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Thom Hogan2011-08-07 16:01:22
RESHARE:
In case you haven't seen this. The one-page manual for Google+.

Reshared text:
Google+ Cheat Sheet version 2.
  • 60 plusses - 2 comments - 71 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2011-08-07 16:01:22
    RESHARE:
    In case you haven't seen this. The one-page manual for Google+.

    Reshared text:
    Google+ Cheat Sheet version 2.
  • 60 plusses - 2 comments - 71 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2011-08-07 16:01:22
    RESHARE:
    In case you haven't seen this. The one-page manual for Google+.

    Reshared text:
    Google+ Cheat Sheet version 2.
  • 60 plusses - 2 comments - 71 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2011-08-07 16:01:22
    RESHARE:
    In case you haven't seen this. The one-page manual for Google+.

    Reshared text:
    Google+ Cheat Sheet version 2.
  • 60 plusses - 2 comments - 71 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2011-08-07 16:01:22
    RESHARE:
    In case you haven't seen this. The one-page manual for Google+.

    Reshared text:
    Google+ Cheat Sheet version 2.
  • 60 plusses - 2 comments - 71 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2011-08-07 16:01:22
    RESHARE:
    In case you haven't seen this. The one-page manual for Google+.

    Reshared text:
    Google+ Cheat Sheet version 2.
  • 60 plusses - 2 comments - 71 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2011-08-07 16:01:22
    RESHARE:
    In case you haven't seen this. The one-page manual for Google+.

    Reshared text:
    Google+ Cheat Sheet version 2.
  • 60 plusses - 2 comments - 71 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2012-02-27 15:59:21
    Saturation and Vibrance

    So what's the difference between saturation and vibrance?

    Linearity.

    Saturation is a linear color boost. Each increment you increase saturation, all colors increase together. If you increase saturation too much you will eventually blow out some colors, pushing them past one or more channel maximums. This is one reason why things like red bricks start going orange when you boost saturation too much, for example.

    Vibrance is a non-linear color boost. Things that are less saturated still get boosted, but things that are already saturated don't get boosted. In theory, a good vibrance control won't blow channels on you (and certainly never as much as saturation does).

    So what's the relevance outside of post processing? Unfortunately, Nikon cameras only have saturation controls. Indeed, one of my problems with Nikon's Picture Controls is that the special ones like Vivid and Landscape use both contrast and saturation boosts. The end result is not subtle and relatively accurate color, but rather comic book color that often pushes some things into unnatural tones. There may be times when you want to push towards comic book color, but you'll be surprised to find that the above raw image (Nikon 1) was processed with vibrance, not saturation.

    Saturation increases tend to push really bright colors into saturation, where you get what I call "nuclear colors" and loss of detail. Try it. Take the image here and push the saturation up and watch the brightest parts: the colored treetops start losing detail rapidly, as the red channel is already maxed out in this rendering. As you push the saturation up, you not only max out the red channel in more parts of the trees, but now the colors start shifting, too.

    Unfortunately, we've been trained to like saturation. It increases perceived contrast and we've been exposed to many years of photo editors and television producers pushing and pushing and pushing further. Check out the intro title sequence on Survivor, for example: someone set the saturation dial to 11. Coupled with nothing staying on the screen for more than a second, it's an outright assault on your eyes. So much so that any ad that follows the intro tends to look tame ;~).
  • 69 plusses - 47 comments - 17 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2012-02-27 15:59:21
    Saturation and Vibrance

    So what's the difference between saturation and vibrance?

    Linearity.

    Saturation is a linear color boost. Each increment you increase saturation, all colors increase together. If you increase saturation too much you will eventually blow out some colors, pushing them past one or more channel maximums. This is one reason why things like red bricks start going orange when you boost saturation too much, for example.

    Vibrance is a non-linear color boost. Things that are less saturated still get boosted, but things that are already saturated don't get boosted. In theory, a good vibrance control won't blow channels on you (and certainly never as much as saturation does).

    So what's the relevance outside of post processing? Unfortunately, Nikon cameras only have saturation controls. Indeed, one of my problems with Nikon's Picture Controls is that the special ones like Vivid and Landscape use both contrast and saturation boosts. The end result is not subtle and relatively accurate color, but rather comic book color that often pushes some things into unnatural tones. There may be times when you want to push towards comic book color, but you'll be surprised to find that the above raw image (Nikon 1) was processed with vibrance, not saturation.

    Saturation increases tend to push really bright colors into saturation, where you get what I call "nuclear colors" and loss of detail. Try it. Take the image here and push the saturation up and watch the brightest parts: the colored treetops start losing detail rapidly, as the red channel is already maxed out in this rendering. As you push the saturation up, you not only max out the red channel in more parts of the trees, but now the colors start shifting, too.

    Unfortunately, we've been trained to like saturation. It increases perceived contrast and we've been exposed to many years of photo editors and television producers pushing and pushing and pushing further. Check out the intro title sequence on Survivor, for example: someone set the saturation dial to 11. Coupled with nothing staying on the screen for more than a second, it's an outright assault on your eyes. So much so that any ad that follows the intro tends to look tame ;~).
  • 69 plusses - 47 comments - 17 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2012-02-27 15:59:21
    Saturation and Vibrance

    So what's the difference between saturation and vibrance?

    Linearity.

    Saturation is a linear color boost. Each increment you increase saturation, all colors increase together. If you increase saturation too much you will eventually blow out some colors, pushing them past one or more channel maximums. This is one reason why things like red bricks start going orange when you boost saturation too much, for example.

    Vibrance is a non-linear color boost. Things that are less saturated still get boosted, but things that are already saturated don't get boosted. In theory, a good vibrance control won't blow channels on you (and certainly never as much as saturation does).

    So what's the relevance outside of post processing? Unfortunately, Nikon cameras only have saturation controls. Indeed, one of my problems with Nikon's Picture Controls is that the special ones like Vivid and Landscape use both contrast and saturation boosts. The end result is not subtle and relatively accurate color, but rather comic book color that often pushes some things into unnatural tones. There may be times when you want to push towards comic book color, but you'll be surprised to find that the above raw image (Nikon 1) was processed with vibrance, not saturation.

    Saturation increases tend to push really bright colors into saturation, where you get what I call "nuclear colors" and loss of detail. Try it. Take the image here and push the saturation up and watch the brightest parts: the colored treetops start losing detail rapidly, as the red channel is already maxed out in this rendering. As you push the saturation up, you not only max out the red channel in more parts of the trees, but now the colors start shifting, too.

    Unfortunately, we've been trained to like saturation. It increases perceived contrast and we've been exposed to many years of photo editors and television producers pushing and pushing and pushing further. Check out the intro title sequence on Survivor, for example: someone set the saturation dial to 11. Coupled with nothing staying on the screen for more than a second, it's an outright assault on your eyes. So much so that any ad that follows the intro tends to look tame ;~).
  • 69 plusses - 47 comments - 17 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2012-02-27 15:59:21
    Saturation and Vibrance

    So what's the difference between saturation and vibrance?

    Linearity.

    Saturation is a linear color boost. Each increment you increase saturation, all colors increase together. If you increase saturation too much you will eventually blow out some colors, pushing them past one or more channel maximums. This is one reason why things like red bricks start going orange when you boost saturation too much, for example.

    Vibrance is a non-linear color boost. Things that are less saturated still get boosted, but things that are already saturated don't get boosted. In theory, a good vibrance control won't blow channels on you (and certainly never as much as saturation does).

    So what's the relevance outside of post processing? Unfortunately, Nikon cameras only have saturation controls. Indeed, one of my problems with Nikon's Picture Controls is that the special ones like Vivid and Landscape use both contrast and saturation boosts. The end result is not subtle and relatively accurate color, but rather comic book color that often pushes some things into unnatural tones. There may be times when you want to push towards comic book color, but you'll be surprised to find that the above raw image (Nikon 1) was processed with vibrance, not saturation.

    Saturation increases tend to push really bright colors into saturation, where you get what I call "nuclear colors" and loss of detail. Try it. Take the image here and push the saturation up and watch the brightest parts: the colored treetops start losing detail rapidly, as the red channel is already maxed out in this rendering. As you push the saturation up, you not only max out the red channel in more parts of the trees, but now the colors start shifting, too.

    Unfortunately, we've been trained to like saturation. It increases perceived contrast and we've been exposed to many years of photo editors and television producers pushing and pushing and pushing further. Check out the intro title sequence on Survivor, for example: someone set the saturation dial to 11. Coupled with nothing staying on the screen for more than a second, it's an outright assault on your eyes. So much so that any ad that follows the intro tends to look tame ;~).
  • 69 plusses - 47 comments - 17 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2012-02-27 15:59:21
    Saturation and Vibrance

    So what's the difference between saturation and vibrance?

    Linearity.

    Saturation is a linear color boost. Each increment you increase saturation, all colors increase together. If you increase saturation too much you will eventually blow out some colors, pushing them past one or more channel maximums. This is one reason why things like red bricks start going orange when you boost saturation too much, for example.

    Vibrance is a non-linear color boost. Things that are less saturated still get boosted, but things that are already saturated don't get boosted. In theory, a good vibrance control won't blow channels on you (and certainly never as much as saturation does).

    So what's the relevance outside of post processing? Unfortunately, Nikon cameras only have saturation controls. Indeed, one of my problems with Nikon's Picture Controls is that the special ones like Vivid and Landscape use both contrast and saturation boosts. The end result is not subtle and relatively accurate color, but rather comic book color that often pushes some things into unnatural tones. There may be times when you want to push towards comic book color, but you'll be surprised to find that the above raw image (Nikon 1) was processed with vibrance, not saturation.

    Saturation increases tend to push really bright colors into saturation, where you get what I call "nuclear colors" and loss of detail. Try it. Take the image here and push the saturation up and watch the brightest parts: the colored treetops start losing detail rapidly, as the red channel is already maxed out in this rendering. As you push the saturation up, you not only max out the red channel in more parts of the trees, but now the colors start shifting, too.

    Unfortunately, we've been trained to like saturation. It increases perceived contrast and we've been exposed to many years of photo editors and television producers pushing and pushing and pushing further. Check out the intro title sequence on Survivor, for example: someone set the saturation dial to 11. Coupled with nothing staying on the screen for more than a second, it's an outright assault on your eyes. So much so that any ad that follows the intro tends to look tame ;~).
  • 69 plusses - 47 comments - 17 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2012-02-27 15:59:21
    Saturation and Vibrance

    So what's the difference between saturation and vibrance?

    Linearity.

    Saturation is a linear color boost. Each increment you increase saturation, all colors increase together. If you increase saturation too much you will eventually blow out some colors, pushing them past one or more channel maximums. This is one reason why things like red bricks start going orange when you boost saturation too much, for example.

    Vibrance is a non-linear color boost. Things that are less saturated still get boosted, but things that are already saturated don't get boosted. In theory, a good vibrance control won't blow channels on you (and certainly never as much as saturation does).

    So what's the relevance outside of post processing? Unfortunately, Nikon cameras only have saturation controls. Indeed, one of my problems with Nikon's Picture Controls is that the special ones like Vivid and Landscape use both contrast and saturation boosts. The end result is not subtle and relatively accurate color, but rather comic book color that often pushes some things into unnatural tones. There may be times when you want to push towards comic book color, but you'll be surprised to find that the above raw image (Nikon 1) was processed with vibrance, not saturation.

    Saturation increases tend to push really bright colors into saturation, where you get what I call "nuclear colors" and loss of detail. Try it. Take the image here and push the saturation up and watch the brightest parts: the colored treetops start losing detail rapidly, as the red channel is already maxed out in this rendering. As you push the saturation up, you not only max out the red channel in more parts of the trees, but now the colors start shifting, too.

    Unfortunately, we've been trained to like saturation. It increases perceived contrast and we've been exposed to many years of photo editors and television producers pushing and pushing and pushing further. Check out the intro title sequence on Survivor, for example: someone set the saturation dial to 11. Coupled with nothing staying on the screen for more than a second, it's an outright assault on your eyes. So much so that any ad that follows the intro tends to look tame ;~).
  • 69 plusses - 47 comments - 17 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2012-02-27 15:59:21
    Saturation and Vibrance

    So what's the difference between saturation and vibrance?

    Linearity.

    Saturation is a linear color boost. Each increment you increase saturation, all colors increase together. If you increase saturation too much you will eventually blow out some colors, pushing them past one or more channel maximums. This is one reason why things like red bricks start going orange when you boost saturation too much, for example.

    Vibrance is a non-linear color boost. Things that are less saturated still get boosted, but things that are already saturated don't get boosted. In theory, a good vibrance control won't blow channels on you (and certainly never as much as saturation does).

    So what's the relevance outside of post processing? Unfortunately, Nikon cameras only have saturation controls. Indeed, one of my problems with Nikon's Picture Controls is that the special ones like Vivid and Landscape use both contrast and saturation boosts. The end result is not subtle and relatively accurate color, but rather comic book color that often pushes some things into unnatural tones. There may be times when you want to push towards comic book color, but you'll be surprised to find that the above raw image (Nikon 1) was processed with vibrance, not saturation.

    Saturation increases tend to push really bright colors into saturation, where you get what I call "nuclear colors" and loss of detail. Try it. Take the image here and push the saturation up and watch the brightest parts: the colored treetops start losing detail rapidly, as the red channel is already maxed out in this rendering. As you push the saturation up, you not only max out the red channel in more parts of the trees, but now the colors start shifting, too.

    Unfortunately, we've been trained to like saturation. It increases perceived contrast and we've been exposed to many years of photo editors and television producers pushing and pushing and pushing further. Check out the intro title sequence on Survivor, for example: someone set the saturation dial to 11. Coupled with nothing staying on the screen for more than a second, it's an outright assault on your eyes. So much so that any ad that follows the intro tends to look tame ;~).
  • 69 plusses - 47 comments - 17 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2011-10-10 14:47:26
    Downdraft

    D100 NEF. Big horizontal landscapes require big decisions. In my thinking either the land needs to be big (and the sky small), or the sky needs to be big (and the land small).

    This is one of a series of images I took over the course of five years that I refer to as my Big Sky series (many of which were taken in the Big Sky state, Montana, though this one is in the state just below it: Wyoming). My decision is usually made easy by a simple question: what dominates what? In this case, the sky is obviously bigger and more dramatic than one of the most dramatic mountain ranges in the US.

    So it's got to be a Big Sky shot, not a Big Land shot.

    I wish I had been more into panoramas and had a really high resolution sensor when this situation happened back in 2002. What you can't see is what's going on to the right and also in back of me, which was just as dramatic, maybe even more so. Indeed, a few minutes after this shot I found myself in the middle of a wild horse stampede, a sight and sound I'll never forget.

