Tag: canon

June 2017 Trip Photo Highlights

June 2017 Trip Photo Highlights

I definitely had a great time on this trip, but not just as a ship-going passenger. The photographer in me always loves the chance to snap a great photo, so here are some of my favorites from the whole journey.

I took most of these pictures, with the obvious exception of the ones of me which were taken by the photographers onboard the ship. Since I don’t often like to take the time to set up all of my studio gear and get all dressed up for a selfie, I enjoy taking the opportunity for a nice professionally-shot image like the ones I can get onboard.

I got some great shots of a few guys up on the Flowrider too. I got a chance to chat with them, and made sure to get their e-mails so I could send them the shots after I’d gotten home.

Enjoy these shots – there may be some repeats from the live blogs, but there may be some new ones you might not have seen. Either way, thank you all again so much for taking this trip with me, and I look forward to sharing more with you on my next trips!


Trip Day 1: Made It to NJ, Cruise in T-36ish hours

Trip Day 1: Made It to NJ, Cruise in T-36ish hours

It’s been a long day. I woke up at 3:30am Central time, and I’m writing this from my phone at 10:30pm Eastern Time from my brother’s house in Toms River, NJ.

The flight here was uneventful aside from some nasty turbulence; nothing that was overly scary. After watching a lot of stuff on planes and learning how tough they are in their construction, I’m really not fazed when the ride is bumpy. Those planes are built to take quite the beating, far more than any ordinary turbulence. 

It took a little while to get my rental car, but I was finally on the road by about 12:30 and made it here just before 2-ish. I didn’t care about the waiting, I’m a pretty easygoing guy to begin with, and hey I’m on vacation. 

I’m staying with my brother for a few days, and after having dinner with my cousin and her daughter, it’s time to wind this day down. I’m feeling the whole “being up for a long time” thing… so I’ll keep this one short and sweet for now. 

I’ll share this beautiful view to end things with:

Got My First Roll Of Black & White Film Back From The Lab

Got My First Roll Of Black & White Film Back From The Lab

One of the many great allures of shooting film is shooting in black & white. It’s been a very long time since I’d shot actual black and white, as opposed to taking color pictures and removing the color in post-production. The last time I shot anything in black & white was easily 20+ years ago, maybe longer, when I had my Pentax K1000.

I shot a roll of Ilford HP5 ISO 400, which I was told was a good all-around film for getting into this type of photography. For my first roll of non-color in a long time, I’m quite happy. Seeing these pictures is making me want to shoot more of it.

I’ve also learned that one should use filters in front of the lens to increase contrast, so I found a great deal on a few color filters at my local camera shop. I’m definitely excited to shoot more black & white shots.

All of the images below are straight from the camera, no post-processing has been done.


Got My First Roll Of Color Film Back From The Lab

Got My First Roll Of Color Film Back From The Lab

Got my first round of pictures back from the lab – I’m optimistic! It was a roll of Kodak Ektar 100 color negative film, which the lab processed via a “dip and dunk” method. I’m told this is the best way to process film, but I haven’t a clue what it means or how it differs from other labs. The lab then scanned my negatives and electronically sent me high-resolution TIFF files which I can store digitally. I’ll be keeping the negatives from any film I shoot archived in case I find anything I want to print, as I’m told this will produce the best quality.

The good news:

  • The camera works! It’s always an unknown when it comes to buying used gear on eBay. Positive feedback has been left!
  • The light meter is fairly accurate. Most of the shots I took the meter was around the centerline, maybe plus or minus half a stop or so. I’m cool with that.
  • Kodak Ektar 100 looks very nice – appears to have a warm tone to it. It could be just my interpretation or my unfamiliar-to-film eye. I’ve got a roll of Fujifilm 400H ISO 400 in my camera now, so maybe I’ll take some of the same shots with that roll and compare.

The bad news:

  • Not that bad: I’m missing the first 2 images that I shot… I remember the first image I shot was of a few things in my office.  Perhaps they didn’t come out? It would make sense that pictures on the extreme ends of the film might be the most likely to not come out? Film photographers, your thoughts?
  • The camera is annoyingly heavy… will be a little annoying for travel…

I’m waiting on a roll of Ilford HP5 Black-and-White pictures to come back, and I’ll post a few of those once I get those scans.

All of the pictures are shown exactly as they had been shot from the camera with the exception of minor blemish cleanups on a few. No color correction has been made.

All in all, I’m feeling pretty good. What do you think?


Taking Photography To Another Level

Taking Photography To Another Level

I picked this baby up on eBay since I’d been wanting to get back into film photography. It’s a Canon EOS 1n, a professional-grade film camera. It works with (almost) all of my existing lenses, so it seemed like a good fit. I just shot my first roll of Kodak Ektar 100 and can’t wait to get it developed.  I should have thought this through a little better, since this camera is…well… a bit… heavy.

