söndag 26 december 2010

Year in review time!

We are almost starting the year of our lord 2011 and before that happens i would like you to do a year in review of the photographic art you created during 2010.
It is a important step into becoming a better photographer by learning from your photos and memories of what happened during those times you were shooting.
You may ask though: Why would i want do a review of the past??
The answer is to learn from your experiences and to remember the mistakes that did or may have ruined a great photo from being created!

So i would suggest to you to look at your photos from 2010 and pick 30 that made an impact on you. This could be by feeling, by the technical difficulty or by what the experience of taking that photo was.
Then make a list of thing you did right and a list of thing you failed at and use those things as a way of learning. Then finally write a list of things or places you want to visit so that you don´t miss that special seasonal moment again!

Most importantly do the year in review throughly so that it you really learn and become a even better photographer!

Have a happy holiday and a happy new year :)

fredag 10 december 2010

Expose for the snow!

The other day when i went and shot a roll of tri-x 400 film and today i developed the roll and found out that i didn't expose for the snow!

So why is exposing for the snow important?
The lightmeter on a camera tries really hard to give you a good exposure but snow plays a nasty trick by being really bright which results in pictures where the snow is grey instead of being white.
In my case my Canon A-1 is from the late 1970:s and it has only one light metering mode (center weight), as a comparison a modern dslr has four different ways of metering light!
Thankfully center weight metering mode is easy to use and as long as you remember to adjust the exposure the result will be great!

So as a "this happens when you fail" example here is two images that show how badly underexposed some of the photos ended being for me:

So the next time you go out for some snow photography make sure to go into your camera settings and overexpose the image and you will see that snow will look white and not gray!

What is your experience when using a film slr and compensating for the snow?

torsdag 9 december 2010

Challenge yourself!

If you are feeling down and need to find that inspiration again then its time to challenge yourself!

I recently found myself being in a stage of non creative mode and finally decided to do something about it!
So i loaded my Canon A-1 with a 50mm 1.4 lens and a roll of Tri-x 400 b/w film and told myself go out and not to come back until i taken all 36 frames!
Well it worked allot better then i thought and not only did i take 36 frames i carefully composed but i also challenged myself to be creative!
So tomorrow (dec 10th) i am going to develop and scan the roll so you can see what i saw today.

So the lesson is to tell yourself to go out there and do something so that your day becomes allot better and you will feel great after accomplishing the task/s!

So what are you waiting for get creative and be feel great about yourself!

How do you get out of a non creative mode?
Please share your tips and tricks :)

söndag 28 november 2010

Surviving the winter dullness

Winter is here and while some love the snow and the outdoor winter activities i find it to be the worst season to photograph because of the lack of variation of colours!
So i found a solution to my problem: take allot of portraits and other objects using a tele lens. The use of a longer lens not only restricts what i can capture in one frame but it also forces me to be allot more creative!
So my plan is to only use my two favorite tele lenses (the legendary Nikkor 105 2.5 and the equally great Nikkor 200mm 4.0) and take some creative and great photo :)

Taken with the 105 2.5 @ 2.5

Here is the two sets on flickr which has photos taken with these lenses.

Do you like the winter season?
How do you find creativity during the cold and gray season?

tisdag 23 november 2010

Auto or manual focus?

To some this is a easy choice, why would anyone ever want to use manual focus when you just need to press a button and the image is on focus?

I prefer manual focus because it allows me to slow down and spend more time on the composition, i still use autofocus lenses when the subject is moving way to fast and i dont have a chance to set the focus manually but since those moments only happen now and then its not a issue for me.
The choice of manual focus does requires me to do some extra calculating but other then that i dont feel disadvantaged compared to using autofocus.

Here is two example shots from the first of may demonstrations were i only used a manual focus lens to cover the whole event and got excellent results:

With that said i do plan to get the excellent canon 24-70 2.8 L USM lens for when i need autofocus, but for now i am very happy with my Nikkor 1970:s tele lenses that cover everything i need for taking the photos i want :)

What do you prefer auto or manual focus?
Have their been a moment when autofocus was a disadvantage for you?

söndag 21 november 2010

The very hard art of sorting images!

I want to ask you a question:
How would you grade you ability to sort through your pictures and find the best ones?

