that l like the looks of are the new OM-D and the Fuji GW670W (not the one with bellows). The K-01 looks pretty good, especially the top and rear, but I would never buy one. The only style that I really detest is the Sony NEX range. Great cameras, but ... ugh.
Yup, that streams nicely over wifi on the iPad.
Toggle Commented Feb 13, 2012 on Video Encoding at LensWork Daily
Hmmm. That streamed ok to my linux machine in work once I installed VLC. It failed to play on my creaky old iPhone3G over 3G (hoped it would stream) but I'll test again with my iPad at home over wifi.
Toggle Commented Feb 13, 2012 on Video Encoding at LensWork Daily
Another link, this time to a recent Carl Weese article on The Online Photographer blog: http://theonlinephotographer.typepad.com/the_online_photographer/2012/01/raised-expectations.html Resolution issues do indeed seem to be in the air at the moment. Another article arguing for the need for lots of detail for certain images that are intended to be printed 20" wide. However, he's happy he can achieve this with the proper handling of a micro 4/3 camera. So there's hope for us mere mortals! I agree that there are situations where max detail is key to an image, but more often I'm concerned with the better tonal qualities and dynamic range provided by bigger sensors and medium format film than with pixel peeping. I think the history of photography has more than enough examples of masterpieces that are technically weak to undermine the notion that high resolution is a fundamental requirement of a quality photograph. My officially 'best' photograph was taken by accident during a birthday party when I was assessing the exposure in a dim hall with a noisy 4/3 camera.. The photo happened to capture my son's personality perfectly, was underexposed by 3 to 4 stops, is as noisy as hell, cropped 50% and is the most precious image I've ever taken.
Toggle Commented Jan 24, 2012 on Pixel Peeping at LensWork Daily
I'm not arguing for or against you here; I just thought it funny that I read the article below before reading your post. http://www.luminous-landscape.com/understanding-series/everything_matters__it_is_all_about_the_small_details.shtml
Toggle Commented Jan 23, 2012 on Pixel Peeping at LensWork Daily
Can I ask why you think it will be full frame?
Toggle Commented Jan 22, 2012 on A Guess at The Online Photographer
I just read the two negative articles you linked to, which of course I should have done before my first comment. I'm puzzled when you say it is reported that Amazon is "gearing up for massive returns of Kindle Fires after Christmas"? All I could see is a reference to users who are happy with the Kindle keeping it and those who are not returning it. Which seems fair enough, if not obvious, to me. I agree picking out 2 negative user reviews from the 1000s of reviews on the Amazon site seems unfair, but that's like a journalistic construct to overlay a narrative onto what is ultimately just a review of some consumer electronics. A bit of drama to relieve the boredom. Start with a 'shock horror', followed by 'oh no!' and concluding with a 'it's not so bad folks'. It is balanced out to some extent in the conclusion. The gist of the USA Today's article seemed to be that buyers thinking they were getting $500 worth of tablet for $200 becoming disappointed in whatever short comings they came across. It then concludes that for $200 the Kindle is hard to beat; "To be clear, the Fire is an excellent e-reader. It's a $200 device that does a decent chunk of what a $500 iPad can do." Again, (never having used the Fire) that seems fair enough to me. Neither article reads like a conspiracy theory level of mis-reporting. Interestingly many people in the comments following the USA Today article go beyond your reaction to the point of claiming this article was an Apple sponsored assassination attempt. They see gun smoke hanging over the grassy knoll. I feel like apologising for being so naive, but I don't understand where all the Apple hatred comes from. Apple is just a consumer electronics company. The iPad is just a thing. It's like the inverse of Jobs' famous reality distortion field. Weird.
Toggle Commented Dec 14, 2011 on Tech Spin at LensWork Daily
LOL - Brooks, I think you need a break - some time to unwind and relax. I suspect a lot of the spin that annoys all of us is more to do with lazy journalism. Sites craving ever higher hit rates publish any old sensationalist nonsense to get attention. Present site excluded of course ;-) The modus operandi of the tech reporting industry is to talk up a product/company and once it becomes successful, to tear it down again. It's a bit like the stock markets where traders make money when the markets are going up, and coming back down - the opportunity lies in the volatility of the market, not the direction of the market. And if cynical reporting helps stimulate this volatility....? Same with tech reporting - feverish hype promoting a new product gets eyeballs, and the subsequent feverish criticism of the same product get eyeballs. It's all eyeballs to these guys! Although the turn around on the Kindle Fire seems pretty quick. If Apple is behind it (which I doubt), then shame on them, but shame on the lazy media machine too that allows itself to mindlessly regurgitate press releases.
