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 Wednesday, April 15, 2015
Think Tank Photo Shoulder Harness v2.0 Offer
From Think Tank Photo:
 
Between now and May 15, Think Tank Photo is offering a free Shoulder Harness v2.0 ($34.75 value) by mail when you order one of their Urban Disguise bags.
 
Shoulder Harness v2.0 Key Features
 
  • Allows an Urban Disguise shoulder bag to be carried as a backpack
  • Adjustable sternum strap for stability
  • Hook-and-loop flap conceals and reinforces rear buckle
  • Compatible with Think Tank Photo Camera Support Straps
Plus, as a reader of our site, receive a free gift with your purchase of $50.00 or more!
Post Date: 4/15/2015 9:35:24 AM CT   Posted By: Sean
Canon 16-35mm L IS Lens Captures Adams Falls, Ricketts Glen State Park
Being only a short walk from a small parking lot makes Adams Falls the easiest of the named Ricketts Glen State Park falls to access. Because this falls is not close to the other falls, special effort must be made to capture it on a day with multiple falls on the to-do list. On this rainy day, I spent some time at this falls before heading deep into the park on the falls trails.
 
The beauty of Adams Falls is very apparent on first arrival, but some composition challenge needs to be addressed before capturing your trophy shot here. A composition that works for me is to use an ultra-wide focal length positioned close to the foreground rocks. I oriented the camera so that the upper flow of water was contained within the frame and horizontally positioned approximately 1/3 of the way into the frame. At about 1/3 of the way from the bottom of the frame, the vertical water flow widens and transitions to a horizontal flow that leaves the right side of the frame narrowly visible. This composition leaves the water nearly completely framed within rock, though still consuming a large percentage of the frame.
 
A cloudy day combined with a circular polarizer filter (consider it a requirement for waterfall photography) meant that a long, water-motion-blurring 1.3 second shutter speed could be used at an ideal-for-depth-of-field (and sharpness) f/11 aperture.
 
A larger version of this image is available on Flickr, Google+ and Facebook. Also, if reading from a news feed reader, click through to see the framed image.
Post Date: 4/15/2015 8:38:40 AM CT   Posted By: Bryan
DxO Logo
From DxO:
 
April 15, 2015 – DxO announces the immediate availability of DxO OpticsPro v10.4, DxO FilmPack v5.1.2, and DxO ViewPoint v2.5.4 for Mac and Windows. These upgrades allow the three DxO solutions to process images taken with the new Nikon D7200 and the Olympus OM-D E-M5 Mark II. Among other new features, DxO OpticsPro v10.4 now offers a one-click reset function, and includes support for several DxO Optics Modules.
 
Improved workflow and new DxO Optics Modules
 
DxO OpticsPro 10 offers many automatic tools for processing RAW and JPEG images. Its library of presets allows photographers to automatically bring out the best in their photos as soon as they open them in the application, or to adapt the processing to their tastes by applying one of many available styles or by making manual adjustments to correction settings. To further improve workflow, the DxO OpticsPro v10.4 interface now offers a new “Reset” button that lets users cancel in just one click all of the manual corrections made to an image and to return to the default preset corrections.
 
DxO OpticsPro v10.4 also offers support for new camera/lens combinations: XXX additional Optics Modules are available, offering support for Konica Minolta, Nikon, Olympus, Sigma, Sony, Tamron, Tokina, and Zeiss lenses for many Nikon, Olympus, Panasonic, and Sony cameras. Among these are the new Sigma 24mm F1.4 DG HSM A Canon-mount lens, the Canon EF 11-24mm f/4L USM wide-angle zoom, and the much-anticipated AF-S NIKKOR 400mm f/2.8E FL ED VR.
 
Availability
 
DxO OpticsPro v10.4, DxO FilmPack v5.1.2, and DxO ViewPoint v2.5.4 are immediately available at photo resellers.
 
Photographers who acquired a DxO OpticsPro 9 license on or after September 1, 2014, are entitled to a free upgrade to version 10. Photographers who bought a DxO FilmPack 4 license on or after September 1, 2014, are entitled to a free upgrade to version 5. Upgrades are free for all photographers who acquired a DxO ViewPoint license on or after August 1, 2013.
 