    I chose this shot, though, due to the iconic mountains over the slightly less iconic and dramatic peaks to the right, because it says something: the grandest peak (pardon the pun) in the range is a mere trifle compared to just this one single downdraft. Moreover, the peak's and downdraft's shape mirror one another.

    Note the date. I need to rework the image with everything I've learned about post processing over the years: the highlights are a bit rough, and I'm sure I could pull a bit more contrast out of the mountains, as well. Yep, not only have cameras gotten better since 2002, so have I.
  • 64 plusses - 28 comments - 16 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2011-10-10 14:47:26
    Downdraft

    D100 NEF. Big horizontal landscapes require big decisions. In my thinking either the land needs to be big (and the sky small), or the sky needs to be big (and the land small).

    This is one of a series of images I took over the course of five years that I refer to as my Big Sky series (many of which were taken in the Big Sky state, Montana, though this one is in the state just below it: Wyoming). My decision is usually made easy by a simple question: what dominates what? In this case, the sky is obviously bigger and more dramatic than one of the most dramatic mountain ranges in the US.

    So it's got to be a Big Sky shot, not a Big Land shot.

    I wish I had been more into panoramas and had a really high resolution sensor when this situation happened back in 2002. What you can't see is what's going on to the right and also in back of me, which was just as dramatic, maybe even more so. Indeed, a few minutes after this shot I found myself in the middle of a wild horse stampede, a sight and sound I'll never forget.

    I chose this shot, though, due to the iconic mountains over the slightly less iconic and dramatic peaks to the right, because it says something: the grandest peak (pardon the pun) in the range is a mere trifle compared to just this one single downdraft. Moreover, the peak's and downdraft's shape mirror one another.

    Note the date. I need to rework the image with everything I've learned about post processing over the years: the highlights are a bit rough, and I'm sure I could pull a bit more contrast out of the mountains, as well. Yep, not only have cameras gotten better since 2002, so have I.
  • 64 plusses - 28 comments - 16 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2011-10-10 14:47:26
    Downdraft

    D100 NEF. Big horizontal landscapes require big decisions. In my thinking either the land needs to be big (and the sky small), or the sky needs to be big (and the land small).

    This is one of a series of images I took over the course of five years that I refer to as my Big Sky series (many of which were taken in the Big Sky state, Montana, though this one is in the state just below it: Wyoming). My decision is usually made easy by a simple question: what dominates what? In this case, the sky is obviously bigger and more dramatic than one of the most dramatic mountain ranges in the US.

    So it's got to be a Big Sky shot, not a Big Land shot.

    I wish I had been more into panoramas and had a really high resolution sensor when this situation happened back in 2002. What you can't see is what's going on to the right and also in back of me, which was just as dramatic, maybe even more so. Indeed, a few minutes after this shot I found myself in the middle of a wild horse stampede, a sight and sound I'll never forget.

    I chose this shot, though, due to the iconic mountains over the slightly less iconic and dramatic peaks to the right, because it says something: the grandest peak (pardon the pun) in the range is a mere trifle compared to just this one single downdraft. Moreover, the peak's and downdraft's shape mirror one another.

    Note the date. I need to rework the image with everything I've learned about post processing over the years: the highlights are a bit rough, and I'm sure I could pull a bit more contrast out of the mountains, as well. Yep, not only have cameras gotten better since 2002, so have I.
  • 64 plusses - 28 comments - 16 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2011-10-10 14:47:26
    Downdraft

    D100 NEF. Big horizontal landscapes require big decisions. In my thinking either the land needs to be big (and the sky small), or the sky needs to be big (and the land small).

    This is one of a series of images I took over the course of five years that I refer to as my Big Sky series (many of which were taken in the Big Sky state, Montana, though this one is in the state just below it: Wyoming). My decision is usually made easy by a simple question: what dominates what? In this case, the sky is obviously bigger and more dramatic than one of the most dramatic mountain ranges in the US.

    So it's got to be a Big Sky shot, not a Big Land shot.

    I wish I had been more into panoramas and had a really high resolution sensor when this situation happened back in 2002. What you can't see is what's going on to the right and also in back of me, which was just as dramatic, maybe even more so. Indeed, a few minutes after this shot I found myself in the middle of a wild horse stampede, a sight and sound I'll never forget.

    I chose this shot, though, due to the iconic mountains over the slightly less iconic and dramatic peaks to the right, because it says something: the grandest peak (pardon the pun) in the range is a mere trifle compared to just this one single downdraft. Moreover, the peak's and downdraft's shape mirror one another.

    Note the date. I need to rework the image with everything I've learned about post processing over the years: the highlights are a bit rough, and I'm sure I could pull a bit more contrast out of the mountains, as well. Yep, not only have cameras gotten better since 2002, so have I.
  • 64 plusses - 28 comments - 16 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2011-10-10 14:47:26
    Downdraft

    D100 NEF. Big horizontal landscapes require big decisions. In my thinking either the land needs to be big (and the sky small), or the sky needs to be big (and the land small).

    This is one of a series of images I took over the course of five years that I refer to as my Big Sky series (many of which were taken in the Big Sky state, Montana, though this one is in the state just below it: Wyoming). My decision is usually made easy by a simple question: what dominates what? In this case, the sky is obviously bigger and more dramatic than one of the most dramatic mountain ranges in the US.

    So it's got to be a Big Sky shot, not a Big Land shot.

    I wish I had been more into panoramas and had a really high resolution sensor when this situation happened back in 2002. What you can't see is what's going on to the right and also in back of me, which was just as dramatic, maybe even more so. Indeed, a few minutes after this shot I found myself in the middle of a wild horse stampede, a sight and sound I'll never forget.

    I chose this shot, though, due to the iconic mountains over the slightly less iconic and dramatic peaks to the right, because it says something: the grandest peak (pardon the pun) in the range is a mere trifle compared to just this one single downdraft. Moreover, the peak's and downdraft's shape mirror one another.

    Note the date. I need to rework the image with everything I've learned about post processing over the years: the highlights are a bit rough, and I'm sure I could pull a bit more contrast out of the mountains, as well. Yep, not only have cameras gotten better since 2002, so have I.
  • 64 plusses - 28 comments - 16 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2011-10-10 14:47:26
    Downdraft

    D100 NEF. Big horizontal landscapes require big decisions. In my thinking either the land needs to be big (and the sky small), or the sky needs to be big (and the land small).

    This is one of a series of images I took over the course of five years that I refer to as my Big Sky series (many of which were taken in the Big Sky state, Montana, though this one is in the state just below it: Wyoming). My decision is usually made easy by a simple question: what dominates what? In this case, the sky is obviously bigger and more dramatic than one of the most dramatic mountain ranges in the US.

    So it's got to be a Big Sky shot, not a Big Land shot.

    I wish I had been more into panoramas and had a really high resolution sensor when this situation happened back in 2002. What you can't see is what's going on to the right and also in back of me, which was just as dramatic, maybe even more so. Indeed, a few minutes after this shot I found myself in the middle of a wild horse stampede, a sight and sound I'll never forget.

    I chose this shot, though, due to the iconic mountains over the slightly less iconic and dramatic peaks to the right, because it says something: the grandest peak (pardon the pun) in the range is a mere trifle compared to just this one single downdraft. Moreover, the peak's and downdraft's shape mirror one another.

    Note the date. I need to rework the image with everything I've learned about post processing over the years: the highlights are a bit rough, and I'm sure I could pull a bit more contrast out of the mountains, as well. Yep, not only have cameras gotten better since 2002, so have I.
  • 64 plusses - 28 comments - 16 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2011-10-10 14:47:26
    Downdraft

    D100 NEF. Big horizontal landscapes require big decisions. In my thinking either the land needs to be big (and the sky small), or the sky needs to be big (and the land small).

    This is one of a series of images I took over the course of five years that I refer to as my Big Sky series (many of which were taken in the Big Sky state, Montana, though this one is in the state just below it: Wyoming). My decision is usually made easy by a simple question: what dominates what? In this case, the sky is obviously bigger and more dramatic than one of the most dramatic mountain ranges in the US.

    So it's got to be a Big Sky shot, not a Big Land shot.

    I wish I had been more into panoramas and had a really high resolution sensor when this situation happened back in 2002. What you can't see is what's going on to the right and also in back of me, which was just as dramatic, maybe even more so. Indeed, a few minutes after this shot I found myself in the middle of a wild horse stampede, a sight and sound I'll never forget.

    I chose this shot, though, due to the iconic mountains over the slightly less iconic and dramatic peaks to the right, because it says something: the grandest peak (pardon the pun) in the range is a mere trifle compared to just this one single downdraft. Moreover, the peak's and downdraft's shape mirror one another.

    Note the date. I need to rework the image with everything I've learned about post processing over the years: the highlights are a bit rough, and I'm sure I could pull a bit more contrast out of the mountains, as well. Yep, not only have cameras gotten better since 2002, so have I.
  • 64 plusses - 28 comments - 16 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2011-10-24 15:35:46
    Touchfire

    I generally don't do this (disclosure: the inventor of this product and I worked together at one of the seminal Silicon Valley startups), but I know enough of you have opted for iPads and you'll see me doing more coverage of the photographic aspects of that Apple product in the future, so...

    Touchfire is a clear overlay that makes the on-screen iPad keyboard feel like a real keyboard. I don't know how to say it any simpler. At one ounce and iPad Smart Cover friendly, it's sort of a no-brainer if you do any significant typing on an iPad, as you don't need to add an external keyboard to your kit. The screen area is still visible and active underneath the transparent plastic that provides you the tactile feedback, and you can easily flip away the Touchfire if you need to.

    We're slowly getting photography software on the iPad that takes advantage of keyboard access. For example, imagine a scenario where you're in the field and you've imported the contents of your SD card directly into your iPad, at which point you use a Lightroom Lite type of application to do your edits and entry of your metadata. A keyboard would be a big help in that instance, but it sort of defeats the purpose of going light with an iPad if you end up with an external keyboard that makes the combination as big as a MacBook Air.

    Thus, I can see the Touchfire's utility being of interest to us photographers soon. Since it's currently a Kickstarter project, the Touchfire is not yet available, but I have little doubts it will jump over it's low funding barrier and become real, very soon. If you want to be an early adopter, you can check out the story at touchfire.com and sign up for one of the very first units (US$45).

    As I wrote, I don't usually step outside of a narrow set of boundaries in terms of product coverage, let alone one with a potential conflict of interest. I always disclose when I do, as I am here. The inventor and I go way back, and we've had discussions about missing software products that we may yet just act on. I'd love to see Steve go over the top of his Kickstarter campaign, mainly because I want to get my own Touchfire sooner rather than later.
  • 15 plusses - 35 comments - 14 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2011-10-24 15:35:46
    Touchfire

    I generally don't do this (disclosure: the inventor of this product and I worked together at one of the seminal Silicon Valley startups), but I know enough of you have opted for iPads and you'll see me doing more coverage of the photographic aspects of that Apple product in the future, so...

    Touchfire is a clear overlay that makes the on-screen iPad keyboard feel like a real keyboard. I don't know how to say it any simpler. At one ounce and iPad Smart Cover friendly, it's sort of a no-brainer if you do any significant typing on an iPad, as you don't need to add an external keyboard to your kit. The screen area is still visible and active underneath the transparent plastic that provides you the tactile feedback, and you can easily flip away the Touchfire if you need to.

    We're slowly getting photography software on the iPad that takes advantage of keyboard access. For example, imagine a scenario where you're in the field and you've imported the contents of your SD card directly into your iPad, at which point you use a Lightroom Lite type of application to do your edits and entry of your metadata. A keyboard would be a big help in that instance, but it sort of defeats the purpose of going light with an iPad if you end up with an external keyboard that makes the combination as big as a MacBook Air.

    Thus, I can see the Touchfire's utility being of interest to us photographers soon. Since it's currently a Kickstarter project, the Touchfire is not yet available, but I have little doubts it will jump over it's low funding barrier and become real, very soon. If you want to be an early adopter, you can check out the story at touchfire.com and sign up for one of the very first units (US$45).

    As I wrote, I don't usually step outside of a narrow set of boundaries in terms of product coverage, let alone one with a potential conflict of interest. I always disclose when I do, as I am here. The inventor and I go way back, and we've had discussions about missing software products that we may yet just act on. I'd love to see Steve go over the top of his Kickstarter campaign, mainly because I want to get my own Touchfire sooner rather than later.
  • 15 plusses - 35 comments - 14 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2011-10-24 15:35:46
    Touchfire

    I generally don't do this (disclosure: the inventor of this product and I worked together at one of the seminal Silicon Valley startups), but I know enough of you have opted for iPads and you'll see me doing more coverage of the photographic aspects of that Apple product in the future, so...

    Touchfire is a clear overlay that makes the on-screen iPad keyboard feel like a real keyboard. I don't know how to say it any simpler. At one ounce and iPad Smart Cover friendly, it's sort of a no-brainer if you do any significant typing on an iPad, as you don't need to add an external keyboard to your kit. The screen area is still visible and active underneath the transparent plastic that provides you the tactile feedback, and you can easily flip away the Touchfire if you need to.

    We're slowly getting photography software on the iPad that takes advantage of keyboard access. For example, imagine a scenario where you're in the field and you've imported the contents of your SD card directly into your iPad, at which point you use a Lightroom Lite type of application to do your edits and entry of your metadata. A keyboard would be a big help in that instance, but it sort of defeats the purpose of going light with an iPad if you end up with an external keyboard that makes the combination as big as a MacBook Air.

    Thus, I can see the Touchfire's utility being of interest to us photographers soon. Since it's currently a Kickstarter project, the Touchfire is not yet available, but I have little doubts it will jump over it's low funding barrier and become real, very soon. If you want to be an early adopter, you can check out the story at touchfire.com and sign up for one of the very first units (US$45).

    As I wrote, I don't usually step outside of a narrow set of boundaries in terms of product coverage, let alone one with a potential conflict of interest. I always disclose when I do, as I am here. The inventor and I go way back, and we've had discussions about missing software products that we may yet just act on. I'd love to see Steve go over the top of his Kickstarter campaign, mainly because I want to get my own Touchfire sooner rather than later.
  • 15 plusses - 35 comments - 14 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2011-10-24 15:35:46
    Touchfire

    I generally don't do this (disclosure: the inventor of this product and I worked together at one of the seminal Silicon Valley startups), but I know enough of you have opted for iPads and you'll see me doing more coverage of the photographic aspects of that Apple product in the future, so...

    Touchfire is a clear overlay that makes the on-screen iPad keyboard feel like a real keyboard. I don't know how to say it any simpler. At one ounce and iPad Smart Cover friendly, it's sort of a no-brainer if you do any significant typing on an iPad, as you don't need to add an external keyboard to your kit. The screen area is still visible and active underneath the transparent plastic that provides you the tactile feedback, and you can easily flip away the Touchfire if you need to.

