Borkware Photoblog

January 30, 2009

Future Project Ideas

Filed under: projects, technique — Mark Dalrymple @ 1:53 am

I tend to do well if I do the “spend a month on some subspecies of $activity”, rather than try to perfect everything at the same time. Here’s my list. No idea if I’ll actually do any/many of these, but it’s an idea. (continually updated, I hope)

Short-term Projects

Stuff that could be done in a couple of days.

  • Manual focusing (Godfrey DiGiorgi’s technique at the forum posting)
  • Hold the damn camera level
  • Try everything with 1×1 (square) format
  • Nothing but the 50mm lens
  • Shoot B&W in-camera to force B&W visualization (and so you see the B&W results when chimping)
  • Long exposoures
  • “painting with light” – with Mr. Kebbin’s mega spotlight
  • Figure out nuances of graphics tablet
  • Play with the Nikon D3 SDK
  • Shoot just in DX
  • Nothing but wide-angle
  • Figure out all the Nikon focusing modes
  • Work on body strength and hand-hold the 70-200

Longer-term Projects

Devote a month to it

  • Portraiture (in progress)
  • Learn Lightroom (in progress)
  • Printing
  • Panoramas
  • Macro
  • Dense detail (stitched closeups)
  • Improving composition
  • True Photoshop studliness
  • True Nik Filter studliness
  • LAB color studliness

January 18, 2009

This month’s Projects: Portraiture and LightRoom

Filed under: Aperture, Lightroom, projects, technique — Mark Dalrymple @ 5:02 pm

Now that Learn Objective-C has shipped, I actually have some photography time to myself. Just got back from business travel, so my months now run from middle of the month to middle of month.

This month, the projects are:

  • laurel_web.jpg Portraiture. I’m going to be taking some individual and group portraits of my friends in the Aeolian Winds of Pittsburgh. I’ve already shot some individual portraits (as seen here), and some group shots at outdoor concerts, but never a “formal” sitting of the individuals and group. This will also be an excuse to go back and re-read all of my portraiture books.

  • Lightroom. Aperture so far has been my Photographic Axe of choice. I love the vaults and way I can bounce around and do stuff. Unfortunately, there are just a couple of things that have really been getting on my nerves: Nearly all of my portrait-orientation photos come out rotated wrong, so I have to find and rotate them manually, which then destroys the correctness of the “landscape/portrait” metadata. Also, doing bulk edits with plugins (like the Nik filters) causes the edited images to end up in stacks (which is fine), but not as the pick. Cmd-/ (make pick) does not work with multiple selection, so I have to manually set the pick for every stack. When you do this with 2 or 300 shots, well, that sucks. Frequently, when paging through large collections in full-screen mode, Aperture will get stuck at the “loading” phase. Going back and then forward clears it, disrupting the working rhythm. Also, I still can’t make Levels do what I want it to do like I can with Photochop curves. And I really like the Fill Lightâ„¢ control in ACR. I haven’t been able to duplicate that in Aperture.

So, I’ve picked up the Scott Kelby Lightroom book, and I’m also a Kelby Training subscriber, so this month I’m gonna live in LightRoom and see if things are any more pleasant.

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