The reason i ask this is that recently i found myself being too fond of the pictures i took that day which resulted in me doing a not so good job of sorting through that days photos.
Thankfully a friend came to the rescue and told me that i had to do a better sorting job which helped me allot to be a better photographer.

As with any situation where a person tells you that you done a not so good job there is the feeling of "how dare that person tells me how to do something!", but after really thinking about it i understood that he was right i DID do a sloppy sorting job!
And that is one of the most important keys to being a better photographer: listen to constructive criticism and learn from it instead just ignoring what other people tell you!

In my case what i got from the constructive criticism was that i now work even harder to sort my pictures and find those great photos that people love to see!

So thank you Lund for your words, as much as it hurts to hear them i am very grateful that you took the time to tell me that i was doing a not so good job :)

How would you grade you ability to sort through your pictures and find the best ones?

fredag 19 november 2010

The canon 85mm 1.2 lens is wonderful :)

I was invited to be a dinner guest at my friend Johan Lunds place, it was a great evening and part of the fun was when i tried out his wonderful Canon 85mm 1.2 lens :)

The bokeh is just amazing and i now want one too!

Here is one of the photos from that day:

View the rest of the photos from this evening on facebook.

torsdag 11 november 2010

A short introduction to depth of field

One of the biggest reason to get a fast lens is the ability to capture a wonderfully blurred background or as its also called bokeh.
For this photo i used the wonderful Nikkor 105 2.5 manual focus lens at the wide open (2.5) setting and its looks great!

The thing one needs to understand about depth of field is that its a mathematical formula that is based on the focal length of the lens, the speed of the lens and the distance between your subject and your lens.
Lets use the 105mm lens as a example: it has a minimum focus range of one meter, that means that if you focus on a object that is one meter away and use the lens wide open you will get a wonderful blurred background like the picture beneath you.

The more you increase the objects distance the less bokeh you will get until you reach the infinity setting where everything is in focus.

The best way of learning this is to use the trial and error method where you take allot of photos and learn how this works because it is confusing at first.

When you are ready for digging deeper then there is a bunch of depth of field calculators online, apps for you smartphone for you to discover and play and really go deep into this subject.


If you feel brave also look at the massive wikipedia article:

iphone/ipod touch app:

tisdag 9 november 2010

The joy of having a geek meetup :)

whenever i can get the chance i meet up with my friends and discuss various topics, have a bite of food and drink some coffee and just have a great time.

Todays meetup was with a good friend and we talked and compared crop frame vs full frame sensors, the wonderful Canon eos 1v slr and using infrared film.

Here is the picture of the day:

måndag 8 november 2010

My new creative and fun project :)

Hi there, its time to resurrect this blog again and so i though why not do that with a fun announcement:

I have been feeling under-stimulated lately so as a remedy and a portal to more fun and being more creative here is my new project:

I am creating my own deck of cards, 52 regular and three joker and a box to put them in :)
I am going to select 54 of my photos and choose four themes that has yet to be decided.

Here is a very rough look at a card i created in order to get a idea of the look and feel of them:

The background for this project is that i got into my creative mode when viewing a picture of a set of playing cards and thought that i can do that too!
So as a way to get more creative and find a excuse to learn indesign again i decided to start this project and do by absolute best to actually finish it too!
Its going to be a fun ride and i have set my pre-new years goal to be allot better with starting and finishing stuff i get involved with!

More info and the progress of this project will be posted regularly (that is my aim!)

måndag 9 augusti 2010

Playing around with macro extension tubes..

I was listening to TWIT live http://live.twit.tv/ and felt my photographic inspiration kicking in, so i decided to find a item and use macro extension tubes to get VERY close to it.
As i was preparing my tripod and remote shutter i remembered that a friend of mine borrowed me his M42 extension tubes, and since i have a pentacon 135mm 2.8 MC M42 lens i decided to see how closer i can get when connecting 2 sets of extension tubes on the lens.

So i looked around and found a standard metal flashlight and made it my subject, it turned out to be a good subject with nice amount of details.

This was my setup:

Canon 50D connected to a tripod and a remote shutter cord.
On the camera i first mounted the canon extension tubes, then i mounted the m42 tubes on to a m42 to eos adapter and finally connected the Pentacon lens on the m42 tubes.