    We're slowly getting photography software on the iPad that takes advantage of keyboard access. For example, imagine a scenario where you're in the field and you've imported the contents of your SD card directly into your iPad, at which point you use a Lightroom Lite type of application to do your edits and entry of your metadata. A keyboard would be a big help in that instance, but it sort of defeats the purpose of going light with an iPad if you end up with an external keyboard that makes the combination as big as a MacBook Air.

    Thus, I can see the Touchfire's utility being of interest to us photographers soon. Since it's currently a Kickstarter project, the Touchfire is not yet available, but I have little doubts it will jump over it's low funding barrier and become real, very soon. If you want to be an early adopter, you can check out the story at touchfire.com and sign up for one of the very first units (US$45).

    As I wrote, I don't usually step outside of a narrow set of boundaries in terms of product coverage, let alone one with a potential conflict of interest. I always disclose when I do, as I am here. The inventor and I go way back, and we've had discussions about missing software products that we may yet just act on. I'd love to see Steve go over the top of his Kickstarter campaign, mainly because I want to get my own Touchfire sooner rather than later.
  • 15 plusses - 35 comments - 14 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2011-10-24 15:35:46
    Touchfire

    I generally don't do this (disclosure: the inventor of this product and I worked together at one of the seminal Silicon Valley startups), but I know enough of you have opted for iPads and you'll see me doing more coverage of the photographic aspects of that Apple product in the future, so...

    Touchfire is a clear overlay that makes the on-screen iPad keyboard feel like a real keyboard. I don't know how to say it any simpler. At one ounce and iPad Smart Cover friendly, it's sort of a no-brainer if you do any significant typing on an iPad, as you don't need to add an external keyboard to your kit. The screen area is still visible and active underneath the transparent plastic that provides you the tactile feedback, and you can easily flip away the Touchfire if you need to.

    We're slowly getting photography software on the iPad that takes advantage of keyboard access. For example, imagine a scenario where you're in the field and you've imported the contents of your SD card directly into your iPad, at which point you use a Lightroom Lite type of application to do your edits and entry of your metadata. A keyboard would be a big help in that instance, but it sort of defeats the purpose of going light with an iPad if you end up with an external keyboard that makes the combination as big as a MacBook Air.

    Thus, I can see the Touchfire's utility being of interest to us photographers soon. Since it's currently a Kickstarter project, the Touchfire is not yet available, but I have little doubts it will jump over it's low funding barrier and become real, very soon. If you want to be an early adopter, you can check out the story at touchfire.com and sign up for one of the very first units (US$45).

    As I wrote, I don't usually step outside of a narrow set of boundaries in terms of product coverage, let alone one with a potential conflict of interest. I always disclose when I do, as I am here. The inventor and I go way back, and we've had discussions about missing software products that we may yet just act on. I'd love to see Steve go over the top of his Kickstarter campaign, mainly because I want to get my own Touchfire sooner rather than later.
  • 15 plusses - 35 comments - 14 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2011-10-24 15:35:46
    Touchfire

    I generally don't do this (disclosure: the inventor of this product and I worked together at one of the seminal Silicon Valley startups), but I know enough of you have opted for iPads and you'll see me doing more coverage of the photographic aspects of that Apple product in the future, so...

    Touchfire is a clear overlay that makes the on-screen iPad keyboard feel like a real keyboard. I don't know how to say it any simpler. At one ounce and iPad Smart Cover friendly, it's sort of a no-brainer if you do any significant typing on an iPad, as you don't need to add an external keyboard to your kit. The screen area is still visible and active underneath the transparent plastic that provides you the tactile feedback, and you can easily flip away the Touchfire if you need to.

    We're slowly getting photography software on the iPad that takes advantage of keyboard access. For example, imagine a scenario where you're in the field and you've imported the contents of your SD card directly into your iPad, at which point you use a Lightroom Lite type of application to do your edits and entry of your metadata. A keyboard would be a big help in that instance, but it sort of defeats the purpose of going light with an iPad if you end up with an external keyboard that makes the combination as big as a MacBook Air.

    Thus, I can see the Touchfire's utility being of interest to us photographers soon. Since it's currently a Kickstarter project, the Touchfire is not yet available, but I have little doubts it will jump over it's low funding barrier and become real, very soon. If you want to be an early adopter, you can check out the story at touchfire.com and sign up for one of the very first units (US$45).

    As I wrote, I don't usually step outside of a narrow set of boundaries in terms of product coverage, let alone one with a potential conflict of interest. I always disclose when I do, as I am here. The inventor and I go way back, and we've had discussions about missing software products that we may yet just act on. I'd love to see Steve go over the top of his Kickstarter campaign, mainly because I want to get my own Touchfire sooner rather than later.
  • 15 plusses - 35 comments - 14 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2011-10-24 15:35:46
    Touchfire

    I generally don't do this (disclosure: the inventor of this product and I worked together at one of the seminal Silicon Valley startups), but I know enough of you have opted for iPads and you'll see me doing more coverage of the photographic aspects of that Apple product in the future, so...

    Touchfire is a clear overlay that makes the on-screen iPad keyboard feel like a real keyboard. I don't know how to say it any simpler. At one ounce and iPad Smart Cover friendly, it's sort of a no-brainer if you do any significant typing on an iPad, as you don't need to add an external keyboard to your kit. The screen area is still visible and active underneath the transparent plastic that provides you the tactile feedback, and you can easily flip away the Touchfire if you need to.

    We're slowly getting photography software on the iPad that takes advantage of keyboard access. For example, imagine a scenario where you're in the field and you've imported the contents of your SD card directly into your iPad, at which point you use a Lightroom Lite type of application to do your edits and entry of your metadata. A keyboard would be a big help in that instance, but it sort of defeats the purpose of going light with an iPad if you end up with an external keyboard that makes the combination as big as a MacBook Air.

    Thus, I can see the Touchfire's utility being of interest to us photographers soon. Since it's currently a Kickstarter project, the Touchfire is not yet available, but I have little doubts it will jump over it's low funding barrier and become real, very soon. If you want to be an early adopter, you can check out the story at touchfire.com and sign up for one of the very first units (US$45).

    As I wrote, I don't usually step outside of a narrow set of boundaries in terms of product coverage, let alone one with a potential conflict of interest. I always disclose when I do, as I am here. The inventor and I go way back, and we've had discussions about missing software products that we may yet just act on. I'd love to see Steve go over the top of his Kickstarter campaign, mainly because I want to get my own Touchfire sooner rather than later.
  • 15 plusses - 35 comments - 14 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2012-02-07 14:27:41
    D800 Article Posted

    I've posted my D800 introduction article at http://www.bythom.com/d800intro.htm. Let's try to keep the discussion about this camera here and not spreading through my other streams ;~)
  • 45 plusses - 201 comments - 13 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2012-02-07 14:27:41
    D800 Article Posted

    I've posted my D800 introduction article at http://www.bythom.com/d800intro.htm. Let's try to keep the discussion about this camera here and not spreading through my other streams ;~)
  • 45 plusses - 201 comments - 13 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2012-02-07 14:27:41
    D800 Article Posted

    I've posted my D800 introduction article at http://www.bythom.com/d800intro.htm. Let's try to keep the discussion about this camera here and not spreading through my other streams ;~)
  • 45 plusses - 201 comments - 13 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2012-02-07 14:27:41
    D800 Article Posted

    I've posted my D800 introduction article at http://www.bythom.com/d800intro.htm. Let's try to keep the discussion about this camera here and not spreading through my other streams ;~)
  • 45 plusses - 201 comments - 13 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2012-02-07 14:27:41
    D800 Article Posted

    I've posted my D800 introduction article at http://www.bythom.com/d800intro.htm. Let's try to keep the discussion about this camera here and not spreading through my other streams ;~)
  • 45 plusses - 201 comments - 13 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2012-02-07 14:27:41
    D800 Article Posted

    I've posted my D800 introduction article at http://www.bythom.com/d800intro.htm. Let's try to keep the discussion about this camera here and not spreading through my other streams ;~)
  • 45 plusses - 201 comments - 13 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2012-02-07 14:27:41
    D800 Article Posted

    I've posted my D800 introduction article at http://www.bythom.com/d800intro.htm. Let's try to keep the discussion about this camera here and not spreading through my other streams ;~)
  • 45 plusses - 201 comments - 13 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2012-07-07 18:39:09
    My review of the Nikon D800 and D800E is now posted at: www.bythom.com/nikond800review.htm.
  • 78 plusses - 77 comments - 12 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2012-07-07 18:39:09
    My review of the Nikon D800 and D800E is now posted at: www.bythom.com/nikond800review.htm.
  • 78 plusses - 77 comments - 12 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2012-07-07 18:39:09
    My review of the Nikon D800 and D800E is now posted at: www.bythom.com/nikond800review.htm.
  • 78 plusses - 77 comments - 12 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2012-07-07 18:39:09
    My review of the Nikon D800 and D800E is now posted at: www.bythom.com/nikond800review.htm.
  • 78 plusses - 77 comments - 12 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2012-07-07 18:39:09
    My review of the Nikon D800 and D800E is now posted at: www.bythom.com/nikond800review.htm.
  • 78 plusses - 77 comments - 12 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2012-07-07 18:39:09
    My review of the Nikon D800 and D800E is now posted at: www.bythom.com/nikond800review.htm.
  • 78 plusses - 77 comments - 12 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2012-07-07 18:39:09
    My review of the Nikon D800 and D800E is now posted at: www.bythom.com/nikond800review.htm.
  • 78 plusses - 77 comments - 12 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2012-03-26 12:22:00
    Learn to Fail

    Some amateurs assume that pros never miss a shot. That pros never take a bad shot. That pros keep 100% of the shots they take.

    Nonsense. Pros fail. A lot. Pros fail far more than they succeed, but they succeed far more than they need to in order to fulfill the job. In fact, if pros are not failing all the time, they rarely progress beyond a simplistic and formulaic way of shooting pictures.

    What you see above is one of my failures. As a matter of fact, I didn't get a single image I liked from a one-hour shooting session. Not one. You all know why I was shooting: practice and play. If I've got spare time with a camera in my hand I'm in either practice or play mode, or both (see previous teaching points).

    Even when I know something isn't going to work--and I pretty much knew this shot wouldn't work--I'll still go through the motions of thinking it through the best I can and taking it. From failure comes information. The more you follow through on the failure (take the shot as opposed to just skipping over it), the more information you get.

    A lot of students are dismayed that I do very little image culling at the front of my workflow. Even failed images like this one get into my files. Why? Because I want the data point to learn from. When I took the picture I was aware of two major things I didn't like and which were going to cause this image to fail. In looking at it dispassionately after the fact, I can find another half dozen or so things that would have to be dealt with for this picture to start working the way I'd want it to.

    By keeping the picture around, I can look at it at length and consider all those things and what I might do about them. As I write this a day later, I'm less than a one minute walk away from that spot. What would I do if I figured out how to make the image work? Why, I'd walk over there and take the "good" shot. Not because I want that shot for my files, but because I want to test whether what I figured out actually was the solution.

    I wrote recently about the fact that it takes 10,000 hours or so to become a master of something. Most of those 10,000 hours are failures. You learn far more from failures if you are open to it than you ever will from your successes. Go out and fail at a photograph today. Fail correctly and your photography will be better tomorrow.
  • 49 plusses - 38 comments - 11 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2012-03-26 12:22:00
    Learn to Fail

    Some amateurs assume that pros never miss a shot. That pros never take a bad shot. That pros keep 100% of the shots they take.

    Nonsense. Pros fail. A lot. Pros fail far more than they succeed, but they succeed far more than they need to in order to fulfill the job. In fact, if pros are not failing all the time, they rarely progress beyond a simplistic and formulaic way of shooting pictures.

    What you see above is one of my failures. As a matter of fact, I didn't get a single image I liked from a one-hour shooting session. Not one. You all know why I was shooting: practice and play. If I've got spare time with a camera in my hand I'm in either practice or play mode, or both (see previous teaching points).

    Even when I know something isn't going to work--and I pretty much knew this shot wouldn't work--I'll still go through the motions of thinking it through the best I can and taking it. From failure comes information. The more you follow through on the failure (take the shot as opposed to just skipping over it), the more information you get.

    A lot of students are dismayed that I do very little image culling at the front of my workflow. Even failed images like this one get into my files. Why? Because I want the data point to learn from. When I took the picture I was aware of two major things I didn't like and which were going to cause this image to fail. In looking at it dispassionately after the fact, I can find another half dozen or so things that would have to be dealt with for this picture to start working the way I'd want it to.

    By keeping the picture around, I can look at it at length and consider all those things and what I might do about them. As I write this a day later, I'm less than a one minute walk away from that spot. What would I do if I figured out how to make the image work? Why, I'd walk over there and take the "good" shot. Not because I want that shot for my files, but because I want to test whether what I figured out actually was the solution.

    I wrote recently about the fact that it takes 10,000 hours or so to become a master of something. Most of those 10,000 hours are failures. You learn far more from failures if you are open to it than you ever will from your successes. Go out and fail at a photograph today. Fail correctly and your photography will be better tomorrow.
  • 49 plusses - 38 comments - 11 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2012-03-26 12:22:00
    Learn to Fail

    Some amateurs assume that pros never miss a shot. That pros never take a bad shot. That pros keep 100% of the shots they take.

    Nonsense. Pros fail. A lot. Pros fail far more than they succeed, but they succeed far more than they need to in order to fulfill the job. In fact, if pros are not failing all the time, they rarely progress beyond a simplistic and formulaic way of shooting pictures.

    What you see above is one of my failures. As a matter of fact, I didn't get a single image I liked from a one-hour shooting session. Not one. You all know why I was shooting: practice and play. If I've got spare time with a camera in my hand I'm in either practice or play mode, or both (see previous teaching points).

    Even when I know something isn't going to work--and I pretty much knew this shot wouldn't work--I'll still go through the motions of thinking it through the best I can and taking it. From failure comes information. The more you follow through on the failure (take the shot as opposed to just skipping over it), the more information you get.

    A lot of students are dismayed that I do very little image culling at the front of my workflow. Even failed images like this one get into my files. Why? Because I want the data point to learn from. When I took the picture I was aware of two major things I didn't like and which were going to cause this image to fail. In looking at it dispassionately after the fact, I can find another half dozen or so things that would have to be dealt with for this picture to start working the way I'd want it to.

    By keeping the picture around, I can look at it at length and consider all those things and what I might do about them. As I write this a day later, I'm less than a one minute walk away from that spot. What would I do if I figured out how to make the image work? Why, I'd walk over there and take the "good" shot. Not because I want that shot for my files, but because I want to test whether what I figured out actually was the solution.