It’s a boat anchor!

I’m going to have to get creative with carrying this when I go traveling, but after trying “smaller form factor” cameras and not liking them for being too small, I’ll make it happen.

The camera was a joy to shoot with, I’m looking forward to taking more great pictures in the future.

Do you have any suggestions or tips for getting back into film photography? Please feel free to leave comments below. Thanks!


Amazing Clouds

Amazing Clouds

Mother Nature does some weird things sometimes… but also will randomly throw us a reward with visuals like this. I happened to have my DSLR with me, so I had to pull over and snap this. 

My Photography; The Past, Present, and Future

My Photography; The Past, Present, and Future

It’s no secret, I love photography. 

My first digital SLR was an Olympus E-500, which I bought… gosh… I forget how long ago. I bought it as a kit shortly before it was discontinued. I had two kit lenses with it, and I remember it taking very nice shots for being fairly inexpensive. I then upgraded to a Canon Rebel XSi, mainly since I wanted more choices for lenses. This was my first foray into the land of the bigger-brand cameras.

I shot on the Canon platform for many years, and I’d done all kinds of shoots; engagement, casual portraits, travel… and had great results. I also had many fellow photographer friends who constantly sung the praises of their respective cameras each time we talked about what we were using. Nikon guys loved their Nikons; Sony folk loved their Sony’s, and so on. Being the inquisitive and curious individual that I am, I wanted to see what life was like on the other side of the pond.

Some would say the grass was greener with a Nikon. Others say it was so with a Canon. Some said one brand’s lenses were better. Some say the tech is best in a Sony body. Some said one brand was better for certain types of photography. Some said ergonomics were better on one than another. I made the jump to Nikon in 2013 to find out for myself what it was like. 

It was actually a lot of fun.

I sold my Canon 5Dmk3 and all of my Canon stuff to make the jump to a Nikon D7100. 

I shot with my trusty Nikon for 4 years. We traveled together, we did portrait shoots, and lots of fun and casual shoots.  I found that the grass wasn’t greener, it was still just as lush and green as it was on the Canon side, it was just…a different feeling grass. 

The tech wasn’t any better or worse, and the ergonomics weren’t any better or worse. The sensor on the D7100 is a crop-frame size, versus the 5Dmk3 being full-frame, but the images I got were just as good with plenty of detail and dynamic range. 

In the end, I learned that the grass isn’t greener switching to a different camera platform. There are technical differences between them, if you want to take the time to find them out, but photography (like any art form) is very much about “feel” for me. The grass is still just as green and lush if you know how to properly maintain it. Lawns don’t take care of themselves, they have to be cut, watered and maintained, much like someone’s skill in photography. Switching over got me excited about shooting again, and it forced me to “focus” on the craft, and not so much what gear I was using. 

Fast forward to this year, and I’d been wanting to look at upgrades for my trusty Nikon. For technical reasons I needed to make a change in camera bodies to be able to take my images to the next level. I’d been looking at the Nikon D810, because I wanted to upgrade to a body with a full-frame sensor. I’d had one in the past, and remembered what was possible with that versus what I’d had. Once I’d heard about the recent financial news from Nikon,  I started looking at the company in a different light; something just didn’t feel right about the whole situation. 

I knew from years back that making the jump from one platform to another isn’t all that easy, so I spoke to a few fellow photographer friends what they thought, and got mixed opinions. I asked if they thought Nikon’s news would mean the company would go under, or if it was just a bump in the road and they’d rebound. In the end, they’re a huge company with a huge following, so it’s quite possible nothing awful would come of this, but I still wasn’t feeling reassured. Maybe this was the signal I needed to start looking at some other options.  

After running some numbers and seeing where I was at, I figured out now was just as good of a time as any to make my upgrade to a full-frame camera, by going back to where I came from. 

With the Canon 5Dmk4 out now, the price on the 5Dmk3 was right within my budget. So, as of now I’m back in the Canon camp with the kit that I had before I switched over to Nikon. I’ve got a Canon 5Dmk3, with the 24-105 f/4L lens. 

I remember the reasons I made the switch in the first place, and am enjoying those all over again now. I’m excited about photography again. I now have a camera that gives me the technical upgrades I’ve been looking for to allow for more possibilities with my future photography. I don’t regret making this jump, or any of the jumps I’d made, because it’s all a matter of gaining experience. In the end, it’s a matter of cultivating the grass so it always stays green. 

If you’d like to see some of my pictures, please take a look at my newly-updated photography portfolio and online store by clicking here.