Photographers, as a whole we can resist anything except temptation itself and as a collective at some if not all the time we get the Gear Acquisition Syndrome that's right GAS...the need to acquire large volumes of photographic kit creating the paradox of having too much to use at once and thereby creating a fine collection of shelf queens to wink at us slyly whenever we set off on our next photographic mission of utmost importance,,dust gatherers, on trend, the mystifying 'why did I buy that' oddity, the piece that 'doesn't feel right when I'm using it' and the vanity object...
I hold my hand up, at this gathering of Photographers anonymous I too have suffered from GAS...and most recently I find irresistible temptation is flowing like warm honey across my computer screen.. The new Nikon Mirrorless Z series and it's promise of 0.95 Noct aperture lenses... the Mavic pro 2 from DJi...with a Hasselblad lens and huge megapix still shots and a 1" sensor...Edelkrone sliders and doohickeys all powered by a phone app...I think I'm on the verge of blacking out... no harm in looking, serious harm to your paypal account if you are buying..
So what to do if you are on the verge of suffering from GAS...well the advice from Doctor Max is simple...go on, treat yourself, we are here but once and I quite like the look of my photographic oddities gathering dust on shelves, (never mind those back in their original boxes) and at some point you will have an 'A HA' moment and that shelf Queen will emerge blinking not winking into the light infused moment of your next photographic mission of utmost importance.
Carrying on with the 10 in camera images in a 10 year old Nikon...on the beach at Carantec and close to Meneham on the Northern Brittany coast, Weather for shooting this kind of image has been exceptional with lots of bright light whilst not being oppressively hot. One above is 10 in camera shots from left to right with a tweak in lightroom...now then it was so bright I had to stop right down and in doing so uncovered a sea of boulders on my sensor, time for a deep clean methinks.
Thanks for all the visits from around the world, China in top spot for the last 3 weeks, many thanks.
last quarter sales were passable with book cover sales throughout Europe and Video clips going to Japan , America and France, mind you I have discovered that the best way to make money out of Photography is not only to sell all your gear on that Ebay but be a Photographic agent and harvest the commission...until the next time.
Jobs done early today so a bit of a continuation of shooting 10 multi images in camera on a 10 year old Nikon D700. Bright and sunny so I strapped the 105mmf2.8 micro Nikkor on and had a try at a few shooting techniques, twirling, walking towards or away from just to get a better idea of what works in camera as opposed to stacking up layers in Photoshop.. So shooting aperture priority and varying the ISO I shot these....with the aperture shut right down the one thing that stood out was a few blodges of muck on the sensor so I'll have a waft and try and clear them. Straight into light room for a mainly 16:9 crop and a touch of clarity with some shadow lightening...yep that's it no eye ball aching computer sessions...mind you if I use these for anything commercial I'll have to titivate the sensor dust but for a blog post....meh.....
10 years on since the Nikon D700 was introduced, technically a museum piece but even after dropping mine several times , having it launched off various car seats, having to replace all the rubber grips and countless eyepieces...well it's still going, so why not a project based on 10 and the ability of my Nikon D700 to shoot 10 multiple images in camera....now for those who have been here before you probably know that I will push at a cameras creative boundaries and see what happens, sometimes it's a sack of files for the recycle bin and then at others...well. So there will be a Gallery for these but as this is my first day I thought I'd share a few from the Summer market at Guerlesquin and on the coast at the Roches d'Argent across the bay from Locquirec on the North Breton coast.
So most of the work in camera with a reframe and tweak in Lightroom, but the minimum I can get away with, I'll throw a minimal amount of Photoshop at them when it gets to the publishing stage but this lot are hot out of the camera, enjoy, leave a comment or shake head in despair, until the next time.
I'll go into camera settings later and also publish some close up detail from these files...eye popping.