Using live view i found my subject and composed the picture and made sure that my focus was spot on.
Since i was taking more light away by using two extension tubes i also used a headlamp for a extra light source.
I then set the aperture to f16 and took a test shot, then another one and finally the one i liked the most.
Here is the shot of the object i chose and the area that the macro shot was focused on:
Click on the image to see in a bigger size.

Here is the macro shot of the highlighted area:

Click on the image to see in a bigger size.

The result was amazing considering how closer i got with using two sets of extension tubes at the same time, also having 15 megapixels to play with really allowed me to get a really close view of a normal item that i happened to have on my desk.

What is your experience with macro photograpy?
What method do you use for taking macro photos?

If you have a macro photo you like allot then please share it by posting a link to it :)

tisdag 27 juli 2010

Kelby worldwide photowalk in Gothenburg

Last Saturday (24th July) i joined my fellow photographers on the 2010 Kelby worldwide photowalk and while i had a good time i do have some thoughts on why these bigger (max 50 people per group) meet-ups doesn't work for me as a source for taking good photos.

Here is some background to my argument:

Last year was the first time i went to the Kelby event and while i did meet many people that i now can call very good friends i also found it to be a less then optimal situation for taking photos i consider memorable and great.
The reason for this is that in our group we were almost 40 photographer and it felt like speed dating where there was a short time to meet and see if we matched enough to have a conversation.
It also didn't help that it rained throughout the whole photowalk which made it allot harder take photos of good subjects and protecting the camera from rain!
The best part was that i met many new people including some that i consider really good friends :)
All in all i did despite the rain and the too large group size enjoy the 2009 Kelby photowalk.

The 2010 Kelby photowalk was allot more fun thanks to a smaller group of people, excellent weather, meet new people and a good route to walk through.

So all in all i still highly recommend the Kelby worldwide photowalks and if you see it as a place to meet new people and allot less about taking good photos you will have a great time!

Did you attend this years Kelby photowalk, if so how did you like it?
What is your thoughts on these kind of large group meet-ups?

torsdag 8 juli 2010

That damned wheel!

Är det inte underbart hur det finns snillen som ser en tom yta och bygger störande och en idiotisk sak på den platsen i förhoppning att folk accepterar bygget och samtidigt betalar hutlösa summor för att ta del av det hela??

Det är det scenariot som vi har haft i Göteborg sedan ett par månader sedan skiten kom igång!

Låt mig börja från början:

Vid hamnen (Lilla bommen) så finner man Göteborgs operahus, bredvid den finns en yta för dom med båtar att parkera och passa på att visa upp sin farkost och mittemot hamnen finns Femmanhuset som är ett stort shopping centrum.
Runt detta område var det förut en tom yta och för en fotograf så var detta en bra plats att fota på då man kunde ställa sig en bit bort och få med operan, hamnen samt andra områden runt omkring utan att ha allt för mycket distraherande hamnar objekt i bilden.
Detta tyckte Göteborg & Co (http://www2.goteborg.com/default.aspx?id=6863) inte allt om så dom byggde ett groteskt och mycket störande pariserhjul mitt i mellan femmanhuset och operan.
Inte nog med att det är groteskt, det kostar också 85kr för en tur!

Så häromdagen så sade en ickefotograf kompis till mig att han ville åka på den och insisterade att om han stod för notan så måste jag åka med! Så efter lite tjatande så accepterade jag hans erbjudande och off we went!

Turen varar ungefär 10-15 minuter, 4 eller 5 varv snurrar hjulet och man blir bjuden på ett fågelperspektiv av staden, så jag den eviga fotograf jag är tog en bunt foton och fann att när man är som högst upp så kan man ta fina fotografier och fånga staden i en ovanlig vinkel (om man nu inte har tillgång till en helikopter som flyger på låg höjd!).

Summa summarum är att jag är fortfarande lika skeptisk till bygget, jag skulle inte betala 85kr för en tur och det är fortfarande ett förskräckligt hjul!


Is not it wonderful how there are geniuses who see a blank space and builds a disturbing and idiotic thing on the site in the hope that people accept the building while paying exorbitant amounts of money to take part of it all?

That is the scenario that we have had in Gothenburg a couple of months ago when this thing started!

