Archive for May, 2011

On vacation next week- heading to Lake Tahoe region…..

Posted in Captain's Personal Log, Photography, Reviews, Travel, Video on May 26, 2011 by William Hooks

I plan to put my D5100 and microphones, Zoom H4N and other video gear to work and do some backpacking, exploring the possibilities with my GoPro wearable camera and not spending one minute thinking about medicine or radiology!

Continuing preparations to travel to China in mid-July, spending time in several cities including Nanjing and Shanghai and documenting the experience of a foreigner seeing the country for the first time. Probably I’ll stick to noodles for the whole trip…..

The preliminary experience with the upgrade to Adobe Premiere Elements 9 has been generally very good, I think this is a practical video editing software option for many people at an intermediate to moderately advanced level. And the price -less than $100 with rebate- is definitely right.

Followup: Nikon D5100 evaluation

Posted in Photography, Reviews, Video on May 19, 2011 by William Hooks

I’m delighted to find that this camera’s small and light form has already made my videography life much easier. I can mount it on a boom and maneuver in a way which would be much less practical with D3 -sized cameras.  The battery life in normal temperatures has proven to be more than adequate for my needs, noting that I carry at least one spare.  Availability of very high-capacity SDXC cards which are compatible with this camera allows for realistic application of its longer clip recordings, up to 20 minutes.

Clearly its low-light capacity is not in the same class as the D3s. I don’t use its viewfinder much, not only because it seems inferior to the FX models but the articulated screen works very well- and I can use  the same monitor loupes with all 3 HD-DSLR’s as they’re  3-inch diagonal size.

Some remaining potential issues for my kind of use: how does the battery behave in very cold weather? What about the durability of its shutter? More testing will tell.

Samsontech Zoom H4N portable audio recorder

Posted in Video on May 17, 2011 by William Hooks

Added this unit to my tool bin  recently and I’m inpressed with the features, and small form factor. Once I get some more experience with syncing audio and video tracks on Adobe Premiere Elements 8, I plan to post a review.

Incidentally, I plan to update to PE9 as soon as practical for these reasons: first, it allows direct integration with my cameras for file transfer. Second, it reportedly offers smoother operation overall; third, as with Lightroom it ‘s now possible to output directly to Facebook. In summary- faster, more practical workflow and that’s especially important with video versus stills.

Do yourself a favor

Posted in Captain's Personal Log, Science Fiction on May 13, 2011 by William Hooks

Take a few minutes sometime and watch some clips from the second episode of season 4, STAR TREK: DEEP SPACE NINE entitled THE VISITOR. It is easily found on YouTube, for example.

I’ve  enjoyed TREK since 1966, when the premiere of the first episode of the original series aired. Of all of the series, DS9 became my personal favorite. And of all of the episodes, this one stands out in my mind and my heart- and that’s saying a lot when you consider TNG ‘s classic ALL GOOD THINGS, and so many others. One of its priceless elements: the music of Dennis Mc Carthy.

If you’re able to see THE VISITOR, let me know what you think?

My first image on Trade For site

Posted in Photography on May 10, 2011 by William Hooks

We’re making some headway getting images into the Gallery there, seeking

actors for headshots. (Nikon D3, 24-70mm f/2.8 Nikkor @ 35mm)

First week with the Nikon D51C (5100): an early review

Posted in Captain's Personal Log, Music, Photography, Photojournalism, Reviews, Travel, Video on May 6, 2011 by William Hooks

So far I have these observations:

– The Selective Color and Color Sketch Effects modes seem most appealing to me, partly because I enjoy their looks and partly because, like the others, they can be applied either in capture (with Live View) or retouching JPEG’s already shot.

-Having native ISO to 6400 available is expected to be very useful for my style of shooting- both stills and video.

-Ergonomics seem very good, although distinctly different in some ways from my pro bodies. I find that the button placements are generally very intuitive given the presense of the articulated screen and have been easy to use. I like the operation of the LV lever, it would be nice if there were a concentric video button as with the D7K – a minor issue.

– I intend to work with this camera mounted to a Matthews or Manfrotto SuperClamp, since it allows remote triggering.

-The layout of the left panel output access ports is appealing. Having a GPS-ready camera this size is exciting and like the new Nikon ME-1 microphone, the GP-1 doesn’t have an internal battery (to fail or corrode). I’m going to look for that microphone and evaluate its features as soon as available.

– Shutter lag is definitely much greater that with my pro bodies and AF is slower to much slower, very much depending on lens choice. I ‘ll experiment more with my upper-end FX lenses in coming weeks to evaluate how much of a factor that may be, should I try shooting limited sports with this camera.

– The  AC adapter has eliminated battery life as a factor in the studio , or where a generator is available.

-I’m definitely going to scarf that 12-24mm f/4 DX from Grant to use in the backcountry…..

Gallery 2

Posted in Photography, Photojournalism, Studio Portraiture, Travel on May 4, 2011 by William Hooks

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Gallery 1

Posted in Photography, Photojournalism, Studio Portraiture, Travel on May 4, 2011 by William Hooks

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.