Category Archives: Blur

Out of Acadia

This is a late post but never the less the Out of Acadia conference was spectacular.  Over a hundred participants and multiple instructors made the event a great success.  Between leading excursions and doing classes there was not much time to do a lot of photography but this was photographed on the last day at Little Hunters Beach.  Given the shape of the cove and the direction of the sunrise, one has to wait for the light to hit is peninsula.

I used my new Leica 12 – 60 mm with the GH5 that I am loving more and more – particularly with Version 2.1 of the firmware update.  Exposure triad: ISO 200, f/7.1, 6 sec at 12mm (24mm equivalent). Benro filter holder with a polarizer and 4 stop ND and a grad.

The image below is the same converted to B&W using Capture One 10.

Also posted in Black & White, GH5, Lens, Mirrorless, Panasonic, Photographs, Photography, Workshops

Beaches of Martha’s Vineyard

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Rocks and the Ocean at Aquinnah

Here are another three images from my Martha’s Vineyard workshop last weekend. The image above and the next were captured on the beach at Aquinnah just below Gay Head Cliffs.  The last image was captured on the last evening at Menemsha.  Menemsha is famous for exceptional sunsets but this was a overcast and stormy evening with no hope of a sunset.  Stormy yet so serene.

 

Aquinnah Beach - Swipe

Aquinnah Beach – Swipe

 

Menemsha Storm

Menemsha Storm

Also posted in Mirrorless, Motion, Panning, Photographs, Photography, Workshops

ND Filters’ Color Cast comparison – Vü 10 stop Sion, Lee 10 stop (Big Stopper) & Formatt Hitech 8 stop

The Lee Big Stopper was introduced in 2010 to compete with the Hitech 10 stop filter that was known to have flare and other issues. Subsequently Hitech reengineered their 10 stop filter and emulated some of Lee’s design features. In particular the the light blocking gasket.  Soon Lee introduced the Little Stopper while Hitech developed a wider range of solid ND filters the Pro Stop line from 6 to 10 stops and in multiple sizes.  Most recently I was introduced to the Vü system and hence this test as a comparison. I will do a full review of the Vü system in the near future.

As I own the Lee Big sStopper and the Hitech 8 stop with the Hitech holder (I do prefer the Hitech to the Lee holder) I was keen to understand the differences in the way high f-stop ND filters impart a color cast when used. Hence this test.  Please click on the images to see a larger version.

The set up was fairly simple.  Using a Sony A7R II and a Zeiss Batis 85mm f/1.8 lens set at f/2.0 and a base ISO of 50, shutter speed 1/125 sec.  The light source was two Elinchrome studio strobes positioned to give a 1/3 stop exposure variation at the edges.  The camera was focused on a white foam-core board with a X-Rite Color Checker Passport clamped to the upper right corner.  Camera white balance set for flash rather than a custom white balance (5450 Kelvin) and an “as shot” tint of +9.  I wanted to allow for any variation in the white of the foam-core board that is typically not 100% white be adjusted in post.

The test exposure was made and the white balance adjusted in post using Lightroom – this is the image below.  White balance adjustment yielded a temperature of 4750 Kelvin and a tint of -1:

Control Shot

Next the strobes were adjusted to full power providing 8 additional stops of light.  The ISO was adjusted to increase sensitivity by two stops while the aperture of the lens was kept at a constant f/2.0 for all the exposures. Each filter was tested for color cast only.

The Lee Big Stopper (10 stop ND)

The Lee Big Stopper (10 stop ND) was mounted and the image as shown below was captured. This is as a screen shot so as to show the RGB histogram.  The info panel shows the reading from the center of the captured image.  Values are R=219, G=229, B=243

Lee 10stop at corner

Color Values measured in the center

 

In this next image the Info Panel shows RGB values from the lower third of the image. Values are R=187, G=203, B=222

Lee 10stop at center

Color Values measured in the lower right quadrant

Next the image was white balanced in Lightroom WB to 8600 Kelvin and tint +43. Compensated for the color of the board and the lights the calculated readings are 7900 Kelvin and a +35 Tint adjustment.