    I wrote recently about the fact that it takes 10,000 hours or so to become a master of something. Most of those 10,000 hours are failures. You learn far more from failures if you are open to it than you ever will from your successes. Go out and fail at a photograph today. Fail correctly and your photography will be better tomorrow.
  • 49 plusses - 38 comments - 11 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2012-03-26 12:22:00
    Learn to Fail

    Some amateurs assume that pros never miss a shot. That pros never take a bad shot. That pros keep 100% of the shots they take.

    Nonsense. Pros fail. A lot. Pros fail far more than they succeed, but they succeed far more than they need to in order to fulfill the job. In fact, if pros are not failing all the time, they rarely progress beyond a simplistic and formulaic way of shooting pictures.

    What you see above is one of my failures. As a matter of fact, I didn't get a single image I liked from a one-hour shooting session. Not one. You all know why I was shooting: practice and play. If I've got spare time with a camera in my hand I'm in either practice or play mode, or both (see previous teaching points).

    Even when I know something isn't going to work--and I pretty much knew this shot wouldn't work--I'll still go through the motions of thinking it through the best I can and taking it. From failure comes information. The more you follow through on the failure (take the shot as opposed to just skipping over it), the more information you get.

    A lot of students are dismayed that I do very little image culling at the front of my workflow. Even failed images like this one get into my files. Why? Because I want the data point to learn from. When I took the picture I was aware of two major things I didn't like and which were going to cause this image to fail. In looking at it dispassionately after the fact, I can find another half dozen or so things that would have to be dealt with for this picture to start working the way I'd want it to.

    By keeping the picture around, I can look at it at length and consider all those things and what I might do about them. As I write this a day later, I'm less than a one minute walk away from that spot. What would I do if I figured out how to make the image work? Why, I'd walk over there and take the "good" shot. Not because I want that shot for my files, but because I want to test whether what I figured out actually was the solution.

    I wrote recently about the fact that it takes 10,000 hours or so to become a master of something. Most of those 10,000 hours are failures. You learn far more from failures if you are open to it than you ever will from your successes. Go out and fail at a photograph today. Fail correctly and your photography will be better tomorrow.
  • 49 plusses - 38 comments - 11 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2012-03-26 12:22:00
    Learn to Fail

    Some amateurs assume that pros never miss a shot. That pros never take a bad shot. That pros keep 100% of the shots they take.

    Nonsense. Pros fail. A lot. Pros fail far more than they succeed, but they succeed far more than they need to in order to fulfill the job. In fact, if pros are not failing all the time, they rarely progress beyond a simplistic and formulaic way of shooting pictures.

    What you see above is one of my failures. As a matter of fact, I didn't get a single image I liked from a one-hour shooting session. Not one. You all know why I was shooting: practice and play. If I've got spare time with a camera in my hand I'm in either practice or play mode, or both (see previous teaching points).

    Even when I know something isn't going to work--and I pretty much knew this shot wouldn't work--I'll still go through the motions of thinking it through the best I can and taking it. From failure comes information. The more you follow through on the failure (take the shot as opposed to just skipping over it), the more information you get.

    A lot of students are dismayed that I do very little image culling at the front of my workflow. Even failed images like this one get into my files. Why? Because I want the data point to learn from. When I took the picture I was aware of two major things I didn't like and which were going to cause this image to fail. In looking at it dispassionately after the fact, I can find another half dozen or so things that would have to be dealt with for this picture to start working the way I'd want it to.

    By keeping the picture around, I can look at it at length and consider all those things and what I might do about them. As I write this a day later, I'm less than a one minute walk away from that spot. What would I do if I figured out how to make the image work? Why, I'd walk over there and take the "good" shot. Not because I want that shot for my files, but because I want to test whether what I figured out actually was the solution.

    I wrote recently about the fact that it takes 10,000 hours or so to become a master of something. Most of those 10,000 hours are failures. You learn far more from failures if you are open to it than you ever will from your successes. Go out and fail at a photograph today. Fail correctly and your photography will be better tomorrow.
  • 49 plusses - 38 comments - 11 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2012-03-26 12:22:00
    Learn to Fail

    Some amateurs assume that pros never miss a shot. That pros never take a bad shot. That pros keep 100% of the shots they take.

    Nonsense. Pros fail. A lot. Pros fail far more than they succeed, but they succeed far more than they need to in order to fulfill the job. In fact, if pros are not failing all the time, they rarely progress beyond a simplistic and formulaic way of shooting pictures.

    What you see above is one of my failures. As a matter of fact, I didn't get a single image I liked from a one-hour shooting session. Not one. You all know why I was shooting: practice and play. If I've got spare time with a camera in my hand I'm in either practice or play mode, or both (see previous teaching points).

    Even when I know something isn't going to work--and I pretty much knew this shot wouldn't work--I'll still go through the motions of thinking it through the best I can and taking it. From failure comes information. The more you follow through on the failure (take the shot as opposed to just skipping over it), the more information you get.

    A lot of students are dismayed that I do very little image culling at the front of my workflow. Even failed images like this one get into my files. Why? Because I want the data point to learn from. When I took the picture I was aware of two major things I didn't like and which were going to cause this image to fail. In looking at it dispassionately after the fact, I can find another half dozen or so things that would have to be dealt with for this picture to start working the way I'd want it to.

    By keeping the picture around, I can look at it at length and consider all those things and what I might do about them. As I write this a day later, I'm less than a one minute walk away from that spot. What would I do if I figured out how to make the image work? Why, I'd walk over there and take the "good" shot. Not because I want that shot for my files, but because I want to test whether what I figured out actually was the solution.

    I wrote recently about the fact that it takes 10,000 hours or so to become a master of something. Most of those 10,000 hours are failures. You learn far more from failures if you are open to it than you ever will from your successes. Go out and fail at a photograph today. Fail correctly and your photography will be better tomorrow.
  • 49 plusses - 38 comments - 11 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2012-03-26 12:22:00
    Learn to Fail

    Some amateurs assume that pros never miss a shot. That pros never take a bad shot. That pros keep 100% of the shots they take.

    Nonsense. Pros fail. A lot. Pros fail far more than they succeed, but they succeed far more than they need to in order to fulfill the job. In fact, if pros are not failing all the time, they rarely progress beyond a simplistic and formulaic way of shooting pictures.

    What you see above is one of my failures. As a matter of fact, I didn't get a single image I liked from a one-hour shooting session. Not one. You all know why I was shooting: practice and play. If I've got spare time with a camera in my hand I'm in either practice or play mode, or both (see previous teaching points).

    Even when I know something isn't going to work--and I pretty much knew this shot wouldn't work--I'll still go through the motions of thinking it through the best I can and taking it. From failure comes information. The more you follow through on the failure (take the shot as opposed to just skipping over it), the more information you get.

    A lot of students are dismayed that I do very little image culling at the front of my workflow. Even failed images like this one get into my files. Why? Because I want the data point to learn from. When I took the picture I was aware of two major things I didn't like and which were going to cause this image to fail. In looking at it dispassionately after the fact, I can find another half dozen or so things that would have to be dealt with for this picture to start working the way I'd want it to.

    By keeping the picture around, I can look at it at length and consider all those things and what I might do about them. As I write this a day later, I'm less than a one minute walk away from that spot. What would I do if I figured out how to make the image work? Why, I'd walk over there and take the "good" shot. Not because I want that shot for my files, but because I want to test whether what I figured out actually was the solution.

    I wrote recently about the fact that it takes 10,000 hours or so to become a master of something. Most of those 10,000 hours are failures. You learn far more from failures if you are open to it than you ever will from your successes. Go out and fail at a photograph today. Fail correctly and your photography will be better tomorrow.
  • 49 plusses - 38 comments - 11 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2012-03-19 16:24:44
    Practice

    G1x image.

    I probably walk the terminal connector at O'Hare airport more than a dozen times a year. If you've never see Sky's the Limit by Michael Hayden, just know that it's a target rich environment for a photographer. Target rich environments are perfect for practicing photography.

    Practicing photography is defined as taking photographs solely to improve your skill and craft set--you have no other purpose or particular output in mind. If you threw away all the photos from a practice session, it shouldn't bother you. On the other hand, sometimes you make some pretty darned good images from practice, and you do keep them.

    I make it a point to spend at least 15 minutes every time I'm at O'Hare to do some photography in this connecting tunnel. I give myself two assignments: (1) find some way to capture a photograph I haven't done before in this place; and (2) work on timing and composition for something I've done before and see if I can top it.

    In this particular shot I was working on variations of timing (#2). I've come up with at least six different variations on this image that I like and which convey different things. But I was mostly practicing timing the exact moment to press the shutter release on a new camera (learning its shutter lag).

    So here's today bonus: if I put this lone walker on the right instead of the left, what happens? Is a left walker in more of a hurry than a right walker? Is a left walker closer to their destination than a right walker? Is a left walker more solitary than a right walker? Why symmetrical framing with asymmetrical subject? Why only a single subject? Why is the right heel lifted?

    Now you know some of what I was thinking about as I was practicing my shutter lag on a new camera between flights this time.

    Find your own place that you visit regularly at which you can practice photography. You don't need to visit it every day (though the more you practice, the better you should get), but you need to visit it regularly. It needs to be photo rich, a place where you keep finding new photographic opportunities. It needs to be convenient or else you'll never go there to practice. As I noted above, I typically only spend about fifteen minutes. So you don't have to spend a lot of time, you just have to do it often. It's a very useful fifteen minutes, and it makes me a better photographer.
  • 56 plusses - 32 comments - 10 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2012-03-19 16:24:44
    Practice

    G1x image.

    I probably walk the terminal connector at O'Hare airport more than a dozen times a year. If you've never see Sky's the Limit by Michael Hayden, just know that it's a target rich environment for a photographer. Target rich environments are perfect for practicing photography.

    Practicing photography is defined as taking photographs solely to improve your skill and craft set--you have no other purpose or particular output in mind. If you threw away all the photos from a practice session, it shouldn't bother you. On the other hand, sometimes you make some pretty darned good images from practice, and you do keep them.

    I make it a point to spend at least 15 minutes every time I'm at O'Hare to do some photography in this connecting tunnel. I give myself two assignments: (1) find some way to capture a photograph I haven't done before in this place; and (2) work on timing and composition for something I've done before and see if I can top it.

    In this particular shot I was working on variations of timing (#2). I've come up with at least six different variations on this image that I like and which convey different things. But I was mostly practicing timing the exact moment to press the shutter release on a new camera (learning its shutter lag).

    So here's today bonus: if I put this lone walker on the right instead of the left, what happens? Is a left walker in more of a hurry than a right walker? Is a left walker closer to their destination than a right walker? Is a left walker more solitary than a right walker? Why symmetrical framing with asymmetrical subject? Why only a single subject? Why is the right heel lifted?

    Now you know some of what I was thinking about as I was practicing my shutter lag on a new camera between flights this time.

    Find your own place that you visit regularly at which you can practice photography. You don't need to visit it every day (though the more you practice, the better you should get), but you need to visit it regularly. It needs to be photo rich, a place where you keep finding new photographic opportunities. It needs to be convenient or else you'll never go there to practice. As I noted above, I typically only spend about fifteen minutes. So you don't have to spend a lot of time, you just have to do it often. It's a very useful fifteen minutes, and it makes me a better photographer.
  • 56 plusses - 32 comments - 10 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2012-03-19 16:24:44
    Practice

    G1x image.

    I probably walk the terminal connector at O'Hare airport more than a dozen times a year. If you've never see Sky's the Limit by Michael Hayden, just know that it's a target rich environment for a photographer. Target rich environments are perfect for practicing photography.

    Practicing photography is defined as taking photographs solely to improve your skill and craft set--you have no other purpose or particular output in mind. If you threw away all the photos from a practice session, it shouldn't bother you. On the other hand, sometimes you make some pretty darned good images from practice, and you do keep them.

    I make it a point to spend at least 15 minutes every time I'm at O'Hare to do some photography in this connecting tunnel. I give myself two assignments: (1) find some way to capture a photograph I haven't done before in this place; and (2) work on timing and composition for something I've done before and see if I can top it.

    In this particular shot I was working on variations of timing (#2). I've come up with at least six different variations on this image that I like and which convey different things. But I was mostly practicing timing the exact moment to press the shutter release on a new camera (learning its shutter lag).

    So here's today bonus: if I put this lone walker on the right instead of the left, what happens? Is a left walker in more of a hurry than a right walker? Is a left walker closer to their destination than a right walker? Is a left walker more solitary than a right walker? Why symmetrical framing with asymmetrical subject? Why only a single subject? Why is the right heel lifted?

    Now you know some of what I was thinking about as I was practicing my shutter lag on a new camera between flights this time.

    Find your own place that you visit regularly at which you can practice photography. You don't need to visit it every day (though the more you practice, the better you should get), but you need to visit it regularly. It needs to be photo rich, a place where you keep finding new photographic opportunities. It needs to be convenient or else you'll never go there to practice. As I noted above, I typically only spend about fifteen minutes. So you don't have to spend a lot of time, you just have to do it often. It's a very useful fifteen minutes, and it makes me a better photographer.
  • 56 plusses - 32 comments - 10 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2012-03-19 16:24:44
    Practice

    G1x image.

    I probably walk the terminal connector at O'Hare airport more than a dozen times a year. If you've never see Sky's the Limit by Michael Hayden, just know that it's a target rich environment for a photographer. Target rich environments are perfect for practicing photography.

    Practicing photography is defined as taking photographs solely to improve your skill and craft set--you have no other purpose or particular output in mind. If you threw away all the photos from a practice session, it shouldn't bother you. On the other hand, sometimes you make some pretty darned good images from practice, and you do keep them.

    I make it a point to spend at least 15 minutes every time I'm at O'Hare to do some photography in this connecting tunnel. I give myself two assignments: (1) find some way to capture a photograph I haven't done before in this place; and (2) work on timing and composition for something I've done before and see if I can top it.

    In this particular shot I was working on variations of timing (#2). I've come up with at least six different variations on this image that I like and which convey different things. But I was mostly practicing timing the exact moment to press the shutter release on a new camera (learning its shutter lag).

    So here's today bonus: if I put this lone walker on the right instead of the left, what happens? Is a left walker in more of a hurry than a right walker? Is a left walker closer to their destination than a right walker? Is a left walker more solitary than a right walker? Why symmetrical framing with asymmetrical subject? Why only a single subject? Why is the right heel lifted?

    Now you know some of what I was thinking about as I was practicing my shutter lag on a new camera between flights this time.

    Find your own place that you visit regularly at which you can practice photography. You don't need to visit it every day (though the more you practice, the better you should get), but you need to visit it regularly. It needs to be photo rich, a place where you keep finding new photographic opportunities. It needs to be convenient or else you'll never go there to practice. As I noted above, I typically only spend about fifteen minutes. So you don't have to spend a lot of time, you just have to do it often. It's a very useful fifteen minutes, and it makes me a better photographer.
  • 56 plusses - 32 comments - 10 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2012-03-19 16:24:44
    Practice

    G1x image.

