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 Friday, August 28, 2015
Summer Photography Tips: Visit the Amusement Park After Dark
Amusements parks, carnivals, fairs, and similar are popular summer attractions. The next time you visit such attractions, be sure to take your camera gear (including a tripod) and ... make sure that you stay until the lights come on. To be more "attractive", amusement rides are typically well-lit at night and these rides (along with other signage) can make colorful images.
 
The first step: before you leave home, make sure that you know the park's rules for photography. The bigger the park, carnival, etc., the more likely that your activity will fall under regulation. The Ferris wheel shown here was captured at Knoebels Amusement Resort in Elysburg, PA (America's largest free-admission park). This park requires permission for "Professional Photography".
 
Also before you go, scope out potential opportunities using the park's map, satellite imagery and photos found online. Look for colorful rides that move significantly and have lots of lights on the moving portions of the ride. While motionless lights can be attractive in images (especially if out of focus), moving lights can be made to cover much more of the frame, replacing dark sky with bright light. Spinning rides often work well, but roller coasters often do not.
 
A perfect night photography ride example is the big Ferris wheel at Knoebels. The park has recently installed a new LED lighting system that displays constantly changing colors as the big wheel spins. The ride looks impressive and attracts many spectators in addition to riders.
 
Though it has excellent image quality, my choice to use the Canon EF 11-24mm f/4L Lens for this image was foremost for the ultra-wide focal lengths. Because of the many obstructions around (notably, trees), I wanted to be as close to the ride as possible and also wanted the close, looking-up perspective. This position also helped avoid people (the spectators I mentioned) in the frame (and the model release complication they could potentially add).
 
There are many options for photographing amusement parks in the dark (or just before dark), but I like to fill a significant amount of the frame with light. In this particular case, I liked having the entire wheel in the frame while shooting (I was over 11 hours into my commercial shoot and had gone to bed at 3:00 AM that morning, so I can't argue that my decision making ability was not slightly clouded at the time). During post processing, I decided that I liked the wheel cropped tighter, showing even more color in the frame and making the support structure larger in the frame. That the 5Ds R has such extreme resolution enabled me to crop significantly into the frame and still have a high resolution image remaining (roughly 22 megapixels). And, I still have the full size image available if wanted at a later time.
 
Camera exposure settings for lights moving in the dark are often determined by aperture and ISO. That was the case here. Since the lights in the middle of the wheel are not moving as fast as the outermost lights, there is an overall exposure balance required. The LED lights were very bright and ISO 100 with an f/11 aperture worked well in this case (I reduced the brightness somewhat in post processing). I adjusted the shutter speed (in manual mode) to capture the complete movement between wheel spokes without overlap (which would cause overexposure), generating a complete circle of light that, with the changing lights, resembles a pinwheel.
 
Dark park photography will test your visualization ability, but it is great fun to anticipate and view the results. It is not hard to create attractive blurs of light at these venues. Give after-dark amusement park photography a go! It shouldn't be hard to entertain the kids while you do.
 
A larger version of this image is available on Flickr, Google+, 500px and Facebook. Also, if reading from a news feed reader, click through to see the framed image.
Post Date: 8/28/2015 1:46:21 PM CT   Posted By: Bryan
From MindShift Gear:
 
The Industrial Designers Society of America named our sister outdoor company MindShift Gear’s rotation180° Panorama Backpack a winner of the Silver IDEA Award. The rotation180° Panorama was selected from among more than 1,700 projects entered from around the globe in 20 categories.
 
“When we look at a design, we’re not just looking at what’s trendy or fashionable at the moment. We have the context of a long line of designers that came before us,” said IDEA Award Chair Matthew Marzynski, IDSA. “That collective knowledge exists within IDSA, kind of like a living treasure.”
 
New IDSA Board of Directors Chair, John Barratt—a former IDEA Jury Chair—calls the competition “the authority on design” and says IDEA jurying is “the most rigorous and thoughtful” in the world.
 
The rotation180° Panorama is the first rotating day hiker backpack. Designed for hikers who carry cameras, binoculars, GPS devices, nature identification books, maps, tablets, and more, the rotation180° Panorama’s beltpack rotates to the front for quick gear access without first having to take off the backpack, or even stop hiking.
 
