29 Jun 2012

Kronetorps Mölla - Funked

There is an obsession amongst some modern photographers to capture a scene as "naturally" as possible, so as to portray it exactly as it was on the day/hour/minute, and any variation from the original is heresy deserving of a burning at the stake for the heretic infidel who dared to step outside of the accepted norm. Absolutely no digital manipulation allowed, because real photographers, at least the good ones "get it right in camera" and don't need to "cheat" with Photoshop!!

Well, some of you may have noticed the quote I have at the top right of my blog by Henry Moore: "Art is the expression of imagination, not the duplication of reality."  and I have to confess that I sometimes like to mess with pics to get a more pleasing (at least to me) look! The above photo being a good example.

Is it an accurate rendition of the scene? No. Is it a colour perfect balance of the real colours on the day? No. Is it pin sharp from corner to corner (as if that matters in real life)? No. Do I like it? Oh yes! I think I'll make a large print of this one for my wall.

I would love to hear your own thoughts on digital manipulation, and whether you agree or disagree, do it yourself or would never dream of doing it. Either way, be nice and remember, these things are highly subjective anyway. 



Det finns en besatthet hos vissa moderna fotografer att fånga en scen som "naturligt" som möjligt, så att beskriva det exakt som det var på dagen / timme / minut och varje avvikelse från den ursprungliga är kätteri förtjänar ett brinnande vid spel för kättaren otrogna som vågade utanför den accepterade normen. Absolut ingen digital manipulation tillåtet, eftersom riktiga fotografer, åtminstone de som är bra "få det rätt i kameran" och behöver inte att "fuska" med Photoshop!

Tja, kanske några av er har märkt citatet har jag längst upp till höger på min blogg genom Henry Moore: ". Konsten är ett uttryck för fantasi, inte dubblering av verkligheten" och jag måste erkänna att jag ibland gillar att bråka med bilder för att få en mer tilltalande (åtminstone för mig) look! Ovanstående foto är ett bra exempel.

Är det en precis återgivning av scenen? Nej Är det en färg perfekt balans av de verkliga färgerna på dagen? Nej Är det knivskarpa från hörn till hörn (som om det frågor i verkliga livet)? Nej Tycker jag det? Oh ja! Jag tror jag ska göra en stor utskrift av denna en för min vägg.

Jag skulle älska att höra dina egna tankar på digital manipulation, och om du instämmer eller inte instämmer, gör det själv eller skulle aldrig drömma om att göra det. Hur som helst, trevlig och kom ihåg, dessa saker är mycket subjektiva ändå.

B ^)

28 Jun 2012

A Rust Coloured Sun Rises in a Blue Sky!

...or a bit of rust on blue paint... either way it is one of those little details I always look for!
... eller lite rost på blå färg ... hursomhelst är det en av de små detaljer jag alltid leta efter!

More little details HERE and HERE.

26 Jun 2012

Spår 1a vid klockan tre (Track 1a at 3 o'clock)

At Helsingborg Station, waiting for departure to Malmö on the Öresundståg. Taken through the train window.
Vid Helsingborgs station och väntar på avfärd till Malmö Öresundståg. Fattas genom tågfönstret.

...and yes, the blog is slowly going to become bilingual, with apologies in advance for my less than perfect Swedish!
... och ja, bloggen kommer att långsamt bli tvåspråkiga, med ursäkter i förväg för min mindre än perfekt svenska!

(Google Translate is my friend!)

22 Jun 2012

Night Walk in Malmö 6

I'm not sure if this building has a name, but it is on the Stortorget in Malmö, southern Sweden.

Nikon D90, under-rated plastic Nikkor 18-105mm kit lens, f3.5, ISO 800, 1/50s, hand held, processed in Lightroom 4.

18 Jun 2012

A "Normal" focal length Prime Lens as a Landscape Lens

Somehow someone has convinced an aweful lot of us that we need a really wide angle lens to take landscape photographs. Who was that, and why? I find, increasingly, that I am using my AF-S Nikkor 35mm f1.8G DX as my go to lens for landscapes and architecture. Remember this shot of the Turning Torso Building in Malmö? Taken with the same lens! And this detail shot of the same building was taken with the same lens.

