Thursday, August 28, 2008

St. Charles Photowalk 8-23-2008

Originally uploaded by reboot9I too5
I took Part in Scott Kelby's nation wide photowalk. Saturday Aug. 23. It gave me an opportunity to make use of my new Canon 40D (I bought it for my upcoming Birthday). It turned out to be a very enjoyable experience. I met some nice people from around the area, there was a group from the O' Fallon Camera Club.

The Photowalk in St. Charles only had about 18 people sign up for it so it was a very small intimate affair. I think that worked out a bit better than the other walks that were full to the brim.

If you get a chance to go on a photowalk take it.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Sigma 18-200 OS

I've been using the Sigma AF 18-200mm f/3.5-6.3 DC OS since June now here are some of my thoughts.

Optic Stabilization
Lowish Cost
Comes with Lens Hood
Great Zoom range
Compact size.

A bit heavy
Slow Auto Focus
Can't nudge the Auto Focus

With an 18-200mm zoom range this works well as a lens that can stay on the camera most of the time. This is a good thing with the "dust on sensor" problems inherent in a DSLR. The lens ends up being a number of compromises. The price on Amazon is great, the Optical Stabilization works well and is a real plus in shooting. The Autofocus is sort of slow and hunts a lot in low light. The lens could be a bit faster but all and all for the Amazon price of around $462 it is a good buy, and has become my primary lens. Oh yeah, and the pictures turn out pretty good too.

Friday, August 15, 2008

Shooting Raw

Originally uploaded by reboot95
After hearing over and over again just how versatile shooting in RAW can be I decided to give it a try. Friday 8-8-08 I headed up the river road with a friend to do a bit of photography and outdoor fun. I purposed to shoot all my photos in raw format and try different things in the editing process.

I've been using the Digital Photo Professional software that came along with my Canon EOS Rebel XTi. It has a few features that I like. And works really nicely with raw images that come out of the canon. The software allows you to choose different picture styles that mimic the ones available on the camera. The feature I've liked the best is to switch the picture to monochrome and then apply filters to give it different "Black and White effects".

Another thing I have noticed shooting in RAW with JPEGS turned on sure makes a 4 Gig card seem small. My 8 Gig card arrived a few days ago.

With this picture I selected monochrome added a red filter which really made the clouds look great. I then added a bit of blue tint to it. I sort of liked the effect and the way the picture turned out. A number of people have looked at it with puzzlement and asked why it was Blue.

This photo started life as a Canon Camera Raw image with these settings.

Camera: Canon EOS Digital Rebel XTi
Exposure: 0.003 sec (1/400)
Aperture: f/9
Focal Length: 154 mm
ISO Speed: 100
Exposure Bias: 0/3 EV

Thursday, August 14, 2008

It is all Black and White

Originally uploaded by reboot95
Camera: Canon EOS Digital Rebel XTi
Exposure: 0.003 sec (1/400)
Aperture: f/9
Focal Length: 200 mm
While on a road trip I happened upon this cemetery in IL. The starkness of a Tombstone with the word Wedding on it captured my attention. I felt it would look better in Black and White. I used Canon's Digital Photo Professional to create the Black and White image.

Wednesday, August 06, 2008

Photoshop Recipes

Originally uploaded by reboot95
I've taken a class in Photoshop I've played with photoshop, I've read blogs on photoshop and listened to podcasts about it. Yet I have no clue what I'm doing. Still I like the way this turned out even though it was mainly a photoshop recipe I followed.

Take a look at this post from the Photowalk pro blog. If you would like to try it yourself

I did not follow his recipe exactly I exercised some creative license and I'm sort of happy with the way it turned out. I sent it to a friend and he thought I had gotten a pinhole camera.

Still on the quest to be comfortable in Photoshop. But for now I am happy to follow recipes.

Know any good ones?

Saturday, August 02, 2008

Canon Rebel XTi one year later

I have now owned the Canon Rebel XTi for a year now. Here are some thoughts.

Features both full automatic modes and a full manual mode with various in between modes.
Self cleaning Sensor.
Wide array of available lens.
Takes very good Pictures.
Good Battery life.
Widely used.

It is like a gateway drug to more and more accessories, lens, bags, etc.
Could be a bit more rugged.
Tends to get bits of stuff on the focus screen.
Did I mention you end up spending a lot of money on it.

Nutshell: Despite it's expensive care and feeding this is a very good starter Camera for the aspiring/consumer photographer. It allows you to stretch your creative side but you can rotate the dial and have all the automatic features of the best point and shoot available. There is the instant satisfaction of looking at a photo on the 2.5 inch LCD and going "oh yeah nailed that" or thinking ick glad I can delete it.

This is no lite weight point and shoot when you start toting it around with you. You will want a nice Camera bag. I've become a big fan of the Lowepro Slingshot series of bags I went with the 100 model since it forces you to stay sparce. You will still want a stick it in your pocket so you can snap photos whenever, compact.

With the new Rebel XSi prices should be dropping on this model. If you are wanting a camera that allows a lot of creative options here is a purchase you won't regret.