varjohaltia: (Fitengli)
The only thing more difficult than taking a good photo is finding a bag for your photo gear.


Fine, that's hyperbole, but I've long been looking for a bag that meets my needs. In particular the challenge is to find a bag for "adventure travel" or hardcore touristing; it needs to not only carry my camera gear, but also a jacket and other layers, lunch, water, maps, souvenirs etc.


Lowepro Primus AW vs. Clik Elite Obscura

The best backpack I had found was the Lowepro Primus AW (AW is Lowepro-ese for having a rain cover, All Weather). It has a great carry system with a proper hip belt, sternum strap and load lifters. It also has a relatively large non-camera compartment, and a tripod attachment. It has served me well on multiple trips to Japan and elsewhere, but a few annoyances remained: the built-in tripod carry system was entirely inadequate for a medium-sized tripod (Gitzo GT2541 with Benro B0 ballhead). Its non-camera compartment was still too small, in particular it was too small to handle an A4 / Letter sized object.
Read more... )

Macro!

Jun. 28th, 2007 06:55 pm
varjohaltia: (Eye)
My Ebay acquisition arrived -- I sprung for a used Quantaray branded Sigma macro lens. Several people had asked me to do miniature photography or photography of small crafts, and I haven't had a lens with any decent macro capability in years. Mind you, I've never had a specific macro lens before, so the obscene fashion in which this thing telescopes came as a surprise. I'll have some learning curve with learning composition, depth of field and lighting for something on this scale.

Regardless, this new capability ought to appease my miniature-painting friends in its ability to show off the exquisite minute detail they've managed -- or shortcomings in such.

I do have a few immediate observations. This lens is a 50 mm focal length one, about 75 mm effective on the digital camera, and that's a bit too short if you want to do 1:1 ratio work. The front of the lens virtually bumps into the object being photographed. When using 1:2 or 1:3 ratios it's much more wieldy, and luckily that's the range in which I'll be spending most of my time.

Some samples )
varjohaltia: (Eye)
I found a neat Flickr group for my home town, and figured it's a rather good way of showing it off! Go look at pretty pictures!
varjohaltia: (Delachiel)
Vince asked me to join him in a photo mission to the University of Tampa today. Despite having lived in Tampa for quite a while now, despite it being a virtual landmark, and despite me driving past the campus several times, I have never actually been there.

Most of the campus is neat, small and nice, but the historic main building is definitely worth a visit. Alas, the Florida weather came upon us and prevented any useful outdoor photography. Definitely worth returning to, though!

Following that, we stuffed ourselves with sushi. Tokyo Sushi now has three pages of special house rolls! That, and a really cute new waitress.
varjohaltia: (Eye)




Spent the evening at Tampa Theatre watching the March of Penguins. This was a charity event, with lots of yummy food and silly costumes, put on by various organizations. I was drafted to do photography there by Lia, our indomitable resident electrician (the one with a penguin in her cummerbund):


STS-114

Jul. 26th, 2005 05:29 pm
varjohaltia: (Delachiel)
Pictures

The first try at the launch found me stuck on SR-50, until I found out that it got scrubbed. So, scared by the record crowds, I went out a bit early today, leaving Tampa around 3:30 am. I got to Titusville around 5:30, at which point I was able to get a good parking spot and a decent seat; almost all the waterfront spots were already claimed by then. Getting there early enough for an afternoon launch would be an exercise in heat stroke.

The crowd, based on the sample of people around me was delightfully new, this was the first launch for almost everyone. Very excited too, oohing and aahing and applauding.

The girl with the horn apparently is the great-granddaughter of Charles Lindbergh, starting an early aviation career.

The three condos now occupy a big stretch of land which was part of the park before, so the available viewing area was cut in half. Also, the pier was closed for a change, so a lot of people were cramming into a much smaller space than before. And crammed it was!

Returning from Titusville went surprisingly well once I cleared the immediate traffic, though I got stuck on SR-50 for another time. For future trips, I'll probably try to settle for the Beeline instead or find some different route.

I also had lunch with Chris, and spent some money on tea and books at Barnes and Nobles. I'm glad I didn't consider going to the Blue Room tonight; I had trouble staying awake driving back at 2 pm! (AMP to the rescue.)

Update

Jul. 24th, 2005 12:39 am
varjohaltia: (Liana-Delachiel)
Picture book version. )

Beyond that... Lessee, spent two hours learning to play tennis, which was fun, and consequently another six or so hours talking political science, urban planning, religion and other such things with Joanna, which was also fun.

More dabbling with Photoshop, though I need to give that a lot more time. I'm still trying to put together a proper portfolio I can use to convince (sucker) people I'm not a hack.

Also, Thursday concluded the Drow portion of Steve's game, and this time ended up being quite fun, as opposed to the somewhat disappointing (for me) previous game.

Anyone interested in legal services (or Adult Swim) needs to call 1 877 MANBIRD.

Finally, I still think Shego is the bomb. (That's what I get for watching late night TV.)

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