Thursday, August 13, 2015

2015 Quick Portraits with the Pansonic G6 and the SLR Magic 35mm T 1.4

This past weekend nieces needed a few new headshots and bodyshots. Seems like they need them more often since the grow so fast!  Here's an old post at the same park about 4 years ago using my old school Canon point and shoot where I learned how to shoot manual.

Here's a lengthy comment I gave someone asking about what lens I used but it turned into my whole setup!

"Thanks. I used the SLR Magic 35mm T1.4. It's used more for video but works well as a still portrait lens. I used a Tiffen .9 ND filter on it but may need a variable ND filter since my aperture was around 2.8 - 4.0 in this shot. I wanted it 1.4 - 2.8 instead. Thinking of getting an auto focus prime like the Oly 45 or the Panasonic since I miss focus sometimes with the manual SLR lens. 

I have the Nissin Di466 micro four thirds flash off camera using a cheap Neewer TTL cable. I had my camera on a tripod and just hand held the flash above my head, camera right. For the future, I'll use my light stand but I need to get a swivel/tilt flash bracket so I can angle the flash when its mounted on the light stand.

In camera, I used Standard Profile and shot JPG. I may shoot RAW once my color correcting/grading gets better but for now JPG is fine. Also, it saves time by not converting to DNG. I've editing RAW in the past but I didn't see much difference assuming exposure was already good.

I use Adobe Bridge and begin a few edits using Camera Raw which is built into Adobe Bridge. I haven't used Lightroom but it's similar. Since out of camera my images are a bit washed out (due to the cheap ND I assume) I adjust a few sliders. I adjusted the exposure a bit, then the Blacks and the contrast if needed. I also crop using Camera Raw and could have used the Adjustment Brush tool in this image to lower background exposure to better match the exposure of the subject but decided not to. I may in other images if the exposure difference is too distracting. Then Camera Raw opens up Adobe Photoshop where make just a few more edits. 

I normally use Auto Levels to correct skin tones but if it seems off, I'll go back and adjust the RGB channels manually to my liking. Then I adjust sharpness using Unsharp Mask. I use this just enough to make it a bit sharper around the eyes. That's kinda my workflow in a nutshell. I could have just used Photoshop by itself but it seems quicker to do a few minor things in Camera Raw and finish up in Photoshop. I hope this is helpful!"

I hope to post more blogs often even if it's just for reference. 

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Worlds BJJ 2014

taken with nokia 925 cell phone

Once again we made the trek down to Long Beach for this year's Brazilian Jiu Jitsu World Championships. It's always a good time seeing the best of the best in the bjj world all in one spot competing against each other. 

It's interesting seeing rookie black belts do well here and even making it to the finals like the Miyao brothers. Keenan did well also but got disqualified for reaping the knee. I wasn't able to watch that match unfortunately.

Too bad we couldn't stay till the final match between Rodolfo and Buchecha since the drive home would be difficult so late at night. Either way I witnessed a ton of great matches and had my fair share of acai bowls this weekend.

pretty good Brazilian soda @Silvio's bbq at Hermosa Beach

it's tiresome work watching matches two days straight

Monday, May 19, 2014

Cherry Picking

I haven't been cherry picking since I was a kid decades ago. The quality and quantity weren't up to snuff because of the drought but we managed. This place we went to was only open for that day for the whole year. 

Evelyn's first time cherry picking I assume

Sunny in the low 80s but not as hot as earlier in the week

Saturday, May 10, 2014

Alcatraz Trip

Did the audio tour at Alcatraz...was able to get some good shots while learning a bit of San Francisco history.

The 35mm focal length worked well here...not sure though if I like the color my ND filter gives me with this lens. I need to work on my post processing a bit more, maybe get Light Room as well as learn how to edit/shoot raw for more control.  

hard to get focus correct without a viewfinder on a sunny day with a manual lens like the SLR Magic 35mm T1.4, luckily I managed.  

I'm slowly getting used to knowing when to use the 7.3mm fish eye

maybe when I get Light Room I'll have an easier time trying to make a shot like this a good black and white image. 

only took two tries to get the composition right. hope the lumix g6 gets cheaper soon, I need an articulating screen among other things that surpass my aging gf2.  

20mm 1.7 was used for these last two shots 

Sunday, January 19, 2014

7th Annual Berkeley Marina Euro Car Meet 2014

Great turn out this year. Tons of nice rides and very peaceful partly since the law was there lol.

 I was able to bring my crane and was a bit surprised it easily fit in my cousin's E55 AMG trunk. I wasn't able to take as much pics but I got some cool video shots.

Next year, maybe hope to tag along at a caravan and start shooting before arriving at the spot. Also I want to do some interviews at next year's event if peeps aren't camera shy!

here's some pix/vid