Sunday, 30 January 2011

Debbie Does Do's Hairdressing event in edinburgh

Point and Destroy clothing Store

Create personalized gifts at Zazzle.

Monday, 24 January 2011

OMG Nikon D700 Replacement!

Am I the only person who is searching almost daily to find if there has been an announcement from Nikon about the Nikon full frame D700 Replacement?
Every day I click into, or dpreview, or popphoto or dphotographer, and get excited when i see there is a new post and then swear at the computer when it is some new announcement of a crappy point and shoot with a million times zoom!

More details after the break

Sunday, 23 January 2011

Photo Critique 1 (Mark Fukui)

Ok this week I got an email from a person who watches my videos on youtube, here is how the email went:

Hey Dom,
 I've been teaching myself photography for about a year now, and i 
 have to say watching your videos has improved my skills and creativity 
 immensely. The hardest thing for me to find right now is a good critic. 
 I show my photos to my friends and family, but they usually just say 
 its good. It doesn't help much. I was wondering if i could send you a 
few photos and have you critique them. I can imagine your a very busy 
 person so if you don't have the time that's fine; but do you know any 
 websites that have forums to critique photos? I cannot upload the 
 photos in this box, but if you if you respond i will send them as 
 attachments. Thanks for the videos again. 


So He wants me to be a critic!  And he doesn't want the nice kinda critic so I am going to have to go all Simon Cowell on his portfolio that he sent me!

Shot one, looks like a shot of a woman holding the sun in her hand.
issues with the image, the woman if it was to be a total silhouette is not in front of enough well lit background, she kinda fades into the dark at the bottom of the image.  putting a flash off camera left would have been a very nice touch, keep the camera at the current ambient light settings for that nice saturated sky but lets see the person holding the sun.

2 remove the random sun flare that is appearing in-between the model and her hand.
3,  rule of thirds… the sun and horizon are in the centre… would be fine but you have an object of attention (the model) 

Score 1/5

More after the break

Nikon CLS tutorials

I may only have one Nikon, 2 canons and 1 Fuji camera (which these videos are me working with the fuji) but the Nikon Creative lighting system (CLS) is what makes me go for my Nikon every time I have a shoot that will require flash. I like using flash a lot and thus You will always see me with a Nikon and NIkon flashes.

But what is so special about the Nikon flashes that you cant get with studio strobes or Monolights?

This video is a strobist technique for capturing water droplets falling or splashes. THe images here are to give you an idea of how you can do it and what the images can look like. Dropping different things into the water would make more interesting images. This technique used NIkon cls system to communicate with the flashes from the camera.

I had the camera on manual mode and the flashes just on ttl mode, i made sure the background was black (my folder) and made sure that the flashes were not reflecting off the background.

more after the break

Friday, 21 January 2011

Camera Noise 1

This is going to be part of a series of blog posts about noise

Here are 4 photos, roughly set to the same exposure for the outside light (out the window)
the dark shots are with no flash
the second shots are with flash
Each photo has the central part cropped into via picasa and exported. Resolution size 740x560(roughly)

This is a test of in camera noise and also the noise created by Active D-lighting,

Thursday, 20 January 2011

Video and photos of the Moon

Firstly this was not a totally clear night. The Moon had a strange haze around it like there was some moisture in the air. but still there is an impressive video and photos.

The nikon 105mm when put on the canon 550d dslr has a crop equivalent focal length of   168mm

Thats nice but as you can see when we are shooting at 1080p the moon only takes up a tiny part of the image.

but the canon 550d has a clever little movie crop function so that when you are fliming it records from just the central 640x480pixels,  which is a 7x digital zoom

put that together and you have
an effective focal length of   1176mm!   Which is huge!

On the camera I had my settings as soft as possible, generally that is a good tip to stop loss of detail and keep tones nice and correct when shooting the majority of stuff, if you want extra contrast and vibrance just add it in post. but when shooting the moon I think in future I will enhance in camera sharpness and contrast.

Scary acting with the Canon 550D

This was an unusual post. It is a video i did a month ago for an acting student in Edinburgh. she needed a simple video of her acting as 5-9 different people and all having the slight scary, creapy twist.

K is such a lovely girl but when she acts it is kinda scary. 

The video was shot with the Canon 550D at the video settings of 1080p, 25fps, 1/30th of a second, f4 iso 400 
Shot in her bathroom with only the onboard mic, 
Sound effects are from the room and are just her breathing and slowed down or reversed and slowed down, all done in imovie.
Shot with the Nikon 20mm f2.8 ais lens and lit by a mobile phone

Monday, 17 January 2011

Email questions answered (January)

Here are the topics that are covered

Ok here is a big one everyone. 13 emails

Here is how they are broken down
1)how to transfer photos to computer
2) video editing software for dslr
3+4) hello and thanks
5) D7000 for interiors for Bose
6) Dark backgrounds in photoshop
7) simple blog for golf photographer
8) olympus photographer help
9) nikon or canon
10) getting your name out there
11) apprentice
12) street pervert
13) tamron vibration control

