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The TPU Darkroom - Digital SLR and Photography Club

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Just a few photos I've taken whilst out and about. The melted aluminium was a flyscreen door that melted from the heat of the house going up during the bushfire
 

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My dog Bear, a Rottweiler, shot taken by my wife.
 

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All I've had time for is my damn, tiny back garden - we've had a very wet month. But here's a very wet Starling. Poor wee guy...

DSCF5048.jpg
 
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Beautiful shot!

Been meaning to try birds lately. The max zoom I have is just 200mm @ a very depressing f/6.3 though, so pretty sad. I have learned with normal ISO that I can crop quite a lot, though. I know places where I can be very close to different birds, too. So many opportunities with the wrong gear. On this crop body I think that 200mm could be enough reach in the right situations. And I've learned that I can crop quite heavily with this sensor up to ISO 800. The 24mp sensor that Canon used on it's final M-series cameras is actually surprisingly good. People online will have you thinking otherwise. But honestly the only thing not great about the whole camera is it doesn't have eye detect or good video capabilities. The AF is still better than a lot of the others in it range, performance-wise. Quick and accurate. Pretty good at picking up on movement and grabbing it.

So theoretically I might be able to do some BIF with it, if only I had that unicorn fast telephoto.

Probably will never pan-out, but I have to try. I could adapt the legendary EF teles to this body if I wanted, but at this point I've decided my next camera is probably going to be a nice mirrorless FF with a good native lens selection. That's way off, when I decide I want to spend $5000 or so bucks to get it going. For now, the way cheaper M5 does most things I want to do exceptionally well. The 32mm f/1.4 has insane resolution and all around exceptional IQ. I got the 11-22, which murders the old EF-M 10-18 I had in sharpness and contrast. The only tele they have is basic, that 55-200mm with a minimum aperture of f/6.3 at max focal length is a downer - it's like the one thing the line really needed before they just killed it, but I don't actually use teles enough to spend a couple thousand more for a better setup that has epic teles. IQ is still as good as most other good Canon lenses... just a bit narrow. Clearly not for the birds though, I bought it for landscape :cool:

Aint that something though? You get setup with something and then inevitably you hit another expensive limitation. Sometimes I think I'm not rich enough to do this as a serious hobby :laugh:
 

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I bought the Fuji (X-T30) because I was drawn by the controls. It's so much fun to work with. But I wish they had Canons lens ecosystem. Fuji are like the Apple of Cameras; they've kept their focus tech proprietary, so it's difficult to use adapters without losing autofocus or some clarity. I've yet to get out and try landscapes. I've got a 18-55mm F2.8-4 for trying that. Keep eyeing a 35mm F1.4......
 
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I bought the Fuji (X-T30) because I was drawn by the controls. It's so much fun to work with. But I wish they had Canons lens ecosystem. Fuji are like the Apple of Cameras; they've kept their focus tech proprietary, so it's difficult to use adapters without losing autofocus or some clarity. I've yet to get out and try landscapes. I've got a 18-55mm F2.8-4 for trying that. Keep eyeing a 35mm F1.4......
That's exactly what had me looking at the M5. People say you get used to funky controls but good physical controls are vital to me getting into a flow. I can't stand using clunky cameras. The M5 impressed me there, because it's scheme is similar to that same line of Fuji's. Dedicated exposure compensation knob. A free-spinning dial that you can use to adjust a whole slew of things - you assign up to 5 of them to it and cycle through with a button in the middle. You can swap which dials control which parts of exposure (even different layouts for different picture modes.) Since everything can have a dedicated dial, I can change every part of the exposure triangle simultaneously. And then there's the back dial with 4 more useful, programmable buttons. The back-button focus is super intuitive once set. Changing AF modes AND types is easy. Pretty much every button is user assignable. I like it because I can change pretty much every setting on the camera very very quickly without even pulling it away from my face.