I wanted to convey the speed and action of the bikes (and entourage ) flashing past so I turned the ISO down to it's lowest went to shutter priority and set at 1/30th shooting RAW with the Nifty Fifty no filters just trying to pan as the action flew past, opened from Lightroom into Photoshop as a layer stack and a bit of opacity faffling with the top layers with a copy layer desaturated in multiply mode...
and masked in where I need it...phew...Photoshop waffle...sometimes it hurts....here are some more
Now then I usually do this with a bog standard studio style one flash/brolley tethered to a laptop plonk people down and blat away system, but hey let's go all 'on trend' this year with a loose free and easy instagrammy style. So aperture priority using the on camera flash set down to 100 iso and of course the irreplaceable nifty fifty...aperture from F4 to 5.6 shoot into the sun at most opportunities.... just a mere waft in lightroom and good to go.
Tour de France came flying through the Breton countryside yesterday, blink and they've gone, but there is a huge entourage of vehicles that come piling through before hand, most chucking promotional material in a scattergun approach to marketing, so before I post some bike shots here's a taste of the speed and mix that came through.
So panning with a nifty fifty, iso as low as it would go and shutter priority set at 1/30th, photoshop bits are copy layer desaturated in multiply mode and masked out...back with the bikes soon.
In a world full of blogs I always welcome the folk who spend the time to bob in , have a look around and leave muttering and shaking their collective heads.. and with the tools available I can always see where folk are bobbing in from and it's usually a fair old mix, lot from China, all the western european states and USA with regular callers from Nigeria and the middle east and then... all of a sudden there are visits from Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan and Romania, all from referring website and also with an increase in 3 letter acronyms in the search results now it could be nothing, I've contacted my website provider to see what they say but there is also the possibility of crypto currency mining.
Now here is a link to Quartz about how to spot anything happening in the dusty bowels of your computer...I'm off to have a play with Task manager... be safe out there folks, you may never know who is creeping in unannounced through your back door!!
I was at Pont Aven shooting some video clips and this strong winter light was causing all kinds of exposure problems, 1/50th at 25fps even at the lowest video iso of 100 meant I was still over exposing fully stopped down...so a quick rummage in the crusty bits of the camera bag to find the ND10x filters which meant some work was done although it's an almighty faff with screw in NDs to focus, screw them back on and get filming ( I know get some Lee ones) anyhow after filming I took a trip to Trevignon and as the tide was out did some rock clambering to get a bit of seascape clips and then thought meh...why not some Long exposures...and here they are, well just a few..I've probably bored you to tears with all this previous waffle ..may your visit from the beast from the east be brief but full of Photo opps...
There are so many photography apps out there and I do admit to downloading far too many in my search for something that I could find useful...don't get me started about light meters though..I've got a full screen of those little blighters..anyhow I've used this one before a few times it's LogExPro
Now all the next images are done with this...I'm using either 2 or 8 seconds for the exposures and as they are on the iphone I've given them a tweak in Lightroom Mobile or whatever they've named it now..puled them off the icloud and walloped them on here...the trick is getting the movement you want matched to the time that you are using..now there are tools in LongExPro that enable you to wind back time and I'm sure if you wanted to you could combine various 'saved' states of the images and bring them together in Photoshop or whatever flavour of imaging software you partake of..
Now all these images are from a coastal walk I did at Carantec over looking the Chateaux de Taureaux yesterday so a lot of bare trees and picket fences in this strong winter light we are having at the moment...here are some more.
2 things got me working on this...the awful weather..okay easily combated with the right clothes but it's been so cold and so wet...we've had a tanker here to pump out lying water..the wells are all full and there is nowhere else for it to go...and the reception that Retrograde got...many hits from all over the place. So I've reworked and standardised a clump of mono images but with hardly any thematic discourse...just stuff I've done over the years and to be honest...mainly with my hard working and totally reliable Nikon 20mm F2.8 and all these conversions have been done in Photoshop CC...sometimes the 20mm had an ND110 screwed on and sometimes not so if the weather is grim with you I hope looking at these may pass a bit of time..