The photo above of the Krönetorps Mölla in Arlöv Sweden was taken with this little gem of a lens, and the one below as well.

Instead of taking my bigger, heavier zoom lens and standing in one spot zooming around to get the pics I want, I pop my teeny 35mm on the camera and take a nice leisurely walk in the fresh air and sunshine. Leaving the zoom at home is good for my health! The Surgeon General should give his/her stamp of approval to prime lenses on the basis that they will ultimately produce slimmer, healthier, fitter photographers! Haha!

The other benefit is that the primes often have a lot less distortion problems than zooms and are sharper as well! To match the quality of a good prime with a zoom you will have to start spending the value of a small car to get one! I would rather have a small car.. oh, I already have one. Great! Now I can afford another prime! WooHoo!

The AF-S Nikkor 35mm f1.8G DX is the second cheapest lens that Nikon makes and I think it represents fantastic value for money. The only cheaper lens is the "nifty fifty" 50mm f1.8D which sells for less than a meal in a restaurant for a family of five. Seriously! I took this portrait with the fifty.

All the major camera makers have these cheap primes in their line-up and they are all great, so please don't email me that your particular favourite is better than mine because I don't want to hear it. ;-)

Have a great day!

13 Jun 2012

How Getting Creative with White Balance can add a little Zing to your Product Photography!

Ok, so how to add a little something to a pic by fiddling with the white balance a bit? First, I took a standard pic of my daughters sneakers. What do you mean that's not something you usually do? Just go with the flow and stop arguing with me ok!

Standard pic of daughters sneakers:

This was taken with two Speedlights to light the sneakers, an sb700 to camera left on a light stand firing into a black-backed umbrella and providing the main light from the front. There is also an sb600 with a home made gobo shooting onto the white wall behind the subject (sneakers) to provide a second soft light from behind.

The result is not bad lighting wise, but what if we wanted to add another element to this to change, and hopefully improve, the look?

12 Jun 2012

What does it take to shoot good photographs?

I get asked by quite a lot of my friends how I get my photos to look so different/better than the photos that they take with their own expensive dslr's when they have the same (and more often better) camera. Shouldn't the camera take just as great photos regardless of who uses it?

Well, the short answer is. No!

The slightly longer answer is, cameras don't take photographs, people do.

A little simplistic maybe, so let me try the long winded approach. Bear with me.

9 Jun 2012

Small Speedlight Studio Setup on a budget.

Don't have enough for those very tempting studio lights down at the camera store, but have a couple of Speedlights in your camera bag? Well then you have pretty much all you need to take some pretty cool portraits!

This is my friend Chinedu, and he just wrote a book. Once I get the details of where to buy it I will post a link right here.

6 Jun 2012

Girl with Agfa Isolette

I recently purchased a used but mint condition Agfa Isolette camera in a second hand store, the same one used in this portrait. When I get around to it I will post better pics of the camera, but first the details of this shot!

This was taken with a Nikon sb700 bounced into an umbrella camera right and about 45 degrees up and to the side of the model. Second light is a Nikon sb600 down, behind and left of model with a corn flakes box front cut to become a gobo to prevent light spill onto the back of the model but splash oodles of beautiful light onto the white wall behind her. It worked.

The lights were triggered by the popped up flash on my Nikon D90 via Nikons nifty CLS system. The pop up flash had the handy IR filter doodad that Nikon produces to keep light from the onboard flash influencing the lighting on the subject, but still allows the camera to communicate via IR signals with the off camera flashes.

Nikon D90, Nikkor 50mm f1.8D "nifty fifty", ISO200, 1/60s, f8.0, hand held, one sb700 Speedlight and one sb600 Speedlight, processed in Adobe Lightroom 4.

Dom Kyrka in Lund Sweden

Nikon D90, Nikkor 35mm f1.8G DX, ISO800, Aperture Priority mode, f1.8, 1/80s, hand held, edited in Corel Paintshop Pro X4.

This lens is remarkably sharp wide open and it is such a pleasure to have that beautiful shallow depth of field in a small sensor camera. Also, at ISO800 the images from the D90 are still great, I hear the new D7000 is miles better. Can't wait to get my grubby little hot sweaty hands on one! ;-)