Macro Photography And Digital Painting


fabsforns:

Michael Brown has been very inspirational for me for many years. Check out his work!

Originally posted on "Macro Art In Nature":

I just started back painting some this week. Back to “macro painting”.
Have been looking through some of my older paintings and some of the newer images that I think might work pretty well for what I have in mind.
I enjoy painting within a computer.
To me, … it’s relaxing.
Also, … I have found that art buyers and designers are just as receptive to those digital creations as they are with straight photography.
All is has to be to them is, ………. “different”.
I have also been searching for various canvas textures to print these on now.
There has been some new papers etc. that has come out in the last few years, some of which I have only recently become aware of.
Some cool stuff out there!

The following two images were created in the past few years, … and the one of the frog has been…

View original 60 more words

How we do fireworks


We love doing fireworks and Florida’s Disney World has three parks that offer nightly shows. You can choose from a variety of locations, using foregrounds to make the photo more interesting. Fireworks by themselves are kind of boring. Cityscapes under them usually work, but incorporating people or structures usually give you a stronger image.
Normally we do the fireworks with a tripod mounted camera and slow shutter speed to have light trails common in this type of image.

Sony A 7r Leica Super-Elmar 18mm f/3.8 ASPH Hand-held, no filters 1/500, f/4, ISO 1250

Sony A 7r
Leica Super-Elmar 18mm f/3.8 ASPH
Hand-held, no filters
1/500, f/4, ISO 1250


I will have to give credit to my husband for the idea of trying high shutter speed and ISO to experiment hand held firework images. I happily went along, since we travel to the parks a few times a year. Nothing to loose but a night of shooting.

There is a great element of luck capturing fireworks, even if you are familiar with the show. Even if you do fast shutter speed, there are no guaranties of getting a good image.

The Sony 7r is a great camera, but it has an DSLR sensor, which becomes a problem with Leica wide angle lenses. Anything under 50mm and even the, you get vignette and a color cast. Leica lenses are range finder lenses, not totally compatible, except for the WADE lens, Tri-Elmar 14-16-18mm, because of it being a new design. There are still way to go around this, using Lightroos free plugin called Flat Field, which calls for you to take a control picture through a clear white balance filter, and the software will use both pictures and correct the problem.
We didn’t have to do this, because the sky was going to be dark anyway.
At the beginning of the show, I was trying the 50mm Noctilux, further away from the people. Mid show, there is a laser show and some talking, and I sued the time to change lenses and go wider.
Instead of standing up to eye level, I decided to kneel on the ground and look up, getting more space in the sky.
I set the camera to Aperture Priority, Auto ISO, f/4 and -1 Ev compensation, to avoid burning the white lights. Normally, at the end of every show, the intensity of the fireworks is much bigger than before and many times a lot lighter, so it is a good idea to move your aperture to a smaller one or your shutter speed to a quicker one, and you have more chances of getting a better exposure.

Since our lenses are manual focus, we either focus on infinity and go back a point or two, or in the case on the structure, we use the magnifying feature of the camera and make sure the borders of the structure are sharp. My suggestion is, if you use AF, to lock the focus and then turn the lens to MF to avoid AF jumping as you shoot.

Here is an example of slow shutter speed on the same show and location. This time, I used the Leica M240, 24mm Elmarit ASPH at f/4, ISO 200 (This Leica’s native ISO is 320) and a shutter speed of 1/500. A three stop neutral density was used to be able to extend the capture time.

Your camera may have long exposure noise reduction. On the Leica M240, you cannot disable this, but on the Sony A7r you can. The bad part about noise reduction is that it takes a while to process, as long as your exposure time, affecting the amount of images you can take during the show. My advise is that it is worth keeping it on. Best to have less picture with a clean sky than many with artifacts and posterized darks.

You can clearly see the difference it makes. This is a traditional approach to fireworks and what most people expect to get. Nothing wrong with that, but trying something different is also good. A cable release was used to avoid camera movement in the long exposure. No mirror up needed, Leica does not have one.

Leica M 240, Elmarit 24mm ASPH, ND filter, ISO 200, f/4, 8 seconds. Tripod and cable releasse.

Leica M 240, Elmarit 24mm ASPH, ND filter, ISO 200, f/4, 8 seconds. Tripod and cable releasse.


Here is another example of hand held fireworks:
Leica M 240, 500mm Noc, ISO 100, 1/60, f/2.8, HH

Leica M 240, 500mm Noc, ISO 100, 1/60, f/2.8, HH

You get a lot of smoke when you do fast shutter speed, which may be an asset getting what we call the nebula look.

Results:
Since this was an experiment, we did not know it if was going to work or not. Some of the images were very interesting, getting a complete different look, almost like galaxies in the sky. Most of them we will not keep, but we did get a bunch of interesting images not available with longer shutter speeds.

