Monday, May 31, 2010

Apple ipad for photography?

Hello everyone!

The official launch of the new Apple ipad for Australia was on the 28th of May and it wasn't till a couple of days later that I actually got a chance to try these new gadgets. Before handling it, my thoughts of the ipad was that it was just a big iphone and a mini mac laptop and there wasn't really anything that would persuade me to buy something like this. After handling it yesterday, I still think its not worth the money and that it would be a luxury to have this. I'm not saying its crap because its obviously an innovative product and a success if people crowd outside and wait in line in the early morning just to get one, I'm thinking that at the moment its not for me. I already have an iphone and in the near future I'll be getting a laptop (eyes on a VAIO or macbook pro). From a photographer's point of view though, it may have some advantages.

  • The display - I always loved the display of apple computers, whether it be from my iphone or a macbook pro. So because of the larger screen its good for photographers to view photos.
  • Digital Portfolio - this is the main reason I can think of why photographers would buy this product. It can store your portfolio and can be shown to prospective clients in a neat and professional manner.
  • Applications - there are so many apps that would be useful for the ipad such as quick editing tools and displays.

    Thats about all I can think of at the moment but in time I'm sure the ipad will have more features to  cater for photographers. Maybe with the new version of the ipad but we'll see. On the downside however, the ipad lacks a lot of features that a laptop would better offer.

    • No flash support - viewing sites that require flash has been one of my main concerns with the iphone and with the ipad its not different.
    • No USB - without a card slot for a compact flash, it would be a hassle to transfer your photos from your camera to the ipad.
    • Software - imaging programs such as photoshop, lightroom and aperture will not work on the ipad (this probably would have been the deal breaker for me).

      There are a lot more ups and downs to a photographer buying an ipad but for me it doesn't seem worth it at the moment.

      Thanks for reading!

      Friday, May 21, 2010

      Overdue Photo Updates

      Hello everyone!

      Its been so long since I last blogged and for the reason for that is because there have been so many things going on and plus I have been quite sick for the past week or so. I was so sick that I missed one of the events I was meant to take photos at which was the Mother's Day Classic Fun Run at the domain which was on the 9th of May. It would've been a great opportunity to attend that event but I have to put my health first but I will have the opportunity to take photos next year as I have already confirmed with the organizers.

      Still on events, I had the opportunity to take photos for a costume party that I was hired for. It was an interesting meet during the day and I had a lot of fun meeting new people and they were all in pirate costumes playing lawn bowls. That was a very different setting for me. Plus, I never understood the rules and objectives of lawn bowls. I guess I never will. All in all, it was a great day, good whether, good people and good food.

      Happy Birthday Carly!

      I have a few other events to take photos at for the next couple of weeks and after that week I'm off to Melbourne for PMA which actually is called the Digital Life Expo in Australia this year. I can't wait to check out all the gear and learn from pro photographers and more. Its a shame that Sony won't be there though, as it would have been a great chance to try out their new cameras, the NEX-3 and the NEX-5 but I guess it can wait. Also I would've liked to ask them a few questions about their DSLRs but I guess that will have to wait as well. 

      When I get back from Melbourne, its time to do a few long awaited photo shoots with a few people. One of them will be with the BDC crew which I will notify them of soon and a few model shoots which will follow after. 

      I will also update the 319 project soon after this post.

      That's all for now. Thanks for reading everyone =.)

      Tuesday, May 11, 2010

      Updated: Sony NEX Cameras Announced

      Hello everyone!

      Today Sony introduced a new type of camera to compete against Olympus and Panasonic's Micro Four Thirds cameras and Samsung's NX series, the NEX camera. Sony introduced two similar cameras to this new category, the NEX-3 and NEX-5. The NEX cameras feature a 14.2 megapixel APS HD CMOS sensor, high resolution tilt/flip LCD screens, various video recording styles, DSLR image quality photos and a whole bunch of shooting options in this tiny body. 

      Here are the specs of the cameras. Taken from the Sony site.