Let me start from the beginning:

At the port (Lilla bommen) one finds the Gothenburg Opera House, next to it is an area for those with boats to park and take the opportunity to showcase their craft, opposite the harbor Femmanhuset, which is a major shopping center.
Around this area it used to be a empty space, and as a photographer i found that this was a good place for taking photos when you could stand a bit away and get to the opera, the port and other areas around it without too much distracting object in the picture.
Göteborg & Co (http://www2.goteborg.com/default.aspx?id=6863) disagreed with this state so they built a grotesque and very disturbing Ferris wheel between the Femmanhuset and the opera.
Not only is this grotesque, it also costs 85kr for a ride!

So the other day a non-photographer friend of mine said that he wanted to go on it and insisted that if he paid my cost i would have no choice and have to go with him! So after some nagging so I accepted his offer and off we went!

The tour lasts approximately 10-15 minutes, four or five laps spins the wheel and you get invited in a bird's eye view of the city, so being that i am the eternal photographer i took a bunch of photos and found that when you are in the top so you can take good photographs and capture the city in an unusual angle (this is if you do not have access to a helicopter flying at low altitude!).

All in all, I remain equally skeptical of the building, I would not pay 85kr for a ride and there is still a terrible wheels!

Här är bilden jag blev mest nöjd med från hjulet/here is the picture that i was most satisfied with from the wheel.

Klicka på bilden för att se din i en störra storlek/click on the picture to see it in a larger size.


söndag 4 juli 2010

Exif of no exif...

Vilken lins använde du för att ta den bilden??

Den frågan ställs alldeles för ofta om du frågar mig!

Effekten av att folk tittar mer på vilken utrustning som används istället för att se vad bilden föreställer, det är trots allt själva bilden som är poängen och inte om en proffskamera eller plastkamera som används för att ta den.
En annan sak som jag slutat med på flickr är att överförklara saker, jag låter bilden tala för sig själv genom att inte beskriva den med ord förutom med en titel och vill man veta var bilden är tagen så hänvisar jag till taggarna på bilden.

För att summera saken: låt bilden tala för sig själv!


What lens did you use to take that picture??

That question is asked way to much if you as me!

The effect is that people look to often at the gear that is used instead of seeing the picture itself, even though the whole idea is to look at the picture and enjoy it and not if a pro DSLR och a plastic camera was used to take the picture.
Another thing that i dont do anymore on flickr is to over explain the picture by adding a description, instead i let the picture speak for it self and only add a title, and if you must know where the picture was taken them look at the tags of the picture.

To sum it up: let the picture speak for it self!

måndag 28 juni 2010

Otroligt ljus!/Amazing lighting



På mitt första Kiruna besök så var jag där under hösten och upplevde vad jag tyckte var helt otroligt kvalitet på ljuset speciellt för att vara vinter säsongen!
Denna gång reste dit under sommar perioden och wow! vilket underbart ljus!
När solen tittade fram kom framträdde ett ljus som är helt makalöst underbart!
Vad som är ännu mer makalösare är vilken karaktär nattljuset har, bilderna ovan demonstrerar hur snyggt det är och det faktum att det är mitt i natten men det är så ljust ute!
Det ska tilläggas att trots så underbart ljus så föredrar jag det mera normala förhållanden som vi får i söder där det ändå blir mörkt om natten och då vi får iaf lite ljus under vintertid medan norr boende folk får i stort sett bara mörker under vinterperioden.

On my first Kiruna visit during autumn i experienced what i thought was a amazing quality of light especially for it being during the winter season!
This time i went there during summer season and wow! what a amazing light!
What is even more amazing is the character the nightlight has, the pictures above demonstrates how amazing it is and the fact that it is in the middle of the night but its still so bright outside!
Its worth mentioning that despite the wonderful light i prefer the more normal state where we in the south get dark night and where we also get a limited amount of sun during wintertime while northern living people have almost always dark during the winterperiod.

söndag 27 juni 2010

På den näst sista dagen på min Kiruna resa så åkte vi och åt middag på en thai resturang, god mat, gott sällskap samt fint tillfälle för ett foto :)

On the next to last day on my Kiruna trip we went and had some dinner in a thai restaurant, good food, good company and a nice opportunity for a photo.

lördag 26 juni 2010

My second attempt to do a hopefully regular blog

So here i am again, setting up a blog that i aim to maintain a regularly with my thoughts on taking photos.
So here starts another adventure :)