Sunday, April 24, 2011
I have a friend who has the nikon 35mm F1.8 (DX) lens and we were curious to know how it performs on a full frame(FX) camera, and whether the vignetting will be severe in FX mode. After testing it for awhile, yes, vignetting is indeed quite severe, though if shot at F2.8 and with the camera's in-built vignetting control set to "High", it can be quite acceptable, especially for close focus subjects. If you know the limitations of this lens on FX camera, I believe it can really take great pictures, especially it being a very sharp len. Its sharper I feel, than the 35mm F2(FX) lens due also to the very precise AFS focussing, and also has better corner sharpness. Using it at F1.8 or more than F8, however, creates the dreaded severe vignetting, so if you have full frame, using a FX lens is still more versatile. Here are some image samples from some casual snapshots with that lens, all shot at F2.8 and with Vignetting Control set to High. Pardon the uninspiring pictures, they were taken on a dreary and cloudy day, and were unedited straight out of the camera except for resizing.
Sunday, April 10, 2011
After serving me for a couple of years and producing some of my favourite pictures, I have decided to sell my Nikon 50mm F1.4 AFD to get the newer 50mm F1.4 AFS last week! Initial impressions of the AFS as compared to the AFD were slightly slower focussing(not really a problem for me) but higher accuracy(important especially wide open where DOF is paper thin!) and hence higher hit rates per shot! Optically wise they are very similar, from the initially impression I got, just maybe a little bit sharper and with less chromatic abberations... All in all, its a worthy upgrade if you use the 50mm range a lot like I do. Stay tuned in the future for some image samples. Cheers!
Sunday, March 27, 2011
Monday, February 28, 2011
Tuesday, February 1, 2011
Due to the dreadful rainy weather the past few weeks, I did not go to Chinatown for my usual street shoot around this time of the year, which is very close to the Chinese Lunar New Year! The recent barren spell was due to low morale induced by the heavy and continuous rains pelting down on almost the entire island, day in day out. No wonder minor floods were created and so many people are reporting sick at work! I'll update this blog with new pictures as soon as I get my creative juices flowing again. Anyway, I do wish that the Year of the Rabbit will give us reason to cheer this time. Gong Xi Fa Cai! Have a Happy and Prosperous Chinese Lunar New Year!
Sunday, January 2, 2011
While browsing through some of my recent pictures that I have taken, I decided to post another window light shoot, this time the subject would be front lit. The source of light is behind my shoulder and illuminating the subject directly. There was a spot light shining on the wall behind the subject, giving a somewhat "vignetting" effect that was not really planned but which I included when I spotted it in my viewfinder. Of course I did add a little additional vignetting effect on photoshop! Once again, this shot was taken with, what else, my workhorse Nikon 50mm F1.4 AFD lens. Cheers!
Sunday, December 19, 2010
The 50mm lens is what people usually consider a normal prime lens because it has a normal perspective similar to the human eye. Do not try to shoot too close to your subjects as the barrel distortion would be more obvious, unless that is the intention. I shot this picture with a very barebones setting, just window light, white bedsheet as reflector and my trusty old Nikon 50mm F1.4 AFD. Just add exposure compensation to blow out the highlights and you get a somewhat high key effect! Cheers!
Sunday, December 12, 2010
A lot of times I hear people saying that you can simply get the effect of the different focal lengths simply by going closer or further to the subject. Not only do you get different perspective of the subject, but for outdoors, the background perspective changes with different focal lengths. Attached here is just a casual sample of the difference between a Nikon 50mm F1.4 shot at F2.5 and a Nikon 180mm F2.8 shot at max aperture(f2.8). Even though the subject fills about the same area in the frame, notice not only the difference in subject perspective but also the background, where in the 180mm, the background appears more isolated, closer and also with less Depth of Field. That is the usual consideration I have when I think of focal lengths. Cheers!
Wednesday, December 1, 2010
Yet again, some random shots with the Olympus E-450 and Jupiter 37A 135mm F3.5 lens for your viewing pleasure... I was looking to take some flora pictures but took some fauna there that I saw for a change. If I am not wrong, they are the Common Gliding Lizard and the Malayan Whip Snake. These pictures were cropped as the creatures were quite tiny and I could not get close enough for a better shot. My manual focus skills is not very quick nor accurate but I make do with these pictures anyway. Cheers!
Wednesday, November 17, 2010
Its been quite a long while since I last went on a holiday and since its close to the end of the year, I think I deserve a little break from work! Thanks to a friend who invited me to join his company's organised trip, we went for a little short trip to visit Malacca in Malaysia over last weekend. The journey was about 5hrs plus by coach, with a little stop over in between at Yong Ping in Johor Bahru. Everyone needs a little holiday away from home to destress and recharge from our usual work routine. We visited A'Famosa and Jonker Street during that short 2 days 1 night stay in Malacca. It was fun and very economical due to the currency exchange rates from (Singapore Dollars)SGD to (Malaysia Ringgit)RM. We tried some of their local delights, and their Durian Chendol is a must try! I brought along my Olympus E-450 as I just wanted some holiday shots and did not want to lug my heavy Nikon D700 which can be quite a drag due to its weight and bulk overseas, not to mention the fear of losing it, haha! I will post some of the usual holiday pictures, so if you are interested, good, but if you find holiday pictures a bore, don't say I did not warn you! Till the next post, have a great week!