It's actually amazing. I haven't seen too many cameras with such a wide range of intuitive control options with what is really a pretty simple layout. Even better, the touch screen is awesome, too. Many other more expensive cameras still don't get it right, and many are embarrassingly bad by comparison.

Stuff like that means a lot for me. Maybe it's because I have ADHD and my brain really only works well with immediate feedback, but I just find it helps keep me focusing on the subjects I want to photograph, the mechanics behind the images I want to create, and the different aspects of the scene as a whole. Frees up some brain juice for the art itself. It's hard for me to concentrate on what I'm doing when I have to go back and forth. I'm better when I can deal with multiple controls at once. Sometimes if I have to break away, I lose that sense of what I'm going for.

Fuji, I think might win-out in sensors a bit, and definitely in video. I really like the look of them, too. I almost bought one. But they are very boxed-in. Not sure on the AF, either. I've heard different things.

The early M series only had Canon's classic contrast detect, which was awful... slow, useless in anything put perfect light, searches constantly. The inclusion of DPAF later made them exceptional focusers... and the way it works it no longer relies so much on low f-numbers. Does respectably in low light... by the time it craps out you're looking at crappy ISO settings anyway. It tracks moving subjects really well and it's smooth. I actually leave it on continuous focus when off of the tripod and let it follow what I put it on... and unless you jerk it really fast, it holds perfect focus for every shot. If it had better burst capability it would be a truly good sports camera. Sony's the only one doing it better IMHO... their shit is absurd.

I will say, the M series is a rare exception to the glass diversity. It's already done with - they will never make a new M lens. The good news is that the ones they DID make perform really well and are small, light, and pretty inexpensive, especially for the image quality you get.

But yeah... no less boxed in. And right now with their R series, they can't figure out their feature sets/technical specs. The bodies are pretty big, the lenses are also big, and it's expensive glass. Very, very good glass. They may be some of the best ever made in that general range. But not cheap. Canon knows lens design like nobody's business. They're really going in on capitalizing on flange distance to make really fast lenses with the best optical quality. They're the same size as normal DSLR lenses, but because of that tend to outperform your typical mirrorless lenses, which more often sacrifice the enormous IQ potential of the shorter distance to make em smaller. I just wish they'd get their bodies sorted. The lenses are one of literally two reasons I even consider them at all, with the other being ergonomics and general usability.

I guess one thing I do have with the M is adaptability. I've got a cheap adapter for ef/ef-s lenses that actually has flawless AF. You lose nothing except for compactness. That was a factor. If I really wanted the good good, I would have a ton of options. Those old lenses may have been dropped now, but they'll continue being competitive for a long time and the used market is ridiculously full of them.

They bug me like crazy sometimes. Canon has all of the technology and experience to make perhaps the best all around mirrorless kits available right now... but it's like they can never quite figure out how to bring it all together.

Landscape is fun. I really like hiking and will stay out all day anyway, so it makes sense for me. I don't get a lot of opportunities for different locations these days, though.

I understand your wanting for a 35mm f/1.4 lol. My favorite for a while now is a 32mm f/1.4. Really versatile lens with good bokeh. The bokeh has ruined me though... I barely ever shoot at narrow apertures now. :laugh:
 
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Just picked up a Sony a6100 for my wife. Can't wait to see what she can do with it.
IMG_4615.JPG
 

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Meh. Went out to try moving objects or landscapes. Hit and miss. Got one flying crow in almost focus. Humped it through Capture One to make it more pretentious... :ohwell:

DSCF5150 (2).jpg
 
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I'm no photographer (I did go to an art college though), but here are some of the first photos we took with the new Sony a6100. Even in low light this thing rocks!samurai suit.jpgpeyton spring 2020.jpgme at my desk.jpg
 
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I got bored at work today... kinda tied up till next week. We can start big repair projects (such as refinishing the gym floor with new urethane,) but no point if EVERYTHING is gonna be shut down not long after. Most things we could do with nobody here will take 2 weeks at the least. 2 guys cutting down and refinishing a full gym floor takes some time, not to mention the weeks of off gassing.