B&H carries DxO OpticsPro 10.
Category: DxO News
Post Date: 4/15/2015 8:57:42 AM CT   Posted By: Sean
Think Tank Photo 10th Anniversary Airport International LE Rolling Bag
From Think Tank Photo:
 
4/14/2015 – The Technical Image Press Association recently named our 10th anniversary edition Airport International LE Classic rolling camera case 2015’s best photo bag. The TIPA awards are given to the best products in their category that have come on the market in the year preceding the election.
 
In naming the Airport International LE Classic “Best Photo Bag” TIPA wrote: “The roller photo case is specially designed for photographers who need to bring a lot of equipment in the aircraft. The bag has been approved as a carryon and offers space for several cameras, lenses and a 15 or 17 "laptop. The outside of the bag is equipped with water-repellent fabric and protected strips.”
 
TIPA Awards are independently voted on by TIPA’s General Assembly every year. TIPA membership comprises 28 leading photo and imaging magazines from 15 countries on five continents, and also has a cooperative partnership with the CJPC (Camera Journal Press Club), representing 11 top photography magazines in Japan.
 
Think Tank Photo developed the Airport International LE Classic in celebration of the 10th anniversary of its founding.
 
The Airport International LE Classic carry-on roller lets photographers legally store their bodies, lenses, and accessories in overhead bins or under the seats of international carriers. For added security, it features front-pocket and main compartment combination locks and a cable from a secret rear hatch that allow it to be secured to posts, trees, and other immovable objects.
 
It accommodates up to a 500mm f/4 lens unattached, additional smaller lenses, two gripped DSLR camera bodies, and other photography accessories. TSA approved combination locks secure the main compartment zipper sliders.
Manfrotto Digital Director in Case
From Manfrotto:
 
Manfrotto is making a huge splash at NAB this year with the launch of our newest product, the Digital Director, the first workflow management processor for iPad, Apple Certified. Come check it out at our booth C6025 April 13th - 16th! This is a brand new, one of a kind product that could revolutionize the way photographers and videographers operate their entire workflow; from the setup to taking the shot and all the way to post production and sharing thanks to the Apple Certified Interface. Simply control the key camera parameters such as the exposure, ISO, shutter speed, aperture, manual focus, white balance and more all from the iPad.
 
Once all of the parameters are set, feel free to use the interactive focus and digital zoom right on the iPad as well to get the precise focus point of your subject. This is taking the weakest part of the camera, the LCD screen, and enlarging it with greater resolution to ensure before taking a shot your focus is spot on. There is also a focus peaking filter which will highlight focused profiles on the image for additional clarity. When you are ready, press the shutter release button on the iPad to take your shots! Then, use the app to take images straight from your camera and instantly download them to view, edit or share via social media or email.
 
This is just the tip of the iceberg for the Digital Director. Manfrotto is dedicated to continuously improving the app and adding more and more features! Coming soon, accessories will be made available including items such as cases and sun hoods, as well as a version for the iPad mini.
 
B&H has the Manfrotto Digital Director available for preorder.
Category: Manfrotto News
Post Date: 4/15/2015 6:02:11 AM CT   Posted By: Sean
 Tuesday, April 14, 2015
As winter quickly transitions into spring, flowers bloom, trees become leafy again and the pitfalls of the frigid cold fade into (maybe not so distant) memory.
 
If you are anything like me, your home and surroundings may not be very inspiring to you anymore. I think it is human nature to lose appreciation for the things you see every day. And when that happens, inspiration close to home can be difficult to come by.
 
Thank goodness spring brings us so many opportunities to see the world around us – including those areas in close proximity to our own doorstep – in a new light with a macro lens attached to your camera. Such was the case with the image above.
 
Dandelions are probably as loved by photographers as they are despised by lawn care professionals, as beautiful as they are hard to get rid of. Once the quaint yellow flower sprouts its seeds, you can bet there will be another dozen or so dandelions appearing soon wherever the wind blows.
 
Dandelion Seeds April 2015 Spring Macro

No matter which side of the fence you are on – whether you love dandelions or regard them with disdain – it's hard to argue with their appropriateness for macro photography.
 
The image at the top of this post was one of the easiest images I've created in quite some time. It was captured with relatively minimal gear, took about 10 minutes to complete (including setup and several different framings), and the flower was located within about eight steps from my front door.
 
Gear used:
 
To capture the shot, I first inverted the tripod's center column so that the camera would hang beneath the tripod. This enabled me to more easily get the top-down perspective that I wanted. I used the 7D II's Live View to frame and focus on the newly forming stigmas of the flower at or near minimum focus distance.
 