MindShift Gear backpacks are available from www.mindshiftgear.com and other leading outdoor and photography retailers.
Post Date: 8/28/2015 5:43:47 AM CT   Posted By: Sean
Instagram Now Displays Portrait and Landscape Images
From Instagram:
 
Today, we’re excited to announce that — in addition to square posts — you can now share photos and videos in both portrait and landscape orientation on Instagram.
 
Square format has been and always will be part of who we are. That said, the visual story you’re trying to tell should always come first, and we want to make it simple and fun for you to share moments just the way you want to. It turns out that nearly one in five photos or videos people post aren’t in the square format, and we know that it hasn’t been easy to share this type of content on Instagram: friends get cut out of group shots, the subject of your video feels cramped and you can’t capture the Golden Gate Bridge from end to end. Now, when choosing a photo or video, you can tap the format icon to adjust the orientation to portrait or landscape instead of square.
 
Once you share the photo, the full-sized version of it will appear to all of your followers in feed in a beautiful, natural way. To keep the clean feel of your profile grid, your post will appear there as a center-cropped square.
 
Instagram Announces Portrait and Landscape Photos

We’re especially excited about what this update means for video on Instagram, which in widescreen can be more cinematic than ever. While we’ve historically had separate filters for photos and for videos, all filters will now work on all types of moments. You can also adjust the intensity of filters on videos, too.
 
We continue to be inspired by the creativity and diversity of the Instagram community, and we can’t wait to see what you create next.
 
To learn more about the changes in today’s update, check out the Instagram Help Center.
 
Instagram for iOS version 7.5 is available today in Apple's App Store, and Instagram for Android version 7.5 is available today on Google Play.
Category: Instagram News
Post Date: 8/28/2015 4:41:57 AM CT   Posted By: Sean
 Thursday, August 27, 2015
LensRentals Logo
Use coupon code SUMMER20 at LensRentals.com to receive a 20% discount on your rental arriving by 9/4/15.
 
Details:
 
  • Order must arrive by 9/4/15
  • Not combinable with any other offers
  • Discount applies to rental fees only, and does not apply to Keeper purchases.
To support this site, navigate to the appropriate product review and click the Rent button.
Post Date: 8/27/2015 11:36:09 AM CT   Posted By: Sean
 Wednesday, August 26, 2015
Catching Color with the Sigma 24-35mm f/2 Art Lens and Why You Shouldn't Leave when the Sun Sets
Time after time, I am in position to photograph the sunset with many other photographers and observers around me. It is (usually) lots of fun talking to those nearby, but ... as soon as the sun goes behind the horizon, most people pack up and leave.
 
Last week, the same thing was happening as I was bayside in Seaside Park, NJ. Right after the sun disappeared, a friendly photographer came over and asked if I got "it" while showing me his favorite pic of the setting sun. I replied that I did, but indicated that the main show was likely still to come. He said that he liked to see the sun's reflection best. My thought was that his preference is fine, that we are all different, that I too like the sun's reflection and that I was still expecting the best yet to come.
 
Fortunately, this gentleman had enough question about my opinion vs. his that he stuck around. Fifteen minutes was all that was needed. The color in the sky was very impressive on this evening and Barnegat Bay was very calm. About 25 minutes after the sun set, the other photographer returned very excited. Upon a quick review of his website the next day, I found only one picture from that evening. One captured well after the sun had set.
 
Unless I am shooting landscape that the setting sun is directly lighting, I am usually more found of my post-sunset images. This image was my favorite from the night (though I have many close runners-up).
 
This is an HDR image, comprised of three exposures used to balance the overall brightness of the final image.
 
While an f/2 max aperture lens invites many uses in addition to landscape photography, the focal length range of the Sigma 24-35mm f/2 DG HSM Art Lens is great for this use. Since the Sigma 24-35mm f/2 Art Lens was what I was evaluating at the time, I put it to use for my sunset session. It performed excellently.
 