...the animation of...or cinemagraphs or never ending looped thingy.... I seem to have cracked it but to what purpose?? Could always boost my Instagram profile (!) once you have the formula though chopping up short clips into seamless rolling images is quite mesmerising here are some mind altering images from Armand Djicks that could be classed as eyeball popping and something to fill those long winter months faffing around on your computer trying to get something close ....not quite seamless but amazing work... they do end up as large files though so please excuse the 'squashed pixel nature' of the files I'm posting I'll leave you with another one
Nothing like sitting around waiting for that new piece of kit to be delivered, tracking it online , seeing it's out for delivery and then giving a shrug as the online tracking page shows it's back in the depot...a story played out many hundreds of times over the Christmas period....oh Happy New Year peeps...so I've had a bit of a look back on the Manchester years...all the images above are from there and so, I thought why not whack a few together whilst I'm waiting for the pack to arrive, it's a fluid Pan Tilt system so that should open up a few more video possibilities...anyway these are from a period of 4 years or so...now here's the thing I used to do talks to Camera Clubs usually with a sackful of this type of thing to show, it sometimes felt as though I was in my pants eviscerating hamsters by some of the reaction, but there again I didn't set out to please all of the people all of the time just try and get the images out of my head..happy daze.....and who is not to say I may run back to this once I get all the videoing out of my system....(260 now online at getty if you want to snatch a look) right back to forlornly looking out of the window wishing my parcel would arrive...maybe tomorrow.
Happy New year one and all, greeted with howling gales, heavy rain interspersed with hail so time to sit down for a bit of a faff. So no sniggering at the back this is my first animated looping GIF as well as looking at layering video files up....meh...I really have learnt a lot from just this one image and there are plenty of how to do it things out there on the web, I'm still learning so I wouldn't be as bold as to stick something online with a 'This is how it's done' label smacked on to it...any way...I seem to have got the hang of saving...now just a jump into making them seamless, beats standing out in the wind and rain and like yesterday..exfoliating sandstorm and wind whipped plankton up at Keremma...dedication.... ..Bonne annee, bonne fête et bisou bisou
So much rain...I know it's not snow and photogenic opportunities for rain are quite limited, especially when it's tied in with the howling gales we have here up in the hills. It's all a bit frustrating, I have all my Cyanotype negatives and paper sorted, no sunlight so they are just lying around, went out video shooting at Meneham the other day and the wind was causing the tripod to shake so that was a waste of time and although I've managed to secure a lot of DP paper for the 10 x 8 pinhole camera the complete grey fug out of light and aforementioned howling gale /driving rain combo puts that on the back boiler as well...so...looks like it might be a full session of thinking up keywords..now one of the good things...no great things about uploading clips to Getty is that they only want a maximum of 8 keywords for video clips...then they add all the rest, which I think is a good deal compared to uploading photographs which can cause intense brain ache/ despair/rsi and the even better news is that I'm almost up to date with all the video stuff I've shot, so click on the image above and it will whisk you over to Getty where you can just roll over to get an idea of the motion in the images...180 and rising......better use of time than standing on a sand dune, howling gale in your face and soggy camera equipment to pack away for a sunnier time.
I've made my eyes bleed and head hurt by watching (almost) every training tutorial on the merits of After Effects and Premiere...there are things in there that I would use if I was film making rather than clip producing...that's what I do at the moment 10 to 15 seconds of somewhere at sometime that might be of interest to someone... so Photoshop...there is a 'Motion' workspace available for one to take the bat to imagery and beat it into something desirous but as I have over...I can't believe this 25 years of acronym based image bashing in Photoshop ... how can this be as, if I don't look in the mirror, I'm only 26...so I stick with the 'Photography' workspace and add Timeline from the 'Window' drop down menu...then you can save it as a 'New Workspace' with whatever tabs , bells and whistles you like, and that is the workspace you see above...Home, comfy, somewhere to put my feet up and bask in the glow of flaming jpegs..
