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Posts Tagged ‘Nikon’

Nikon D7000

Nikon D7000 (Photo credit: jaredpolin)

My typical camera bag is showing its age. It is a great backpack and I’ve taken many times on driving and flying trips. These days, however, there is the added need of taking a laptop. When going by car, this really isn’t much of a problem. I put my MacBook in another bag with books, power cords and other materials. Taking two bags on a plane though, that’s a problem.

I started looking at larger backpacks that could hold the 17″ laptop. Holy cow they are expensive. I settled on one from Sam’s Club. The Case Logic DSLR Travel Pack. Though it is inexpensive, I am already seeing problems in the design. For starters, it doesn’t seem to have much room and there are no straps for the chest and waist. Hiking is going to become a problem. I don’t need to worry too much about the tripod as it isn’t making the trip (all aluminum and too heavy).

I have an idea, I’ll pack my existing bag in my suitcase. I stuffed it full of underwear, etc, placed it in the suitcase. It fits! Well, sorta. There is some room leftover, though not enough. It will have to stay home and I’ll need to get used to the new bag.

The biggest problem here is that I really do need two bags. I need one large enough for traveling. Stuff all my gear, lenses, cleaners, filters, laptop, etc. Rugged so I can take it on the plane. Once where we are going, I need a smaller one for hiking around, whether town or wilderness, in which I take only what is needed for that trip. I have tried a few other bags, results are crap.

Are there any bags out there that fit this bill? Perhaps a bag in a bag? Let me know.

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dog fetch

dog fetch (Photo credit: mallix)

What a day today was. Starting before dawn walking the dogs, my head felt like someone was driving a nail through my forehead. No, this was no leftover from drinking too much or staying up playing computer games, this was real and out of nowhere. Not long into dealing with the dogs, nausea showed up to say hello. Surely, this was a real reason to return to bed.

Gave in. Did. Hours later.

It was time to be up, after all the puppy dog chewed up a couple of my daughter’s toys. Hello day. Headache still around, let’s see what can be done with it anyway. On-line to check auctions (not real ones, those in World of Warcraft). Ok, run an instance. Ok, now what. Exercise!

Exercise tried and not feeling any better, what now? The typical Sunday morning routine. Check tweets and trim old ones. Generate new ads being sure to take advantage of Michael Force’s funnel. Done and saved. A few more tweets. Ideas for blog postings go in and out. Nuts. Clean up. Lunch. Dressed.

Video Editing

Wait, I shot videos yesterday. Find the D7000 and get the vids off of the cards. This camera also has a battery recall, time to check the Nikon website. My are not included. Load videos into iMovie. This will take some time, off to other chores.

Was able to spend an hour editing some videos. One is a demonstration of the D7000 panning and zooming, for the photography followers out there. The other is a new take on a concept with marketing. Marketing is more than just advertising, it is about establishing relationships. The woods behind my parent’s house had noises of the chirping birds, cars going by on I-74 and the occasional wind. It was a good metaphor to stop and listen. Listen to your customers, feel their pain, know their desires. Connect here and they will know your product. The video is a connection with listening.

Wrapping Up

What an amazing day. It was filled with illness, headache, tiredness, cleaning, shouting, tears, anger, heartache, forgiveness, love, tenderness and redemption. Like any day. Unlike everyday. And it totally rocked!

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Creating a walk-through slash how-to over using a Nikon D7000 to create HDR images is really lame using text only. So, with the help of my daughter, I’ve created a video. Being on vacation, I did have to use demo version of Photomatix inside of Aperture. The results are alright for the purpose it serves.

Once posted, I did see a video about creating an HDR image inside of the camera. I’m still testing settings on my D7000 as the demonstration video was for a D3. It seems interesting, but there can be absolutely no movement between shots; neither subject nor camera. The D7000 is also limited to 3 shots, so EV settings will need to be wide. More later.

Now to my video. Enjoy and comment. Let me know what you think and what other videos you would like to see.

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HDR what?

High dynamic range imaging. It’s all the rage these days. Typical digit photos capture more information than can be displayed on the limited color scope of 32bit screens. The exposure settings also further limit the range a photograph contains. It is not possible for the camera to capture high level of details in the shadows and the light simultaneously.

Enter High Dynamic Range Imaging.

The concept is quite simple. Take several photos of the same subject at different exposures, bracketing above and below the balanced shot, combine them in layers using a computer and then either balance them for tone or detail. The mapping, especially of tone, is a subjective matter, but the aimed result is to have an image that show details in the shadows and the highlights.

Searching the web for these images brings an interesting array of artistic visions. Some choose to so blowout colors that the pictures look really fake and old. A more subtle approach brings something closer to what the eye might see, only better.

But what about IBL?

Confusing the matter is computer 3D rendering and the concept of Image Based Lighting. This concept uses an image to simulate lighting for a scene. The image is typically an HDR image and the uninitiated tend to think of HDR or HDRI as the lighting concept. It isn’t. HDRI is just a tool used for IBL.

Ok, back to the photography stream.

Though there is no requirement on the number of photos to use to layer, the best results lend themselves from 5 images taken at ⅔ EV steps, the middle image being the effective 0 EV. This is not as subjective a statement as it may seem. In most photographic situations, having images at ±⅔ intervals gives the algorithms their best information for extrapolation. Intervals smaller can lead to too much being picked up in one area. Intervals larger leave too much of a gap.

Over the next several posts, I’ll cover how to create HDR images, making full use of the auto-bracketing features found on most DSLR cameras. I’ll also cover gotchas such as subject movement and depth of field changes. Buckle in and hand on, it will be a fun ride.

DSC_0034_7_1_2_3_tonemapped

Clifton Gorge, Yellow Springs, Ohio – 26 May 2008

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