Remember when I was joking about that fridge? What if I said it actually exists...?
IMG_1362-HDR.jpg

Ever seen anything like that? :D I hadn't. Rumor has it, it's one of the first residential fridges ever. :laugh: Realistically it is at least 30, maybe 40 years old. The greybeard who's been here for like 25 years says it was there before he was and looked old then. It works amazingly well. Better than a lot of modern ones, actually. It's just absolutely disgusting and loud. Barely suitable for drinks, though it keeps them ice cold. This is just a storage room where we dump tools, stock, and crap. May not look it but there is at least $100k worth of stuff in this hidden dungeon.

As a kid, I used to imagine schools had places like this. I never thought I'd see one for real lol.

I tried my EF-M 11-22mm for this one. It's a pretty good lens! Obviously at 11mm the barrel distortion is pronounced, but I don't think the vingnetting is too bad and the thing is surprisingly sharp and smooth closed-up tight. I've said it before, kills the venerated EF-S 10-18mm in every regard. I don't care what anyone says... that lens dumpster juice compared to this, and it's twice as big! Gotta remember to use the 11-22 more. I can't believe they ditched these M series lenses! Every single one I've used except the short kit lens is a great value, depending on how important really low apertures are to you. Personally, if all of my lenses had great bokeh like the 32mm f/1.4, I'd only abuse it, soo... o_O

I took this as a chance to try something different with editing, instead of that super-clean look I usually like. How gritty and nasty can I make things? Can I get an interesting picture out of a shitty old fridge? These are questions I need to answer.
IMG_1383-HDR.jpg

IMG_1394.jpg

Real talk, the textures are super-interesting me. I never realized that was something I liked. I'll have to keep an eye out for opportunities to exploit this look for *real* photos. I wish I had the ability to do this as a 16-year-old sneaking into abandoned mansions and businesses. Would've had a field day with my camera gear, just trying to catch the interesting side of all kinds of decay.

I don't know why, but I am like, irrationally fond of this one. It's somehow really soothing and nostalgic for me. Strong childhood memories in this little console, and that dull, dingy glow.
IMG_1389.jpg

Something about the colors, materials, and condensation reminds me of being very little, when we had a fridge like this in our little kitchen. It even makes those same humming and whirring noises, with loud relays kicking on and off. Ours wasn't remotely this bad, but sometimes it's crazy to think how different stuff looks now compared to things people often had back then. I remember friends having fridges like this, too. I'm not just talking the shape. It's that style. I start to feel old when I see them, even though they were old when I first saw one.

It also bolsters my theory that this model was a forerunner. Those instructions are obviously for someone who's never had a fridge before. :laugh:

Gotta love that EF-M 32mm. It really does take some nice wide-aperture close-ups. I was wary of it being nearly $500, but... yeah, it was worth it. I could ditch my tele and wide-angle for only that if I had to, just because of how I always seem to get my most flattering pictures through it. Criminally slept on in its brief time on the market.
 
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The bottom left of your 2nd last pic reminds me of the surface of Jupiter's moon Europa.

So, learned me some patience and continuous shutter action. Sparrows rock - they're cool little birds - noisy too.

DSCF5307.jpg
 
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Wow, amazing shot on that bird! Congrats!
 

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My daily local walk under quarantine. Deer down by the river. Don't be fooled; the dilapidated iron fence should give the 'ambience' away.

DSCF5583.2.jpg
 
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I decided to go back an edit an old photo... see what I'd do different, and what I've learned. For whatever reason I chose an exposure that was bad to begin with... part of the fun? So here we have the original photo...
IMG_0116-3.jpg

...dark, terrible noise floor (made worse by cropping a higher-ISO image,) silhouetting... but otherwise, at least I caught a somewhat interesting perspective (imo.) I like how it gets across that her head just whipped around - you just know intuitively that she has just turned to look without seeing where she's actually looking to. The angle and slight warpage goes well with that hyper-alert expression to give a little sense of action and tension. It has that startled vibe like "WHOA! watsgoinonhere?!" :p It's just too bad the exposure is weak.