Today I got some nice information to help others in the street photography

here is the email

From: David Edge []
Message: Hi
YouTube wouldn't let me post this, bah!
For an intro to street photography your correspondent could try the
course run by Nick Turpin at the School of Life in London if that's
handy. Even if not - when I went most participants were from Germany.
The next one is 26/27 Mar 2011

My photos from the 2010 weekend:

Here in Derby, the Format 2011 festival will showcase street

Sigma 105mm f2.8 Macro lens review and photos

This is the Sigma version of the 105mm f2.8 macro lens which is very very similar to the Nikon (old version) 105mm f2.8 macro

Saturday, 15 January 2011

Dom Bower and Jared Polin catch up

Catching up with Jared over in America and discussing the projections for photography over the next year, the royal family, jewish holidays, tax, christmas pressents, and a load of other crap,

tell me what you think of the video and if you want more.

Friday, 14 January 2011

Nikon 105mm f/2.8 Micro lens review

This is now an old lens but a macro lens is always going to be a winner in the terms of sharpness of an images.

Here I give you a review of what is one of the best lenses you can get and for the price you can get it at on the second hand market, probably the best lens you can possibly buy.

More details after the break

Low Light Photography Tips

I get a lot of questions some impossible to answer, most of the impossible ones are about Low light photography.  i.e. shooting at night time or at dusk.

One of the impossible questions I have been asked is:
How do get sharp photos in low light?
I want to keep my ISO really low, and I cannot use flash and i am using a kit lens 18-55.....
(A) Not going to happen! unless you want to get shots which are silhouettes of people running with the setting sun shining straight into the camera.

You need flash if you are shooting sports in the dark. You need super High ISO if you are wanting to get fast shutterspeeds, and you will need quality glass which is f2.8 to help you keep those shutterspeeds high.

Anyway here are some more tips about what you can do with night or low light photography

here are a couple more videos after the break

Wednesday, 12 January 2011

Adobe Lightroom Tutorials

Ok Here is what 95% of my photo editing workflow is based around Adobe Lightroom.

Lightroom from version 2 onwards has been brilliant (the first version was not that advanced and really just a cataloging) but from version 2 you were able to do gradients and adjustment brushes, spot removal and smoothing of skin.

Here are a bunch of videos to let you see how I work and also how to get the most out of your Adobe Lightroom software when editing your photos

More videos after the break

Gimp Tutorials

On this page you will find a lot of different videos all related to the free photo editing/graphic design software called Gimp (GIMP which stands for GNU Image Manipulation Program. it is a popular open source alternative to photoshop.) Its free to download and you can get it from HERE

Ill start off with the most popular video and that is how to make it look like you are holding your own head away from your body

For the videos click the link below

Sunday, 9 January 2011

Chromatic Aberration expained

and here is an example of it in video and showing you how to you can reduce it with stopping down a bit ie going from f2.8 to f4
 click below

Wednesday, 5 January 2011

Canon 5d Mark 2 with the Sigma 70-200mm f/2.8 HSM Macro lens

Just before Xmas I managed to get to have a good trial with the Canon 5d Mark 2 and the Sigma
70-200mm f/2.8

I was shooting rehersal footage for a burlesque dancer in Edinburgh at a very dark night club venue (during the day) and shot it from two angles, one straight on with my Canon 550d and Nikon 20mm f/2.8 ais lens and from further back and at an angle with the Canon 5D Mark 2 and the Sigma 70-200mm f/2.8 lens both shooting at f/2.8 and at around 800 or 1000 iso.
more details below

Tuesday, 4 January 2011

Macro Magic (making things invisable)

shot with the nikon 105mm f2.8 af Micro lens (macro) on the Canon 550d camera at 720p.  The effect you are seeing here is the focusing being changed from far to near.

Monday, 3 January 2011

Nikon lens to Canon EOS camera adapter

You can put Nikon lenses on Canon cameras, you just need a simple little adapter,

The links below is pricing from £11  to 200pounds.

The most basic really just is a piece of metal, with that you loose autofocus, and auto focus confirmation and you also loose aperture control unless you have an older lens that has the aperture ring on the lens

Second type you still loose auto focus and aperture control but you gain Auto Focus Confirmation (the little dot on your screen saying you are in focus)

The most expensive ones give you the ability to change the aperture so you can now use it with your G lenses (normally they are stopped all the way to their smallest aperture such as f22) You still do not get auto focus!

All the links to the different types of adapters below

Happy New Year, time to spend some cash!

So Over the holiday season I was up in the Highlands of Scotland with the family.  I had a lovely time and got right stuck into working on my book again, and totally re-worked the first 60 pages. I am really happy with it now.

I came back just yesterday to find I had 34 email, 20 facebook messages and 59 comments on youtube to follow up on. so been very busy with that.  Here is one email that I thought was quite appropriate, This guy Joe has got 1000 to spend on a new camera and is not liking the Canon 550d (t2i) anymore and is wanting to go away from canon, so I could have emailed him back but instead I thought more people would be interested in the reply,