Monthly Archives: April 2009

Pharaoh

pharaoh

It isn’t often that I add a new category to my “categories.”

One of my goals (and the way I’m justifying the expense of digital gear) for this year is to become a confident portrait photographer. I don’t need to be Zack Arias (whose work is fantastic), but I want to feel like I know what I’m doing. Fortunately, I have roommates to drag to my bedroom-turned-studio for impromptu self-education sessions. I am fairly happy with the light here considering my constraints (one undiffused light, limited space and backdrop options),  and I know where I need to work. More of these may appear from time to time.

Nikon D200, Nikkor 50mm f/1.8, strobe that was free.

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Filed under Black and White, Digital, Portrait

434

434-frame

New equipment doesn’t provide new things to shoot at.

The sign on the door:

“KEEWAYDIN COMPUTERS and KEEWAYDIN AQUATICS We are undergoing an upgrade in our facilities and cannot operate our business here temporarily. Please call 237-5560 for further information. Deliveries remain here as usual.”

Nikon D200, Nikkor 50mm f/1.8 (which really is a razor at f/4).

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Filed under Black and White, Digital, Street Photography

Golden Dawn

gold-dawn

Around and around and around again.

I think this is pretty self-explanatory.

The exciting news is not that the camera body got here today (which was expected), but that the lens and CompactFlash card arrived a full four days earlier than UPS predicted. That was definitely a nice Friday surprise.

Nikon D200, Nikkor 50mm f/1.8, off-camera flash (“Promatic FT700”) medium-high right with printer-paper-and-electrical tape barndoor assembly triggered optically with the onboard flash.

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Filed under Color, Digital, Portrait

Saint Elizabeth

st-e

A photo posted on another photographer’s blog yesterday reminded me of one of my favorite photography truisms:

Just because you don’t know what it is at first glance doesn’t mean it’s bad.

In fact, I think too many of us forget the value in not knowing. What’s wrong with being uncertain? Unsettling or agitating your viewer can be a conscious artistic effect, and I think it is sorely underused

So what is it? You probably wouldn’t believe me if I told you.

In “I’m getting another digital camera” news, my SLR body is set to be delivered tomorrow, and I ordered a lens and CompactFlash card this morning. As I am writing this I checked the UPS site again, and they won’t be delivered until Tuesday. The facility is 150 miles away and they are taking all of their 2-4 business days? I am not amused. It’s going to be a long weekend.

I am racking my brain for friends, acquaintances, or strangers with F-mount SLRs that I could borrow lenses (I guess I need a CF card too), but to no avail. I’ll be spending my weekend staring at the picture on the shiny box.

Pentax digital SLR, which is long gone. To the people I sold it to, I hope it’s serving you as well as it served me.

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Filed under Abstract, Black and White, Digital

New Leaf II

new-leaf-ii

There is a season, turn, turn, turn.

Those (admittedly, few) of you who read this regularly probably know my digital photography story. I sold my  digital SLR along with virtually everything that went with it (lenses, filters, batteries, chargers) about eight weeks ago, but it had been mostly sitting and collecting dust for months before that while I played with various 35mm cameras and processes. I did have plans to order a new body (starting over on a new system- hint: F-mount) in May. I was going to order a used body now one generation “obsolete,” thinking prices could only go down, but I was keeping a hawk’s eye on the prices at the largest two used dealers here in the States. In that last few weeks, I had actually noticed prices of used bodies climbing instead of falling for the camera I wanted, which makes no sense for a camera that was introduced four years ago and was replaced in 2007. To my amazement, the used camera bodies started vanishing as fast as dealers could get them in, and prices continued to rise steadily. Though I was worried that prices would rise out of my price range, there wasn’t much I could do. Until Sunday, that is. In my routine searching, I found that Best Buy was selling the cameras brand new for $150 less than used ones in respectable condition were trading for on reputable sites (no, eBay is not reputable for cameras. I have learned that the hard way). I hurriedly freed up some cash, and this is the picture I wanted to post today (although it isn’t much of a photograph by traditional standards). Again, long-time readers will recognize the significance: The camera I’ve been plotting about for a few months will be delivered to me as soon as Saturday.

Unfortunately, there are a few issues with this. First, since I’ve pledged not to use cheap zooms after my Pentax two-lens kit days, I’m not interested in the 18-200mm kit lens deal (which wasn’t on sale at Best Buy anyway). Instead, I ordered the body only. While I will technically have the body as early as Saturday, I will not have a lens (or, for that matter, a CompactFlash card). This will obviously make picture-taking difficult (though technically not impossible). Even better, the two lenses I plan on ordering in the near future are either hard to come by or almost impossible to find (35mm f/1.8, which I’m still not sure is officially out yet). This means it may be a little while before I can actually take pictures with the thin. I have a few schemes in mind to “borrow” a compatible lens for a day or so, but we’ll have to see how those turn out. I’ll probably crack and order a 50mm f/1.8 in the next day or so (and a CompactFlash card- that would probably be a good idea too).

Pentax digital SLR system, which is long gone.

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Filed under Digital, Landscape