The Fun of Photography – The Right Equipment – DNG files – When Things Go Wrong

It has been a busy time for me recently. I have been away to Cork to stay with friends, and whilst I was there I wanted to make the photos to complete Image the Portrait. Visiting somewhere new is a wonderful opportunity to take lots of photos, and that’s just what I did. That was the fun, taking photos, taking more photos, and exploring with a camera (or three).

I  found Cork to be an interesting city. I miss being in a multi-cultural environment, and Cork most certainly is. It had a great energy and vibrancy, as multi-cultural environments tend to. Lots of busyness, lots of people (for a small city), and a fair bit of history as well.

Before leaving for Cork, I made a decision about which of my cameras to take, and I decided on the Olympus OMD EM10mk iii (which I wouldn’t have left behind) and also the Fuji S9900w bridge. I have an interest in nature and especially in birds, and that’s why I took the bridge camera with me. I have commented before that I don’t like the bridge for most forms of photography because it lacks quality and produces a lot of noise, however with 50x optical zoom its an excellent camera for birds, without the expense of a DSLR lens with the equivalent focal length.

The EM10, with the 25mm prime, is a good set up for portraits, street, architecture and landscape, and the images are excellent quality, and the in camera image stabiliser is so good. However, the electronic viewfinder doesn’t give full coverage, which is a bit tricky, but I am getting used to it.

I now consider my smart phone to be a second prime. The Huawei P10 has a dual 20mp f2.2 camera with Leica lens, and this adds versatility to my set up. The Pen F 25mm is effectively a 50mm lens due to the 2x crop sensor, and the Leica is 27mm. I found this particularly useful for architecture, especially churches, or buildings that are tall or built on hills.

Having these choices is amazing, and it meant I could photograph in a range of environments, and this has been a really enjoyable experience for me.

Windows 10 doesn’t have a codec for viewing DNG files (The EM10  raw files are DNG, as are those from the Huawei), so I tried to find a DNG viewer. Thank god for google. I have previously avoided Bridge as I felt I had enough to do with learning Lightroom and Photoshop, however google pointed me towards Bridge for viewing DNG files. I didn’t want to open files in Lightroom for my initial evaluation, particularly because I file my uploads to a “To Sort” folder, before assigning them to their appropraite folder after the first cut.

I have only used Bridge very briefly this morning, but I can see the benefits of it, something new to learn.

Sometimes the best laid plans go wrong, and that’s an opportunity to try something different. I had put some plans together for assignment 2 -Painting With Light, and had made assumptions about the amount of space that I would have to use at my friends. Without the space required I had to come up with a completely new idea on the hoof, as I needed to make the photos whilst I was around people. The other difficulty was in relation to light. The assignment brief suggests that we take the photos in a dark environment so that we do not get light leak ruining the image. My home is up quite high, there are no street lights shining through my window, so when the curtains are closed its dark. My friends house is in a city, with street lights outside, and even with the curtains closed there is quite a lot of background light. It took a while to get the best ISO, aperture and shutter speed, to cut out as much light as I could, whilst allowing in the light that I wanted to capture. All good experience, in fact, it was a great learning experience. I will evaluate and develop the photos over the next few days, and update my coursework as I go along.

If you’ve managed to read this far – Happy new year. Have a great photographic 2018.

2 Replies to “The Fun of Photography – The Right Equipment – DNG files – When Things Go Wrong”

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