I dunno. Some people might say this is fine, but to me the overall tones just make the image seem boring. Like, the overall balance of colors, tones, and lighting just doesn't have the energy to match. It don't think it's terrible but the subdued mood doesn't really fit. The window ate all of the light and dynamics - so you have a flat-looking window view against a flat-looking subject, while the composition is trying to convince you that something is happening. As Jared Polin would say, it's a snapshot.


And then, we have the edit from ~6 months ago.
IMG_0116-2.jpg

Eh, I tried to fix it up. Very little time put in... half considering it a loss already. At least it somewhat looks like a proper exposure, if not rather bleached out and 'dry' looking. Most of what I did was just basic adjustments. I think I used the adjustment brush to mask off the background noise and very slightly dim the window to make room for global shadows/blacks adjustments.

And here's what I came up with tonight. I found the limit for adjustment layers before LR starts to crash. Not even that much! Adobe REALLY needs to figure out a stellar way to optimize having things like lots of spot removal, or a lot of adjustment layers. I know it's not photoshop, but there must be a way to make it so the whole thing doesn't lag/almost crash because I used a handful of adjustment layers after knocking out 10-20 spots with the spot removal tool.
IMG_0116.jpg

I think it had a lot left in it! The noise just does not come out of the eyes... they were so dark in the original you can just only do so much. I figured if they're going to be a little blocky anyway, might as well give them an epic glow! :laugh: Adjustment layers to fix the distracting light from the window, and give it some bleed over the ear with a graduated filter. Bunch of color/contrast adjustments, though not as much as you might think. All I wanted to do was even-out the light on her fur without flattening-out the highlights. Tonemapping adjustments ended up being the answer for correcting the midtones affecting the fur - very, very useful to be able to define the mid point and shift the extremes further out. I was trying to dial it in with the contrast slider initially but it was just different variations of flat: super-flat and flat/harsh.

I wound up with something a bit fantastical and surreal, but I kind of like this look. May use it again for pets. I tried really, really hard to not fall into that 'trying too hard with fake HDR' trap with nasty splotching and fried colors. Just because I wanted exaggerated enhancements doesn't mean I can't be tasteful. My idea of what a good image is has changed a lot. It was a trip to uncover that as I went along. Weirdly enough, I think Skyrim modding is starting to influence me towards more fantastical pallets and light... and I don't know if that's good or not :laugh:

Lightroom is kind of scary powerful, isn't it. Give me a camera with a good enough sensor and I might never get an exposure right a day in my life. I'd just ruin myself making fancy edited images at web res.
 

the54thvoid

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I decided to go back an edit an old photo... see what I'd do different, and what I've learned. For whatever reason I chose an exposure that was bad to begin with... part of the fun? So here we have the original photo...
View attachment 151225
...dark, terrible noise floor (made worse by cropping a higher-ISO image,) silhouetting... but otherwise, at least I caught a somewhat interesting perspective (imo.) I like how it gets across that her head just whipped around - you just know intuitively that she has just turned to look without seeing where she's actually looking to. The angle and slight warpage goes well with that hyper-alert expression to give a little sense of action and tension. It's just too bad the exposure is weak.

I dunno. Some people might say this is fine, but to me the overall tones just make the image seem boring. Like, the overall balance of colors, tones, and lighting just doesn't have the energy to match. It don't think it's terrible but the subdued mood doesn't really fit. The window ate all of the light and dynamics - so you have a flat-looking window view against a flat-looking subject, while the composition is trying to convince you that something is happening. As Jared Polin would say, it's a snapshot.


