Last weekend, this weekend.

I made a mistake today. I did not put a camera in the car when we were going for a walk, The phone then decided to freeze, so this is all I got.

However, last Sunday and Saturday I did carry a camera. It helps: particularly when chasing light. In this case, all were taken with a D800

First set taken with Motorola X phone: second set with D800, processed in Darktable

Snowball in the dark.

People say the Xpro one is not good at autofocus and low light. But… one of my contacts is chipped, leaving me unable to focus manually. Our black cat decided to visit a room where my son and I were.

This is done using autofocus, at F 1.4, 35 mm lens. It is cropped. And it was autofocus. The eye is in focus… not much else.

But this is snowball the cat at ISO 6400 with a now old camera.


So folks, don’t be scared to buy the old models or keep on using them. Processed in darktable to 16 bit png.

Why I have stayed with the Nikon one series, and a walk up a steep hill.

After the V1 died I had some options. One was to do nothing… but there were some errors. Cameras belong in their own waterproof sacks, particularly when you are carrying them around every day. I hope that I have not ruined the lens on it. So, after checking the prices around I ended up ordering a V3 from Lahood Cameras. The NZ price is for the US style kit with all the bits I want (the Viewfinder) and bits I will probably try and then leave off (the grip). It means I do not need to replace the collection of primes I have. And it means I can use my nikkor lenses on this camera to reach further, particularly since (thanks Thom Hogan for this hint) Really Right Stuff make a camera plate that will work with an Swiss Acra style head.

Because if you are going after birds, and that is the killer app of this camera, you need a tripod. You will be functionally using 100 to 400 mm of zoom (I have a 200 mm zoom: that is 540 mm at f 3.6 on this machine, and I have 300 mm (810 mm effective) on my other big zoom).

But that is on order. After playing viola all last weekend I have got out in the freezing cold yesterday with the Leica M6 for 1 1/2 film, and have just been up a steep, hard hill to a lake with the son.

I carried the d 800, with a 85 mm F 2 Nikkor and a 20 mm Voightlander Skopar. In a carry sack: the son carried the tripod. Here are some shots from today.

Nikon d800. Minimal processing from Raw in Darktable.

Ektar and a Mamiya.

THis is basically the second film that went through the Mamiya 7. I was shooting Ektar, which has a bit more tolerence for brutality, and using the wide angle lens, but without, obviously, any filters. On a very gray day, on signal hill.

All photos scanned and processed by Reatha Kenny at Film Soup, and then reduced in size and turned into pngs in Rawtherapee.

Garden experiments

I was using the 50 mm macro lens on the Ricoh GXR. Technically, this is a 16 MP sensor, about APS-C size, attached to a high quality lens. It is fairly inflexible, and probably needs a tripod — which is a reason that I will be moving to an Arca swiss system and getting plates for everything.

But the landscape view was directly behind the flower. Ricoh GXR, 50 mm macro, processed in Darktable: 16 bit png files.

The digital erzatz medium format or clouds over Dunedin.

These were taken last week using a D800 and a combination of a Voightlander wide angle lens and Nikkor f1.8 50 mm lens. The sensor on this is, of course, FX but it functions with almost as much sharpness as you will get from a scanned medium format picture — in the same way that an ASP-C or four thirds sensor mimicks 35 mm film.

New Lenses I: Voightlander 20 SLII

This is a manual focus lens with electronics for the Nikon. I got it from Steve Gandy. It arrived in NZ within a week of ordering: no hassles, with box and all the bits. Yesterday the weather was good and Mike and I went driving. These two photos are basically uncorrected, just transferred to jpeg from RAW by Darktable



Workflow, workflow.

I am changing my workflow by starting to use shotwell. Shotwell understands. NEF and can import large numbers of photos from cards.

Screenshot from 2013-02-17 13:31:37  It also means that things are now filed by date. Which helps, because I can generally remember when I was in a place… and then get the file.   I still use darktable for the next step.

Shotwell will also reformat my SD card. I use a compact flash card in the D800 as backup.

Film is different. I get the photos scanned at the lab, and keep the CD.

Screenshot - 170213 - 14:01:59  Darktable is definately needed at times — to get the shots here I underexposed by +2 and this needs to be fixed in post production.

From the correction (which is saved in Darktable) then I export to picasa (Google Plus) and files to be printed or for the blog



I had a telephone call from the good service people at Lacklands. They have the only Leica technician in NZ, and they are trying to fix my M6 which I got from Tamarkin. It turns out that the rewinder was not only broken, but had been repaired and someone (not Tamarkin. who are very ethical and good guys) had tried to repair it and used Locktite to seal things together. Apparently the air turner purple as the tech swore in English, German and Leica.

So we are waiting for a new rewinder. Which is a compliment to Leica: the last M6 cameras were made in 1998 and there are parts available. In Germany.

Which is why a second and cheap body is so useful. My Bessa R with a Jupiter 8 has TriX in in and lives in my work bag. That thing is unpadded: do you think I will let my expensive glass live in it? The Jupiter is a nice Zeiss copy from the Russians, and the bessa is a nice light camera — and if they break, they break.

As a result, I am completely digital at present. Enough of this. The Digital camera likes old lenses, and all the photos in the gallery were taken with a second hand 70-200mm f2.8 Nikkor lens.

I may have a modern DSLR, but there is absolutely nothing wrong with second hand lenses from good manufacturers.

All photos taken around Dunedin Harbour and Dunedin Peninsula. Processed in Darktable.

D800 in.

I have just been out taking the first shots on the D800. The EXIF file does not recognise the lens as this was taken using a 21 mm Nikkor E lens.

Not a bad shot. And the underling photo is cut down to a 16-bit png @ 2000×1500, thus is 12 MB.

But when you zoom in, you get this much detail from the same shot in Darktable.

Please note that this is using a very simple wide angle lens. Hand held. A manual focus lens. No real tweaks apart from saving as raw. The detail is in the sensor.