    I probably walk the terminal connector at O'Hare airport more than a dozen times a year. If you've never see Sky's the Limit by Michael Hayden, just know that it's a target rich environment for a photographer. Target rich environments are perfect for practicing photography.

    Practicing photography is defined as taking photographs solely to improve your skill and craft set--you have no other purpose or particular output in mind. If you threw away all the photos from a practice session, it shouldn't bother you. On the other hand, sometimes you make some pretty darned good images from practice, and you do keep them.

    I make it a point to spend at least 15 minutes every time I'm at O'Hare to do some photography in this connecting tunnel. I give myself two assignments: (1) find some way to capture a photograph I haven't done before in this place; and (2) work on timing and composition for something I've done before and see if I can top it.

    In this particular shot I was working on variations of timing (#2). I've come up with at least six different variations on this image that I like and which convey different things. But I was mostly practicing timing the exact moment to press the shutter release on a new camera (learning its shutter lag).

    So here's today bonus: if I put this lone walker on the right instead of the left, what happens? Is a left walker in more of a hurry than a right walker? Is a left walker closer to their destination than a right walker? Is a left walker more solitary than a right walker? Why symmetrical framing with asymmetrical subject? Why only a single subject? Why is the right heel lifted?

    Now you know some of what I was thinking about as I was practicing my shutter lag on a new camera between flights this time.

    Find your own place that you visit regularly at which you can practice photography. You don't need to visit it every day (though the more you practice, the better you should get), but you need to visit it regularly. It needs to be photo rich, a place where you keep finding new photographic opportunities. It needs to be convenient or else you'll never go there to practice. As I noted above, I typically only spend about fifteen minutes. So you don't have to spend a lot of time, you just have to do it often. It's a very useful fifteen minutes, and it makes me a better photographer.
  • 56 plusses - 32 comments - 10 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2012-03-19 16:24:44
    Practice

    G1x image.

    I probably walk the terminal connector at O'Hare airport more than a dozen times a year. If you've never see Sky's the Limit by Michael Hayden, just know that it's a target rich environment for a photographer. Target rich environments are perfect for practicing photography.

    Practicing photography is defined as taking photographs solely to improve your skill and craft set--you have no other purpose or particular output in mind. If you threw away all the photos from a practice session, it shouldn't bother you. On the other hand, sometimes you make some pretty darned good images from practice, and you do keep them.

    I make it a point to spend at least 15 minutes every time I'm at O'Hare to do some photography in this connecting tunnel. I give myself two assignments: (1) find some way to capture a photograph I haven't done before in this place; and (2) work on timing and composition for something I've done before and see if I can top it.

    In this particular shot I was working on variations of timing (#2). I've come up with at least six different variations on this image that I like and which convey different things. But I was mostly practicing timing the exact moment to press the shutter release on a new camera (learning its shutter lag).

    So here's today bonus: if I put this lone walker on the right instead of the left, what happens? Is a left walker in more of a hurry than a right walker? Is a left walker closer to their destination than a right walker? Is a left walker more solitary than a right walker? Why symmetrical framing with asymmetrical subject? Why only a single subject? Why is the right heel lifted?

    Now you know some of what I was thinking about as I was practicing my shutter lag on a new camera between flights this time.

    Find your own place that you visit regularly at which you can practice photography. You don't need to visit it every day (though the more you practice, the better you should get), but you need to visit it regularly. It needs to be photo rich, a place where you keep finding new photographic opportunities. It needs to be convenient or else you'll never go there to practice. As I noted above, I typically only spend about fifteen minutes. So you don't have to spend a lot of time, you just have to do it often. It's a very useful fifteen minutes, and it makes me a better photographer.
  • 56 plusses - 32 comments - 10 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2012-03-19 16:24:44
    Practice

    G1x image.

    I probably walk the terminal connector at O'Hare airport more than a dozen times a year. If you've never see Sky's the Limit by Michael Hayden, just know that it's a target rich environment for a photographer. Target rich environments are perfect for practicing photography.

    Practicing photography is defined as taking photographs solely to improve your skill and craft set--you have no other purpose or particular output in mind. If you threw away all the photos from a practice session, it shouldn't bother you. On the other hand, sometimes you make some pretty darned good images from practice, and you do keep them.

    I make it a point to spend at least 15 minutes every time I'm at O'Hare to do some photography in this connecting tunnel. I give myself two assignments: (1) find some way to capture a photograph I haven't done before in this place; and (2) work on timing and composition for something I've done before and see if I can top it.

    In this particular shot I was working on variations of timing (#2). I've come up with at least six different variations on this image that I like and which convey different things. But I was mostly practicing timing the exact moment to press the shutter release on a new camera (learning its shutter lag).

    So here's today bonus: if I put this lone walker on the right instead of the left, what happens? Is a left walker in more of a hurry than a right walker? Is a left walker closer to their destination than a right walker? Is a left walker more solitary than a right walker? Why symmetrical framing with asymmetrical subject? Why only a single subject? Why is the right heel lifted?

    Now you know some of what I was thinking about as I was practicing my shutter lag on a new camera between flights this time.

    Find your own place that you visit regularly at which you can practice photography. You don't need to visit it every day (though the more you practice, the better you should get), but you need to visit it regularly. It needs to be photo rich, a place where you keep finding new photographic opportunities. It needs to be convenient or else you'll never go there to practice. As I noted above, I typically only spend about fifteen minutes. So you don't have to spend a lot of time, you just have to do it often. It's a very useful fifteen minutes, and it makes me a better photographer.
  • 56 plusses - 32 comments - 10 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2012-03-07 15:10:52
    Someone asked me how the camera companies could survive in the cell phone era. Here's how:
  • 33 plusses - 61 comments - 9 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2012-02-06 16:22:50
    How Much Dynamic Range Do You Need?

    If you thought last week's discussion was heated, this one will probably contribute to global warming. This week's image, by the way, was taken with a Nikon V1.

    By my calculations, I needed a minimum of three more stops of dynamic range to fully open up the shadows on the left side, even more to get fine detail on the shady right side. Even then, given the low light and the small sensor, I'd be fighting with not enough electrons.

    Or maybe not. I've deliberately left this rendering dark for a couple of reasons. First, I want to provoke a discussion of dynamic range;~). Second, it was dark. Not only is there no internal lighting during the day in most of this Quito church, but it was late in the day and the sky was full of menacing rain clouds. The feeling you got inside the church was pretty much what the designers probably intended: look up at the stained glass and the light from above. Thus, I've tried to express that in my post processing.

    But let's say I had a camera that gave me unlimited dynamic range. What would happen then? I'd still have to post process, because our output media (prints, displays) has limited dynamic range capability. Anyone who talks about wanting more dynamic range also has to confess that they're a tonal rearranger. 14 stops of dynamic range rendered straight will look very flat in a print. Post processed correctly, it will look, well, dynamic.

    So that brings me to this: the V1 is a small-sensor camera with little dynamic range, right? This image, though, proves it has more than enough for very tough subjects. Say what? Well, that wall on the right? It's post processed +3 stops and then carefully brought down in tonal value to where I want it. The stained glass you're looking at? Post processed -2 stops with 100% recovery. So whatever the base dynamic range of the V1 in a regular conversion, I've actually extended it 5 stops here via my post processing. And then, in order to recreate the visual impact of a church interior lit only by ambient light coming through stained glass, I actually took a lot of that dynamic range and either removed it in places, or moved it more than a stop in tonal position.

    Is there noise? Surprisingly, not really. I didn't use any noise reduction at all in the conversion or post processing. There is a slight blockiness to the deep shadow detail that I've had to spend some extra time working on, but in a 24" print of this I doubt anyone would really expect it was an image taken with a small sensor camera.
  • 48 plusses - 59 comments - 9 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2012-02-02 16:24:15
    How Many Pixels Do You Need?

    Hmm. A couple? This image certainly doesn't need many.

    We're in the midst of the lastest camera introduction waves (CES and CP+ shows being the catalyst), and megapixels seem to be on everyone's mind. Olympusians are eager to try 16mp, as are Fujifilmians. Nikonians are salavating over 36mp. Even the camera phone folk are thinking about wandering above 8mp.

    It's been interesting, though, in how many of the emails I've been getting about "should I preorder?" just how rare it was for anyone to actually ask "what will I use those pixels for?" Even the ones that do seem to often be speaking generically (e.g. "I'll use them for landscapes"). Landscapes don't tend to move, and I've yet to find many situations where I couldn't stitch a far bigger image than any rumored camera could do on its own. So, no, "landscapes" is not the answer.

    If you answer "because I want to print 48 inches wide" my question to you is going to be "how many times do you think you'll do that this year?" If the answer is a couple or a few, you don't need to buy a camera, you could probably just rent a MF camera for a couple of weeks and satisfy your big print lust for a lot less money.

    Another common answer I get is "it'll give me more cropping flexibility." In other words, you don't own the right lens and you have no idea how perspective informs an image.

    Now, this isn't to say that there aren't uses for more pixels. More pixels, all else equal, does offer us benefits. But make sure you know what those are and what they'll do for you specifically before you lust over pixels. As I've noted several times, I find myself using my D3s more than my D3x, and according to all of the emails I get about why more pixels are better, I ought to be doing the opposite (landscapes, cropping, print wider).

    One thing I noticed about a lot of pros in the past few years: we talk far less about pixel count than we used to. We're more often talking about lens selection, perspective, and light these days than bemoaning something our cameras can't do. Somewhere we crested a pass and have moved on to things that are more important to our work.

    Sure, we'll take some more pixels if none of the other things we count on don't go backwards, but we're in no hurry to grab more pixels. We have enough for most of our jobs. So here's a question to you: don't you have enough pixels for what you do?
  • 68 plusses - 150 comments - 9 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2012-03-07 15:10:52
    Someone asked me how the camera companies could survive in the cell phone era. Here's how:
  • 33 plusses - 61 comments - 9 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2012-02-06 16:22:50
    How Much Dynamic Range Do You Need?

    If you thought last week's discussion was heated, this one will probably contribute to global warming. This week's image, by the way, was taken with a Nikon V1.

    By my calculations, I needed a minimum of three more stops of dynamic range to fully open up the shadows on the left side, even more to get fine detail on the shady right side. Even then, given the low light and the small sensor, I'd be fighting with not enough electrons.

    Or maybe not. I've deliberately left this rendering dark for a couple of reasons. First, I want to provoke a discussion of dynamic range;~). Second, it was dark. Not only is there no internal lighting during the day in most of this Quito church, but it was late in the day and the sky was full of menacing rain clouds. The feeling you got inside the church was pretty much what the designers probably intended: look up at the stained glass and the light from above. Thus, I've tried to express that in my post processing.

    But let's say I had a camera that gave me unlimited dynamic range. What would happen then? I'd still have to post process, because our output media (prints, displays) has limited dynamic range capability. Anyone who talks about wanting more dynamic range also has to confess that they're a tonal rearranger. 14 stops of dynamic range rendered straight will look very flat in a print. Post processed correctly, it will look, well, dynamic.

    So that brings me to this: the V1 is a small-sensor camera with little dynamic range, right? This image, though, proves it has more than enough for very tough subjects. Say what? Well, that wall on the right? It's post processed +3 stops and then carefully brought down in tonal value to where I want it. The stained glass you're looking at? Post processed -2 stops with 100% recovery. So whatever the base dynamic range of the V1 in a regular conversion, I've actually extended it 5 stops here via my post processing. And then, in order to recreate the visual impact of a church interior lit only by ambient light coming through stained glass, I actually took a lot of that dynamic range and either removed it in places, or moved it more than a stop in tonal position.

    Is there noise? Surprisingly, not really. I didn't use any noise reduction at all in the conversion or post processing. There is a slight blockiness to the deep shadow detail that I've had to spend some extra time working on, but in a 24" print of this I doubt anyone would really expect it was an image taken with a small sensor camera.
  • 48 plusses - 59 comments - 9 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2012-02-02 16:24:15
    How Many Pixels Do You Need?

    Hmm. A couple? This image certainly doesn't need many.

    We're in the midst of the lastest camera introduction waves (CES and CP+ shows being the catalyst), and megapixels seem to be on everyone's mind. Olympusians are eager to try 16mp, as are Fujifilmians. Nikonians are salavating over 36mp. Even the camera phone folk are thinking about wandering above 8mp.

    It's been interesting, though, in how many of the emails I've been getting about "should I preorder?" just how rare it was for anyone to actually ask "what will I use those pixels for?" Even the ones that do seem to often be speaking generically (e.g. "I'll use them for landscapes"). Landscapes don't tend to move, and I've yet to find many situations where I couldn't stitch a far bigger image than any rumored camera could do on its own. So, no, "landscapes" is not the answer.

    If you answer "because I want to print 48 inches wide" my question to you is going to be "how many times do you think you'll do that this year?" If the answer is a couple or a few, you don't need to buy a camera, you could probably just rent a MF camera for a couple of weeks and satisfy your big print lust for a lot less money.

    Another common answer I get is "it'll give me more cropping flexibility." In other words, you don't own the right lens and you have no idea how perspective informs an image.

    Now, this isn't to say that there aren't uses for more pixels. More pixels, all else equal, does offer us benefits. But make sure you know what those are and what they'll do for you specifically before you lust over pixels. As I've noted several times, I find myself using my D3s more than my D3x, and according to all of the emails I get about why more pixels are better, I ought to be doing the opposite (landscapes, cropping, print wider).

    One thing I noticed about a lot of pros in the past few years: we talk far less about pixel count than we used to. We're more often talking about lens selection, perspective, and light these days than bemoaning something our cameras can't do. Somewhere we crested a pass and have moved on to things that are more important to our work.

    Sure, we'll take some more pixels if none of the other things we count on don't go backwards, but we're in no hurry to grab more pixels. We have enough for most of our jobs. So here's a question to you: don't you have enough pixels for what you do?
  • 68 plusses - 150 comments - 9 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2012-03-07 15:10:52
    Someone asked me how the camera companies could survive in the cell phone era. Here's how:
  • 33 plusses - 61 comments - 9 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2012-02-06 16:22:50
    How Much Dynamic Range Do You Need?

    If you thought last week's discussion was heated, this one will probably contribute to global warming. This week's image, by the way, was taken with a Nikon V1.

    By my calculations, I needed a minimum of three more stops of dynamic range to fully open up the shadows on the left side, even more to get fine detail on the shady right side. Even then, given the low light and the small sensor, I'd be fighting with not enough electrons.