EXIF: f/11, 1/100 sec, ISO 800
 
The overcast day provided a nice, even light on the flower. However, the subdued light combined with the narrow aperture I needed to obtain the depth of field I wanted meant that I had to push the ISO to 800 and use a relatively long shutter speed (relatively long considering the small bursts of wind occurring at the time). I could have pushed the ISO higher and used a shorter shutter speed, but instead I simply timed my shots to coincide with the small periods of calm in between small wind gusts. The shot headlining this post was my favorite out of the twenty or so shots I captured that day.
 
The image in the middle of this post and the one below were captured using a handheld Canon 5D III, 100mm f/2.8 Macro, and a 580EX Speedlite with a Roundflash Ringflash Adapter.
 
Dandelion Full of Seeds April 2015 Spring Macro

In summary, great macro subjects are everywhere, and that's especially true as spring sets in. Grab your macro lens and capture inspiring images without having to travel farther than your own mailbox.
Post Date: 4/14/2015 11:20:27 AM CT   Posted By: Sean
BorrowLenses.com Logo
Through April 30, use promo code BLTAXDAY15 at BorrowLenses.com to recieve a 15% discount on any gear rental.
Post Date: 4/14/2015 11:19:15 AM CT   Posted By: Sean
Sigma 24mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art Lens
Just posted: Sigma 24mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art Lens Review.
 
This lens turns in best-available 24mm optical performance in a very attractive package at an eye-catching price.
 
B&H has the Sigma 24mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art Lens available for preorder with "Coming Soon" being the expectation.
Post Date: 4/14/2015 8:42:38 AM CT   Posted By: Bryan
Tokina Protector Filter with Hydrophilic Coating
From Kenko Tokina USA:
 
APRIL 13, 2015 – Kenko Tokina USA, Inc. is pleased to announce the specialized Tokina Cinema Hydrophilic filters for broadcast and cinema use. Tokina Cinema Hydrophilic filters have a coating layer that does not allow water to bead up like traditional filter coatings. If water cannot bead it simply flows evenly off the filter surface making for clear viewing and recording even in a steady rain.
 
Water-drops on glass are formed by surface tension and adhesion. Once the weight of the water is sufficient to overcome the strength of these two forces the water beings to flow. This can be seen every time water drops first “stick to” and then cascade down a window when it rains.
 
The Tokina Cinema Hydrophilic coating does not allow surface adhesion so water drops cannot form. The coating Tokina Cinema Hydrophilic filters permanent and does not ever need to be reapplied, unlike over-the counter products that make a similar claim. The filter coating is “recharged” by UV light making it ideal for stationary weather cameras or other cameras that are being exposed to sunlight for several hours a day.*
 
Tokina Cinema Hydrophilic filters come in standard broadcast sizes from 77MM to 127MM as well as square and rectangular.
 
Specifications: Glass: Optical Clear Protector Glass
Coating: Multi-layer Proprietary Coating
Size Availability: 77MM, 82MM, 86MM, 95MM, 105MM, 112MM, 127MM, 4x4, 4x5.65
Retail Price: Starting at $405.00
Availability: April, 2015
Category: Tokina News
Post Date: 4/14/2015 7:15:06 AM CT   Posted By: Sean
Tokina Cinema Pro IRND 3-Stop Neutral Density Filter
From Kenko Tokina USA:
 
APRIL 13, 2015 – Kenko Tokina USA, Inc. is pleased to announce the Tokina Cinema IRND neutral density filters for cinematography.
 
The Tokina Cinema IRND filters use ACCU-ND technology to yield a truly neutral color balance that will not add any noticeable color cast to your footage. This series was created specifically for the cinema and HDSLR video markets.
 
The Metallic ACCU-ND coating on the IRND filters do not color shift as you move from one density to the next, a common problem with almost all other series of neutral density filters. Now you can set your white balance once and have the same color balance even if you need to change filters due to changes in lighting, or have multiple cameras with different strengths of filters on them.
 
The ACCU-ND metallic coating also has the added essential benefit of accurately controlling and suppressing infrared (IR) light so color fidelity is maintained. This is important as IR can add its own color cast when recording outside and manly other IR filters on the market add their own color cast that can be difficult to correct in post production.
 
The IRND filters use an exclusive clear optical glass that has a metallic ACCU-ND coating bonded to the surface of the glass to create the neutral density affect.
 
The Tokina IRND series has round filters in common sizes from 82MM to 127MM and strengths from one stop (0.3) to four stops (1.2). The series also has two square mat-box sizes that are available from one stop to 7 stops of light reduction.
 