Hints:

Scout location if you have the time and try to get there early to secure a good spot.. If you are using a tripod, be careful of somebody tripping on it or moving it while you are capturing a long exposure.

Try to include other elements, like structures or people in your image, they add interest.
Try to include other elements, like structures or people in your image, they add interest.

If you only have one night of fireworks, you can try to do one camera in a tripod with long exposure, and another hand held for fast speed hand held. This requires quick reflexes and the ability to multitask.

Leica M 240, 50mm Noc, ISO 200, f/4, 8 seconds, ND filter

Leica M 240, 50mm Noc, ISO 200, f/4, 8 seconds, ND filter


Sony 7r, Leica 50mm Noctilux f/0.95, ISO 2000, 1/2000, F/2.8, hand held

Sony 7r, Leica 50mm Noctilux f/0.95, ISO 2000, 1/2000, F/2.8, hand held


Epcotfireworks18mm
Leica M240, Christmas fireworks

Leica M240, Christmas fireworks

It has been a long time


We have not been to the blog since December 1st of last year. Shame on us!

It is not that we are not taking photographs, nor stopped in our testing of new equipment. Sometimes our priorities get a little shook up and we need to stop and re-evaluate.

Some of you know that I went through a life chafing event, health related. Although I am officially rid of the Big C, some of the sequels are still around, in the form of lack of interest and energy, which I try to fight, sometimes with no results.

Yes, we have been active in photography. Yes, we have tried new things, but since I am the main communicator in the couple, the bucket stopped there.

We had big illusions to a trip to Guatemala with Raul Touzon, to document the Holy Week processions and events. An unexpected surgery got on the way and we were left behind and hospitals enriched their bottom line. to be perfectly honest, missing the trip hurt me more than having the surgery.

But I have come to terms with the cards that were dealt, and slowly put the pieces back together.

Since December, we have acquired and enjoyed the Leica monochrome, that has only one channel and shoots only black and white.

Very enjoyable camera, not for all uses, but worth having if you like B&W.

I will ask Alfred to write a small review, he’s more tech oriented than me. In the mean time, just to break the ice, I will include some pics taken after the last December post.

Will try and keep up the Blog, it used to be fun. I will reclaim that fun!!!

Great to be with you guys again!

Coral Gables tree. Leica M Monochrome, Voigtlander 12mm

Coral Gables tree. Leica M Monochrome, Voigtlander 12mm

Leica X-Vario. Youth Fair

Leica X-Vario. Youth Fair

Leica M, 35 Cron. Little Havana

Leica M, 35 Cron. Little Havana

Leica M240, Super Elmar 18mm, Magic Kingdom

Leica M240, Super Elmar 18mm, Magic Kingdom

Leica M240, Christmas fireworks

Leica M240, Christmas fireworks

Leica M240, 18mm Super Elmar, from the hip

Leica M240, 18mm Super Elmar, from the hip

Leica X-Vario, Youth Fair

Leica X-Vario, Youth Fair

Leica M240, 18mm Super Elmar, Youth Fair

Leica M240, 18mm Super Elmar, Youth Fair

Leica M240, Voigtlander 12mm

Leica M240, Voigtlander 12mm

Leica M240, 75mm Cron, French Pavilion, Epcot

Leica M240, 75mm Cron, French Pavilion, Epcot

EpcotChinesepavillion

M240, 35 Lux, Port Orleans, Riverside WDW

M240, 35 Lux, Port Orleans, Riverside WDW

Santa’s Enchanted Forrest


One of our favorite night shooting locations for the year and a fine place to use the fast Leica lenses.    All images made hand holding, including the Ferris Wheel which was taken at 1/15 sec.    Might make one more trip this year and post more images.

Family outing !!!   Leica APO-Summicron-M 75mm f/2.0 ASPH

Family outing !!! Leica APO-Summicron-M 75mm f/2.0 ASPH

In amazement !!    Leica  75 APO-Summicron Asph

In amazement !! Leica 75 APO-Summicron Asph

One wild ride !!!!     Leica APO-Summicron-M 75mm f/2.0 ASPH

One wild ride !!!! Leica APO-Summicron-M 75mm f/2.0 ASPH

The drag strip !!  Leica Super-Elmar-M 21mm f/3.4 ASPH

The drag strip !! Leica Super-Elmar-M 21mm f/3.4 ASPH

The eyes have it !!   Leica APO-Summicron-M 75mm f/2.0 ASPH

The eyes have it !! Leica APO-Summicron-M 75mm f/2.0 ASPH

Mechanical  bull operator     Leica APO-Summicron-M 75mm f/2.0 ASPH

Mechanical bull operator Leica APO-Summicron-M 75mm f/2.0 ASPH

Looking fine with iPhone !!     Leica Noctilux-M 50mm f/0.95 ASPH

Looking fine with iPhone !! Leica Noctilux-M 50mm f/0.95 ASPH

Riding !!!     Leica Noctilux-M 50mm f/0.95 ASPH

Riding !!! Leica Noctilux-M 50mm f/0.95 ASPH

The big wheel !!!   Leica Super-Elmar-M 21mm f/3.4 ASPH

The big wheel !!! Leica Super-Elmar-M 21mm f/3.4 ASPH

 