Toggle Commented Dec 14, 2011 on Tech Spin at LensWork Daily
>If it's standing alone, there is simply no need to try and put it into a context. While I disagree with your point of view, I accept it's a perfectly valid stance to take - but not up to the point of mocking it with an award in a fairly high profile way. If you want to take criticism to the point of mockery, then I think it does justify a bit of homework on the individual work, it's context, the artist and the artist's body of work.
Brookes, you added you last comment before I posted my original. So I'll add the following... >I just can't get past the comparisons. I could buy this photograph or, say, 12 new Kindle Fires, or 6 of the Panasonic M4/3 cameras An argument might be that kindles & cameras etc are not art, they are 'things' or commodities that have a price tag related to the cost of production and the value they bring to the end user. The monetary value of the item is tied up with the utility of the item. Art is different. Art being bought & sold in the art world, that is. Art has no value, other than the cost of production. You can't do anything with it after you've bought it other than look at it. And yet many millions is invested in art each year. So the rules that govern the value of art are different than those that govern the monetary value of useful things. I suppose art is a bit like gold. Neither has a utility that justifies its high price. But perversely they gain a utility by the very fact they carry a high price; it allows them to become investment vehicles. Maybe a part of the problem is that there is also a difference between the price an artist initially offers a print for, and the price the market will subsequently attribute to the print once it leaves the artist's control. The offer price is perhaps the measure of the artists ego (less time & materials). >Especially not considering that another print can be made so easily. This segues neatly into your famous analysis of limited edition prints. Scarcity creates value.
My knee-jerk reaction was to agree with you Brookes, but after skimming through Jeffrey Milstein's site I now agree with Carlton's comment above. On Milstein's site you see this photo in the context of a series of photos he has about houses in Palm Springs. The photo above wouldn't have been my choice from the series, but the series is a interesting 'topographic' once you flick through a number of the houses. Each house has its own little personality; some more eccentric than others. In the context of the series the photos reveal a light hearted formality. So in the right context the photo makes a bit more sense. Not $2000 worth of sense, of course. But that's me. I can't afford to spend a quarter of that on a photograph, no matter how famous. If I was a banker, it would be chump change. So even the price has to be seen in context! And then there's the Gursky photograph. I too snorted coffee out my nose having read the price, then seen the photo. But, flicking through Gursky's portfolio (for want of a better word) I've come to realise that his work is fantastic! Love it. I was familiar with a lot of his work without knowing who the photographer was. The Art World is insane, and has been for decades. Every aspect of it. I do agree with the Naked Emporer Award in principle, and for the Art World in general, but I think you might have chosen a more worthy victim to launch with.
>I can see where "simplifying" file management, in the name of security, may benefit those who are less tech savvy, whereas the "freedom" afforded by the Android system appeals to those more technically inclined. I agree, although I think it was a design decision motivated by the desire for simplicity as much as security. Where a lot of people see a file system as "freedom", many users have little to no clue about files. And less inclination to learn about it. Like my Dad. Tech savvy computer users are in the majority (I assume) when it comes to general purpose computers & laptops. But Apple's view of the iPhone & iPad is as high volume consumer electronics products - the target market far outstripping the PC/Mac market in scale. Thus Apple changed its name from Apple Computer Inc to Apple Inc. Trying to make the devices as user friendly as possible for the widest audience requires compromises. And Apple decided an explicit file system on small screened touch based devices was one of those compromises worth making. Of course I'm saying this like I sat in on some of Apple's meetings! Obviously not, but Apple's design philosophy has been well documented and commented on over the years. >iPhad won't let you into the file system?!?!??? From the user's perspective there is no file system to access. Each app is responsible for managing its own data and has it's own (hidden) filesystem/database that is generally sandboxed from other apps. Users are encouraged to associate content with the app that uses that content. Not files as such. >refuse to mess with apples now Nobody is forcing you! No need to "refuse". Plus, don't confuse iPhads with Macs - Macs are unix machines and pretty much allow you to go as hardcore as you like. I don't understand why people get upset about iPads when there are plenty of excellent alternatives. This is like the Canon v Nikon debates. Or film v digital. I'm not making all these points to argue that iOS is superior to Android - I'm pointing out *why* iOS does things in this way. There is a solid design philosophy guiding the functionality and usability. If this design philosophy is restrictive to you and/or you don't like it, then don't buy one. Simple. Or if you were unfortunate enough to buy one, jailbreak it! >Curious that Apple will still not let you download an mp3 directly into itunes on the iPad.. It is curious. Safari lets you download images directly into the Photo app. Or pdfs into iBooks or GoodReader. You would think it would let you download a file into the local (hidden) filesystem/database of which ever app is capable of handling that file type, in this case iTunes. Maybe it's a hangover from the DRM days?