    Or maybe not. I've deliberately left this rendering dark for a couple of reasons. First, I want to provoke a discussion of dynamic range;~). Second, it was dark. Not only is there no internal lighting during the day in most of this Quito church, but it was late in the day and the sky was full of menacing rain clouds. The feeling you got inside the church was pretty much what the designers probably intended: look up at the stained glass and the light from above. Thus, I've tried to express that in my post processing.

    But let's say I had a camera that gave me unlimited dynamic range. What would happen then? I'd still have to post process, because our output media (prints, displays) has limited dynamic range capability. Anyone who talks about wanting more dynamic range also has to confess that they're a tonal rearranger. 14 stops of dynamic range rendered straight will look very flat in a print. Post processed correctly, it will look, well, dynamic.

    So that brings me to this: the V1 is a small-sensor camera with little dynamic range, right? This image, though, proves it has more than enough for very tough subjects. Say what? Well, that wall on the right? It's post processed +3 stops and then carefully brought down in tonal value to where I want it. The stained glass you're looking at? Post processed -2 stops with 100% recovery. So whatever the base dynamic range of the V1 in a regular conversion, I've actually extended it 5 stops here via my post processing. And then, in order to recreate the visual impact of a church interior lit only by ambient light coming through stained glass, I actually took a lot of that dynamic range and either removed it in places, or moved it more than a stop in tonal position.

    Is there noise? Surprisingly, not really. I didn't use any noise reduction at all in the conversion or post processing. There is a slight blockiness to the deep shadow detail that I've had to spend some extra time working on, but in a 24" print of this I doubt anyone would really expect it was an image taken with a small sensor camera.
  • 48 plusses - 59 comments - 9 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2012-02-02 16:24:15
    How Many Pixels Do You Need?

    Hmm. A couple? This image certainly doesn't need many.

    We're in the midst of the lastest camera introduction waves (CES and CP+ shows being the catalyst), and megapixels seem to be on everyone's mind. Olympusians are eager to try 16mp, as are Fujifilmians. Nikonians are salavating over 36mp. Even the camera phone folk are thinking about wandering above 8mp.

    It's been interesting, though, in how many of the emails I've been getting about "should I preorder?" just how rare it was for anyone to actually ask "what will I use those pixels for?" Even the ones that do seem to often be speaking generically (e.g. "I'll use them for landscapes"). Landscapes don't tend to move, and I've yet to find many situations where I couldn't stitch a far bigger image than any rumored camera could do on its own. So, no, "landscapes" is not the answer.

    If you answer "because I want to print 48 inches wide" my question to you is going to be "how many times do you think you'll do that this year?" If the answer is a couple or a few, you don't need to buy a camera, you could probably just rent a MF camera for a couple of weeks and satisfy your big print lust for a lot less money.

    Another common answer I get is "it'll give me more cropping flexibility." In other words, you don't own the right lens and you have no idea how perspective informs an image.

    Now, this isn't to say that there aren't uses for more pixels. More pixels, all else equal, does offer us benefits. But make sure you know what those are and what they'll do for you specifically before you lust over pixels. As I've noted several times, I find myself using my D3s more than my D3x, and according to all of the emails I get about why more pixels are better, I ought to be doing the opposite (landscapes, cropping, print wider).

    One thing I noticed about a lot of pros in the past few years: we talk far less about pixel count than we used to. We're more often talking about lens selection, perspective, and light these days than bemoaning something our cameras can't do. Somewhere we crested a pass and have moved on to things that are more important to our work.

    Sure, we'll take some more pixels if none of the other things we count on don't go backwards, but we're in no hurry to grab more pixels. We have enough for most of our jobs. So here's a question to you: don't you have enough pixels for what you do?
  • 68 plusses - 150 comments - 9 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2012-03-07 15:10:52
    Someone asked me how the camera companies could survive in the cell phone era. Here's how:
  • 33 plusses - 61 comments - 9 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2012-02-06 16:22:50
    How Much Dynamic Range Do You Need?

    If you thought last week's discussion was heated, this one will probably contribute to global warming. This week's image, by the way, was taken with a Nikon V1.

    By my calculations, I needed a minimum of three more stops of dynamic range to fully open up the shadows on the left side, even more to get fine detail on the shady right side. Even then, given the low light and the small sensor, I'd be fighting with not enough electrons.

    Or maybe not. I've deliberately left this rendering dark for a couple of reasons. First, I want to provoke a discussion of dynamic range;~). Second, it was dark. Not only is there no internal lighting during the day in most of this Quito church, but it was late in the day and the sky was full of menacing rain clouds. The feeling you got inside the church was pretty much what the designers probably intended: look up at the stained glass and the light from above. Thus, I've tried to express that in my post processing.

    But let's say I had a camera that gave me unlimited dynamic range. What would happen then? I'd still have to post process, because our output media (prints, displays) has limited dynamic range capability. Anyone who talks about wanting more dynamic range also has to confess that they're a tonal rearranger. 14 stops of dynamic range rendered straight will look very flat in a print. Post processed correctly, it will look, well, dynamic.

    So that brings me to this: the V1 is a small-sensor camera with little dynamic range, right? This image, though, proves it has more than enough for very tough subjects. Say what? Well, that wall on the right? It's post processed +3 stops and then carefully brought down in tonal value to where I want it. The stained glass you're looking at? Post processed -2 stops with 100% recovery. So whatever the base dynamic range of the V1 in a regular conversion, I've actually extended it 5 stops here via my post processing. And then, in order to recreate the visual impact of a church interior lit only by ambient light coming through stained glass, I actually took a lot of that dynamic range and either removed it in places, or moved it more than a stop in tonal position.

    Is there noise? Surprisingly, not really. I didn't use any noise reduction at all in the conversion or post processing. There is a slight blockiness to the deep shadow detail that I've had to spend some extra time working on, but in a 24" print of this I doubt anyone would really expect it was an image taken with a small sensor camera.
  • 48 plusses - 59 comments - 9 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2012-02-02 16:24:15
    How Many Pixels Do You Need?

    Hmm. A couple? This image certainly doesn't need many.

    We're in the midst of the lastest camera introduction waves (CES and CP+ shows being the catalyst), and megapixels seem to be on everyone's mind. Olympusians are eager to try 16mp, as are Fujifilmians. Nikonians are salavating over 36mp. Even the camera phone folk are thinking about wandering above 8mp.

    It's been interesting, though, in how many of the emails I've been getting about "should I preorder?" just how rare it was for anyone to actually ask "what will I use those pixels for?" Even the ones that do seem to often be speaking generically (e.g. "I'll use them for landscapes"). Landscapes don't tend to move, and I've yet to find many situations where I couldn't stitch a far bigger image than any rumored camera could do on its own. So, no, "landscapes" is not the answer.

    If you answer "because I want to print 48 inches wide" my question to you is going to be "how many times do you think you'll do that this year?" If the answer is a couple or a few, you don't need to buy a camera, you could probably just rent a MF camera for a couple of weeks and satisfy your big print lust for a lot less money.

    Another common answer I get is "it'll give me more cropping flexibility." In other words, you don't own the right lens and you have no idea how perspective informs an image.

    Now, this isn't to say that there aren't uses for more pixels. More pixels, all else equal, does offer us benefits. But make sure you know what those are and what they'll do for you specifically before you lust over pixels. As I've noted several times, I find myself using my D3s more than my D3x, and according to all of the emails I get about why more pixels are better, I ought to be doing the opposite (landscapes, cropping, print wider).

    One thing I noticed about a lot of pros in the past few years: we talk far less about pixel count than we used to. We're more often talking about lens selection, perspective, and light these days than bemoaning something our cameras can't do. Somewhere we crested a pass and have moved on to things that are more important to our work.

    Sure, we'll take some more pixels if none of the other things we count on don't go backwards, but we're in no hurry to grab more pixels. We have enough for most of our jobs. So here's a question to you: don't you have enough pixels for what you do?
  • 68 plusses - 150 comments - 9 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2012-03-07 15:10:52
    Someone asked me how the camera companies could survive in the cell phone era. Here's how:
  • 33 plusses - 61 comments - 9 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2012-02-06 16:22:50
    How Much Dynamic Range Do You Need?

    If you thought last week's discussion was heated, this one will probably contribute to global warming. This week's image, by the way, was taken with a Nikon V1.

    By my calculations, I needed a minimum of three more stops of dynamic range to fully open up the shadows on the left side, even more to get fine detail on the shady right side. Even then, given the low light and the small sensor, I'd be fighting with not enough electrons.

    Or maybe not. I've deliberately left this rendering dark for a couple of reasons. First, I want to provoke a discussion of dynamic range;~). Second, it was dark. Not only is there no internal lighting during the day in most of this Quito church, but it was late in the day and the sky was full of menacing rain clouds. The feeling you got inside the church was pretty much what the designers probably intended: look up at the stained glass and the light from above. Thus, I've tried to express that in my post processing.

    But let's say I had a camera that gave me unlimited dynamic range. What would happen then? I'd still have to post process, because our output media (prints, displays) has limited dynamic range capability. Anyone who talks about wanting more dynamic range also has to confess that they're a tonal rearranger. 14 stops of dynamic range rendered straight will look very flat in a print. Post processed correctly, it will look, well, dynamic.

    So that brings me to this: the V1 is a small-sensor camera with little dynamic range, right? This image, though, proves it has more than enough for very tough subjects. Say what? Well, that wall on the right? It's post processed +3 stops and then carefully brought down in tonal value to where I want it. The stained glass you're looking at? Post processed -2 stops with 100% recovery. So whatever the base dynamic range of the V1 in a regular conversion, I've actually extended it 5 stops here via my post processing. And then, in order to recreate the visual impact of a church interior lit only by ambient light coming through stained glass, I actually took a lot of that dynamic range and either removed it in places, or moved it more than a stop in tonal position.

    Is there noise? Surprisingly, not really. I didn't use any noise reduction at all in the conversion or post processing. There is a slight blockiness to the deep shadow detail that I've had to spend some extra time working on, but in a 24" print of this I doubt anyone would really expect it was an image taken with a small sensor camera.
  • 48 plusses - 59 comments - 9 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2012-02-02 16:24:15
    How Many Pixels Do You Need?

    Hmm. A couple? This image certainly doesn't need many.

    We're in the midst of the lastest camera introduction waves (CES and CP+ shows being the catalyst), and megapixels seem to be on everyone's mind. Olympusians are eager to try 16mp, as are Fujifilmians. Nikonians are salavating over 36mp. Even the camera phone folk are thinking about wandering above 8mp.

    It's been interesting, though, in how many of the emails I've been getting about "should I preorder?" just how rare it was for anyone to actually ask "what will I use those pixels for?" Even the ones that do seem to often be speaking generically (e.g. "I'll use them for landscapes"). Landscapes don't tend to move, and I've yet to find many situations where I couldn't stitch a far bigger image than any rumored camera could do on its own. So, no, "landscapes" is not the answer.

    If you answer "because I want to print 48 inches wide" my question to you is going to be "how many times do you think you'll do that this year?" If the answer is a couple or a few, you don't need to buy a camera, you could probably just rent a MF camera for a couple of weeks and satisfy your big print lust for a lot less money.

    Another common answer I get is "it'll give me more cropping flexibility." In other words, you don't own the right lens and you have no idea how perspective informs an image.

    Now, this isn't to say that there aren't uses for more pixels. More pixels, all else equal, does offer us benefits. But make sure you know what those are and what they'll do for you specifically before you lust over pixels. As I've noted several times, I find myself using my D3s more than my D3x, and according to all of the emails I get about why more pixels are better, I ought to be doing the opposite (landscapes, cropping, print wider).

    One thing I noticed about a lot of pros in the past few years: we talk far less about pixel count than we used to. We're more often talking about lens selection, perspective, and light these days than bemoaning something our cameras can't do. Somewhere we crested a pass and have moved on to things that are more important to our work.

    Sure, we'll take some more pixels if none of the other things we count on don't go backwards, but we're in no hurry to grab more pixels. We have enough for most of our jobs. So here's a question to you: don't you have enough pixels for what you do?
  • 68 plusses - 150 comments - 9 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2012-03-07 15:10:52
    Someone asked me how the camera companies could survive in the cell phone era. Here's how:
  • 33 plusses - 61 comments - 9 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2012-02-06 16:22:50
    How Much Dynamic Range Do You Need?

    If you thought last week's discussion was heated, this one will probably contribute to global warming. This week's image, by the way, was taken with a Nikon V1.

    By my calculations, I needed a minimum of three more stops of dynamic range to fully open up the shadows on the left side, even more to get fine detail on the shady right side. Even then, given the low light and the small sensor, I'd be fighting with not enough electrons.

    Or maybe not. I've deliberately left this rendering dark for a couple of reasons. First, I want to provoke a discussion of dynamic range;~). Second, it was dark. Not only is there no internal lighting during the day in most of this Quito church, but it was late in the day and the sky was full of menacing rain clouds. The feeling you got inside the church was pretty much what the designers probably intended: look up at the stained glass and the light from above. Thus, I've tried to express that in my post processing.

    But let's say I had a camera that gave me unlimited dynamic range. What would happen then? I'd still have to post process, because our output media (prints, displays) has limited dynamic range capability. Anyone who talks about wanting more dynamic range also has to confess that they're a tonal rearranger. 14 stops of dynamic range rendered straight will look very flat in a print. Post processed correctly, it will look, well, dynamic.

    So that brings me to this: the V1 is a small-sensor camera with little dynamic range, right? This image, though, proves it has more than enough for very tough subjects. Say what? Well, that wall on the right? It's post processed +3 stops and then carefully brought down in tonal value to where I want it. The stained glass you're looking at? Post processed -2 stops with 100% recovery. So whatever the base dynamic range of the V1 in a regular conversion, I've actually extended it 5 stops here via my post processing. And then, in order to recreate the visual impact of a church interior lit only by ambient light coming through stained glass, I actually took a lot of that dynamic range and either removed it in places, or moved it more than a stop in tonal position.

    Is there noise? Surprisingly, not really. I didn't use any noise reduction at all in the conversion or post processing. There is a slight blockiness to the deep shadow detail that I've had to spend some extra time working on, but in a 24" print of this I doubt anyone would really expect it was an image taken with a small sensor camera.
  • 48 plusses - 59 comments - 9 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2012-02-02 16:24:15
    How Many Pixels Do You Need?

    Hmm. A couple? This image certainly doesn't need many.

    We're in the midst of the lastest camera introduction waves (CES and CP+ shows being the catalyst), and megapixels seem to be on everyone's mind. Olympusians are eager to try 16mp, as are Fujifilmians. Nikonians are salavating over 36mp. Even the camera phone folk are thinking about wandering above 8mp.