Lee 10 stop WB to 8600 and tint +43

Lee 10 stop WB to 8600 Kelvin and tint +43

The Lee Big Stopper exhibits a heavy blue cast in both the center and the edges.

Formatt Hitech 8 stop ND filter

As I do not have a 10 stop Formatt Hitech filter, I chose to do the same test with the 8 stop that I own. As with the Lee filter before, here the info panel shows the reading from the center of the captured image.  Values are R=234, G=238, B=236

Screen Shot 2016-03-06 at 5.05.05 PM

Format 8 stop – Color Values measured in the center

In this next image the Info Panel shows RGB values from the lower third of the image. Values are R=209, G=220, B=212

Format 8 stop - Color Values measured in the center

Format 8 stop – Color Values measured in the lower right quadrant

Next the image was white balanced in Lightroom WB to 5750 Kelvin and tint +52. Compensated for the color of the board and the lights the calculated readings are 5050 Kelvin and a +44 Tint adjustment.

Formatt 8 stop WB to 5750 and tint +52

Formatt 8 stop WB to 5750 Kelvin and tint +52

The Formatt HiTech 8 stop exhibits a heavy green cast at the edges but is more neutral in the center.

Vü Sion Q 10 stop Neutral Density Filter

The Vü Sion 10 stop ND filter mounted using The Vü professional filter holder (more abut this in a future post) and the same test was performed. As before the image captured is shown as a screen shot showing the RGB histogram.  The info panel shows the reading from the center of the captured image.  Values are R=235, G=235, B=239

Screen Shot 2016-03-06 at 5.15.29 PM

Vu Sion 10 stop – Color Values measured in the center

In this next image the Info Panel shows RGB values from the lower third of the image. Values are R=211, G=214, B=219

Screen Shot 2016-03-06 at 5.15.44 PM

Vu Sion 10 stop – Color Values measured in the lower right quadrant

Next the image was white balanced in Lightroom WB to 5800 Kelvin and tint +13. Compensated for the color of the board and the lights the calculated readings are 5000 Kelvin and a +5 Tint adjustment.

VU 10 stop wb adjusted 5800 tint +13

VU Sion 10 stop WB adjusted 5800 and tint +13

The Vü Sion 10 stop is very neutral in the center an has a negligible shift at the edges.

In conclusion I am very impressed with the Vü Sion 10 stop and is near neutral rendering.  My full review of this system is forthcoming.

 

Hunts Photo is offering my students and workshop participants a 20% discount on all Vu filters and holders! All you  have to do is call 781-662-8822 and ask for Alan Samiljan and tell him you are one of my students.  He will give you the discount. UPS Ground shipping is free in the Lower 48 and there is no sales tax except for orders shipped to MA, RI or ME.

 

Also posted in Accessories, Lighting, Motion, Photographs, Photography, Product Reviews, Sony A7R, Strobes, Tips, Zeiss

Cape Cod – after Lexi

After Friday’s snow storm, Saturday’s skies and a thin layer of high clouds were a good indication for photo opportunities.  heading out to the Cape this next image was off Rt. 1 in Foxboro. (please click on the images for a larger rendition)

Rt 1 Foxboro

Rt. 1 Foxboro

There are many great opportunities for some exceptional color in Cape Cod. This next image is an outhouse at a farm.  A favorite location we always visit during my “Light of Cape Cod” workshops that I will be posting in the next few days.

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The Outhouse

Low tide coincidental with the sunset in the flats are another set of my favorite locations.

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A sweep before sunset

With the way the low cloud bank was forming I did not expect much of a sunset.  There were some interesting cloud formations and a lovely warm glow on the horizon.