Toggle Commented Nov 17, 2011 on Downloading Should Be Easy at LensWork Daily
> I tested the default browser, Firefox, and my preferred browser, Dolphin > I have to use a different browser if I want to download a link? You are happy that you can choose to use a non-default browser on Android but complain about using a non-default browser on an iPad. Perhaps the fact that iOS wont let you set the default browser is the snag here? >Why no download option? Why is this so hard? Obviously it can be done, but Apple has chosen not to. There's a difference. Apple has chosen to avoid making the user aware of an explicit file system. The iPad is not meant to be a mini-PC. It's supposed to be a device, like your TV or radio. Like it or not Apple's designers decided that juggling files on a touch screen device introduces more potential problems than it solves. Having said that, Apple is slowly bringing many PC-like features into iOS with each release. Originally there were no apps to download, no cut&paste, no background processes, no notifications etc. As these features were brought in it was done so in a way (like it or not) that suited the tablet-as-a-device model rather than the tablet-as-a-mini-PC. I wouldn't be surprised if Apple eventually updates iOS to cater for ad hoc file storage, presumably via iCloud. The iPad sounds like a bad fit for tablet users who value having explicit, PC-like control over their files and software, who want their tablet to be a mini-PC. Other tablets fit that model better. Some users like me who wrangle computers, software and operating systems all bloody day long find the simplicity of the iPad/iPhone a definite plus. I do occasionally trip up over these kinds of restrictions, but in balance, not having to 'manage' the iPad is its greatest attraction. Now that wireless syncing & backups are available, it's even less work. For what its worth, iCab Mobile (http://www.icab-mobile.de/) is an alternative web browser for iOS that allows you to download files. I tried downloading a jpeg file by touching & holding the image and a menu popped up to allow me to save the image in the iPhone's Photo app, or within the iCabMobile's own downloads folder, or to the clipboard.
Toggle Commented Nov 16, 2011 on Downloading Should Be Easy at LensWork Daily
Sorry Brookes, but your iPad/Goodreader experience just isn't the same as mine! Don't understand how it can differ so widely. As an experiment (which you might want to try), I just downloaded a magazine PDF from www.blur-magazine.com. They too zip their PDFs for download. I waited for the 58mb zip file to be downloaded by Safari. When the download completed, I was automatically asked if I wanted to unzip the file with Goodreader or to choose a different app to unzip it with. I choose to unzip it with Goodreader, Goodreader launched and copied the file into it's list of files, with the filename preserved (blur21en.zip). The file didn't automatically unzip, so I tapped it and it unzipped into blur21en.PDF. I tapped the new PDF file and was reading the magazine within 60 seconds of originally requesting the download. That was all pretty seamless. I was surprised that Goodreader preserved the file name, which it hasn't in the past. Perhaps I'm running a new version with that bug fixed. I don't think it's quite fair to blame Apple/iOS/iPad for file name errors in a third party app, but I do agree wrestling with different video formats must be a royal pain. Anyhow, thanks for persevering on behalf of us unfortunate iPad users. PS: To add irony to insult, I was unable to submit this comment via Safari on the iPad as both the post & preview buttons were visable but disabled! I had to email the text to my macbook and post it from there. *sigh*
Toggle Commented Aug 28, 2011 on A small iPad rant at LensWork Technology Blog
Aristotle listed courage as one of the Virtues - can shooting slide film & jpeg be at least regarded as courageous - especially for working, commercial photographers?
Toggle Commented May 25, 2011 on Virtuous Technique at The Online Photographer
As much as this isolated approach to file management protects the iPad from badly written apps, I think it is also an attempt to remove file management altogether from the user experience. Other than syncing the iPad to move files to and from a desktop computer, the notion of files largely goes away. It's an attempt to make it more of an appliance than a small computer. I'm not going to argue whether this is a good or bad thing - but if you look at the file management interface in Goodreader, you can see how clunky file management can get with a touch-only interface.
To over come the flat, 2D look, the direction of the flash has to come off camera; either literally or by bouncing the flash. For manual, off camera flash tutorials, you can't go wrong with the Strobist site. For TTL mode, on-camera bounced flash tutorial's, I would also recommend Neil van Niekerk's site (http://neilvn.com/tangents/flash-photography-techniques). To overcome the inverse square law, I think you'll have to go off-camera with a pocket wizard. It's actually quite easy to get good results with either manual or bounced TTL techniques, but I guess it takes time and practice to master. Studying both these sites really grounded my understand of exposure and improved my photos dramtically; everything from at-home snapshots to my carefully crafted 'art' :-)
Olympus 410 with 25mm pankcake lens. Holga 120 GN plus close up filters. Both of these cameras fit in my coat pocket, so I usually have one of them with me.
Toggle Commented Nov 17, 2010 on Who Do You Love?* at The Online Photographer