Prices start at $210.00 for the 82MM size.
Category: Tokina News
Post Date: 4/14/2015 7:07:46 AM CT   Posted By: Sean
Beachtek DXA-SLR ULTRA - 2-Channel Active XLR Adapter
For a limited time, B&H has the Beachtek DXA-SLR ULTRA - 2-Channel Active XLR Adapter available for $249.00 with free expedited shipping. Regularly $469.00.
Post Date: 4/14/2015 6:18:50 AM CT   Posted By: Sean
Tamron Logo
2nd Annual Tour for Photo Education Will Turn Camera Store Parking Lots Into A Full Day Photo Experience
 
April 13, 2015, Commack, New York - Tamron USA announced today that the national 2015 Tamron Tailgate Tour will commence April 13th in New York City. The fully equipped Tamron van is back by popular demand with all new free mini-seminars, hands-on experiences with the latest Tamron technology, portfolio review opportunities, excited new evening seminar program, and tons of swag. The tour will visit camera stores throughout the country, bringing the total Tamron experience to you. The Tailgate Tour strives to take the average seminar and turn it into a photographic celebration full of giveaways, prizes, lens specials, and valuable insight from the Tamron tech team of photographers. This casual and fun approach to photography education is designed to offer easy and free access to great information to anyone interested in photography. The schedule is continually updated and can be accesses at www.tamron-usa.com/tailgate.
 
The Tamron Tailgate Tour will work with local photo retailers to deliver this unique learning experience. The Tamron van will pull into the parking lot and set up for a full day of education from 12pm to 4pm to help people with their photography questions. And each day will feature team members offering free mini-sessions under the Tamron Tailgate Learning Tent - "Achieving Perfect Exposure"12:00 - 12:45pm, "Portfolio and Image Review" 1:00 - 2:30pm and "Understanding Your Digital Darkroom" 3:00 - 3:45pm.
 
For those looking for even more tips to creating better photographs, Tamron will offer a two-hour evening seminar entitled "The Field Guide to Inspired Photography: See It, Capture It, Work It" taught by experienced Tamron tech team photographers. The cost of the seminars will be $25 dollars and will include a welcome bag with a reporter notebook and lens cleaning cloth.
 
Visitors will also see the latest in Tamron products, and will be eligible to enter the Tailgate Tour raffle contest, where three lucky winners can win any Tamron lens of his/her choice. One winner will be chosen at the end of each tour leg. Full contest details can be found at the Tamron Tailgate website on April 13th for the kick off of the tour. A Tailgate lunch will be served at most locations from 12pm to 2pm.
 
For more information and to find out when the Tamron Tailgate Tour will be in your area, visit www.tamron-usa.com/tailgate
 
B&H carries Tamron lenses.
Category: Tamron News
Post Date: 4/14/2015 6:13:16 AM CT   Posted By: Sean
 Monday, April 13, 2015
Hoya 82mm Variable Neutral Density Filter
B&H has the Hoya 82mm Variable Density Filter available for $89.95 with free expedited shipping. Regularly $124.95.
 
Product Highlights
 
  • Variable 0.45-2.7 Neutral Density Filter
  • Reduce Exposure by 1.5-9 Stops
  • Darkens Entire Image
  • Greater Control Over Exposure Settings
Post Date: 4/13/2015 12:06:49 PM CT   Posted By: Sean
by Sean Setters
 
At about 3:30am this past Friday, I awoke from a sound sleep but had no idea why. Through the tiny slit in my eyelids I thought I detected a flash of light from the window behind my head. It didn't seem very bright and I thought to myself, "Was that lightning or am I dreaming?"
 
After waiting a few seconds to hear the tell-tale sounds of thunder, I laid my head back down. A few seconds later, though, I finally heard the faint sounds of distant thunder.
 
Wanting to try out my Vello FreeWave Stryker Lightning & Motion Trigger, I groggily rose from the bed, put on clothes and packed my camera gear. In 15 minutes I was standing on the town square after a very short drive.
 
I originally purchased the Vello FreeWave Stryker Lightning & Motion Trigger just before Christmas of last year. As winter is not known for producing thunder storms, I had only been able to use the device once a couple of weeks ago since acquring it. While testing the device for the first time, I thought about how cool it would be to capture lightning over one of my town's most famous landmarks, the historic county courthouse.
 
