3738 – Still Inside the Machine

 Olympus M.Zuiko Digital ED 60mm f/2.8 Macro  Comments Off on 3738 – Still Inside the Machine
Jan 132017

For a long time I was a Photoshop user, now I’m a Lightroom user. I once wrote a few Photoshop tutorials, but I can’t even remember Photoshop’s keyboard shortcuts now.

I’m a Lightroom user, but I keep Photoshop around. It’s part of the Creative Cloud photography bundle anyway and I use it for the few things that I can’t do in Lightroom, like “Edit / Transform / Skew”. That happens less than once a month.

The other software that I keep (and actually have acquired not so long ago) is DxO. I use it for pictures like this. I’ve taken it on the train, I like it in a way, and although the camera’s stabilization would have allowed me to get away with ISO 800 and 1/20s (maybe lower with a few tries), I forgot to change to manual mode. The result was ISO 1600 and 1/40s. ISO 1600 is by no means bad on the E-P5, but when I can make it look like ISO 400 using DxO, I’ll happily do it. Basically I’m only abusing DxO as a noise reduction plugin for Lightroom, but it’s so excellent at that, I’d buy it again any time. Now that I think of it, I might have to, once I switch to the E-M1 MkII 🙂

3736 – The Big Eye

 Walimex 7.5mm f/3.5 Fisheye  Comments Off on 3736 – The Big Eye
Jan 112017

Alternatively I could also call this post “The Fisheye” 🙂

It’s interesting: I don’t use that lens very often, but I use it regularly. Sure, this image was taken more than five months ago, but I’ve used my new fisheye every once in a while in between.

I had one on the Nikon D300, and there it was more of a novelty. I used it for some time and then almost never again. It seems, that in the meantime I have found my way of working with this lens.

3582 – Tension here!

 Olympus M.Zuiko Digital ED 75 mm f/1.8  Comments Off on 3582 – Tension here!
Aug 092016

The E-P5 in silver is a remarkably beautiful camera and the 75/1.8 in silver is a remarkably beautiful lens. Perfect match 🙂

The lens is already a little bit on the heahy side for a PEN. It’s still quite balanced, but anything longer and heavier would feel awkward.

What’s not to like, I asked yesterday. There’s only one Fn-button. Thus I have one programmable button less than on the OM-D E-M1. It does not have the on/off switch on the left side, like on the E-M1 and the PEN-F. At first I found it a bad idea (and it likely is), but once you’re used to it, consistency is more important than ultimate usability.

Finally the firmware didn’t get one convenient update that the E-M1 got: the stickiness of menu position. On the E-M1 the camera remembers where I was when I last changed something in the deep menu. On the E-P5 it doesn’t. I can live with both ways perfectly, but it’s still irritating when I switch cameras. And of course it’s unnecessary as well. Hmm … I probably should switch it off on the E-M1, but it was a feature I’ve always wished for, a feature that made me happy when I got it.

OK, that’s it. During the last three months I’ve almost exclusively used the E-P5 in Vienna, almost always with primes, and the E-M1 in Carinthia and in Provence, almost always with the PRO zooms.

May 262015

This is a special kind of train used for repairing train tracks. It moves along very slowly and it seems to do something to the gravel between the rails. I have not asked, I just made a few images and tried to protect my contact lens-wearing eyes from the dust 🙂

The Song of the Day is “Work Upon The Railway” by The Weavers. Hear it on YouTube.

Dec 092014

You may have been following my struggle with Flickr for some while, how I felt elated when an image got explored and how I never understood why particular images made it and others didn’t. Take for instance “2970 – Street Lights II“. I love that image, I’m ecstatic about it (well, almost :D), I think it’s one of my best in a long while, but on Flickr it earned not even a shrug.

In a way that unpredictability took the fun out of Flickr. Images that I had hopes for just didn’t take off, and although I see a general rise in views, it feels … random. It’s nice when it’s happening, but whenever I feel like I’m working for it, the effect is negligible.

Well, you know how it is, there’s always the impression that the grass us greener across the fence, and therefore I created accounts at 500px.com and ipernity.com.

I started trying 500px and I liked it. There’s a lot of good material over there, people are welcoming and for a few days I put my image on both Flickr and 500px. And then it happened.

I did not care. I did not care about Flickr any more and I certainly had not started caring about 500px. That’s when I deleted the 500px account. I’m back to Flickr only and if there was one net effect of the whole episode, then it is that I care less about it and will spend less time creating other people’s content.

I started using Flickr, because when I switched from IMatch to Lightroom, putting images on Flickr became painless and without any effort I had another backup for my full-size images. I think this is a healthy state and I’d better keep it at that 🙂

The Song of the Day is “Night Train” by Lionel Richie. Hear it on YouTube.

2884 – Rain, Rain, Beautiful Rain

 Olympus M.Zuiko Digital 45 mm f/1.8  Comments Off on 2884 – Rain, Rain, Beautiful Rain
Sep 102014

People around here generally agree that this was one lousy summer. I won’t complain though and the rain can’t keep me from making images. Here is one taken from the train 🙂

The Song of the Day is “Rain, Rain, Beautiful Rain” by Ladysmith Black Mambazo. If they somehow flew under your radar so far, you may at least remember them from Paul Simon’s masterful album “Graceland”. Hear it on YouTube.

Aug 232014

You may remember my decision to never again buy paper and plastic, i.e. printed books and music CDs. Even remember that I’ve decided to stop buying music downloads and do streaming via Spotify instead?

Well, it’s a success. Reading e-books has made me a much more active reader and hearing music on Spotify constantly lets me discover great music made by artists I’ve never before heard of. Wanna hear an example? “The Train” by 17 Hippies, a group that has been in business for a long time but never caught my attention. It is a great song and a good example for the quality of their other music. Hear it on YouTube.

2650 – Part Of The Machine

 Panasonic Lumix G 20/1.7 ASPH  Comments Off on 2650 – Part Of The Machine
Jan 182014

The weather here is sub-par and the question should not be what lens I buy next, but instead whether I need a camera at all 🙂

Here is an image taken more than a week ago and immediately rejected. In fact I only kept it at all because it was the only image of that day and I like to have at least one image per day, regardless of how bad it is.

In retrospect I think it is not so bad at all. Going to B&W did it for me.

The Song of the Day is “Part Of The Machine” from the 1987 Jethro Tull album “Crest Of A Knave”. Hear it on YouTube.