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Posts posted by t37traveler

  1. <p>Wow - you have a tricky situation if you want to get rid of the shadows given the location of your subject. Bouncing won't eliminate shadows. It's the angle of the light that has to change. I think it would take two lights from opposing angles to eliminate the shadow.... that's how we solve the problem in underwater photography where virtually all of our light must come from strobes. A single strobe creates shadows, - two strobes correctly aimed eliminates the shadow. A really bring LED flashlight, such as a LaserLight, hand held by an assistant might be an option.</p>
  2. <p>I think the problem with the rating system lies in the very subjective of nature categories that are to be rated - aesthetics and originality..... these lend themselves to the vagaries of subjectivity and personal taste, just as happens when one reads poetry or prose or views other art forms. Many people too often forget to leave personal taste at the door when the enter the ratings room. Interesting how often the same photo can get 3/3 and 7/7 (and the signed 7/7 is from someone who is a stranger).... </p>
  3. <p>I shoot mainly manual on both my D100 and D700 so that I can control the color saturation and lighting better. Program modes tend to wash out colors in my experience. I use the SB800 99.9% of the time to fill when shooting outdoors and take full advantage of the adjustable angles, positioning as much as 90º from the subject, depending on the, reflectivity of the subject's color, distance to subject, and other lighting factors. If you're not used to shooting manual, you will find that it is very easy to over-expose at close range with the SB800 - it is one strong flash! I'd experiment inside and outside - and don't forget about the E/V adjustments you can make on the fly to fine tune your exposure without sacrificing dof by opening the aperture.</p>

    <p> </p>

  4. <p>Simon - In the FWIW category, if a picture is in the public domain, you can use it - if you see something that is unique and belongs to someone - i.e. a bird in a signed photo or painting- if it were me, out of courtesy, I'd try to contact the person and ask permission, copyright or no - and if necessary, give credit where credit is due. I think there is as much of a courtesy issue as a legality issue... but that's just me. Put yourself in the position of some of the excellent abstract artists or digital alteration artist here on PN - ask yourself how you would feel if someone borrowed a piece of your copyrighted work without express permission - or uncopyrighted work without contacting you.</p>
  5. <p>My nephew (a Leica admirer who shoots bw film with an ancient Alpa) emailed me this link today with the subject line "Holy S***" Leica has unveiled its prototype S@ - a medium forrmat camera in a 35mm DSLR body, "aimed at the profe$$sional." Go to the link below to view. The product was just previewed at Photokina. 30x45mm sensor with 35.5 MP. The camera is amazing - simple, streamlined - Nikon, Canon - watch out... <br>

    A working prototype is demonstrated.... yeah - holy crap.... the future is here. Of course price is TBD<br>




  6. <p>The other part of the Ritz problem is that Ritz owns Boaters World, which pales in comparison to West Marine. The economic it in the boating business was devastating everywhere - My experience is that the quality of the Ritz store depends wholly on the expertise of the manager. I went to one Ritz in northern VA to look at a D100 years ago and the "order taker' (he was o sales person) didn't even know why the "EE" showed up in the monitor or why the camera wouldn't work. I walked out. A couple of days lager i tried another Ritz - lucked in a sales person who was a rained photographer (later became the store manager and now is a district manager with the sad job of overseeing the closure of unprofitable stores in No Va, Md and WV). She was fantastic - knew her stuff, and although she wasn't a diver, knew exactly what lenses I needed UW (I had already checked this out with UW photo specialty merchants- and she was correct!) You have to not just pick the store, but pick the sales person. I always ask if there is someone there who is a pro photographer who shoots 35mm DSLR. A little bit of ling and the point and shoot order takers are happy to pass you on to the resident expert. If you aren't satisfied, try another shop. My guess is that Ritz will survive, but over-saturating local area markets with high overhead facilities has to stop - I don't care if it's Starbucks, Ritz or other merchants. Times have changed!</p>
  7. <p>Michael - and all the contributors to this twisted thread - thank you for making me laugh so hard and so often. It is a good sign that PN is alive and well when we can laugh at and with ourselves. Laughter truly is the best medicine! ROTFLOL!</p>
  8. <p>Josh -Wouldn't it be better (and easier?) to establish a relatively simple control such as the system not accepting ratings for a photo without a critique being posted first? You could set up criteria to require a minimum of number of characters so that more than "nice work" or "I don't like it" won't be accepted. What you may wind up with if you require "x" number of comments before a member is allowed to submit his own photos for comment are sets of meaningless, canned pre-written critiques that could be cut and pasted forever. I agree with Ryan that some kind of written guidelines for comments/critiques/rating would be helpful to many and should be required reading before rating. I've only been a member for 5 months and have noticed a decrease in rating and viewing activity... wondering if it's just that everyone has spring fever and has been outdoors for the past two months.?</p>
  9. <p>UMMMM... Mac or PC? I'm so confused. >; }<br>

    Seriously, I haven't noticed many aberrations, but maybe that's because I do NWF late at night with a glass or two of wine. Enough wine and enough lack of sleep and you can rationalize anything.</p>