And then, we have the edit from ~6 months ago.
View attachment 151226
Eh, I tried to fix it up. Very little time put in... half considering it a loss already. At least it somewhat looks like a proper exposure, if not rather bleached out and 'dry' looking. Most of what I did was just basic adjustments. I think I used the adjustment brush to mask off the background noise and very slightly dim the window to make room for global shadows/blacks adjustments.

And here's what I came up with tonight. I found the limit for adjustment layers before LR starts to crash. Not even that much! Adobe REALLY needs to figure out a stellar way to optimize having things like lots of spot removal, or a lot of adjustment layers. I know it's not photoshop, but there must be a way to make it so the whole thing doesn't lag/almost crash because I used a handful of adjustment layers after knocking out 10-20 spots with the spot removal tool.
View attachment 151227
I think it had a lot left in it! The noise just does not come out of the eyes... they were so dark in the original you can just only do so much. I figured if they're going to be a little blocky anyway, might as well give them an epic glow! :laugh: Adjustment layers to fix the distracting light from the window, and give it some bleed over the ear with a graduated filter. Bunch of color/contrast adjustments, though not as much as you might think. All I wanted to do was even-out the light on her fur without flattening-out the highlights. Tonemapping adjustments ended up being the answer for correcting the midtones affecting the fur - very, very useful to be able to define the mid point and shift the extremes further out. I was trying to dial it in with the contrast slider initially but it was just different variations of flat: super-flat and flat/harsh.

I wound up with something a bit fantastical and surreal, but I kind of like this look. May use it again for pets. I tried really, really hard to not fall into that 'trying too hard with fake HDR' trap with nasty splotching and fried colors. Just because I wanted exaggerated enhancements doesn't mean I can't be tasteful. My idea of what a good image is has changed a lot. It was a trip to uncover that as I went along. Weirdly enough, I think Skyrim modding is starting to influence me towards more fantastical pallets and light... and I don't know if that's good or not :laugh:

Lightroom is kind of scary powerful, isn't it. Give me a camera with a good enough sensor and I might never get an exposure right a day in my life. I'd just ruin myself making fancy edited images at web res.

If you look at the last picture (edit) on it's own, you don't see it as being surreal - to me it looks well balanced, as though it was a well-composed shot. You know the original, so you feel it's maybe hyper-real but I've realised through umpteen reviews and reading; what we see in print is almost always a JPG edited from RAW. And I picked up the fact that a straight out of camera JPG is after all, just what the processor on the camera 'thinks' you should see.

My original deer shot is a bit dull and muted but that's just where I live. In my back garden, I've got a nice potential shot of an old church with a big fat skeletal tree, but so many things make it a bad option. Sun light, street lamps and a generally crappy sky make it one of those 'if only' shots. If only the sun set behind the church, I could make it work, or, if the street was dark, I could mult-exposure for a starry night background - but neither can happen. That's what I'm starting to appreciate, and it's giving me patience. A good photo is never just taken on the spot. Even street reportage requires the right scene at the right moment.

Taking photos is a mechanical skill but making them good to the eyes can often be more akin to art. I know it sounds pretentious but it's kinda true.
 
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If you look at the last picture (edit) on it's own, you don't see it as being surreal - to me it looks well balanced, as though it was a well-composed shot. You know the original, so you feel it's maybe hyper-real...
This is most likely true. I remember what the room looked like at the time, and then I'm going back and forth between the original and the new edits. The difference is definitely jarring, so the changes probably look really exaggerated to my eyes. It's kind of funny how that is the exact opposite of the experience I have writing/recording music. The more you mess with eq and tone, the harder it gets to hear the real differences - it literally all sounds the same, like how if you read the same word aloud enough times the word completely stops making sense in any conceivable way. You can't tell if you're way off or just back where you started. Funny how with pictures I almost seem to get more sensitive, differences get overemphasized in my perception.

but I've realised through umpteen reviews and reading; what we see in print is almost always a JPG edited from RAW. And I picked up the fact that a straight out of camera JPG is after all, just what the processor on the camera 'thinks' you should see.