    It's been interesting, though, in how many of the emails I've been getting about "should I preorder?" just how rare it was for anyone to actually ask "what will I use those pixels for?" Even the ones that do seem to often be speaking generically (e.g. "I'll use them for landscapes"). Landscapes don't tend to move, and I've yet to find many situations where I couldn't stitch a far bigger image than any rumored camera could do on its own. So, no, "landscapes" is not the answer.

    If you answer "because I want to print 48 inches wide" my question to you is going to be "how many times do you think you'll do that this year?" If the answer is a couple or a few, you don't need to buy a camera, you could probably just rent a MF camera for a couple of weeks and satisfy your big print lust for a lot less money.

    Another common answer I get is "it'll give me more cropping flexibility." In other words, you don't own the right lens and you have no idea how perspective informs an image.

    Now, this isn't to say that there aren't uses for more pixels. More pixels, all else equal, does offer us benefits. But make sure you know what those are and what they'll do for you specifically before you lust over pixels. As I've noted several times, I find myself using my D3s more than my D3x, and according to all of the emails I get about why more pixels are better, I ought to be doing the opposite (landscapes, cropping, print wider).

    One thing I noticed about a lot of pros in the past few years: we talk far less about pixel count than we used to. We're more often talking about lens selection, perspective, and light these days than bemoaning something our cameras can't do. Somewhere we crested a pass and have moved on to things that are more important to our work.

    Sure, we'll take some more pixels if none of the other things we count on don't go backwards, but we're in no hurry to grab more pixels. We have enough for most of our jobs. So here's a question to you: don't you have enough pixels for what you do?
  • 68 plusses - 150 comments - 9 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2012-03-07 15:10:52
    Someone asked me how the camera companies could survive in the cell phone era. Here's how:
  • 33 plusses - 61 comments - 9 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2012-02-06 16:22:50
    How Much Dynamic Range Do You Need?

    If you thought last week's discussion was heated, this one will probably contribute to global warming. This week's image, by the way, was taken with a Nikon V1.

    By my calculations, I needed a minimum of three more stops of dynamic range to fully open up the shadows on the left side, even more to get fine detail on the shady right side. Even then, given the low light and the small sensor, I'd be fighting with not enough electrons.

    Or maybe not. I've deliberately left this rendering dark for a couple of reasons. First, I want to provoke a discussion of dynamic range;~). Second, it was dark. Not only is there no internal lighting during the day in most of this Quito church, but it was late in the day and the sky was full of menacing rain clouds. The feeling you got inside the church was pretty much what the designers probably intended: look up at the stained glass and the light from above. Thus, I've tried to express that in my post processing.

    But let's say I had a camera that gave me unlimited dynamic range. What would happen then? I'd still have to post process, because our output media (prints, displays) has limited dynamic range capability. Anyone who talks about wanting more dynamic range also has to confess that they're a tonal rearranger. 14 stops of dynamic range rendered straight will look very flat in a print. Post processed correctly, it will look, well, dynamic.

    So that brings me to this: the V1 is a small-sensor camera with little dynamic range, right? This image, though, proves it has more than enough for very tough subjects. Say what? Well, that wall on the right? It's post processed +3 stops and then carefully brought down in tonal value to where I want it. The stained glass you're looking at? Post processed -2 stops with 100% recovery. So whatever the base dynamic range of the V1 in a regular conversion, I've actually extended it 5 stops here via my post processing. And then, in order to recreate the visual impact of a church interior lit only by ambient light coming through stained glass, I actually took a lot of that dynamic range and either removed it in places, or moved it more than a stop in tonal position.

    Is there noise? Surprisingly, not really. I didn't use any noise reduction at all in the conversion or post processing. There is a slight blockiness to the deep shadow detail that I've had to spend some extra time working on, but in a 24" print of this I doubt anyone would really expect it was an image taken with a small sensor camera.
  • 48 plusses - 59 comments - 9 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2012-02-02 16:24:15
    How Many Pixels Do You Need?

    Hmm. A couple? This image certainly doesn't need many.

    We're in the midst of the lastest camera introduction waves (CES and CP+ shows being the catalyst), and megapixels seem to be on everyone's mind. Olympusians are eager to try 16mp, as are Fujifilmians. Nikonians are salavating over 36mp. Even the camera phone folk are thinking about wandering above 8mp.

    It's been interesting, though, in how many of the emails I've been getting about "should I preorder?" just how rare it was for anyone to actually ask "what will I use those pixels for?" Even the ones that do seem to often be speaking generically (e.g. "I'll use them for landscapes"). Landscapes don't tend to move, and I've yet to find many situations where I couldn't stitch a far bigger image than any rumored camera could do on its own. So, no, "landscapes" is not the answer.

    If you answer "because I want to print 48 inches wide" my question to you is going to be "how many times do you think you'll do that this year?" If the answer is a couple or a few, you don't need to buy a camera, you could probably just rent a MF camera for a couple of weeks and satisfy your big print lust for a lot less money.

    Another common answer I get is "it'll give me more cropping flexibility." In other words, you don't own the right lens and you have no idea how perspective informs an image.

    Now, this isn't to say that there aren't uses for more pixels. More pixels, all else equal, does offer us benefits. But make sure you know what those are and what they'll do for you specifically before you lust over pixels. As I've noted several times, I find myself using my D3s more than my D3x, and according to all of the emails I get about why more pixels are better, I ought to be doing the opposite (landscapes, cropping, print wider).

    One thing I noticed about a lot of pros in the past few years: we talk far less about pixel count than we used to. We're more often talking about lens selection, perspective, and light these days than bemoaning something our cameras can't do. Somewhere we crested a pass and have moved on to things that are more important to our work.

    Sure, we'll take some more pixels if none of the other things we count on don't go backwards, but we're in no hurry to grab more pixels. We have enough for most of our jobs. So here's a question to you: don't you have enough pixels for what you do?
  • 68 plusses - 150 comments - 9 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2011-08-01 18:56:57
    And Now for Something Completely Different. Canon G11, IR converted. I've been hesitating about posting this image for quite some time now. I took it earlier this spring while photographing a Colorado mountain biking group. This image was taken right at the end of the session when things were winding down, riders were cooling off, and everyone's "posing guard" was mostly down. I've been showing a lot of images lately with "mystery" in them, and this is yet another. Who is this? Why is she dressed like this? Where are we? How did she get here? While it might look like she's shot putting, she's actually pivoting on response to a pose request from another photographer off to the right. I have plenty of pictures of her posed and more conventionally framed, including some with her and her bike, but both she and I like this one the best. I actually grabbed my IR converted G11 out of my pocket instead of using the D3s hanging around my neck for several reasons, but the primary thing was that she was a very bright object that was going to get framed against a very bright background and sky. I knew her upper body would be in deep contrast against an IR sky, and I felt that contrast was going to be an important element in this image. It turned out to be a good decision: she pops off the background better than I imagined.
  • 61 plusses - 39 comments - 8 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2011-07-26 17:40:28
    Nikon D5100 Review now posted, Complete D5100 Guide now available for order (ships 9/17). See www.bythom.com/nikond5100review.htm.
  • 13 plusses - 27 comments - 8 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2011-08-01 18:56:57
    And Now for Something Completely Different. Canon G11, IR converted. I've been hesitating about posting this image for quite some time now. I took it earlier this spring while photographing a Colorado mountain biking group. This image was taken right at the end of the session when things were winding down, riders were cooling off, and everyone's "posing guard" was mostly down. I've been showing a lot of images lately with "mystery" in them, and this is yet another. Who is this? Why is she dressed like this? Where are we? How did she get here? While it might look like she's shot putting, she's actually pivoting on response to a pose request from another photographer off to the right. I have plenty of pictures of her posed and more conventionally framed, including some with her and her bike, but both she and I like this one the best. I actually grabbed my IR converted G11 out of my pocket instead of using the D3s hanging around my neck for several reasons, but the primary thing was that she was a very bright object that was going to get framed against a very bright background and sky. I knew her upper body would be in deep contrast against an IR sky, and I felt that contrast was going to be an important element in this image. It turned out to be a good decision: she pops off the background better than I imagined.
  • 61 plusses - 39 comments - 8 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2011-07-26 17:40:28
    Nikon D5100 Review now posted, Complete D5100 Guide now available for order (ships 9/17). See www.bythom.com/nikond5100review.htm.
  • 13 plusses - 27 comments - 8 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2011-08-01 18:56:57
    And Now for Something Completely Different. Canon G11, IR converted. I've been hesitating about posting this image for quite some time now. I took it earlier this spring while photographing a Colorado mountain biking group. This image was taken right at the end of the session when things were winding down, riders were cooling off, and everyone's "posing guard" was mostly down. I've been showing a lot of images lately with "mystery" in them, and this is yet another. Who is this? Why is she dressed like this? Where are we? How did she get here? While it might look like she's shot putting, she's actually pivoting on response to a pose request from another photographer off to the right. I have plenty of pictures of her posed and more conventionally framed, including some with her and her bike, but both she and I like this one the best. I actually grabbed my IR converted G11 out of my pocket instead of using the D3s hanging around my neck for several reasons, but the primary thing was that she was a very bright object that was going to get framed against a very bright background and sky. I knew her upper body would be in deep contrast against an IR sky, and I felt that contrast was going to be an important element in this image. It turned out to be a good decision: she pops off the background better than I imagined.
  • 61 plusses - 39 comments - 8 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2011-07-26 17:40:28
    Nikon D5100 Review now posted, Complete D5100 Guide now available for order (ships 9/17). See www.bythom.com/nikond5100review.htm.
  • 13 plusses - 27 comments - 8 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2011-08-01 18:56:57
    And Now for Something Completely Different. Canon G11, IR converted. I've been hesitating about posting this image for quite some time now. I took it earlier this spring while photographing a Colorado mountain biking group. This image was taken right at the end of the session when things were winding down, riders were cooling off, and everyone's "posing guard" was mostly down. I've been showing a lot of images lately with "mystery" in them, and this is yet another. Who is this? Why is she dressed like this? Where are we? How did she get here? While it might look like she's shot putting, she's actually pivoting on response to a pose request from another photographer off to the right. I have plenty of pictures of her posed and more conventionally framed, including some with her and her bike, but both she and I like this one the best. I actually grabbed my IR converted G11 out of my pocket instead of using the D3s hanging around my neck for several reasons, but the primary thing was that she was a very bright object that was going to get framed against a very bright background and sky. I knew her upper body would be in deep contrast against an IR sky, and I felt that contrast was going to be an important element in this image. It turned out to be a good decision: she pops off the background better than I imagined.
  • 61 plusses - 39 comments - 8 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2011-07-26 17:40:28
    Nikon D5100 Review now posted, Complete D5100 Guide now available for order (ships 9/17). See www.bythom.com/nikond5100review.htm.
  • 13 plusses - 27 comments - 8 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2011-08-01 18:56:57
    And Now for Something Completely Different. Canon G11, IR converted. I've been hesitating about posting this image for quite some time now. I took it earlier this spring while photographing a Colorado mountain biking group. This image was taken right at the end of the session when things were winding down, riders were cooling off, and everyone's "posing guard" was mostly down. I've been showing a lot of images lately with "mystery" in them, and this is yet another. Who is this? Why is she dressed like this? Where are we? How did she get here? While it might look like she's shot putting, she's actually pivoting on response to a pose request from another photographer off to the right. I have plenty of pictures of her posed and more conventionally framed, including some with her and her bike, but both she and I like this one the best. I actually grabbed my IR converted G11 out of my pocket instead of using the D3s hanging around my neck for several reasons, but the primary thing was that she was a very bright object that was going to get framed against a very bright background and sky. I knew her upper body would be in deep contrast against an IR sky, and I felt that contrast was going to be an important element in this image. It turned out to be a good decision: she pops off the background better than I imagined.
  • 61 plusses - 39 comments - 8 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2011-07-26 17:40:28
    Nikon D5100 Review now posted, Complete D5100 Guide now available for order (ships 9/17). See www.bythom.com/nikond5100review.htm.
  • 13 plusses - 27 comments - 8 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2011-08-01 18:56:57
    And Now for Something Completely Different. Canon G11, IR converted. I've been hesitating about posting this image for quite some time now. I took it earlier this spring while photographing a Colorado mountain biking group. This image was taken right at the end of the session when things were winding down, riders were cooling off, and everyone's "posing guard" was mostly down. I've been showing a lot of images lately with "mystery" in them, and this is yet another. Who is this? Why is she dressed like this? Where are we? How did she get here? While it might look like she's shot putting, she's actually pivoting on response to a pose request from another photographer off to the right. I have plenty of pictures of her posed and more conventionally framed, including some with her and her bike, but both she and I like this one the best. I actually grabbed my IR converted G11 out of my pocket instead of using the D3s hanging around my neck for several reasons, but the primary thing was that she was a very bright object that was going to get framed against a very bright background and sky. I knew her upper body would be in deep contrast against an IR sky, and I felt that contrast was going to be an important element in this image. It turned out to be a good decision: she pops off the background better than I imagined.
  • 61 plusses - 39 comments - 8 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2011-07-26 17:40:28
    Nikon D5100 Review now posted, Complete D5100 Guide now available for order (ships 9/17). See www.bythom.com/nikond5100review.htm.
  • 13 plusses - 27 comments - 8 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2011-08-01 18:56:57
    And Now for Something Completely Different. Canon G11, IR converted. I've been hesitating about posting this image for quite some time now. I took it earlier this spring while photographing a Colorado mountain biking group. This image was taken right at the end of the session when things were winding down, riders were cooling off, and everyone's "posing guard" was mostly down. I've been showing a lot of images lately with "mystery" in them, and this is yet another. Who is this? Why is she dressed like this? Where are we? How did she get here? While it might look like she's shot putting, she's actually pivoting on response to a pose request from another photographer off to the right. I have plenty of pictures of her posed and more conventionally framed, including some with her and her bike, but both she and I like this one the best. I actually grabbed my IR converted G11 out of my pocket instead of using the D3s hanging around my neck for several reasons, but the primary thing was that she was a very bright object that was going to get framed against a very bright background and sky. I knew her upper body would be in deep contrast against an IR sky, and I felt that contrast was going to be an important element in this image. It turned out to be a good decision: she pops off the background better than I imagined.
  • 61 plusses - 39 comments - 8 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2011-07-26 17:40:28
    Nikon D5100 Review now posted, Complete D5100 Guide now available for order (ships 9/17). See www.bythom.com/nikond5100review.htm.
  • 13 plusses - 27 comments - 8 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2011-11-01 19:38:45
    Good Enough?

    I'm going to drop back to a previous image I've shown, mostly because being without power for three days I'm way behind on a bunch of things and don't have time to prepare a new image this week. But this image addresses a question I get a lot these days: is m4/3 good enough?

    This is a three image stitch. It looks pretty darned fine to me printed large (and you then become aware of the photographer on the sand and the scale of the place). As many of you know, while I pursue every last iota of quality I can get from my images, I'm also highly pragmatic, too. It's an odd combination.

