With my purchase justification squarely in tow, I went out today to run the lens through its paces on land before experimenting with its capabilities under the water. Elise and I went to the Mohammad Al Amin Mosque in downtown Beirut for a quick walk to explore the iconic landmark. I used the 16-35 lens to snap a few photos of the interior of the mosque. The image stabilization and incredible sharpness from corner to corner gave me some beautiful images. Here are a few for your perusing.
Saturday, January 9, 2016
Sunday, October 18, 2015
Ok, so I'm probably getting pretty geeky now so I'm assuming that if you actually clicked on this post then you are ready to geek out with me. So, my last post was about the concept of hyperfocal distance and how to use that with back button focus. My wife, daughter and I went to Beiteddine the other day and had the chance to fool around with metering modes.
I had watched a tutorial that suggested that photographers stick to either center-weighted metering or spot metering modes depending on whether they were in a controlled environment or shooting on the go. I decided to test this theory out the other other day.
Since I was "on the go" while walking around Beiteddine, I selected center-weighted metering mode, put my 17mm f4.0 to 17mm and f8.0 and set the focus to the hyperfocal distance. I think proceeded to walk around the Beitedding complex taking some shots. I kept the in mind the fact that anything closer than about 4ft (125cm) would be out of focus. I then set my other two back buttons to start metering and lock metering. I was able to quickly set and lock metering by touching the two aforementioned buttons quickly in sequence and then move to the trigger to take the photo. This system, combined with the hyperfocal theory, help produce fast and reliable results as I walked around. Here are some examples.
Sunday, October 11, 2015
With our most recent visit to Lebanon, I had a chance to play around with hyperfocal distance. Ever since I started to consider getting into underwater video, I've been fascinated by the this theory.
To oversimplify a complicated theory, hyperfocal distance is the focal distance at which you set your camera for a given aperture and focal length in order to achieve the maximum depth of field. It will extend from a certain point in front of the camera until infinity. The advantage of this theory is that as long as everything in your picture is more than the minimum distance then everything should be in focus. There are a glut of apps out there that will help you calculate your hyperfocal distance. Just simply search for "hyperfocal" and you will find them. This approach is incredibly helpful when working with underwater video as it allows you to set your focus and simply concentrate on recording and framing and not dealing with focusing knobs etc.
During our last trip to Byblos, I decided to play around with this theory and apply it to photography. I set my camera to f11 and my focal distance to 0.8m. This meant that everything from 0.3m to infinity would remain in focus as I took pictures. Since my camera was set to back button focus and manual mode I simply had to pull the shutter release button. I found it a easy and effect way of taking photos that kept everything in focus while giving you complete control over your exposure. I would think that this would be effective in a situation where there is limited change in light. Variable light would require a much more complicated approach. In any case, here are some samples from the day.
Sunday, October 4, 2015
Wednesday, April 15, 2015
The photo of Neushwanstein was a straight up 24-70 f2.8II shot at around 40mm/f8.0. I pulled the blues and overall highlights down to get the darkened sky.
Saturday, May 3, 2014
Sunday, April 13, 2014
Enter my new macro lens. Now, please note, what is to follow is only an example and the photos are simply crops of larger photos but I think they serve to prove my theory. I recently purchased the Canon 100mm 2.8L Macro Lens. This purchase got me thinking about macro photos and histograms ... and that led me to my current exposure process.
My theory was that I would be able to expose for a subject's skin by taking a photo that encompasses the highlights to shadows of the subjects face and then look at the histogram to determine if the exposure was correct. I quickly realized that the histogram changed depending on the lighting ratios/setup and the intended mood of the image. I found that a flat lighting setup gave a histogram that spread from the "bottom" (shadows) 1/3 to the top (highlights) 2/3s of the histogram. Now, this is not always true for every lighting setup, or every photographer. You will need to determine your ideal histogram shape and spread.
I start by taking a photo of the subject (a forehead) as you see below. Note, that you do not need a macro lens to do this as you can take the same photo, out of focus, and achieve that same result.
After that, I look at the histogram and adjust settings until I get a histogram that spreads from the lower (left) 1/3 to upper (right) 2/3s of the histogram (see below). I've found that I tend to like the look that is shifted slightly to the right.
I then step back and begin shooting. and get images that, I have fond, require little adjustment for skin exposure in post. Now, this does not include a explanation of determining background exposure. That is another beast for another post, and I would be happy to explain that process if there is interest. In any case, below is an example the overall histograms and photos that I have been getting out of camera.
As always, comments, opinions or other methods of exposing for skin are very, very welcome. Take care everyone!