My original deer shot is a bit dull and muted but that's just where I live. In my back garden, I've got a nice potential shot of an old church with a big fat skeletal tree, but so many things make it a bad option. Sun light, street lamps and a generally crappy sky make it one of those 'if only' shots. If only the sun set behind the church, I could make it work, or, if the street was dark, I could mult-exposure for a starry night background - but neither can happen. That's what I'm starting to appreciate, and it's giving me patience. A good photo is never just taken on the spot. Even street reportage requires the right scene at the right moment.
I hear you. I mean, to me, editing is usually vital to some degree. I've noticed that the best tend to edit really well, in addition to their main skills. People probably don't even notice how edited some photos really are when they're done skillfully. It doesn't mean you need to do a lot any more than it makes it bad to do a lot when doing a lot makes sense.

But I also agree that a photo is never really just a moment. Forethought counts for a lot. I learn that lesson continually, while editing, oddly enough. I first see the things I did wrong, because those are the things I'm there to try and work around or somewhat make up for. After assessing the image for a while and getting down to making the main changes, I'll reflect back on the moments leading up (and sometimes even parts of the day) and find myself going over things I could've done differently then that would make a big difference now. So many different considerations and possibilities. Things I could've done then, but can't now... if I wanna open the floodgates, it's a rabbit-hole I can fall down forever.

Taking photos is a mechanical skill but making them good to the eyes can often be more akin to art. I know it sounds pretentious but it's kinda true.
I like to think of it that way, too. I much prefer that side of it, anyway. I may never learn it on a super-serious level. Doesn't mean I won't put a lot of time into the skill of 'touch'.

I kind of do the same thing with guitar - I've been playing for almost 17 years now and I never got to be a technical wizard striking fear into all men. But I've spent a lot of time exploring the colors of notes and textures of sound. I learned to audiate well enough to tab out the combinations in detail. I'd pick up what I wrote later and play with the same stuff I heard earlier, much as I heard it then. It's a process completely removed from the mechanics. In my mind, I generally separate playing with sounds and actually playing sounds. I like the things I'm able to create with that being sort of the focus and I really enjoy the process. A different part of your mind becomes very active, more so the more you do it. You gradually reach a different understanding of the whole 'transference' process in the art - that sense of how stuff works on people. You understand the connection on a more granular level. I don't want to dazzle people hyper-technical noodling. I want to get across the purpose and creativity through the music, and maybe add to someone's appreciation of music... change their perception of it for a moment so they can see what I know works on me in my appreciation of it and maybe something just connects.

Raw mechanical ability is still a major factor, you need to be competent... preferably reasonably beyond just competent. But I like to think my approach gives me a different sort of edge in my music. I've always had friends who were much more technically oriented, who still looked forward to jamming with me in particular, even though my inconsistent style makes it hard to keep track of me lol. One's a trained pianist and trumpet player, now instructor, and long-time gigging guitarist, we have a mutual outspoken respect for each other's blind spots. His composition, improv, and technique are off the charts - he's a real, educated gigging musician. But I'm the guy who against all odds comes up with the super-musical stuff that's interesting to just listen to. I am geared towards making the stuff that's made to be listened to. Just don't ask me to explain what I'm doing :laugh:

I'm always told that I bring something to everything that just makes it right... and I think that's because I focus on the subtleties of the arrangement - the vaguer side of things in music. I am meticulously subjective. I think being able to navigate that in any art form is a skill in itself. It takes a long time to just build up that overarching sense of how things go together... not just the mechanics of how you put them together. You're training yourself to see all the points of emphasis in everything that you do, and capitalize on those to leave a type of impact that isn't described in technical terms. Understanding what works on you in the art and being able to feel that out enough to convey it in your own art. Compared to that, the technical side of getting there is arbitrary, so long as you can. The latter doesn't bring forth the former on its own.