A larger version of this image is available on Flickr, Google+, 500px and Facebook. Also, if reading from a news feed reader, click through to see the framed image.
Post Date: 8/26/2015 12:03:09 PM CT   Posted By: Bryan
Sigma 24-35mm f/2 DG HSM Art Lens
B&H has the Sigma 24-35mm f/2 DG HSM Art Lens for Nikon in stock with free expedited shipping.
Posted to: Nikon News
Post Date: 8/26/2015 7:06:00 AM CT   Posted By: Sean
CanvasPeople Logo
CanvasPeople has all sizes of their standard and thick wrap canvas prints discounted by 80% with one exception – 16x20 standard wrap prints are almost 95% off and will set you back only $5.00 + shipping.
 
Available Sizes
 
SizeStandard
Wrap
Thick
Wrap
8x10$49.99 $10.00-
11x11$68.99 $13.80-
11x14$69.99 $14.00$89.99 $18.00
16x16$82.99 $16.60-
9x27$86.99 $17.40-
16x20$93.99 $5.00$117.99 $23.60
18x24$108.99 $21.80$128.99 $25.80
20x30$128.99 $25.80-
24x36-$199.94 $39.99
20x48-$219.94 $43.99
Post Date: 8/26/2015 6:54:48 AM CT   Posted By: Sean
Apple 15.4
B&H has the Apple 15.4" MacBook Pro with Retina Display (Mid 2014) available for $1,749.00. Regularly $2,299.00.
 
Product Highlights
 
  • 2.5 GHz Intel Core i7 (Crystalwell)
  • 16GB of Onboard 1600 MHz DDR3L RAM
  • 512GB PCIe-Based Flash Storage
  • NVIDIA GeForce GT 750M Graphics (2GB)
  • 15.4" LED-Backlit IPS Retina Display
  • 2880 x 1800 Native Resolution
  • 802.11a/b/g/n/ac Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 4.0
  • Thunderbolt 2, USB 3.0, HDMI
  • FaceTime HD Camera, Dual Mics
  • Mac OS X 10.10 Yosemite
Post Date: 8/26/2015 6:30:17 AM CT   Posted By: Sean
 Tuesday, August 25, 2015
AdoramaPix Logo
Through the end of this month, use coupon code PXMETL30 at AdoramaPix to get select Metal Prints for 30% off.
 
Sizes which qualify for discount: 8x12, 11x17 and 16x24.
Post Date: 8/25/2015 10:13:11 AM CT   Posted By: Sean
The-Digital-Picture.com's servers have been exhibiting performance issues with a dramatic decrease in performance seen on Sunday. I have spent a large amount of time (12 hours straight ending at 3:00 AM Monday prior to a 12 hour outdoor commercial photo shoot starting Monday morning) trying to track down the cause of the problem (rogue traffic, site code or server issues).
 
I assure you that the problem will be resolved, but ask for your patience as the complete fix appears likely to be more than a few hours away. If you find the site performing slowly or receive an error page (over the next few days), please try loading the page a short time later.
 
Thanks for your continued support!
 
Bryan
Post Date: 8/25/2015 10:06:56 AM CT   Posted By: Bryan
Manfrotto 055 Magnesium Ball Head with Q2 Quick Release
For a limited time, B&H has the Manfrotto 055 Magnesium Ball Head with Q2 Quick Release available for $199.95 with free expedited shipping. Regularly $249.95.
 
Product Highlights
 
  • Load Capacity: 26.5 lb
  • Quick Release with 1/4"-20 Camera Plate
  • Working Height: 5"
  • Weighs: 2 lb
  • 360° Pan with Independent Pan Lock
  • Friction Adjustment
  • Lateral Tilt: -100° / +40°
  • 3 Spirit Levels
  • 90 - 100 Degree Portrait Angle Selector
  • Tripod Mount: 3/8"-16
Post Date: 8/25/2015 9:12:52 AM CT   Posted By: Sean

 
From the B&H YouTube Channel:
 
In this class, Sal talks about the basics of speedlites, how and when to use them, and setting up for on-location work. He shows before and after images and talks about how to incorporate dramatic shots into your portfolio.
Post Date: 8/25/2015 9:03:32 AM CT   Posted By: Sean
Adobe Photoshop Elements 13
Today only, Amazon is featuring Adobe Photoshop Elements 13 (Disc/Download) as a Gold Box Deal and the software is available for only $44.95. Compare at $79.95.
Post Date: 8/25/2015 7:34:02 AM CT   Posted By: Sean
Sigma 120-300mm f/2.8 DG OS HSM Sports Lens
For a limited time, DigitalRev has the Sigma 120-300mm f/2.8 DG OS HSM Sports Lens (review) available for $2,959.00. Compare at $3,599.00.
 