      Resolution14.2 effective megapixels (approx.)14.2 effective megapixels (approx.)
      Image sensorExmor APS HD CMOS (23.4x15.6mm)Exmor APS HD CMOS (23.4x15.6mm)
      ProcessorBIONZ™ image processorBIONZ™ image processor
      Lens compatibilityE-mount; (with adaptor, MF only, exclude power zoom lenses) Sony α lens, Minolta and Konica Minolta AF lensE-mount; (with adaptor, MF only, exclude power zoom lenses) Sony α lens, Minolta and Konica Minolta AF lens
      ISO RangeISO 200 - 12800ISO 200 - 12800
      Video shootingAVCHD: max. 1920 x 1080i, 17Mbps
      MP4: max. 1440 x 1080i, 12Mbps
      MP4: max. 1280 x 720 p, 9Mbps
      Continuous advance shootingUp to 2.3 fps / 7 fps in speed priority mode (AF/AE fixed)Up to 2.3 fps / 7 fps in speed priority mode (AF/AE fixed)
      Precision digital zoom10x10x
      Autofocus systemContrast AF (25 multi-point
      /Centre-weighted/Flexible Spot)
      Contrast AF (25 multi-point
      /Centre-weighted/Flexible Spot)
      Metering systemMetering by main image sensor (49-segment Multi light metering, Centre-weighted, Spot)Metering by main image sensor (49-segment Multi light metering, Centre-weighted, Spot)
      Shooting functionsFace Detection; Smile Shutter; Sweep Panorama (3D ready); iAUTO; Auto HDR; Anti Motion Blur Mode; Hand-held Night ShotFace Detection; Smile Shutter; Sweep Panorama (3D ready); iAUTO; Auto HDR; Anti Motion Blur Mode; Hand-held Night Shot
      Creative stylesStandard, Vivid, Portrait,  Landscape, Sunset, B/WStandard, Vivid, Portrait,  Landscape, Sunset, B/W
      Display7.5cm (3”) Wide type XtraFine TruBlack LCD (921k dot resolution), angle adjustable 80◦ up/45◦ down7.5cm (3”) Wide type XtraFine TruBlack LCD (921k dot resolution), angle adjustable 80◦ up/45◦ down
      Weight & size287g (10.1oz) with battery and Memory Stick PRO Duo; 110.8×58.8×38.2mm (WxHxD) - Min. Depth 24.2mm (without grip & mount)297g with battery and Memory Stick PRO Duo; 117.2×62.6×33.4mm (WxHxD) - Min. Depth 25.4mm (without grip & mount)
      Anti-dust systemCoating on low pass filter, plus image-sensor shiftCoating on low pass filter, plus image-sensor shift
      InterfacesHDMI out (with PhotoTV HD and BRAVIA Sync); USB 2.0 Hi-SpeedHDMI out (with PhotoTV HD and BRAVIA Sync); USB 2.0 Hi-Speed
      Shooting stamina330 shots approx. (CIPA standard)330 shots approx. (CIPA standard)
      MediaMemory Stick Pro Duo, Pro-HG Duo; SD memory card, SDHC memory card, SDXC memory cardMemory Stick Pro Duo, Pro-HG Duo; SD memory card, SDHC memory card, SDXC memory card
      Supplied accessoriesShoulder strap; Battery; Charger; USB cable; CD‑ROM; FlashShoulder strap; Battery; Charger; USB cable; CD‑ROM; Flash
      ColoursBlack, silverBlack, silver, red

      Sony NEX Demo Video

      Sony also announced three lenses using a new mount (E-mount) with the camera, the 16mm f2.8 pancake lens, 18-55mm f3.5-5.6 and the 18-200mm f3.5-5.6 (to be released at a later date) lens. There is also an adapter to use Sony Alpha DSLR cameras but these won't support auto-focus.

      NEX Camera attached with Optional Viewfinder

       NEX Camera attached with flash (supplied)

       NEX Camera attached with microphone

      NEX Camera attached with Alpha Mount Adapter
      The cameras are expected to begin shipping next month and following FIFA a firmware update will be released enabling the camera to achieve 3D panoramic photos with Sony's Bravia televisions.

      There is more tech news and news on photo shoots that I've been organizing with Marione and hopefully we can get them off the ground soon. I'll update on this soon.

      Friday, May 7, 2010

      How Photography Connects Us?

      Hello everyone! Heres a quick post of something I stumbled on while I was looking up things on photography. I found this interesting because the speaker, David Griffin, who is the photo director of National Geographic gave a presentation about how photography connects us and how images evoke certain feelings and different ways of thinking. He portrayed this idea through the works of a selected group of photojournalists and also through his own experience to give the audience something more to think about when they take photos in the world around us. So if you have some spare time, (this is just under 15mins) take a look and check out these great images from these photojournalists.

      Wednesday, May 5, 2010

      Photos #72-79

      exposure: 1/8sec f/stop: 3.5 iso: 400

      I was at Starbucks on George Street with Marione enjoying some green tea, discussing various things until I could hear my stomach grumbling. I didn't feel like eating Macdonalds and wasn't bothered walking elsewhere, so I settled for a sausage roll. Not the healthiest choice but I didn't want to spend more on a wrap. Anyway, I was feeling a bit artistic and drew a happy face and a sad face with tomato sauce on the sausage rolls that were cut up. Enjoy this amazing effort of artwork. 
      exposure: 1/10sec f/stop: 2.8 iso: 800

      Today, Marione spotted out this interesting stone figure of a toy bear that was stuck to the monorail pillars. Not only was this a random thing to find but it also said culture. Anyone else in Sydney seen anything like this around the city?

         exposure: 1/8sec f/stop: 2.8 iso: 800

      And here we have Marione, my partner in crime and my main supporter with anything and everything I do. I honestly don't know what I would do without her because shes helped me in so many ways that if I list them all, this would be a really long post. Just like to say thank you for everything you've done and supporting me through my ups and downs and for being there for me.   

