Sony Alpha7

Posted on December 4, 2013

This is the first blog post with a photo from my new camera, a Sony A7 with a Zeiss Sonnar 35mm f2.8. This is a full frame sensor in a small camera body. I’m still getting used to the focal length as its a much border field of view than a 50mm on a APS-C body. As a result there’s so much more in the viewfinder to account for. I find myself taking a couple steps closer to my subject to get what I want. I’ve been missing shots because it takes time to walk forward and either the moment passes or the perspective changes so dramatically that it’s a totally different picture then what I originally saw. The camera came with a kit zoom lens but I really like the look and feel of the Zeiss.

So far it’s been a challenge shooting with the A7 but when I’ve had it dialed in, it takes some wonderful pictures. The dynamic range and high ISO performance are incredible, something that you don’t normally have work together in the same camera. Even in the really high ISO, like 12800, the noise has a very nice film grain quality to it. The camera is really small and light which adds very little weight to my day bag. But I think my favorite part about my new camera is the sound of the shutter. It sounds so cool, just like a real camera!

SONY, ILCE-7, FE 35mm F2.8 ZA
1/60, f/5.6, ISO 640

Day for Night

Posted on December 3, 2013

When I walked by this scene I was attracted to the clock and how it seemed to have a glow even though it was the middle of the day. I set up a composition and waited for someone to enter the scene. I got lucky when a women took a pose in the perfect spot right under the clock. The figure adds a sense of scale to the scene, something I was looking for. The addition of the figure also draws the viewers attention away from the clock face and makes it a much more interesting composition. It really is incredible how much visual weight a human figure has in a composition.

It wasn’t until I was post processing the image when I discovered how good this image looked as a night scene. I was done developing the image as a normal daylight shot when I started to experiment. I just kept making the area around the clock darker until it looked like the middle of the night. I adjusted the color a little to give it a warm, evening glow and ended up with a “Day for Night” scene. It’s a term used in the film industry for when they shoot a scene during the day but underexpose the film to make it look like it was shot at night. Shooting at night is not an easy thing to do and most of the time you just end up with a lot of black areas and film grain in your scene.

SONY, SLT-A77V, 50mm F1.4 ZA SSM
1/90, f/8, ISO 250

Saul Leiter

Posted on November 27, 2013

In memory of Saul Leiter who died on Tuesday at the age of 89 in New York after a short illness. Leiter eluded mainstream fame for most of his life, but his body of work, particularly his experiments in abstract street color studies in the middle years of the 20th Century are a continuing inspiration to new generations of photographers. A shy figure, Leiter is the subject of a new film, ‘In No Great Hurry’ about his life and work which was recently released.

SONY, SLT-A77V, 50mm F1.4 ZA SSM
1/350, f/1.7, ISO 100

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