    Would I have rather hiked the six miles to this location with my D3x and 14-24mm lens? No. I still would have used image stitching, and I would have needed my big tripod, too. I'm not a fool: if I can achieve the same final result carrying 10 pounds less gear, I'm going to do it.

    Okay, so is it the same final result? Am I losing a little detail in the shadows, for example? Yes, I am, but I kind of like the old Velvia quick-drop-to-black effect, and if I had really been concerned I would have just done exposure stitches, too.

    I'm getting ready for another trip with a lot of long hikes in it, and I'm contemplating the kit I'll take. I have little doubt I'll pick something smaller and mirrorless, simply because it allows me more ability to range on and off the trail, and with care, I don't really give a lot up. Indeed, for landscape/scenic work, there are techniques that allow me to give essentially nothing up except a bit more time in shooting and processing.
  • 61 plusses - 59 comments - 7 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2011-10-18 15:11:50
    Motion
    Olympus E-PL3.
    There are a few things to discuss in this shot. This image was taken by zooming the lens during a long exposure.

    First, let's talk about the regularity of the motion. Look at the light streaks: notice how close to straight they are? Notice that they're evenly weighted from one end of a streak to the other? Those are indications of a relatively even zoom and a stable platform (this is handheld by the way: the stable platform is my stomach--that's one nice thing about those tilting LCDs, as you don't have to have the camera at arm's length or eye level). If you're not consistent with your motion/zoom or not on a stable platform, all those streaks start to get wavy and uneven.

    When you zoom you also need to zoom at either a constant speed or an constantly accelerating speed--no glitches in the motion are tolerated as they show up as bobbles in the streaks. That may mean you need to practice your motion/zoom so that your hand is in a comfortable position throughout (the usual catch is you start to zoom and your hand gets to an awkward position and you bobble the zoom). You also need to pick a stationary point that the motion is around or toward. In this case I picked the balloon, not the Eifel Tower. That's because of the lettering that tells us where we are (Vegas, baby).

    If you nail the zoom/motion and the object you're centered on is at or near the brightest thing in the scene you often get very clear detail on the object if you linger on it a bit during the exposure. I had to try this shot three times before I got an acceptable balloon. Even then I had to select the "Paris" and run a deblur routine on it to get the full sharpness you see here. The deblur function Adobe has been showing lately as a technology preview would have made this a more simple task than it turned out to be with the tools I had available. It also would have helped if the lettering was on the left side of the balloon instead of the right, because my zoom was to the left side. That suggests that I should have zoomed to a different finishing point or moved my camera position.
  • 22 plusses - 17 comments - 7 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2011-09-26 14:40:32
    Story Continued. GH2 raw. That's me on the left. That's a cheetah on the right. Obviously, there's a story here ;~). Since I seem to be here to write about it, obviously the story didn't end the way you think it did from just looking at the image. First, about the image itself. I've done very little to it. I cropped the bottom to better fit the format I use on this site. I sharpened it. I boosted the colors a bit. That's basically the full post processing work. This isn't a double exposure, I am indeed in front of the cheetah and thus there's no optical illusion involved in terms of placement. So what the heck; did I really try to run away from a cheetah? Last time I checked I can't run 60 mph. Okay, here's the inside scoop: the cheetah is a metal sculpture that can be moved. Over the course of the week I was at Kirkman's Kamp this year, we moved said cheetah all over the place (it's heavy, that wasn't easy) doing all kinds of set up shots with it. It even showed up for our traditional bush breakfast one morning. Kirkman's had just acquired the sculpture, so they really hadn't a good idea of what to do with it yet. The staff watched with great curiosity as I kept trying to figure out photos to do with it. I'm pretty sure they thought I was crazy. But it isn't every day that I have a very nice cheetah statue to play with--I was going to make the most of it. This image, therefore, is a complete set up, obviously. We were up before sunrise every morning and off on safari, so said cheetah became part of my ponderings over my earning morning tea. Now about the shot. There are intentional issues with the shot. If the shot were too perfect, you'd suspect that it was a set up. Thus, having the camera slightly unlevel and part of me cut off are false cues that attempt to get you to believe that this was a spontaneous "catch" and not something set up. Obviously, since the statue is metal, we needed to silouette it, which meant either a dawn or dusk shot. I wanted you to fill in the story with this shot (cheetah about to take down human), and I was trying to come up with a number of small things to get you to believe that story. Note, for example, that I am really moving (see the blur in my foot). Like last week's "story," this is about previsualization. I saw this shot long before we captured it. It was more of the matter of getting the elements aligned "right", just like last week, only I had more control of them this time. Mom? Mom? Mom, you can start breathing again. The only way that cheetah was going to hurt me is if I dropped it on my foot while moving it around.
  • 75 plusses - 41 comments - 7 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2011-09-12 17:15:25
    Lightpainting and Blend Modes. D3, three 30 second exposures combined in Photoshop. Which brings me to Photoshop World. If you've never attended one, you're missing out on lots of knowledge and information. Like Dave Black's Lightpainting class at this year's Las Vegas Photoshop World. I'm not going to duplicate or repeat Dave's teaching--you can find that at his Web site under Workshop at the Ranch, where he's been doing a series of articles on his lightpainting techniques. But let's tackle a few things about the image above. Dave set up several still life and portrait positions at Photoshop World where we could learn and practice his techniques. Obviously, with lots of students in tow, Dave wasn't able to give each of us a lot of time with his set ups, so basically we had three tries at getting our flashlight-wielding right for a subject, with Dave making suggestions as we went. None of us quite managed to get the "perfect" lightpainting, unfortunately. However, the great thing about Photoshop World for someone with an open mind is that ideas and knowledge intersect in interesting ways. While I was a bit disappointed with my three individual shots--I didn't manage to get all parts of an individual image to look exactly as I wanted--it so happened that I encountered Adobe's Dr. Russell Brown and his stack-a-matic script almost immediately after finishing up with Dave. Hmm. What would happen if I took the three JPEGs and ran them under stack-a-matic? Isn't lightpainting a bit like star trails, where you don't necessarily get what you want in one shot, but with multiple shots you might fill in the gaps? Sure enough, the three shots layered up in Photoshop using Lighten as the Blend mode does exactly what I wasn't able to do in Dave's class: get one fully painted image pretty much as I wanted it. Indeed, because I now had three layers, I had some further choices on what parts to use from each image. I did a bit of masking on two of the layers to "pick" the light from one shot over another. So, standing in a completely black room at Photoshop World with a flashlight in my hand went from nothing to the image you see here in a matter of minutes. I've done nothing additional to the images. No use of exposure changes, burning, dodging, shadows and highlights, or any other Photoshop tool. I didn't even correct the slight color cast. I simply stacked the three images into three layers, switched the Blend mode to Lighten, and then in a couple of small areas, used a mask to hide one layer from participating in that section. Now that I know what I'm doing here, I'll bet that I can go from black room to final picture like this in less than five minutes with regularity. So, if you haven't gotten the message: even pros learn and discover things at Photoshop World. I highly recommend you attend one and see what you've been missing. The next Photoshop World is in March 2012 in Washington DC (plus they'll be another in Vegas in September 2012). See you there.
  • 28 plusses - 19 comments - 7 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2011-09-04 18:09:19
    Play Time. Sony HX9V, 1/3 second. Every photographer needs to play and experiment. If all you do is make the same pictures over and over, at some point your audience starts to see the same thing over and over and grows bored. In the arts, you live on the shoulders of those that came before you, and someone will stand on your shoulders in the future. This picture of the Dulles Airport subway doesn't exactly raise above anyone's shoulders, but it illustrates this week's point: I'm always carrying a camera with me when I travel, and I'm always playing with it, seeing what things I can provoke out of it. Despite the fact I had exactly an hour from the time my plane landed to clear Customs and get to the gate for my next plane (including the subway ride, above), I was still in play mode. In some ways, having only one quick chance for an image increases the play intensity. Remember, the camera can see things in ways we don't see them. Slow shutter speeds, like the one used here, blur time in ways that change the experience. Likewise, fast shutters speeds freeze time in ways we have a hard time doing in real life. When we play and take images like this one, we learn little things, like sometimes a wrong white balance is better, or that oddball color controls can sometimes impart a different feel. If all you're doing is trying to duplicate some "normal" picture you've seen somewhere, you're probably avoiding more than half the controls and settings your camera has to offer. Don't you ever wonder what they'd do if you used them? I do. I don't always like what I get, but I almost always learn something every time I do head down that path. So get out your camera and play. Make an image you haven't made before and learn something from doing that.
  • 53 plusses - 37 comments - 7 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2011-08-15 18:19:40
    From a Cessna. Shooting from planes has all kinds of special considerations that come into play, but here I want to write about one: color. This is a September sunset on Denali, it should have a slight pink/orange tone in the snow in the sun, slight cyan/magenta in the shadows. There's only one problem with Cessnas, especially older ones: they have a notorious greenish tint in their windows, and it will impact your white balance and overall color. So the question is how to do your deal with that? Well, you could shoot raw and try to deal with it later, but it's a slightly funky tint that's not always easy to correct perfectly by eye. When I know I'm flying, I carry my Cessna filter (an old FLD-like filter no longer made that's somewhere between a 30 magenta and a true FLD, but that's a little too much correction (though on the right side of wrong for a shot like this). One thing I always try to do is have the pilot stand outside the plane with my gray reference and take a shot of that just prior to take-off. In this case, that worked, though images taken late in this flight when the light had changed couldn't easily be corrected by using the reference shot.
  • 59 plusses - 34 comments - 7 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2011-11-01 19:38:45
    Good Enough?

    I'm going to drop back to a previous image I've shown, mostly because being without power for three days I'm way behind on a bunch of things and don't have time to prepare a new image this week. But this image addresses a question I get a lot these days: is m4/3 good enough?

    This is a three image stitch. It looks pretty darned fine to me printed large (and you then become aware of the photographer on the sand and the scale of the place). As many of you know, while I pursue every last iota of quality I can get from my images, I'm also highly pragmatic, too. It's an odd combination.

    Would I have rather hiked the six miles to this location with my D3x and 14-24mm lens? No. I still would have used image stitching, and I would have needed my big tripod, too. I'm not a fool: if I can achieve the same final result carrying 10 pounds less gear, I'm going to do it.

    Okay, so is it the same final result? Am I losing a little detail in the shadows, for example? Yes, I am, but I kind of like the old Velvia quick-drop-to-black effect, and if I had really been concerned I would have just done exposure stitches, too.

    I'm getting ready for another trip with a lot of long hikes in it, and I'm contemplating the kit I'll take. I have little doubt I'll pick something smaller and mirrorless, simply because it allows me more ability to range on and off the trail, and with care, I don't really give a lot up. Indeed, for landscape/scenic work, there are techniques that allow me to give essentially nothing up except a bit more time in shooting and processing.
  • 61 plusses - 59 comments - 7 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2011-10-18 15:11:50
    Motion
    Olympus E-PL3.
    There are a few things to discuss in this shot. This image was taken by zooming the lens during a long exposure.

    First, let's talk about the regularity of the motion. Look at the light streaks: notice how close to straight they are? Notice that they're evenly weighted from one end of a streak to the other? Those are indications of a relatively even zoom and a stable platform (this is handheld by the way: the stable platform is my stomach--that's one nice thing about those tilting LCDs, as you don't have to have the camera at arm's length or eye level). If you're not consistent with your motion/zoom or not on a stable platform, all those streaks start to get wavy and uneven.

    When you zoom you also need to zoom at either a constant speed or an constantly accelerating speed--no glitches in the motion are tolerated as they show up as bobbles in the streaks. That may mean you need to practice your motion/zoom so that your hand is in a comfortable position throughout (the usual catch is you start to zoom and your hand gets to an awkward position and you bobble the zoom). You also need to pick a stationary point that the motion is around or toward. In this case I picked the balloon, not the Eifel Tower. That's because of the lettering that tells us where we are (Vegas, baby).

    If you nail the zoom/motion and the object you're centered on is at or near the brightest thing in the scene you often get very clear detail on the object if you linger on it a bit during the exposure. I had to try this shot three times before I got an acceptable balloon. Even then I had to select the "Paris" and run a deblur routine on it to get the full sharpness you see here. The deblur function Adobe has been showing lately as a technology preview would have made this a more simple task than it turned out to be with the tools I had available. It also would have helped if the lettering was on the left side of the balloon instead of the right, because my zoom was to the left side. That suggests that I should have zoomed to a different finishing point or moved my camera position.
  • 22 plusses - 17 comments - 7 shares | Read in G+
  • Thom Hogan2011-09-26 14:40:32
    Story Continued. GH2 raw. That's me on the left. That's a cheetah on the right. Obviously, there's a story here ;~). Since I seem to be here to write about it, obviously the story didn't end the way you think it did from just looking at the image. First, about the image itself. I've done very little to it. I cropped the bottom to better fit the format I use on this site. I sharpened it. I boosted the colors a bit. That's basically the full post processing work. This isn't a double exposure, I am indeed in front of the cheetah and thus there's no optical illusion involved in terms of placement. So what the heck; did I really try to run away from a cheetah? Last time I checked I can't run 60 mph. Okay, here's the inside scoop: the cheetah is a metal sculpture that can be moved. Over the course of the week I was at Kirkman's Kamp this year, we moved said cheetah all over the place (it's heavy, that wasn't easy) doing all kinds of set up shots with it. It even showed up for our traditional bush breakfast one morning. Kirkman's had just acquired the sculpture, so they really hadn't a good idea of what to do with it yet. The staff watched with great curiosity as I kept trying to figure out photos to do with it. I'm pretty sure they thought I was crazy. But it isn't every day that I have a very nice cheetah statue to play with--I was going to make the most of it. This image, therefore, is a complete set up, obviously. We were up before sunrise every morning and off on safari, so said cheetah became part of my ponderings over my earning morning tea. Now about the shot. There are intentional issues with the shot. If the shot were too perfect, you'd suspect that it was a set up. Thus, having the camera slightly unlevel and part of me cut off are false cues that attempt to get you to believe that this was a spontaneous "catch" and not something set up. Obviously, since the statue is metal, we needed to silouette it, which meant either a dawn or dusk shot. I wanted you to fill in the story with this shot (cheetah about to take down human), and I was trying to come up with a number of small things to get you to believe that story. Note, for example, that I am really moving (see the blur in my foot). Like last week's "story," this is about previsualization. I saw this shot long before we captured it. It was more of the matter of getting the elements aligned "right", just like last week, only I had more control of them this time. Mom? Mom? Mom, you can start breathing again. The only way that cheetah was going to hurt me is if I dropped it on my foot while moving it around.
  • 75 plusses - 41 comments - 7 shares | Read in G+