Thursday, 20 August 2015

Spirit Catcher, Blade 350 QX3 and GoPro

Hi there!  Yup, it's been another 'while', since my last posting.  But then, I'm sure you're not just sitting around waiting to see what I've been up to.  In any case, here's the news...  Elizabeth got me a new quad-copter.  You'll notice how I avoided calling it a 'drone'.  The latter seems to have been stuck with such a nasty connotation, just because a few dim-wits mis-behaved with theirs.

The first quad-copter she got me (Proto-X FPV) was a great one for learning on, as I could easily use it indoors, with minimal risk of damage to either the 'copter, or our furniture.  It could easily rest in my hand.  However, the camera was sadly lacking in decent clarity, contrast and white balance.  Additionally, keeping a steady shot was almost impossible.

Then came the Blade 350 QX3!  This one allows me to slap my GoPro Hero 3+ Black on there and get some decent shots.  Although not the same smoothness as shot by those with gimbals on board, this combination does an 'ok job'.  It even returns to where it took off, without any input from me, if needed.  Great idea for panic situations.

Steel sculpture called, Spirit Catcher
The other day, I took it to Barrie's landmark, Spirit Catcher and did a few moves around it.  I couldn't take much time as I was on my way to work.  Anyway, here's a quick (one minute) video with the GoPro set to 1080p.  Please let me know what you think?


Friday, 15 May 2015

Our Web Page is Coming Along...The Booth Too!

It's been a while since we last tried authoring a web page for our photography, but recently got back into it - and are remembering just how much work goes into it!

First, I, by no means, profess to really 'know' what I'm doing with web authoring.  I just have enough of my father in me to tell myself, "Hey, if 'that guy' can build his own web page, I can sure take a stab at one for Elizabeth & I."  So here we are once again, my Scottish background attempting to both save us money and prove that I can do this task after all - without having to hire some outsider.

I'll admit, building your own web page can be a head-scratcher - but once it starts to come to life, it really gives you a sense of pride!  Our web site isn't going to win any awards, but I think it's coming along nicely.

Ramages' Photography Booth, Elmvale Flea Market, Cty Rd 92
This time last year, we made the switch from PC to iMac and I only recently got my hands on the web authoring program/app, Kompozer.  So, here I sit - all bleary-eyed and confused as I try to learn the new software.  I think the hardest part of this whole iMac bit is still the file system.  After using Microsoft file systems since about 1982, it's hard to wrap my mind around this Apple system.

I make this sound like a complaint session.  It really isn't.  See, I enjoy figuring out new software and all that jazz!  It's quite relaxing.  Maybe not for many, but it is for me.

We hope to see you at the Elmvale Flea Market this Sunday (and most Sundays this summer)!  It's just west of 'downtown' Elmvale, along County Rd #92 (or, Queen Street).

Sunday, 8 February 2015

Canon AE Lock Button Confuses Me - and others...

It's been a long while since I posted anything here (I seem to post in 'waves'), so thought today I had a good enough reason to blather about something.

Today's topic is why photo's taken with and without using AE Lock, vary so widely.

This morning, I quickly shot a photo of a fruit flan.  I just needed a quick 'snap' or two to send to relatives to show our culinary experiment.  However, I decided to take one photo using the AE Lock button and another without (just let the camera use its own pre-flash to meter).  There were no other differences between the two shots (same position, lens, flash & settings - all done in manual mode, except for the flash, which was using ETTL II).

As you can see in the attached picture, there is a very large difference between the two shots (the lighter one uses the AE Lock).  Why is this?  I'll admit that both photo's used my 'Beauty Dish' as a light-modifier, but can't see how that should cause this effect.  I've even seen this difference without any light modifiers - even without using flash - but still using the AE Lock and then shooting the same scene again without it.

A fellow Canon user and I have discussed this before and both leave the conversation scratching our heads (and he does a LOT of professional shooting, so you'd think he'd have an answer for us).  It seems to just be one of those 'things that make you go "hmmm"...'

Equipment used:  Canon 6D (hand-held), Canon 580EX II (on a stand, with 12" Beauty Dish with 'shower cap' over it).  Flash and camera tied together by dedicated cable, using ETTL II.

If you have any ideas, please reply to this post - enquiring minds are dying to learn!