To get the shot, I positioned myself under the awning of a building across the street. I used my 5D Mark III and a Canon TS-E 24mm f/3.5L (precursor to the TS-E 24mm f/3.5L II) so that I could keep the perspective of the building clean while also capturing a good portion of the sky (shifting the lens upward).
 
I adjusted the Vello trigger's sensitivity to the point at which it was triggered by the ambient street lights and then backed off the sensitivity just slightly. It took me a few test shots to nail down my exposure settings (adjusting aperture and ISO to properly expose for the lightning and shutter speed to properly expose for the buildings), but I finally worked it out.
 
After about 30-40 minutes there was a break in the rain where lightning was striking within the camera's field of view. I captured lightning bolts in three different images, and this one captured at 4:07am was the best of the bunch. The camera also triggered when lightning flashed outside the camera's field of view, but those images simply showed a brightened sky.
 
After about an hour and a half of shooting (well after getting this shot), I went home and immediately edited the image and posted it to Facebook where it blew up in popularity, easily besting any other image I've ever posted to social media. It was shared by the official Facebook page of our county (where it has garnered over 1,400 likes and almost 200 shares this weekend) as well as being shared on the Facebook pages of our town mayor and a local radio DJ.
 
Unfortunately, I was quite tired when originally editing and posting the image and didn't notice how warm I left the image's color balance. I cooled down the color balance (but still left it slightly warm) in the image uploaded to Flickr (shown above).
 
Could I have captured this image without the lightning trigger? Of course. To do so, I would have needed to continuously fire the camera in interval mode (either using an intervelometer or simply pushing the shutter button every time an exposure ended), but using the dedicated lightning trigger made the process much easier. The lightning trigger was also handy when trying to find the right exposure variables (as the camera wasn't continuously firing, camera settings could be adjusted as normal). Also, using the trigger meant that I didn't have to wade through hundreds of images to find the ones where lightning actually struck.
 
Misc. Takeaways
 
  • When posting images to social media, timing is important. As I posted the image soon after getting home, the morning lighting storm was still fresh in everyone's mind (many people woke up to the storm), so the image was even more relevant.
  • Even though I was shooting beneath an awning, a lens hood (which I forgot to bring) would have helped protect the lens's front element from raindrops blown by the wind. The image above shows evidence of rain being on the front element.
  • An image that has nothing to do with your bread-and-butter, money-making photography (for me – portraiture, architecture and advertising) can actually help you get business. A former headshot client of mine contacted me later that day to congratulate me on the image and then requested a quote for portrait-based advertising images for his company. The proceeds from that job alone would easily cover half the investment in an EOS 5Ds. Aside from that, I've also had requests for print purchases of the image.
You can see a larger version of the image on Flickr.
 
EXIF Info:
Canon EOS 5D Mark III
Canon TS-E 24mm f/3.5L Tilt-Shift
24mm, f/8, 10 sec, ISO 100
Post Date: 4/13/2015 9:51:39 AM CT   Posted By: Sean
Canon 200-400 L IS Captures Black Bear Cub and an Iris
With the amazing Canon EF 200-400mm f/4L IS USM Lens getting a nearly-equally amazing $800.00 price reduction, I felt compelled to share an image captured with this lens.
 
In the spring, black bears come out of hibernation and the cubs enter their new world, full of first-time experiences waiting to happen. This little cub may have never seen an iris before and though it was still nursing from its mom, must have thought the iris looked like candy. After pulling some unopened flower buds from their stems and carrying them around like toys, this little cub approached the big open flower. It proceeded with great effort to pull the flower off of the stem. Too cute.
 
With a cub this young, you can count on the mother being close by. The zoom focal length range of this lens allowed me to frame the cub reasonably tightly at 560mm with the built-in 1.4x extender switched into the optical path (with some cropping) and then quickly zoom out to 270mm sans extender to vertically capture the momma bear standing upright with a cub between her legs. No single prime lens would have worked in this situation (unless the widest-needed focal length was selected with most images needing significant cropping).
 
Leave your own caption for this image in the comments!
 
Check out the huge list of significant Canon L lens price reductions in addition to the 200-400 L II's $800.00 price drop.
 
A larger version of this image is available on Flickr and Google+. Also, if reading from a news feed reader, click through to see the framed image.
 
Camera and Lens Settings
560mm  f/5.6  1/250s
ISO 1000
3914 x 2609px
Post Date: 4/13/2015 10:30:20 AM CT   Posted By: Bryan
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