I could put it another way. A computer can largely replace good technique... you're not needed for that as much. But a computer can't replicate the sorts of things I'm talking about. It takes a real person's sensibilities, which are qualified by level of engagement with them. I think the idea with any art form is to get the mechanics as out of the way as possible, either by conquering them or negating them... so that you can be freed up to focus more on the creative aspects of it. That is the reason you learn music theory if you want to make music... so you don't HAVE to think about how things go together alongside of working out how you WANT them to go together. You can just do that and the things you need to do, come.

Focusing only on the technical side and the mechanics of shots when what you want are interesting, compelling images, is building yourself a tower of Babel. Hows that all for pretentious? Really this is just a super-long-winded way of saying that it's very important to build up that deeper appreciation for the experience of undergoing any art form, and not just furthering yourself in the craft itself. It takes patience - you have to always be willing to explore. That just means you're taking the time to get it right, instead of relying on the pre-generated (though very well-honed) itinerary that your knowledge and skills lend you.
 
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If only the sun set behind the church, I could make it work, or, if the street was dark
Taking photos is a mechanical skill but making them good to the eyes can often be more akin to art. I know it sounds pretentious but it's kinda true.

You can torch it for the sake of... ehrm additional lighting. :laugh: Try to avoid making horizon in the middle, landscape pictures prefer to have ratios, like 1/3, it would help the composition.

Dudes, don't overcomplicate things in LR. The more you do, often the more harm you cause. Basically JPG's made in good lighting conditions, with modern glass is made to be usable for starter type cameras, as a definition(think of an smartphone). Having high resolution, need for lens corrections, bad light, noise, aberrations etc etc camera CPU will NEVER ever be able to handle RAW conversion on the fly. The sensor development, resolution is league ahead of the mobile CPU powers and the gap will remain. Camera has to take shots and be ready at any moment to do so. For cameras the JPG processor is not a priority for sure, actually JPG should die soon, that's another discussion, albeit fit for this place. Cameras will not compete with phones, what are they doing best, generating Instagram pics.

Mechanical skill and art share many things. Our perception of things isn't something that abstract, it is described and already automated(AUTO MODE), especially taking into consideration neural networks. Basically, can you call mathematics art? Yes in certain way, as you can always get the solution going through various routes and methods, formulas, that process is art for me sure, but the result itself often ain't. But in the end... the photographer itself matters, how he uses and has mastered its tool.

Okay... something from me too... I got my hands on some Vintage lenses.

The first one is Carl Zeiss Jena Tessar 50mm F2.8. Got on fleabay for 30€, the Englishman described it was fully working, and of Horse it wasn't. It had a bump and kinda suspected that. Anyways, took the sucker apart, straightened the barrel, fixed aperture blades and cleaned optics... as you the the first pic with the ammonia bottle, I didn't have any fungus it, but was worth cleaning still.

It is the cheapest Zeiss lens actually, and for a reason. 4 elements in 3 groups. No coating. Many internet reviewers claim the lens is very sharp. I wonder what kind of crap they used before. It ain't bad, but it ain't stellar for sure. It cannot resolve sensor sizes past 12mpx wide open actually. For FB it doesn't matter thou. If you use it on cropped sensors, you might get the best center area of the glass, thus kinda avoiding the corner softness and distortion, but end up into sharpness problem. Many do not take this phenomenon into account actually... but okay, seldom who shoots vintage glass anyway. Bokeh has a tendency to swirliness, but not in the Biotar scale. It gets nervous on many focus lengths like in the third pic, you have to know this thing and fight it, because it ain't my taste. Contrast falls enormously with light sneaking into the glass directly, even if is scattered from ground. The lens gets sharpest at F8 and F11, past those diffraction kicks in. Oh well, so I let it hit the dust on the shelf now.

