Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Mission Monday

Given the fact that I'm posting a "Mission Monday" on Tuesday is a clue that I'm behind schedule on this challenge.  Ahhh, I have trouble keeping up.  Which is actually a great segue to this week's question.  I was investigating Adobe Lightroom, the differences between that and Photoshop and whether or not I need Lightroom.  What I found is that Lightroom is geared toward organizing your photos and streamlining your work flow.  That might help me keep up with everything, you think?  The other feature that appeals to me is that you can apparently edit photos in batches, which would be a real time-saver!  For example, you took a bunch of photos in a room with funky lighting and you wanted to adjust the white balance on all of them...or you have a group of images that are slightly underexposed and you needed to brighten them all up a bit...you could make those changes to a group of photos all at once.  Yep, like that idea! 
I want to say Thank You to Gail Werner, a great photographer in Muncie, for sharing her opinion and knowledge about Lightroom.  You can check out Gail's work here http://www.gailwernerphoto.com/.
And because you really need a photo with every post (this IS a photography blog, after all)...
A lone Acacia tree - I took this photo in Kenya 2 years ago.  The clouds and the sun worked together to create a neat effect on this scene.  Hard to believe it's been 2 years since we were there.  I'm missing it right now....might have to post more images from that trip soon.

Next week's "mission" question:  I need to master the focus modes on my camera and figure out why I'm not always getting the focus on the right spot in my images.  This has been bugging me for a long time and I'm gonna figure it out once and for all!

Friday, June 17, 2011


Why doesn't someone invent that?  I realize that these photos in smellography might induce a sneezing fit in some of you, but I just love the smell of fresh-cut hay and the outdoors in the evening.  Actually I was experimenting with light on this particular outing...and y'all know how I love me some soft evening light!

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

In memory of Molly

My sister's family's dog, Molly, passed away suddenly this week.  She was part of their family for 10 years and was such a devoted, loving dog.  She would run around and do the "butt tuck" when they came home, she would lay on their feet when they were sick, and bring them her stuffed toy when they were sad.  Thank you, Molly, for all the ways you enriched our lives. You'll be greatly missed.

Monday, June 6, 2011

Mission Monday

So…I’m issuing myself a challenge - to learn at least 1 new thing about photography, my camera (or related equipment), or post-processing each week. My plan is to post a question on my blog each Monday, do some research, and then post the answer the following Monday. Now I realize that by doing this, I’m putting it out there for everyone to see how much of a novice I am…but hey, I’m not too proud to admit that there is SO MUCH I still have to learn.

If you’re an expert and you care to share your knowledge about a particular week’s question, feel free to help a girl out. And if you have a passion for learning more about photography like I do, by all means take advantage of any information posted here that might be helpful to you.

On this particular Mission Monday, I’m posting a question and it’s answer – for a couple reasons: 1) I already researched this last week, and 2) next Monday I will be on a little vacation with no access to a computer. So…the question is… (drumroll)

What is a full-frame camera, what is the difference between that and a “non” full-frame camera, and…do I need one? (Let me just note here that it’s becoming clear already that this researching business will probably end up costing me. I have a feeling that the answer to all the “do I need one” questions is gonna be YES).

Anyway this is what I found out:

A full-frame digital camera has an image sensor that is the same size as a 35mm film frame – as opposed to an APS camera (and don’t ask me what APS stands for), which has a smaller sensor. The sensor size of FF is 36mm x 24mm, whereas for APS it is 24mm x 16mm. A 50mm lens on FF behaves like a 50mm should, but on an APS camera the smaller sensor can only capture the cropped central part of the image – an image that is approximately 1.5 times more narrow than the full capability of the lens. This is called the “crop factor” – i.e. the APS camera has a crop factor of 1.5. Put another way, because FF’s sensor is 50% larger than APS’s sensor, the crop factor is 1.5x.

Now, what are the advantages of this (because full-frame cameras are much more expensive so there are surely some big advantages)?

One advantage is with wide-angle photography and taking full advantage of a wide-angle lens. Here’s an example: a 24mm lens on a FF camera has an 84◦ view, but a 24mm lens on a camera with a crop factor of 1.5 has only a 62◦ angle of view (making it approximately equivalent to a 36mm lens on a FF camera).

Another advantage is pixel size and number. A larger sensor allows for larger pixels and more pixels. Larger pixels provide wider dynamic range and lower noise at high ISO levels, which means better quality images in low light situations especially. More pixels allow it to capture more light, which results in better color representation and an image with more depth and greater detail. Apparently this pixel advantage is dramatic with larger prints.

Now I did find out that if you do a lot of telephoto work – like you’re a wildlife photographer or something – there is an advantage to the ASP camera (besides being way less expensive). An example: a photographer using a 300mm lens on an APS camera is going to capture the same field of view that she would get with a 450mm lens on a FF camera – a much “tighter / closeup” view (remember it essentially “crops” the center image). The 300mm lens will be smaller, lighter and less expensive than a 450mm lens.

Unfortunately I can’t post any comparison photos because I don’t own both kinds of cameras, but there are lots of articles with examples on the web if you want to google it for more info.

Yay – my first Monday Mission accomplished! Sorry this was so long.  Thanks for reading.

Oh, I almost forgot – my next Monday Mission (which will be 2 weeks away this time) is: Lightroom.  Adobe publishes 2 products that are widely used for editing and post-processing of digital photos – Lightroom and Photoshop. What are the differences between the 2 and do I need both? (sigh, another “do I need it” question).

Friday, June 3, 2011


I'm so excited about these images of Madison!  We had a very small window of time in which to take them because - now hold onto your socks - she had to leave for her graduation from Jr High.  I know, she looks very grown up, huh?  Anyway, we were lucky enough to have some very pretty light during that window of opportunity.  And, of course I was lucky to have such a pretty face to photograph. 

This could possibly be my favorite photo I've ever taken.  Creamy skin, even in black & white...love it.

She knows how to pour on the honey, don't ya think?