I keep on wondering about the discussions of photographic enthusiast about camera technology and brands. Some enthusiasts even react very angrily at brands they used to have, or at other people when they mention some sort of shortcomings of their new camera. I would think a camera is just a tool… isn’t it?
Articles written by Nando Harmsen
I once started with the top of the line Canon flash with a remote controller. Even though those flashes very good, they can have too little light output for off camera flash. That is why I started looking for a portable studio flash system and I ended up with the expensive Profoto system.
With the digital age stacking techniques make it possible to shoot a star trail in the middle of a city. But when I got my hands on a great medium format camera, I also ran into a problem: the star trail had strange patterns in the stacked image. Fortunately I found out why this is, and how to avoid it.
When it is time to buy a camera, image stabilization can be something that is on the bucket list of must haves. Image stabilization makes it possible to shoot with longer shutter times than normal, preventing the use of a tripod. There are many different implementations of image stabilization, but it is not the Holy Grail. You could say image stabilization is overrated.
Have you ever made a picture of a landscape? Sure you have. Everyone has. Making the photo is the easy part, but showing the landscape how you experienced it, is something else. Often the photo does not show the landscape from you perception. Finding a subject is often one of the solutions.
We planned a few days at the Opal Cast in France, a wonderful seaside area with rocky coasts, large tide differences, and a lot of remains of the Second World War, that has shaped the landscape many years ago. The forecast promised fantastic weather for landscape photography, so we had high expectations for impressive sunrise and sunset shots, and perhaps even a few star trails. The reality turned out quite differently.
You saw that wonderful long exposure image on the internet, with a smooth water surface and moving clouds in the sky, and you thought; I want to shoot images like that. So you invested in a dark neutral density filter that makes it possible to shoot with shutter times that are 1000x longer. Now you can start making those long exposure images.
Every camera is standard set to AWB, meaning "Auto White Balance". AWB uses 18% gray as a reference, to correct any color cast in the image. But the auto white balance is a dumb algorithm that cannot interpret a scenery. Perhaps it would be best to set the white balance yourself, instead of relying on the camera.
Ten years ago I decided to start using filters for my landscape photography again. In those days the best choice was Hitech or Lee, and I chose the latter. I was very content with those filters and I shot many beautiful landscapes with it. But ten years left some serious traces of use. It was time to replace the filters… I chose Kase filters.
You can get cool results when photographing water or cloudy skies with long exposures. For that you often need a filter that reduces the amount of light that enters the lens: a neutral density filter. But what if you don’t have such a filter? In that case there is another way to retrieve almost the same results. In this article I will explain how to shoot long exposures without the help of a neutral density filter.
When processing your precious photos in Lightroom, Photoshop, or any other photo processing software, you make sure the exposure is spot on, the colors are perfect, and the contrast is pleasing. For that reason you may have a calibrated monitor, and the optimum light situation in your room. But did you think about the background shade of your photo processing software?
Whenever I bought a new lens, I always added a UV filter to it. It was obvious to do so, and I never gave it any thought. But there was a moment that I stopped adding that sort of filter and I never looked back since. Does a UV filter still have any benefit, or is it a waste of money? Let’s find out.