 

 

 

 

Back in the field: Life at 1/15 of a second and more…


So the day finally came when I was able to back to the field after surgery. We picked Key Largo for the outing, on a beautiful fall day, sun shining and enough breeze to make you comfortable outdoors. We travelled via Car Sound to visit Alabama Jack’s hoping to get a shot at something interesting, and sure enough we did. It’s a very exciting place, with boaters, bikers,and a mixed crowd of fun people, good food and drink.
There was live music and some dancing, and I got some slow shutter speed stuff.

Leica M240, SUper Elmar 18mm, 1/15

Leica M240, SUper Elmar 18mm, 1/15


Leica M240, Super Elmar 18mm, 1/15, ISO 200

Leica M240, Super Elmar 18mm, 1/15, ISO 200


Dancing the afternoon away. M and Super Elmar 18mm

Dancing the afternoon away. M and Super Elmar 18mm


Happiness is…Leica M240, SUper Elmar 18mm

Happiness is…Leica M240, SUper Elmar 18mm


M240, Super Elmar 18mm, 1/15 of a  second.

M240, Super Elmar 18mm, 1/15 of a second.


M240, Super Elmmar 18mm. Edited in Silver Efex Pro 2.

M240, Super Elmmar 18mm. Edited in Silver Efex Pro 2.


Don't let the music stop. M240, Super Elmar 18mm

Don’t let the music stop. M240, Super Elmar 18mm


After that, we crossed the brig and joined the main road to Whale Harbor. Headed for the Tiki Bar in the back, there was a photographer in a job, and he and the model got friendly with us, letting us grab a coupe of shots.
we came back tired but happy, before sunset, but we saw no colors on the drive back, so we didn’t miss anything much.
Glad to be back to my M!!!!!
Model al Tiki BAr, Whale Harbor. M240, 135mm, natural light.

Model al Tiki BAr, Whale Harbor. M240, 135mm, natural light.


Shooting pose, M240, 135mm, edited in RadLab.

Shooting pose, M240, 135mm, edited in RadLab.


Bartender at Tiki Bar, Whale Harbor. M240, 135mm.

Bartender at Tiki Bar, Whale Harbor. M240, 135mm.


M240, 135mm. edited in RadLab. Frame in OnePhoto.

M240, 135mm. edited in RadLab. Frame in OnePhoto.

Phaleanopsis Study


Due to a surgery I had two weeks ago, my field mobility has been somehow impaired temporarily. But the photographer in me is always there and my house orchids proved to be patient and cooperative subjects. The light comes in fully around 8AM, so I took advantage of it and captured and edited these, warming up for the field days. God bless all of you! Life is good :)

Leica D-lux 6, tripod, against window light. Edited in RadLab.

Leica D-lux 6, tripod, against window light. Edited in RadLab.


Leica D-Lux 6, against window light, tripod. Edited in RadLab.

Leica D-Lux 6, against window light, tripod. Edited in RadLab.


Leica D-Lux-6, window light, tripod. Edited in RadLab.

Leica D-Lux-6, window light, tripod. Edited in RadLab.


Leica D-Lux 6, hand held, against window light.

Leica D-Lux 6, hand held, against window light.


Leica M, 90 Elmar macro, edited in Rad LAb

Leica M, 90 Elmar macro, edited in Rad LAb


Leica M, 90 macro Elmar, window light

Leica M, 90 macro Elmar, window light

Leica D-Lux 6 visits the train museum.


I don’t usually carry a point and shoot to the field trips, either the full garb or no camera at all so I can concentrate in others, but today I made and exception because I wanted to try my D-Lux without the electronic viewfinder and no tripod. I’m not a tripod lover and I’m enjoying traveling light. The reason for not using the EVF is the tight camera bag where I’d like to keep the D-Lux, to be on my purse at all times.