Sunday, October 3, 2010
I like plants as they give me a sense of peace and serenity. I often go to a plant nursery(Thong Hup Gardens) around my area to destress from the hustle and bustle of work and for some gardening therapy. I went there after a casual meeting to have lunch with some colleagues and hence for not so critical photography, I would bring my Olympus E-450 out for snap shots. But what I realise and those who may not realise, it is the camera that you bring along for unplanned shots that often bring out some unforgetable pictures, just because you had the camera with you, rather than at home because you thought the camera is too heavy and bulky as is often the case with my Nikon D700 and its gears. I so happen to have brought along my Jupiter 37A lens since it itself is quite a light and compact lens to carry and took some casual close ups of the flowers at the plant nursery yesterday during the dying rays of the evening sun...
Saturday, September 18, 2010
Do you still remember the time when you bought your first camera? I remember when I was still a student and I saved up to purchase a Russian mechanical camera that was a Zenit in the M42 mount. It provided affordable bokeh that I loved and could not achieve with the compact cameras that were more widely used then. I decided to use the M42 lens that I still keep on the Olympus E-450 because unfortunately Nikon cameras cannot accept M42 mount unless I use an adapter with a correction lens to allow the camera to focus to infinity. The lens I used today for this casual walk about is the Jupiter 37A, a russian 135mm F3.5 lens that brings back fond memories of my early years in photography. I remember the time of film where I had to wind the shuttle release after every shot, metering the exposure manually and setting focus, aperture and shuttle speed myself. Then there is the anticipation of waiting to see the prints after the film is being developed. Things that most people cannot wait to do these day when everyone tends to look for instant gratification. But I feel one certainly feels more involved in the picture taking process when you do all the things yourself, more pride of ownership, I guess. Holding that compact piece of solid metal lens barrel in my hands, and manually focussing seems to transfer me back to memory lane. I took a stroll along Clark Quay during the Mid Autumn Festival, taking some pictures of the colourful lanterns along the way. Holding a 135mm lens which becomes a 270mm on the Olympus 4/3 system, and taking night shot picture handheld in a very crowded environment, what was I thinking?! I must have been crazy, haha! Here are some random pictures anyway! First impressions are great, nice colours and sharpness wide open, with nice circular bokeh.
Tuesday, September 14, 2010
Recently I had a stye on my eyelid and its preventing me from trying to take pictures. Oh well... In the meantime, just to share one of my random picture from some time ago. A backlit shot with the Nikon 50mm prime again. This was actually a candid! Cheers!
Thursday, September 9, 2010
Olympus? I know, most of you would be surprised to find me using an Olympus 4/3 system DSLR. But let me explain. I was looking for a compact camera for casual and holiday use when I came across an offer for a very compact DSLR, the Olympus E-450, going for the amazing price of SGD$480! That is roughly only about the price of a higher priced compact cameras! It was a no brainer and I got that camera to use for snap shot duties. But it turns out the 14-42mm F3.5-5.6 kit lens is no slouch! It is one marvellous kit lens that I am quite impressed with. The whole package gave me a very compact package with most of the dslr flexibility and performance. The only downside currenly I feel is that of the 4/3 system, due to the smaller sensor, has noisier pictures in settings higher than iso400. Its depth of field for the 4/3 format is also deeper than most APS and full-frame sensors of course, which can be a plus or minus depending on the type of picture you want. Its shallower than compact or prosumer cameras but not as shallow as APS or Full frame sensors. Another thing I gained through this system is my ability to reuse my Old M42 lens collection! I know Nikon systems can also use an adapter too but the problem lies with focussing at infinity. Nikon lens adapter require an additional lens correction element to allow M42 mounted lens to focus to inifinity, which somehow I feel would degrade the image quality. Did I also mention its weight? It is almost non-existant! What a joy it is to bring it along the whole day without suffering shoulder and backaches like when I carry my D700 gears! For sure the D700 is a vastly superior camera, but for its price and purpose, the Olympus has nothing to be embarrased and will definitely have a place in my camera bag, haha! Here are some of my first casual snapshots with the Olympus E-450. All the pictures were taken with the Kit lens except for the last 2 pictures which were taken with the Meyer Optik Gorlitz 50mm F2.8 M42 lens with M42 to Olympus 4/3 system adapter. Its good to revive back some of my cheaply gotten M42 lens, especially the Old European lenses which somehow have this creamy pastel and paintily effect that is often missing in modern optics.
Thursday, June 3, 2010
I remember a friend of mine asking me why would anyone have the need for such high shutter speed in my camera, other than to freeze high speed subject, which I rarely do. Using me trusty Nikon 85mm F1.8 AFD lens this morning for a spin once again, this is another chance to show him why! If I want to shoot outdoors in very bright light conditions, and yet achieve a shallow Depth of Field by using a bigger aperture without the use of clumbersome Neutral Density filters, high speed shutter speed is my only option!
Anyway, another friend and I decided to scout for any new interesting locations for photoshoots. We arrived at the this new location a little later then we would like to and the weather was starting to be quite unbearably hot! This area, called the Helix Bridge, should look quite spectacular in the evening light. Here is just a sneak preview, more to come in the future...