October 26, 2015

Post digital

No digital gear. That's where I find myself today. Correction. No professional digital gear. Still have decent assortment of lenses and some top notch film cameras. 

Sometimes I feel a bit lost. For nearly a decade I've had a camera strapped around my neck. 

Assessing the situation I'll say that I'd like to get a whole slew of new gear. A 5D4 with a range of fast prime lenses.

And yet... There is something serene. Peaceful. Seeing a sunset, a scenic, something really beautiful and knowing that you can't take it with you... You just have enjoy it for what it is. In the present...

I'll gear up eventually. But in the meantime I'll be discovering the world without gear. 

August 30, 2015

In the steps of Adams.

At least I probably crossed or followed a path he took. You see I spent today in Yosemite. I can't say I copied him photographically. Except perhaps the subject. 

In the tunnel viewpoint parking area there was a gent. We shall call him 64. Because he was espousing the virtues of good old Ansel Adams. small. The aperture has to be small! 

I pretended not to overhear. But he was shooting an SLR with a prime Lglass lens. I might be mistaken but I doubt it goes past f/22 but perhaps not even f/16. But wait he'd solved that problem with a dark filter! Effective aperture!

Now any decent photog knows Adams was not after a magic f-stop. He was after purity. But like I said I was trying to ignore 64. I'd been having trouble with my old 1DS2 since the late afternoon. It was sticking the shutters and freezing up. Err01! It continually shouted. Grr. I am eyeing the new 5D. It sure would have been sweet today. Oh well. Debt first then save up money like an adult and buy it cash.

As 64 droned on to anyone who'd listen. I managed to cajole a few shots out of the 1DS. I got it working enough to shoot the valley @300mm. I am still using a mediocre 70-300USM. So I racked it out to 300mm and for Adams sake I dialed the aperture to f/40. Great so I'm still 24 away from the f/64 club? Oh well don't really care to join at the moment because the last battery gave up and my SLR is now just a very expensive necklace. So I pulled out my iphone(maybe mostly for 64's sake and snapped a few more. As I headed to the car I heard an anguished yelp as 64's camera popped off his tripod and smashed on to the unforgiving asphalt. Ouch! Very serious hurt! I've dropped gear before and it's emotionally traumatic. 

As I watched 64's precious neutral density filter roll a wobbly path down the parking lot it struck me that 5k worth of gear doesn't mean a thing if it's smashed. Profound no? 

 Shot with an iPhone 5 and edited on PS express.

August 26, 2015

Return to Watson Falls.

Six years ago a certain waterfall had its way with a young photographer. The soaking was not soon forgotten, yet today we are highlighting a return trip to this magnificient falls. 

Small World -Examined.

Canon 1DS
Canon 17-40L w/ reverse mount

June 16, 2015

Its a small, small world.

I was working on some plumbing yesterday when I saw a bug. I've done little with bugs since I sold my beloved 100mm macro. But this bug just sat there. So I pulled out my reverse thread lens adapter and threw my trusty 17-40 into action. I'll share the pictures eventually but here is my set up:

Canon 1DS
Canon 17-40L w/ reverse mount(Most pics were shot @ f/11)
A LumaPro flash communicating through a pair of Pocket Wizards. (Flash was @ 64th power most of the time)

So I kept my ISO high (400+) so my flash would recycle the same day and slow shutter to let daylight bleed in and make it look more natural, maybe around 25th of a sec? 

If you look closely you can see the subject. He crawled off a few minute after I was through. Very polite.


June 11, 2015

Monetarily Speaking

Lady by Sea

Canon ElanII
Olympus Zuiko 50mm f/1.8@f/8?
Fujifilm Superia X-TRA 400ISO

June 9, 2015

Dangerous Chemicals!

Film is dangerous my friends. This according to a helpful Walgreens associate. Digital is safe. Digital is protecting the store from dangerous film processing chemicals!

I went in this last Monday to the Walgreens next to my work to get a roll processed. I've run a few through their wet lab had was happy enough with the quality and speed. I was disconcerted to find a sign indicating that I was to put my film into a mailer and then it was to be sent away. I was then to return in 15 days.

No. Thank you. I called Walmart. No wet lab. The nice Walmart associate told me that only Fred Meyer(Kroger) has the only wet lab left in the county. And they have one hour service. Sweet.

So that is where I went.

But this disconcerting round of events is pushing me closer to building my own lab. I actually have many of the pieces. Picked up at random garage sales and thrift stores. I'll keep you posted...

April 13, 2015


Documentary photograph: A photo that tells a bit of a story. Not necessarily trying to win any contest but rather just taking a bit of information and pinning it down.

I use my phone for this type of pic and am rather prolific. Since I purchased this phone in January of 13 I've logged some 50gb of photos... Good thing I chose the 64gb version! About a year ago I transferred nearly 20gbs onto my desktop PC. Very useful for referring to  to old lists or IP address configs at work.

Not all photos need to be perfect to be useful.

January 11, 2015


I was organizing my photo gear this evening. A lot of what I'd been sorting through was not regularly used gear. In fact most of it is destined for ebay. Pentax. Olympus. Canon. Nikon. Leitz. Etc. So many systems!

But it is time to clean house. My personal gear took a significant hit in 2014. I figured it would be better to be debt free then have cool camera gear.

5D MarkIII? Gone.
50mm 1.2L? Gone.
Faithful 100-400? Gone.
100mm Macro? Gone.
24-105L? Gone.
580EXII? Gone.
50mm 2.5 macro? Gone.

I've even sold a good many of my CF cards!

The cabinet of other systems should clear the rest of my debt.

So what am I left with? Precious little. In the way of lenses anyway.

I purchased a used Canon 1DsII to replace the 5DIII.
I've kept the 17-40L
And now I have(Found in a camera gear lot) a 28-105 and a 100-300USM.

Not the best. But not heading toward deeper debt.

It'll do for now.