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Cloud formations as the sun sets

As photographers we know never to leave after the sun sets – you never know what the skies might do. Staying pays off:

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Red Skies at Night ……

Also posted in Black & White, Panning, Photographs, Photography, Workshops

Wild Flowers, Smoky Mountains and Cades Cove – Spring Workshop

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April 17 to 22, 2016 – Six Day 5 Night Photo Workshop

Great Smoky Mountains National Park is a world-renowned preserve of wildflower diversity over 1,660 kinds of flowering plants are found in the park, more than in any other North American national park. In fact, the park is sometimes referred to as the “Wildflower National Park.” From the earliest hepaticas and spring-beauties in the late winter to the last asters in the late fall, blooming flowers can be found year-round in the park. Wildlife is fairly abundant in Cades Cove and we will have opportunities if lucky, to photograph bears. Landscapes, rivers, waterfalls and much more – a photographer’s paradise.

CLICK HERE FOR DETAILS

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Also posted in Black & White, Educational, Flowers, Horses, Macro, Mirrorless, Night Photography, Photographs, Photography, Time-Lapse, Workshops

Hummingbird Moth Hemaris thysbe

Hummingbird Moth Hemaris thysbe

Hummingbird Moth Hemaris thysbe

The Hummingbird Moth Hemaris thysbe, unlike most moths that are nocturnal or shade loving, is seen on bright sunny days. It is a fantastic hovering species  that flies like a hummingbird and hence its name.

They feed on nectar using a very long proboscis.  Their wings flap at incredible speeds.  This image was captured at 1/1600 sec and I was unable to freeze the wings.

 

Also posted in Educational, Flowers, Macro, Mirrorless, Motion, Photography Tagged , |

A Special Discount for LRTimelapse 3

LRT3_flat_250LRTimelapse 3 is one of the best time-lapse assembly software products available and works seamlessly with Photoshop Lightroom 5.

For the remainder of 2013 and January 1, 2014 you can license or upgrade to any version of LRTimelapse for a 15% discount.  This applies to upgrades and cross-grades too.

A brief explanation of the options:

  • If you still don’t have any License, you can choose LRTimelapse 3 private and LRTimelapse 3 Pro. You can read about the differences here.
  • If you have a LRT2 private license, you can get a discounted upgrade to LRT3 private or a discounted crossgrade to LRT3 Pro. For the latter, you will then save the cost of the update to version 3.
  • If you have a license for LRT2 Pro (commercial), you will require the update to LRT3 Pro.
  • If you already have upgraded to LRT3 private, you can crossgrade to Pro, if you need the advanced features.

Click Here and use the discount coupon code: XMAS2013LRT

Also posted in Educational, News, Photography, Software, Time-Lapse, Tips, Video, Workshops Tagged |

NiK – Google release Analog Efex Pro

Analog Efex Pro

Carriage Road House - Acadia National Park

Carriage Road House – Acadia National Park
Treated with Viveza and Analog Efex Pro (Wet Plate)

“Explore the look and feel of classic cameras, films, and lenses” as state by NiK

The plugin allows you to create images with the look of various analog camera and film types.  You can choose from Classic, Vintage, Wet Plate and Toy Cameras and create vintage effects.  You can  create textures, modify the bokeh, generate frames and vignettes with controls that are not like the typical NiK “control points” used in the original suite of products.

In the release NiK states that they will be adding  additional cameras, films, bells, and whistles.

NiK products will be automatically updated based on what you own but if you do not want to wait for the update to happen you can download the trial suite from the NiK web site and install it over your existing suite of NiK products.  Agalog Efex Pro will appear as an additional product in the Google/NiK collection.
Also posted in Black & White, News, Photographs, Photography, Software Tagged , , , , |

Blurs and Abstracts

Many an image of birds in flight have been photographed while panning and using slow shutter speeds to create blurry images (aka “pleasing blurs”).  I decided to try something similar but different.  Rather than capturing a whole flock I concentrated on a few.  Waited for a decent formation and captured the image.  Enhanced in photoshop to augment the high key effect and treated with NiK Color Efex Pro for added impact.

Your thoughts and comments are welcome?

Snow Geese Abstract

 

Also posted in Educational, High Key, Motion, Panning, Photographs, Photography Tagged , , |