Monday, December 17, 2012

Another exciting weekend

Actually, it wasn't very exciting, but I was hoping the title would trick you into reading anyway.

We kicked things off with an early gift exchange as I'm headed back to Kansas to see my parents next weekend, and I was thrilled that Rachael got me a personalized ring buoy for the Seahorse. Unfortunately, massive amounts of rain kept me from getting a good picture of it sitting on the stern, but here's a shot of it.

Early Christmas present

I spent last week playing with video features on the camera and practiced making animated gif cinemagraphs. I haven't come up with anything too fancy or mind-blowing yet. (I'm nor even sure they'll be animated when I host them on Flickr, but if you click through you'll be able to see the animated versions.)



I used Premiere to make these, but I think I'm going to attempt some in Photoshop and Fireworks next.

Since we were stuck inside during the rain, there was nothing left to do except torture the dog. Rachael's dog Zoe became a dinosaur for the afternoon. The portrait session wasn't too challenging since she refuses to move while wearing the costume.


I'm in the office until Thursday scripting some new video projects. Then it's off to Kansas for Christmas.

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Catching up

I've slipped on the blogging. Work got crazy, and on the weekends if I can be sailing or shooting photos, I kind of forget about sitting around and writing.

After shooting with the NEX-6 for a week, I sold the Leica M8. It had 29,000 actuations and although I loved the color rendering of the Kodak sensor, it was just a really slow, dated camera with horribly noisy high ISO. Prices were already plummeting, so I figured I better unload it while it was still worth something to somebody.

Although I love the versatility of the NEX-6 (500mm telephoto lenses, macro tubes, video, etc.), the fact that it isn't a full frame sensor still drives me crazy. I would really like my 28mm Ultron to be 28mm instead of cropped down to a 42mm field of view when shooting on a boat. You can't back up on a boat.

Sailing to Redfish Island

I really want to place my pre-order for the new Leica M, but refurbished M9s have dropped to around $4k, and I really wonder if Sony will unleash a full frame NEX this year in the $3k range. The difference in price could mean a nice lens or several sailboat upgrades. I just haven't been able to justify the cost yet.

The first week I had the NEX I visited my parents in Kansas. I was hoping for some wildlife, but trekking through the woods with two dogs was no conducive to sneaking up on any kind of animals ... but I did see evidence of animals having been there prior to our arrival.


The clear skies of Kansas also present a nice opportunity for some star photography. There's so much haze and light pollution in Houston that even attempting to shoot stars is a lost cause.


Saturday we attended the Texas Photographic Collectors Association meeting at Professional Camera Repair for a presentation on "cheap macro." We got lots of tips on macro tubes, macro converters, shooting with lenses backwards, etc.

TPCA December Meeting
 Being the only members under 50 and Rachael being the only girl, they gave her a Polariod Land Camera Automatic 100 that came into the shop. She was quite thrilled and has film on order.

Polaroid Land Camera Automatic 100

I practiced some birding with the 500mm Canon FD f8 reflex lens I procured via eBay. It gives great image compression, separation and detail. I was quite pleased.

Windy Gull

I also did a little bit of macro -- something I couldn't do at all with the M8 -- with my new macro tube kit.

Today's fortune

I know this post was a bit scattered, but that more or less catches us up to the present. I was hoping to take the next two weeks off for the holidays, but I'm going to be in the office until the 21st.

I'll try to stay on a posting schedule now that all my major projects are finished for the year, but if life gets too busy, have a happy holiday.

 Happy Holidays, Flickr