  10. <p>I am a PADI underwater photo and underwater digital photo instructor. I found that the best photos to teach with are my own mistakes - the ones with dof, exposure, backscatter, lighting, shadow, composition, etc. errors. Being able to display a photo and say "if your photo looks like this, this what you did wrong... and here is what you do differently to avoid the problem is a tremendously powerful tool" Seeing examples of problems and understanding what went wrong and what to do to avoid the mistake in the future helps a student far more than just seeing perfect photos and being told how to shoot them. I asked the students to evaluate and comment on both the poor and good photos. It got class lively discussion going so that people were having fun while learning to analyze photos. It also makes you as the instructor more "human" - you made mistakes, just like they do, and you learned and grew your skills; you did it, and so can they. I liked to teach with the "junk shots" and correct with the good shots - it really helped turn on the light bulb, and I had many students tell me how much they liked that approach because it was less intimidating and more illuminating to them. </p>
  11. <p>Manuals are often poorly written and confusing. As cameras have gottem more ocmplex, the manuals have gotten thicker. For example, the User's manual for my Nikon D100 is about 1/4" thick. The one for my D700 is over 1" thick The increasing complexity is one reason why JumpStart DVDs are so popular. They are available for Nikon, Canon and other complex DSLRs. I bought the DVD set for the D700 - two DVDs - it was a quantum leap up the learning curve and time frame. I could sit there with my camera, pause the video, review and follow along real time. The manual is great for quick reference, but it would have taken me a week to digest the instructions and technical info; instead it took a couple of hours with a DVD in my laptop. "Help Desk" assistance does not exist in the DSLR post sale world the way it does in the computer market. The local camera shop where you used to buy cameras was once the post sale support source.... with low-priced on-line sales becoming more popular, people buy on-line and expect to find tutoring in the use of equipment on-line. </p>
  12. <p>Switzerland is a pretty expensive place ; perhaps some of what you see in high cost the because of high labor and high import duties on Nikon cameras & parts. (Don't forget that Switzerand has a proud history of fine camera and optics... they may be a little protectionist.) Perhaps you could contact Canon USA or the shop /dealer where you bought the lens for some info. It might be even worth overnight air shipping elsewhere for the repairs. Further research definitely a good idea here. Maybe someone on Nikonians would have an idea.... This situation is exactly why I purchased extended warranty and accident insurance for my Nikon D100, two lenses and the SB800 flash. It cost about $400/year thru Ritz for all the pieces - and when I sent something in for repair, there were no questions about cost - there wasn't any. In the past I had one lens fixed (something minor), and this year new shutter mechanism and internal flash circuitry in the D100. I also had plus as many cleanings as needed and all routine maintenance every year. I came out ahead. For the big stuff, Ritz sent the camera to Nikon. I recently bought a D700 (not thru Ritz) and paid for extended warranty and accidental coverage insurance for it for 3 years (I live on a sailboat part time and do underwater photography and haul my cameras all over the place in windy salt and sand environments.) This accident coverage includes drop/shock as well as immersion, melt - anything but fire and theft loss which is covered under homeowners policies. All I have to do is send the camera - or what's left of it - back.</p>
  13. <p>I would rent a body and raise some serious cane about the lack of cleaning. I'd go so far as to ask that shop to provide a body at no charge. The technician obviously did not check his/her work, and took no pride in it - just took your money. There is really no excuse for this kind of lousy service. Being a pro, you have a serious cause to have a beef and a little more clout than Joe Amateur. I had similar spots frequently on my Nikon D100. Every time I took it to Ritz where I bought it, they first cleaned it in the store (the manager was a serious photographer and shot Nikon). If they couldn't clean it, it went to their repair facility and always came back "spotless." What happened to you just isn't right!</p>
  14. <p>For me, one of the interesting things about my favorites folder, which numbers over 200 images, is what it reveals about my personal tastes and preferences in terms of color palette and genre. Every image is there for a particular reason. I often go back through them and revisit various artists' portfolios to see what is new. Ratings combined with useful comments is a good way to draw viewers to your own work. I know that I'm always curious about skill and style of those who comment on my photos... and I've found some wonderful work and met some interesting people by visiting the portfolios of my critics. One final comment - ratings should not be based on personal taste. I strongly believe we should strive to be unbiased and analytical in our evaluations (does one's preference for a black BMW mean that one should categorize a silver Mercedes as "below average"?) the photo rating equivalent happens too frequently.</p>
  15. <p>I'm still laughing so hard the tears are rolling down my cheeks - let's see in "e-speak" I guess I would say "ROTFLOL"(rolling on the floor laughing out loud). The funniest thing was how seriously those dudes were taking themselves; the sad thing was how bad the grammar and spelling were; the good thing is that I'm not part of flickr! Anyone want to introduce that group to the Nikon vs Canon or PC vs Mac wars? You could sell e-tickets to that one - especially for prime seats. : D Thanks to all for really lighting up my otherwise dull day!</p>
  16. <p>I wouldn't touch it with a 10 foot pole! On-line transactions through eBay and local Craig's list listings (where you can actually go pick up or deliver items) are usually pretty safe. I've never had a bad experience on eBay, but you always have to be careful. Any time that you have someone sending you a check and then wanting you to refund money - watch out. Your bank would hold you liable for the $650 - there was just a big spread on the evening TV news in the DC area about just this type of "deal." </p>
  17. <p>I I learned macro shooting underwater photography. In that theater macro is referred to as the "no brainer point and shoot" method. Flash is set for TTL; aperture is set for max (f/22 or higher). You want the to use greatest depth of field you can dial in and rely upon the flash for lighting the subject. That dof is going to be pretty narrow - the closer the lens is to the subject (and it's max. minimum focus) - if that makes any sense, the narrower that dof will be.</p>
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