Leica D-lux 6, f/2, 1/20, ISO 400

Leica D-lux 6, f/2, 1/20, ISO 400


I must admit I missed the EVF on a couple of occasions because of the angles of captures, and given the darkness indoors in the museum, I could have used the little tripod. But you can’t win them all and other that the heat, the day was great.
1/13 & f/4, ISO 400

1/13 & f/4, ISO 400


The D-Lux performs quite nicely, although it is not in the same league as the M type 240. If you accept that, it is a veery convenient and small cam that can save the day if you don’t want to carry a lot of stuff.
1/160, f/4, ISO 80 (my hand and camera's shadow over the rusty can)

1/160, f/4, ISO 80 (my hand and camera’s shadow over the rusty can)


It has a Leica lens (of course), 24 to 90, that can be set in steps, to 24, 28, 35, 50, 70 and 90 and that is the way I prefer to keep it, since I’m trying to stay away from the comforts of zooms.
1/50, f/4, ISO 400

1/50, f/4, ISO 400


It has a built in .9 (three stops) neutral density that you can use if it’s too bright or if you want to to some slow panning. It is small yet no credit card size, which makes it comfortable in your hands.
It has 12 MG, but it depends on the ratio of picture you choose.
1/25 f/5.6, ISO 400

1/25 f/5.6, ISO 400


I have seen beautiful prints 20×30 made with this camera, not that I’m going to print that big, but it’s nice to know that it can hold it.
1/125, f/4, ISO 320

1/125, f/4, ISO 320


Although my preferred camera is the M, this little jewel, which BTW can be very affordable, can be in my purse all the time and allow me to take pictures when I was not planning to. OH, it has AF and takes video.
You can check one or any other on the free Leica walk on September 20th, Friday, out of the Leica Store. RSVP required, email info@leicastoremiami.com
1/50, f/5.6, ISO 400

1/50, f/5.6, ISO 400


You can click on images to see a larger version. Our images are watermarked and protected with Digimark.
1/100, f/4, ISO 80

1/100, f/4, ISO 80


1/125, f/1.4, ISO 80

1/125, f/1.4, ISO 80


1/30, f5.6, ISO 400

1/30, f5.6, ISO 400

Leica Monochrom


 

The only way to know if a Monochrom is worth it for you is trying it. No amount of reading will be able to

Make your decision easy…… so I went down to the Leica Store and got one for using overnight.   Sweet.

Nothing but good vibes at the  store and  Kirsten and Peter could not be nicer.

 

First, test it at Miracle Mile with a 50 Summilux, then to  the Grove with the Noctilux for nighttime shooting.

Got enough images to get a feel for what the camera could do. First obvious difference is the clean ISO,

10,000 is usable with work. For general shooting would set to 3200 without having to worry about

noise, hardly any at that setting.   Made images thought to be impossible before (action wise).

 

50mm Noctilus f/0.95, 1/125, ISO 10,000

50mm Noctilus f/0.95, 1/125, ISO 10,000

The Monochrom files are much better than the M9 but only marginally better than the M type 240.   Still

Feel there is enough different to make it worth the effort.   The sharpness produced at high ISO needs to

Be seen to believe.

 

Will post some images from the two shoots and will be posting lots more in the very near future.

90mm f/4 Macro Elmar. F/11, 1/125, ISO 800

90mm f/4 Macro Elmar. F/11, 1/125, ISO 800

 

50mm Noctilux f/0.95, 1/60, ISO 1250

50mm Noctilux f/0.95, 1/60, ISO 1250

50mm Noctilux @ f/2, 1/125, ISO 320

50mm Noctilux @ f/2, 1/125, ISO 320

50mm Noc  f 1.4  1/90 sec  ISO 1600

50mm Noc f 1.4 1/90 sec ISO 1600

50mm Noc  f 0.95   1/125 sec  ISO 320

50mm Noc f 0.95 1/125 sec ISO 320

 

 

 

 

Noctilux focusing techniques.


Fashion photographer Scott Morvay shares his technique to make sure he gets sharp pictures when shooting wide open.
Short video, packed with info. Enjoy!

So I got the M Type 240


And I can’t be any happier with the results. The file quality really leaves the M9 in the dust, and that extra ISO stop is not only usable. It totally rocks. The conversion to B&W has a lot more detail than its predecessor and since I’ve been doing a lot of B&Ws, totally unknown territory to me in my nature photography days, it will be a treat to get to try the M Monochrome, with its 65,000 shades of gray. No kidding, just got it from the horse’s mouth (source, Leica Store).
Anyway, the combo formed by the new M and the Noctilux f/0.95 is a fantastic combination to do all the crazy stuff I like to do. I am not using an electronic viewfinder since I got used to the rangefinder. I totally forgot about the Liveview feature that could have come handy for focusing in total darkness like some areas of the Beach. I’ll try and remember.
Here are some of the images with my new favorite combo. I am like a child in a candy store, discovering new things and really enjoying myself. Great week-end everyone!!!!
CGbacklit3
Calle8smokingBW
Mrooster3
SOBetrumpetBW
SoBecarabstract
SOBebirdbacklit
SBtrumpetBW
SBhotellobby
SBflamenco
SBenergydrinks
Calle8security
Calle8cubancoffee
Calle8chessBW2

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