_DSC2584.jpg_DSC2677.jpg_DSC2637.jpg

I took another oldie with me that day... and it was AUTO REVUENON 55mm F1.4(Imho Tomioka made), rumored to be planar design knock off. I had compared this lens and it performs much better than any Russian Helios Biotar design for sure. As usally F1.4 is not usable for any vintage glass, see the 4th pic, but stepped down it ain't that bad, at F4 it starts to look clean. Colours are good, it has some primitive coating. Aberrations are bad thou, very pronunciated, so it can screw a good shot actually, so I don't have many keepers from this glass.

_DSC2650.jpg_DSC2658.jpg

On the walk home I got fed up, and put my second lens and calmed down. Contax Zeiss Sonnar 135mm F2.8 MMJ. It has the T*, that historically came from Honeywell and SR-71 program, to HFT coating at Rollei and only then to Zeiss as T*, not vice versa, they had a trade deal back in the day, so QBM got Zeiss design glass.

It is razor sharp as you see with the Cuban police lady, even wide open it is respectable, see my mouse, the focusing is so smooth and easy, you really get to use it, not relying on autofocus it really matters. Aberrations are there, but calmed down past F4 greatly, depending on the scene. The colours... It is Kubrick and the Shining, there is nothing more to add, it renders it the Zeiss way. There was no LR in the days, the post processing magic was done already by the glass. Bokeh is creamy and well controlled as you see in pic7. No schizophrenia. It is a steady second glass that I always carry around. And it made in the 1970ties. I have to mention, their over the Berlin Wall Carl Zeiss Jena Sonnar 135mm F3.5 is a stunner too, it does have the same sharpness(sample variation tho), the optical formula delivers, the coatings are worse, but still, it is there and can be obtained fairly cheap, their blades do get stuck, but an easy fix, if your hands grow out of the right place...

_DSC2709.jpgILCE-6500_DSC4862_20190514.jpg_DSC7913_191119_15h52m.jpg

My daily driver is 24mm F1.4 G Master lens btw... I haven't got hold of anything, that tops it at that length on any platform. I haven't found a really weak spot for it, it fast, colors are superb, light... So... in the end of a day... yeah... there's art for sure... but the glass still matters...

_DSC5941.jpg_DSC5216.jpg_DSC6134.jpg

I hope with Robot Zombie, we don't hang up TPU with such long posts lol. I hope you got the idea from the pics, they really differ and deliver different results in many disciplines. Also using them is a matter of getting used to. But at least it's fun...
 
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So, I do all my garden bird pics. This is the nemesis of all bird life.... Next door neighbours cat, hiding between my bins.

DSCF5834 copy.jpg
 
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So, I do all my garden bird pics. This is the nemesis of all bird life.... Next door neighbours cat, hiding between my bins.

I can bet... that cross eyed feline is actually plotting to kill you too. :laugh:

If onto topic. I am waiting an adapter... oly to nex... I got a 200mm F4 Zuiko... I will put it up to old Meyer Optik Gorlitz Orestegor 200mm f4(Pentacon).
 
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Afternoon scones and tea, well, coffee. Played about trying to snap a hoverfly with a telephoto lens at 100mm. Cropped photo and fly is sharpened post-process but the wings were left as they were.

DSCF5882.jpg


This is the actual pic.

DSCF5882 2.JPG
 
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IMG_2627.JPG

IMG_2436.JPG
 
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Arrgghh... Garden spiders.....

Been practising with birds in flight (all on 600mm equiv.)

It's funny, you get home, load up card and see that you get 1 in 10 that are in focus. And most of those are poor composition (see below :roll:)

Magpie - I edited out the traffic cone that was lying in the background - remember - I said I lived in a dump. The two dark splodges in the top area - right hand side is a clone, you can see the flowers are in the same positions, but the software's pretty smart.

DSCF6050.jpg


DSCF6041.jpg


If I had more chimney it'd been better - but it was an opportune shot for a long range focus effort.

DSCF6063.jpg
 
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I'm gonna get out and take some photos today

My first one, cats watching a cat movie




Here we go, armed with my Nikon and my bike










Would have been nice if I had my 300mm Osprey





 
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