2014 was another busy year for me. I logged a lot of miles this year traveling to both new and familiar locations, and I’m incredibly happy that I got to meet some of you in person along the way! With that, here’s a little recap of the past year and some of my favorite captures. Enjoy.
April 2014: Digital Underground Las Vegas
I kicked off the year with the inaugural tour in a new series of workshops, called Digital Underground, that I’m co-hosting with Deborah Sandidge. We took a small group of photographers to Las Vegas, where we explored creative techniques and got to see some pretty cool places like the Neon Museum Boneyard and the Nelson Ghost Town.
It’s shopping season again, and I want to talk a little about that obsession we have with camera lenses. Often times, you’ll hear, “get the best glass, you won’t regret it.” This is certainly the case in terms of total image quality, but is it practical advice? I mean, there are entire websites devoted to the minutia of MTF charts and brick-wall photos trying to convince us which lenses are the best, and which are marginal. I’ve been thinking about this topic a lot lately, especially when going through my images and examining my gear needs as they have evolved. Continue reading →
Join the Digital Underground as we explore creative urban photography!
I’m pleased to announce the addition of two new Digital Underground instructional photo tours for spring and summer 2015. I will be co-hosting these small group (10 max) tours with Deborah Sandidge. Each day, we’ll cover interesting locations within the city, explore creative techniques, and provide feedback and critique. If you’re looking to get creative with travel photography, these workshops are not to be missed.
Digital Underground: Washington, D.C.
March 30-April 2, 2015 Limited to 10 participants
Explore the monuments and architecture of the nation’s capitol during cherry blossom season! Washington, D.C. is an incredibly photogenic city, and we’ll be capturing many of the iconic monuments at twilight and at night. Learn More
Digital Underground: Chicago
August 19-22, 2015
Limited to 10 participants
We roll into the Windy City in the summer of 2015 to capture the amazing art and architecture of Chicago. We’ll start with an architectural boat tour along the Chicago River. We’ll also photograph the fireworks display over Navy Pier. No trip to Chicago would be complete without photographing “The Bean” sculpture in Millennium Park.
Last night, Nikon announced their latest FX-format (36x24mm) DSLR body, the Nikon D750. They also announced a new 20mm f/1.8 AFS G Nikkor lens. Here are my initial thoughts on these announced products. Note that I haven’t tried or tested these items; these are my opinions based on the specs I’ve seen so far. Continue reading →
Fujifilm announced a new color (Graphite) X-T1 body to be released later this year. While it looks really nice, it’s really the same camera as the original (black) X-T1, which I use as my primary travel/family camera. The bigger news, however, was a firmware upgrade coming in December that will match the original (black) X-T1’s features with its silver counterpart. I looked through the firmware features, which you can read here, and the following items caught my eye:
Electronic shutter option for fast primes: You will be able to shoot at a shutter speed of up to 1/32,000s with the electronic shutter. That’s perfect for using a fast prime in bright light without having to stop down. The downside is that this feature will only work with the 23 f/1.4, 25 f/1.4 and 56 f/1.2 Fuji prime lenses (I’m scratching my head on that one).
Natural Live View Mode: Because the X-T1 uses an electronic viewfinder (EVF), the viewfinder displays the scene with in-camera settings applied, like monochrome or “Velvia” mode. What that means is that sometimes the viewfinder image is too contrasty or saturated due to the chosen film emulation mode. Natural mode will display a normal image in the viewfinder, while the captured images will have the film emulation settings applied to them.
Linking the focus area to the metering area in spot metering mode: This is something my Nikon’s do, and it’s a feature I find quite useful. Currently, the spot meter uses the center of the frame, meaning you can’t just choose a metering area with the focus points without recomposing the shot.
Sadly, the one feature I really want, ± 2EV bracketing, wasn’t on the list. I hope Fuji reconsiders and adds this feature… it would make HDR capture so much easier!