So I've slung together some timelapses and one bit of slo-mo (60 fps taken down to 25fps) with some more tinkling from Barryvan off of that free music archive site... cobbled up in that comfy Photoshop window that I call home.
It must be getting near Christmas around here because the barking mad stuff has started...I love what they do at Chateaux Trevarez each year..it's usually LEON which of course is NOEL backwards and that's the slant they apply to it. This year we have Alice in Wonderland, okay not really Christmas but fits in with the general celebratory ethos here...What no Boxing Day !!! you bet cha...back to work and no messing so why not adopt Alice as a Christmas theme. I've got to say it really is quite impressive as most of the exhibits are constructed from rolled up corrugated card and papier mache. So here is a selection of photo ramblings from this non festive yuletide festivity.!!!
Tech notes..Nikon D750, 50mm f1.8 at between F2 and F3.2 1600 iso hand held a wafty Lightroom mono conversion(could have done it in camera I suppose) and cropped 16 : 9
You may have got the impression that I'm always at the seaside slip sliding, time lapsing and generally trying to not get wet feet...now that's partially true..there is so much material around this quite magnificent coastline to keep me occupied until my eyes really fade and a comfy chair and daytime TV become the mainstay of my waking hours...but there is also a great deal of undiscovered country, especially around where I live in the Parcs d'Armorique in Central Brittany. So above is a selection of my clips off of that Getty images and they all happen to be from this patch of land I have and am grappling nature with for dominance...equal on points at the moment but getting there. So I've linked the above image to the web page and you can roll over and they'll play or click on them and just press play.
Overhauled my new slider as there was far too much play in the auto tracking doohickey but now everything is as tight as tight can be...whether this will blow the stepper motor I'll find out in a few minutes as I'll do a bit of testing...onwards...ever onwards
So I've spent a crazy amount of time learning as much as I need to know about Adobe Premiere and After Effects...and then....and then...I realise I can do all I need to do in Photoshop.. DOH!!!!!!
Still it may come in useful at some point...so here is a little set of clips mainly from October from up on the Northern Breton coast, the crop is in a 24 to 9 proportion, you've got to be so careful on the mono conversion as you are dealing with teeny tiny non raw files so if it's blown it's blown but the D750 does a good job on the tonal range EV. Music is from freemusicarchive ..some mad stuff in there but if you kiss enough frogs you'll find a Prince. This is rendered out as an H264 mp4 HQ 1920 x 720 and should look okay as long as you are not trying to stick it onto a 60" monster TV
It's been, as ever, a good learning exercise...oh and TFI friday yet again everyone...see you on the other side.
Now as well as a lot of video clips I'm doing time lapse, all kinds of subjects, chuck them at the barn door see what sticks...now in the Nikon D750 you have the option of taking a time lapse in the 'old' fangled way of a great run of images which you then cobble together in your favourite programme to produce your clip ...and you can sit back and be aghast at all the faults that pop up..the one above is a case in point...variance in exposures and color balance...all is not lost because there is a programme that sorts this out and I've just downloaded a trial to see how well it does it's called LRT timelapse
I'll give it a go in that 5 minute window of nothingness that I'm still trying to find...now back to the D750...it lets you record a timelapse but as a movie, which having peeked into a few forums gets some raw munching folk a weency bit hot under the collar...but for me it's a perfect dovetail joint fit...it allows exposure smoothing, auto iso and all the other doohickey tricks that are tucked away in your D750 menu system and you can shoot in aperture or shutter priority not locking everything down in manual so here is one I made earlier, well yesterday in fact, the very one where the 2 blokes with semi automatics stopped by to say 'Bonjour'... So this was shot in Timelapse Movie mode in aperture priority, auto iso and left to do it's thing...just a waft of levels in Photoshop and ...here is the real kicker..a file size of 6mb not 450 stonking Raw files...
What's all this then????
An unyeilding torrent of Photo babbel full of unconfirmed facts and manufactured photo drivel.. take from it what you like, it won't change the world but may leave you feeling nauseous...