Friday, January 30, 2009

More HDR Exploration

Continued with my HDR experiments last night.
Still using single pictures with RAW EV adjustments.
Damn the halos and tone reversals.
Actually, I kind of like the halos and think they work well in images of statues of exhaulted figures.

Thursday, January 29, 2009

High Dynamic Range

I've started experimenting with high dynamic range images (HDR).
At this point, I'm not doing true HDR images since I haven't completed the first step in the process, which is going out and taking multiple pictures of the same subject at different exposures.
Instead, to recreate the effect, I'm manipulating the RAW files of pictures +/-2 ev to give me the minimum required variations.
It gives new life to photographs that failed due to the high contrast between a subject and its background.
And opens up a whole new world of effects experimentation.
I don't know if I'd consider these true photographs though.
They seem more like graphics to me.
Anyway, here's a sample.



I've added some in the following galleries:
Sculpture Portraits
Landmarks & Landscapes

Monday, January 26, 2009

Portraiture Pics

I've updated the Other gallery for a few of the pictures from yesterday.

Sunday, January 25, 2009


Spent some time in my studio this weekend experimenting with my lighting set up.
Of course, when I say my lighting set up, I mean my hot shoe flash and a Noma halogen work light, and when I say my studio, I mean the one wall of my tv room in my dark and dingy, low-ceilinged basement apartment where I've taped up a sheet of seamless background paper.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Pension Plan

Funny thing happened to me the other day. I received a letter giving me the options of what to do with the pension contributions from my last job. One of the options was to leave it with the same investors, who at that point had realized a whopping annual return of MINUS 20%. MINUS. Yeah, no thanks guys. Another option was to transfer it to another investor. Who I am sure would do just as well. And then there was option three. Receive the contributions, net of tax, in cash. Nice. Well, the cheque finally cleared the bank yesterday. And it was enough to pay for all my camera gear purchases from the last year, up to and including today...
...because today I happened into Henrys and got a pretty great deal on a 50D and grip kit.

Of everything in the picture, only the EF100 macro lens was NOT picked up in the last 6 months. And the sad thing is that my bohemian lifestyle is such that I would be happy paying rent for the next twenty years while amassing a horde of such playthings. Life is good.

ps...missing are my gripped xti, kit lens and tripod since they were used to take the picture.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Experimenting with the Seamless Paper

Ali's Portrait

I really need to get a reflector or second light to get rid of the shadow on his neck, eh.

More here

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Sunday Monotony

The best part about living in the big city is that there are so many resources at your disposal. For instance, if you’re bored on a Sunday, you can run up to the local photo shop and pick up some seamless background paper and continue experimenting with studio photography.

ps...yes, that is my bike. It makes a great prop.

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Testing the 300 & kenko tube combo

A round brilliant diamond is a diamond cut and polished with 58 facets (sides). Its called a brilliant because, well, its brilliant. The cut is suppposed to maximize the light return through the top of the diamond.

This round brilliant is 0.02 carats.
Or, size-wise its approx. 0.0011364 cubic centimetres.
I believe this is the smallest size that can be sucessfully cut.
How small is it really?
Well, the average golf ball is 40.633 cubic centimetres.
So, for a pile matching the size of a golf ball, you would need around 35,756 of these little brilliants.
That's how small.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009


I just picked up a used Canon EF 300 F4L IS USM prime lens and Sigma 1.4x teleconverter.

With my crop camera and the teleconverter, this will give me 672mm (approx. 13.5x zoom) at F5.6.

Monday, January 5, 2009

Toronto Islands

So I spent Saturday in the frigid wind and weather on the Toronto Islands with the TPMG. Six hours exposed to the elements so that I could get a couple nice Toronto skyline pictures.
Worth it? Of course.

I've posted new pictures in the landmarks & landscapes, other and mammalia galleries.