Note: When purchased by US customers, items sold by DigitalRev are considered grey market.
Post Date: 8/25/2015 5:36:53 AM CT   Posted By: Sean
Canon CJ12ex4.3B 4K Zoom Lens
From Canon UK:
 
United Kingdom, Republic of Ireland, 25 August 2015 – Canon today unveils the CJ12ex4.3B, a new 2/3” portable 4K zoom lens with the world’s widest focal length – an incredible 4.3mm, designed for professionals shooting interviews or live broadcast, including sport and news. Canon also today announces that it is developing a new compact 2/3” 4K all-purpose-zoom lens. Further bolstering Canon’s 4K broadcast lens range for cameras employing 2/3” sensors, the versatile new lens will be optimised for both indoor and outdoor shooting, across a variety of applications including, sporting events, live broadcasts, as well as television dramas and commercials.
 
Outstanding 4K optical performance
Leveraging Canon’s renowned heritage in optical design and advanced technologies, the CJ12ex4.3B delivers outstanding 4K image quality throughout the entire 12x optical zoom range. Providing the freedom to quickly adapt to different shooting environments, the new lens enables shooters to swiftly move from an ultra-wide 4.3mm angle shot to close ups, whilst ensuring first-class image quality from the very centre to the edge. A built-in 2x extender also helps provides even greater focal reach, whilst still maintaining 4K optical performance.
 
To further provide sharp, high contrast images, the CJ12ex4.3B includes an increased use of fluorite and UD glass combined with Canon’s expert coatings, resulting in exceptional control over ghosting and flare. A new three group internal focus system also reduces focus breathing.
 
Exceptional portability and flexible operation
Boasting a brand new design, the CJ12ex4.3B is compact and lightweight, weighing just 2.1kg, making it similar in size and weight to a comparable 2/3” HD lens. Ideal for on-shoulder shooting traditionally adopted by news gatherers, the lens can easily be used on-the-go, and with an ergonomic design and grip, it is comfortable to hold for longer periods of time. The lens also incorporates three 20-pin connectors for easy integration with existing HD zoom/focus controllers and can be directly connected to an external virtual operation system at the same time.
 
Featuring a Digital Drive Unit, the CJ12ex4.3B offers advanced operability giving users the freedom to select repeatable zoom positions and speeds, in addition to focus and iris settings. A 16-bit absolute value encoder integrated into the Digital Drive Unit allows operators to start shooting with the camera’s aberration compensation function in an instant, without the need for any initialization. This is perfect for news and wildlife environments where action can disappear as quickly as it started. A digital display, built into the Digital Drive Unit, also makes it easy to set, review and adjust vital functions in a way similar to 2/3” HD lenses.
 
Key features CJ12ex4.3B:
 
  • 4K resolution 2/3” portable wide angle lens with 12x zoom
  • Exceptional 4.3mm focal length at the wide end extends to 52mm (104mm using the built-in 2x extender)
  • Stunning optical performance right to the edge of the image when paired with a 2/3” 4K compatible camera
  • Combines 4K quality with lightweight design and compact size comparable to HD lenses for comfortable on-shoulder shooting
  • Sustained 4K performance even when using the built-in 2x extender
  • Proven, high-quality 16-bit encoder captures precise information on zoom, focus and iris and allows support for aberration correction immediately on start-up
  • 3 20-pin connectors make for effortless use with existing Canon HD lens accessories and virtual systems
Post Date: 8/25/2015 5:08:04 AM CT   Posted By: Sean
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