       exposure: 1/5sec f/stop: 8 iso: 400
      Converted to black and white

       I'm sure for the people that live in Sydney and go to the city and visit Pitt Street, you would have seen this person. He's a homeless person that shines shoes in front of Myers. I admire that even though hes homeless, hes still trying to make a living and works on donations from people that pass by as well. I spoke to him before I took this photo and hes a really nice person.

       exposure: 1/4000sec f/stop: 2.8 iso: 200

      I picked up Marione after she finished work at the Rosemount Fasion Show and we walked to buy some soup and as we were walking she was telling me that I should take a photo of the buildings with reflections cause they look pretty interesting. I took a few shots and I also ended up taking more of the surrounding buildings and this is the end result. I also thought it was pretty cool that my lens was wide enough to fit these buildings in the frame. 

       exposure: 1/60sec f/stop: 3.5 iso: 125

      I was at Centennial Park with my mum and my sister and we stumbled onto this exhibition of photographers works and they are amazing! Its hosted by ACMP (Australian Commercial Media Photographers) and its on between 28 April and 5 June. They were still setting up with the exhibition when I went but I'm going to go back again soon with Marione. I encourage photo enthusiasts and anyone interested and bothered to attend this. There's a lot of talent shown through these images and I hope to be exhibited here someday next to these great photographer's works. 
      exposure: 1/200sec f/stop: 8 iso: 125
      I was out with my mum and sister again and this time we were at Bondi Beach enjoying the sun and eating some fish and chips and some prawns that mum wanted to get as well. I took this photo when we were leaving to go back to the car at the lights and even though this was a random shot, I like it because of the shadows. If you didn't know, I'm the one that is second from the left =.)

      exposure: 1/3sec f/stop: 5.6 iso: 800

      I love finding these random things in the city. Actually, Marione found it again. Props to her for the find and this was in front of Gloria Jeans on Pitt and Park for anyone that wants to check out this random thing. Its a remote control that says "STOP!" on it and there are different ones on nearly every pillar of the monorail. Some were taken off which is unfortunate because I wanted to see what they were but the ones that Marione and I ended up finding were pretty cool. 

      Tuesday, May 4, 2010

      Updated: The Nifty 50

      Hello everyone!

      I've been so busy with heaps of things lately but I finally have the time to blog. This is something I recommend every photographer get whether you're an amateur or a pro, the 50mm prime lens. Its the lens I think should be in everyone's camera collection. Its a sharp, fast and very affordable lens to own. Its the only prime lens I have in my kit at the moment and it is without a doubt the sharpest lens I own and its 25 years old.

      My Minolta 50mm f1.7 lens

      Generally, prime lenses are very lightweight due to their construction so it wouldn't be as heavy as a zoom lens which makes it very easy to carry around with you. They're great tools for photographers as I find that it challenges the user to compose their images in the frame by moving around instead of zooming in like they would with a zoom lens. The 50mm is also known to be a good portrait lens and very popular among photographers for this reason.

       Minolta 50mm lens mounted on a Sony a350 body

      These are one of the reasons why I love the Sony system. With the ability to use legacy lenses, old Minolta lenses work perfectly and with in body stabilization added, I'm able to use this lens at longer shutter speeds. Of course there are other versions of this lens that are faster from Sony and Sigma but you only need one and I got this for a really good price online.

      I will be doing a few events this month and like I said before in one of my previous entries, its going to get busy! PMA is next month and I'm in the middle of booking my flight to Melbourne and perhaps staying there for three or four days, so expect a few videos on my youtube account where I'll be able to check out new gadgets, have the chance to talk to a lot of photographers and learn a whole lot from them.

      Vivid Sydney is back for 2010 and I encourage everyone to check out the light show around Circular Quay and the Rocks because its going to be awesome! I went there so many times last year and I had a chance to meet a lot of photographers and experiment with my equipment. It was then when I really learned about what my camera was really capable of and for anyone that attends this, they won't regret going here. Vivid Sydney starts on the 27th of May and ends 21st of June so thats plenty of time to enjoy Sydney lit up in a creative and spectacular way.

      Opera House - Vivid 2009

       To tech news, I am anxiously waiting for Sony's new ILC (Interchangeable Lens Camera) due to be announced May 11, just in time for FIFA. I also had the chance to handle Samsung's answer to the micro four thirds camera, the NX10. When I was fiddling around with the controls and taking a few shots, I found that it was very slow to focus and still quite large in comparison to Olypan's (Olympus and Panasonic) cameras which was rather strange. Back to Sony, they really need to fill in their DSLR gap between the a550 and a850 which was once filled with their now discontinued a700. They need a top APSC body to compete with the Canon EOS 7d and Nikon d300s. I am patiently waiting for the a700 replacement (with a lot of many other photographers who have Sony) as my next camera body and then after that, I'll make the jump to full frame but that won't be for a long time. 

      I shall leave it at that with my postings and I'll post my update to the 319 project before I go to sleep tonight.

      Thanks for reading everyone and take care! =.)